Cedarwood: The Benefits and Usages

The Complete Herbal Guide / Essential Oils  / Cedarwood: The Benefits and Usages

Cedarwood: The Benefits and Usages

Cedarwood Benefits

Improves Hair Growth

If you are affected by hair loss or just want longer, thicker locks, cedarwood oil may be just what you need. A study was done on 86 patients with alopecia areata. Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease causing bald patches and eventually total baldness.

A mix of 4 essential oils including cedarwood oil was massaged into the scalp daily in the test group. The control group massaged the scalp with inert carrier oils. 44% of patients in the test group showed an improvement in hair growth compared with 15% in the control group.

Any sort of massage will encourage hair growth as it increases blood flow to the area. This nourishes and oxygenates the hair roots, stimulating growth. However, the essential oil treatment gave results nearly three times higher that of the plain oil massage. The study concluded that essential oils including cedarwood oil are “a safe and effective treatment for alopecia areata”.

Promotes Focus and Improve Concentration

Cedarwood oil may help your brain focus, making it a good choice for students or the workplace. One study investigated the effect of cedarwood essential oil on children with ADHD (attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder). ADHD is characterized by a shorter than usual attention span and become distracted easily.

The participants inhaled vapor from a bottle of cedarwood oil three times a day for thirty days. The outcome was measured using ECG and a neuropsychological assessment called “Test of Variables of Attention” (TOVA). A 33% improvement was observed.

This dramatic improvement is attributed to the high concentration of sesquiterpenes in cedarwood essential oil. Sesquiterpenes improve oxygenation of brain cells.

It’s A Powerful Insect Repellant

Cedarwood oil is commonly used as an insect repellant – and the scientific evidence to support this is sound. There are numerous studies using cedarwood oil against various insect species.

One study showed that many components of cedarwood oil have insecticidal effects against the pulse beetle and the housefly. 97.5% of the insects were killed. Two naturally occurring sesquiterpenes were deemed responsible – himachalol and β-himachalene.

Another study tested its efficacy against cockroaches. It was found to have repellant power but did not kill the cockroaches. Only 63% of cockroaches were repelled so it’s best used in combination with other methods.

Finally, a study investigated the toxicity of cedar oil vapor on clothes moths. I have used this method in my own home however, it’s only been proven to kill moths in the early stage of their life cycle – the newly hatched larvae. It’s not effective against older moths.

Helps You Sleep

Many essential oils have sedative and anxiolytic effects. I was most familiar with lavender and chamomile for this purpose. However, cedarwood oil has also been shown to have sedative effects.

One study looked at cedrol, a major component of cedarwood oil. It was found to prolong sleeping time in lab rats when given along with a conventional sedative (phenobarbital)

Kills Bacteria

A study examined the antibacterial powers of various essential oils against a strain of bacteria called “streptococcus mutans”. Streptococcus mutans is mostly found in the mouth in humans and is responsible for tooth decay.

While many of the oils had no effect on the bacteria, cedarwood oil came out as #3, behind cinnamon oil and lemongrass oil. It’s suggested that it may also be effective against yeasts.

Relieves Pain and Inflammation

Cedarwood oil is commonly suggested for treating inflammatory skin conditions such as eczema and acne. It makes sense as it’s been shown to reduce skin inflammation in lab rats and also ease symptoms of arthritis.

Do Not

  • Use during the first trimester of pregnancy
  • Use on babies under 6 months

Cedarwood Uses

  • Add five drops to the bathwater to help relieve eczema
  • For a holiday air freshener, splash a few drops on a fireplace log half an hour before lighting the fire
  • Apply to cedar furniture – This restores the natural scent
  • Inhale for menstrual benefits
  • Put on cotton balls – Place these in storage areas to repel moths

Cedarwood Recipes

There are lots of different ways to use cedarwood essential oil depending on the desired effects and your own personal preferences. Here are some of the most common methods:

Cedarwood Oil Shampoo

  1. For improved hair growth, add a few drops of cedarwood oil to your shampoo (about 1 drop of essential oil for one tablespoon of shampoo).
  2. Massage this into your hair for 5 minutes
  3. Rinse as normal.

Cedarwood Oil Hair Mask

  1. Mix cedarwood oil with a carrier such a coconut or almond oil. The ratio is 1 drop of essential oil to 1 tablespoon of carrier.
  2. Massage this into the scalp for at least 5 minutes.
  3. Cover your hair with a shower cap and towel and leave for 30 minutes to absorb.
  4. Rinse as normal

Cedarwood Oil Insect Repellant

To repel insects in your home or garden, use an aromatherapy oil burner or diffuser with cedarwood oil. If you want to keep insects at bay while you’re out and about, try an aromatherapy necklace.

Cedarwood Oil For Sleep

To improve your sleep quality try a diffuser with cedarwood oil in your bedroom or add a few drops to a cloth and keep it on your bedside table.

Cedarwood Oil For Skin

To ease skin conditions such as acne or eczema, put a few drops of cedarwood oil into a warm bath and soak for 30 minutes. Alternatively, add 1 drop of cedarwood oil to 1 tablespoon of plain moisturizer and apply to the affected area.








Stacey Chillemi


I am on a mission to transform the health of millions worldwide. Check out my website at staceychillemi.com. I am a popular and recognizable health and lifestyle reporter and expert, columnist and health host. Author of The Complete Guide to Natural Healing and Natural Remedies for Common Conditions, along with 20 other published books. I am the founder of The Complete Herbal Guide and a recognized health and natural remedies expert, with over 20 years in practice as a Health Coach. I write for the Huffington Post, Huff Post, Thrive Global and Medium (Owned by Arianna Huffington). I have been a guest on the Dr. Oz Show, local news, and numerous radio shows. My focus is on natural healing, herbal remedies, alternative methods, self-motivation, food for medicine, nutrition, fitness, natural beauty remedies and the power of positive thinking.



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