Cypress Essential Oil
- Distillation Method: Steam
- Country of Origin: Spain
- Plant Part: Needles and Twigs
- Latin Name: Cupressus sempervirens
- Cultivation: Naturally Grown
About the Oil: A beautifully crisp and softly woody aromatic, Cypress is a tonifying and gentle ‘must have’ for your aromatherapeutic supply kit.
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About The Plant
Cypress essential oil is distilled from the leaves of a tall evergreen tree with slender branches and a statuesque conical shape. Growing to a height of 25-45 meters or 75-147 feet, the Cypress bears small flowers and round brownish-grey cones or nuts. Native to Southern Europe, Italian Cypress (Cupressus sempervirens) has spread to North Africa and North America and is cultivated in France, Spain, and Morocco.
About The Oil
The essential oil is produced by steam distillation from the fresh dark green needles and twigs.
First used in ancient Egypt for medicinal and ceremonial purposes, Cypress oil was also employed by the ancient Assyrians for its astringent properties. The Greek physician Galen used it in 165 AD.
THERAPEUTICS DESCRIBED BY AROMATHERAPY SPECIALISTS
From Salvatore Battaglia’s The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy1:
Calms varicose veins
Soothes hemorrhoids & edema
Encourages internal wisdom & steadfastness
Quoting Fischer-Rizzi: “The cypress tree, standing dark and silent, is like a finger pointing to heaven! It does not indulge in needless movements, like other trees that stretch out limbs, allowing them to sway in the wind.”
Quoting Mailehebiau: “The splendor of the cypress…represents the sacred flame of life, the unchangeable, eternal essence”
From K. G. Stiles’ The Essential Oils Complete Reference Guide2:
Recommended during times of transition or mourning
Instills direction and purpose
Creative & visionary support
From Gabriel Mojay’s Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit3:
“Cypress essential oil has one the most distinct and profound psychological actions. The sour, astringent, and woody notes of the essence convey a feeling of cohesion and stability. At the same time, its fresh, coniferous pungency, and ability to circulate the Qi and blood, relate it to both psychological and real life change. Cypress oil's basic subtle action, then, is to help us cope with and accept even difficult change of both an inner and outer nature."
PROPERTIES OF CYPRESS REPORTED IN PEER-REVIEWED RESEARCH
Cypress essential oil has a high alpha-pinene content, over 60%. Some of the benefits of alpha-pinene include:
SUMMARY OF RESEARCH STUDIES
α-pinene was found to significantly reduce pain-related behavior in a pain model studied in mice.4
α-pinene was reported to have significant anti-inflammatory effects in a study on mice. The researchers suggest that α-pinene "is a potential candidate as a new drug to treat various inflammatory diseases".5
A study in mice found that α-pinene had significant anti-inflammatory activity in a model of acute pancreatitis (sudden painful inflammation of the pancreas).6
α-Pinene had significant antibacterial activity against multiple strains of Gram-positive bacteria, including Staphylococcus aureus, S. epidermidis, Streptococcus pneumoniae and S. pyogenes.7
α-Pinene, extracted from fir essential oil, was found to be responsible for its significant anti-anxiety effects in rats.8
Direct inhalation,diffuser and oil vaporizer. We like adding it to a humidifier.
The cooling effects of Cypress oil effectively balance nervous, unstable mental states. It can be inhaled periodically on a tissue or handkerchief.
Dilute to less than 10% in your favorite carrier oil and massage into sore muscles and joints, or areas of poor circulation.
The essential oil may be combined with Clary Sage, Lemon, and Geranium and applied as a salve or ointment to varicose veins.
It also blends well with Helichrysum, for an extra potent formula for muscle and joint aches and pains.
This Cypress oil has a distinct musty and citrus-like top note with a crisp, pine-like middle note and sweet balsamic undertones.
It blends well with Cedarwood, Pine, Juniper, Clary Sage, Lavender, Bergamot, Orange, Lemon, Benzoin, Cardamom, and Sandalwood.
For measuring blends using % concentrations, or for measuring fractions of milliliters, see measuring essential oils.
Non-toxic, non-irritant and non-sensitizing, Cypress oil is safe when used in proper dosages.
Always test a small amount first for sensitivity or allergic reaction. If pregnant or under a doctor's care, consult a physician.
1 Battaglia, Salvatore. The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy. International Centre of Holystic Aromatherapy, 2003.
2 Stiles, K. G. The Essential Oils Complete Reference Guide: Over 250 Recipes for Natural Wholesome Aromatherapy. Page Street Publishing, 2017.
3 Mojay, Gabriel. Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit: A Guide to Restoring Emotional and Mental Balance through Essential Oils. Gaia, 2005.
4 Him, A, et al. “Antinociceptive Activity of Alpha-Pinene and Fenchone.” Pharmacologyonline, vol. 3, 2008, pp. 363–369.
5 Kim, Dae-Seung, et al. “Alpha-Pinene Exhibits Anti-Inflammatory Activity Through the Suppression of MAPKs and the NF-ΚB Pathway in Mouse Peritoneal Macrophages.” The American Journal of Chinese Medicine, vol. 43, no. 04, 2015, pp. 731–742., doi:10.1142/s0192415x15500457.
6 Bae, Gi-Sang, et al. “Protective Effects of Alpha-Pinene in Mice with Cerulein-Induced Acute Pancreatitis.” Life Sciences, vol. 91, no. 17-18, 29 Oct. 2012, pp. 866–871., doi:10.1016/j.lfs.2012.08.035.
7 Leite, Aristides Medeiros, et al. “Inhibitory Effect of β-pinene, α-pinene and Eugenol on the Growth of Potential Infectious Endocarditis Causing Gram-positive Bacteria.” Revista Brasileira De Ciências Farmacêuticas, vol. 43, no. 1, 2007, pp. 121–126., doi:10.1590/s1516-93322007000100015.
8 Satou, Tadaaki, et al. “Anxiolytic-like Effect of Essential Oil Extracted from Abies Sachalinensis.” Flavour and Fragrance Journal, vol. 26, no. 6, Nov. 2011, pp. 416–420., doi:10.1002/ffj.2075.