Cedar, a woody fragrance

Cedar, or Cedarwood to give it its correct name, is likely to be a familiar smell to most people. If you were to smell it now, you would probably be transported back to your school days and the smell of a brand new pencil. This is because it is the wood used to make pencils. It is a fresh scent with hints of resin.

The leaves are found on slow-growing evergreen conifer trees in the Atlas Mountains of Morocco as well as in Virginia, USA. They are harvested and steam-distilled to produce the oil.

On occasion, the roots and the wood of the tree are also used, however this raises some environmental questions, therefore there is now a fair amount of synthetic cedar-like notes which can be used in fragrances as an alternative to give some depth to the scent.

Cedar – Woody
Fragrance Wheel

The Oil in Aromatherapy

This wood is well known for its calming and balancing properties, along with its antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, it is a popular aromatherapy oil. The anti-inflammatory properties are used for skin complaints and can be beneficial for acne. Its calming properties can also aid sleep and aromatherapists suggest adding a few drops of oil to a warm bath before going to bed.

Other uses for Cedar oil

Not only is the oil used for aromatherapy and well being purposes, it can also be found on the ingredients list for many other household products such as insect repellent, shampoo and deodorant.

It is also a popular ingredient in men’s colognes. Its woody scent is also soothing so it is often added to aftershaves. If you would like to use the oil as a fragrance in its own right, it would need to be diluted first and then it can be dotted gently behind the ears, on the wrists or underarms. Alternatively a few drops may be mixed with whichever other beauty products you use.

In perfumery this important wood gives vibration to the fragrance and supports what is known as the Olfactory pyramid.  This means the scent blends across the perfume from the top notes through the heart notes and right down to the base notes. It is becoming more widely used and popular in fragrances for both men and women.

Men’s Fragrances containing Cedarwood