Cypress essential oil is well-known for its medicinal qualities and has been used to treat various ailments over time.
It is rich in many phytochemicals and bioactive compounds like terpenes, sesquiterpenes, bornyl acetate, Linalool, and camphene, which provides this oil its healing properties. It promotes wound healing, provides relief from anxiety and even aids in toxin removal.
Read on to learn more about this unique essential oil and its therapeutic benefits.
What is Cypress essential oil?
Cypress oil is obtained through steam distillation from the leaves of the cypress tree, which is a needle-bearing tree that grows in the coniferous and deciduous regions.
The species most commonly used to make cypress essential oil is the Mediterranean cypress, Cupressus sempervirens.
This oil is light yellow and has a unique woody, somewhat spicy and refreshing fragrance. It has natural antimicrobial, antiseptic, antispasmodic, stimulating, and astringent qualities.
The main components of cypress essential oil are a-pinene, camphene, sabinene, b-pinene, d-3carene, myrcene, a-terpinene, terpinolene, linalool, bornyl acetate, cedrol, and cadinene.
History of cypress essential oil
The cypress tree has been regarded as a medicinal tree since medieval times. It has also been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries.
The cypress tree can live up to 1,000 years. Its scientific name includes the word ‘sempervirens’ which is the Latin word for ‘lives forever.’
Avicenna, an influential Persian physician, mentions the use of this tree for treatment of gout, arthritic pain and chronic wound in his ‘Qanoon-fel-teb.’
Health benefits of cypress oil
1. Relieves pain
Cypress essential oil has antispasmodic properties, which help in dealing with problems like muscle cramps, muscle pulls and soreness caused by exercise.
It can be used to treat abnormal muscle contractions and relieving restless leg syndrome. The restless leg syndrome, which is characterized by the throbbing and wrenching spasms in legs, can lead to insomnia, difficulty in concentrating and daytime tiredness.
Cypress oil is also used to treat carpal tunnel syndrome naturally. Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when the tunnel that holds the nerves and connects the forearm to the palm and fingers gets inflamed due to overuse or hormonal changes.
Cypress essential oil improves circulation of the blood, which helps in relieving pain and cramps. Some cramps occur due to the build-up of lactic acid in the body — the diuretic properties of cypress oil help in reducing the pain caused by this condition.
2. Treats wounds and infections
Cypress essential oil has antiseptic properties and can be used to heal wounds and infections. It contains camphene, which provides it with wound healing properties.
According to a 2014 study from Egypt, cypress oil has antimicrobial and antibiofilm properties that prevent the growth of bacteria and prevents infections (1). These properties give cypress oil the ability to treat both external and internal wounds.
Cypress oil can helps to treat sores, pimples, pustules and skin infections.
3. Helps flush out toxins
Cypress oil has diuretic properties, which helps in flushing out toxins from the body. This property also helps in cleansing the liver and lowering cholesterol levels.
According to a 2007 study from the National Research Centre, Cairo, cypress oil contains three phenolic compounds known as cosmosiin, caffeic acid and p-coumaric acid, which have hepatoprotective properties.
When cypress extracts were orally administered to rats, there was a significant decrease in glutamate oxaloacetate transaminase, glutamate pyruvate transaminase, cholesterol level, and triglycerides and a substantial increase in total protein levels.
The results also showed that compounds in cypress extract contain antioxidants (2).
Cypress oil also promotes sweating which helps to remove toxins, excess water and salt from the body which also helps to open up skin pores and cleans them up, which helps to prevent skin problems like acne.
4. Relieves stress
Cypress essential oil also helps to get rid of the feelings of stress and anxiety. It stimulates the mind and uplifts the mood to produce a sense of confidence and optimism.
It is beneficial for people under tension as it can encourage feelings of well-being and happiness. Cypress essential oil is also helpful for people who have difficulty in sleeping.
5. Promotes blood clotting
Cypress essential oil can stop excessive flow of blood in the event of an accident or an injury. It is a hemostatic agent, which means it helps in controlling the blood flow. It is also a styptic agent, which means it constricts the blood vessels, which helps in stopping excessive flow of blood.
These two qualities of cypress essential oil help in healing cuts, wounds and sores quickly. These qualities of cypress oil also help in reducing heavy menstrual flow and can also treat natural fibroids and endometriosis.
6. Treats respiratory conditions
Cypress oil manages chest and nasal congestion and helps to eliminate the phlegm that builds up in the respiratory system. Since it is also an antispasmodic agent, it helps in the treatment of asthma and inflammation of the bronchi.
This oil is also an antibacterial agent, and it helps in the treatment of respiratory infections that cause bacterial overgrowth. Camphene, a compound present in cypress oil can inhibit the growth of nine bacteria and yeasts according to studies.
These properties of cypress oil make it a natural and safe remedy for clearing up cold and congestion.
Veins do the critical job of returning blood that lacks oxygen back to the heart. The tiny valves in the veins prevent the blood from flowing backward.
However, as we age, these valves weaken, and this can cause the valves to weaken and the blood to flow back and pool. This leads to varicose veins.
Since cypress oil improves blood circulation, it can be used topically to treat varicose veins.
8. Reduces cellulite
Cellulite is a health condition in which the skin develops areas with underlying fat deposits, which give it a dimpled and lumpy appearance. Essential oils like cypress oil can help eliminate this fat by removing toxins that accumulate in fat cells.
When we use cypress oil topically, it helps to boost circulation to support balanced fluid levels in the body’s tissues. Massaging the affected areas with coconut oil helps to get rid of cellulite effectively.
9. Natural deodorant
The spicy and masculine fragrance of cypress oil can easily eliminate body odor and life up your spirits. This oil also has antibacterial properties that make it an excellent natural deodorant.
10. Improves skin health
The astringent properties in cypress oil cause the skin to contract. Since it also improves blood circulation, applying cypress oil can give skin a smooth feel and a vibrant look.
The astringent property of cypress oil also makes the gums, muscles and hair follicles to contract. This property makes the muscles stronger and prevents the teeth and hair from falling out.
Different ways to use cypress essential oil
1. Inhale it
You can inhale it directly or vaporize cypress oil with the help of a diffuser. Inhaling this oil helps to calm your mind and to alleviate anxiety. Inhaling cypress oil can also help treat respiratory conditions such as asthma and bronchitis.
Add 3 to 5 drops of cypress oil in a bowl of boiling water and inhale it to take care of your phlegm.
2. Massage with it
You can use diluted cypress oil as a massage oil to treat cramps, muscle pulls, sprains, varicose veins, and cellulite. You can also add a few drops of this essential oil to your bath water.
3. Add it to your cream or shampoo
You can also add it to your cream or lotion to help improve your skin. Add a few drops to your shampoo to make your hair healthy and strong.
3. Deodorize with it
Dilute this oil and use it as a deodorant. You can also add it to your foot soak to clean and deodorize sweaty feet. Add some drops of this essential oil to a spray bottle and spray it around your house.
Side effects and precautions
Do not use cypress essential oil internally. This oil is generally considered safe for use topically and aromatically. Always mix it with a carrier oil before you apply it on your skin. Before you use this oil for the first time, apply it on a small patch of your skin to ensure you are not allergic to it.
Since there not enough research on the effects of cypress oil on children and pregnant and breastfeeding women, they should avoid using it.
Always purchase 100 percent pure and organic cypress oil from a reputable source. Store it in a cool and dark place.
Cypress essential oil is extracted from the cypress tree. This light yellow oil has a woody, spicy and refreshing aroma. It helps to alleviate stress and improve mood.
It also helps to relieve pain caused by muscle cramps and pulls, treats wounds and infections, improves blood flow, addresses respiratory conditions, treats varicose veins and cellulite and promotes skin health.
While it is safe to use cypress oil topically and aromatically, it should never be ingested. Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding and young children should avoid using this oil.