Cedarwood Essential Oil: Uses, Benefits, and Precautions
Remember the smell of grandmother's cedar chest? Cedarwood essential oil (Juniperus virginiana) is a lot like that: warm, soft, grounding, comfortable. And although it's still good for repelling moths, it has many other uses and benefits for health and wellness, too.
It's most frequently used for the nervous and respiratory system, but it is supportive of the urinary system as well. The oil itself is extracted through a careful process of steam distillation of the wood, leaving the woody aroma.
- Supports and maintains healthy respiratory function
- Helps skin recover quickly
- Promotes clear, healthy skin
- Relaxing and soothing aroma is perfect for massage
Cedarwood essential oil benefits our nonphysical bodies as well. Emotionally, cedarwood is said to have a grounding, calming affect on the nervous system and is thought to have the spiritual affect of bringing people together. It may help individuals feel strong and confident in themselves, while still reaching out for connection and support from those around them, both rooting a person and opening their heart.
In this way it may support a person in overcoming tendencies to hide away, to hold their cards close to their chest, or to mistrust. It may help create a sense of community and healthy relationship boundaries, or give a person the strength to examine their struggles with others, either personally or on a whole.
How to Use Cedarwood Essential Oil
Traditionally, cedarwood essential oil uses these application guidelines. Click the banner to understand what each symbol means and to learn how each is used safely and effectively:
Precautions of Cedarwood Essential Oil
Use with caution during pregnancy, particularly in the 1st trimester. Always test for skin sensitivity prior to widespread use and use on the feet when possible. Excessive use of any oil can lead to skin sensitization. Keep out of eyes, ears, or nose. Not all oils are created equal, so test brands carefully, and never use an oil in a way not recommended by its maker.
Popular Uses of Cedarwood Essential Oil
- Diffuse after a stressful day to relax the mind and body.
- Use with a carrier oil in massage therapy.
- Add 1–2 drops to facial toner or moisturizer for added clarifying properties.
- Inhale directly or diffuse to promote healthy respiratory function.
Inspiration for Using Cedarwood Essential Oil
Make a Sleepy Time Rub! Whip together 1/3 coconut oil with 12 drops Lavender, 12 drops Cedarwood, 6 drops Wild Orange essential oils. Place in glass storage container with an air tight lid. Massage on bottoms of feet or back before bedtime.
IMPORTANT NOTE ON QUALITY
Not all oils are created equal. Because of a lack of industry standards and a lack of regulation on terms such as "natural" or "pure", much of what you find at the drug store is NOT a therapeutic grade of essential oil and may lack real quality or even contain contaminants or adulterants (way more common than you'd think).
A LOT goes into creating a high quality essential oil. A good brand should follow these guidelines:
- Proper plant varieties
- Each plant grown indigenously for the healthiest plant
- Grown without chemical pesticides, herbicides, etc
- Harvested with precise timing to ensure peak properties
- Extracted with proper temp and pressure to preserve oil molecules
- Third-party testing of every batch
- Stand behind the internal use of their oils