Atlas Cedarwood

Cedrus Atlantica


The Atlas Cedar is a very tall, majestic, pyramid-shaped tree that grows in the Atlas Mountains in Algeria and can live for up to 2,000 years. The tree is prized for its scented wood, which is insect repellent and used for making chests, closets, and other furniture for storing precious items because it naturally repels vermin. Atlas Cedarwood oil was used in ancient Egypt for embalming bodies for mummification and the wood was used for sarcophagi. The tree is endangered and so the essential oils is very precious, and pricey.

Responsibly-sourced essential oil is derived from woodchips and sawdust that is left over from wood used in making furniture and traditional handicrafts. The trees take around 20 years to reach maturity before they are harvested. However, the entire process from planting to harvesting is overseen by the Moroccan government to ensure sustainability.

Unlike all the floral scents I have featured so far in Feels and Flowers, the scent of Cedarwood Atlas is a little on the masculine and woodsy side, which I personally prefer.

Cedarwood: Ancient Traditions

An oil with a long history and a wide range of benefits. Unfortunately the tree is endangered, hence it is expensive. There are other varieties you may consider using which still have many excellent properties.

Atlas: Good for skin and respiratory problems: acne, joint inflammation, dandruff, cough, and stress (see more below in the Key Benefits section). This type of cedarwood is most commonly used to make colognes and perfumes because it has a sweeter smell than all the other types of cedarwoods.

Himalayan: Similar to Cedarwood Atlas both in aroma and benefits, but with a sharper scent. It is especially good as a stimulant as well as an antiseptic, so it is best used to treat mentail ailments related to depression, anxiety, etc, as well as to help treat respiratory-related issues. However, because of possible hormonal interactions, the use of this type of cedarwood oil should be avoided if you are pregnant. 

Virginian/Red: Good for skin ailments: acne breakouts, oily skin, redness, irritation, eczema, and psoriasis. It can also double as an expectorant and antiseptic. With its crisp, woody, newly-sharpened-pencil smell, it is commonly used to treat stress, nervousness, and anxiety. Note of interest: this is actually not a true cedar; it is actually distilled from a type of Juniper.

Texas: Good for immune support, hair and skin issues, as well as circulatory issues. Has a softer, sweeter scent.


Blends Well With

  • Bergamot
  • Black pepper
  • Clary Sage
  • Cypress
  • Frankincense
  • Jasmine
  • Juniper
  • Lavender
  • Lemon
  • Neroli
  • Rose
  • Rosemary
  • Sandalwood
  • Vetiver
  • Ylang-ylang

Key Benefits

  • Astringent
  • Antiseptic
  • Anti-inflammatory: has more sesquiterpenes than any other essential oil
  • Warming
  • Relieves pain: helpful for arthritis
  • Insect repellent
  • Skin conditions: oily skin, acne, eczema, dermatitis, fungal infections, ulcers, wounds, psoriasis, dandruff, and athlete’s foot
  • Hair health: balances oily hair and promotes hair growth
  • Contracts and tones tissue
  • Circulatory stimulant
  • Urinary system
  • Supports respiratory health: loosens and removes mucus. Use for bronchitis, coughs, colds, flu, etc
  • Aids detox: stimulates the flow of lymph and reduces water retention
  • Relieves menal strain and depression and any other feelings of negativity
  • Aids in focus
  • Men: Aphrodisiac


Generally safe as long as it is properly diluted. 

Do not confuse with White Cedar (aka Thuja, Thuja Occidentalis). Thuja essential oil is unsafe to use, and has been found to cause seizures.

Topical Application

Restore Normal Oil Production

Apply to face and neck in upward motions at night after washing skin. Avoid exposure to the sun for 12 hours after using. <1% dilution:

  • 4 drops Tea tree
  • 2 drops Lemon
  • 2 drops Cedarwood
  • 1 drop Rosemary
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) Grapeseed oil
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) Jojoba

Congestion Ease

3% dilution. Chest massage and throat. Women can also use this to rub on lower abdomen to help regulate menstural cycle:

  • 9 drops Cedarwood
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) carrier oil

Skin Problems

1% dilution for face prone to redness, acne, or itching:

  • 3 drops Cedarwood
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) carrier oil OR lotion

Rapunzel Hair

2% dilution. Massage some of this oil into scalp. Leave in overnight or 1-6 hours before rinsing off. PS: If you already have oily hair, you might want to use the shampoo recipe instead.

  • 3 drops Cedarwood
  • 3 drops Lavender
  • 3 drops Rosemary
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) Castor Oil
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) Argan Oil



Diffusing Blends

Focus 1

  • 2 drops of Cedarwood
  • 2 drops of Rosemary
  • 1 drop Peppermint

Focus 2

  • 2 drops Cedarwood
  • 2 drops Lavender
  • 2 drops Vetiver


  • 15 drops Eucalyptus
  • 10 drops Cedarwood
  • 8 drops Peppermint

Chill out, will ya?

  • 4 drops Cedarwood
  • 3 drops Frankincense
  • 2 drops Geranium

The Great Indoors (Room Freshener)

  • 2 drops Cedarwood
  • 2 drops Lavender
  • 2 drops Tea Tree
  • 2 drops Orange

Dreaming of BAE

  • 4 drops Cedarwood
  • 1 drop Orange
  • 1 drop Vanilla

Music Box ZzZs

  • 1 drop Cedarwood
  • 1 drop Mandarin
  • 1 drop Lavender


Mr. Sandman

  • 5 drops Lavender
  • 3 drops Cedarwood
  • 2 drops Orange


Hair Growth Shampoo

For a 1% dilution, set aside 3 oz of your regular shampoo and add the following…

  • 9 drops Cedarwood
  • 9 drops Lavender
  • 9 drops Rosemary

Mix ingredients. Store in a small bottle and use 2 or 3x a week. You can use your regular shampoo but if you want to do better use unscented shampoo that is sulfate and paraben free.


Featured in Episode 8