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Cedrus Atlantica Bark Oil

What is "Cedrus Atlantica Bark Oil" and what is its utility?

In I.N.C.I. lists, Cedrus Atlantica Bark Oil refers to theessential oil of Atlas cedar bark. Known for its toning effect on the scalp, it is used to slow down hair loss and eliminate dandruff. Also recognised for its lipolytic properties, when applied topically, it acts on the breakdown of fatty bodies and therefore has an anti-cellulite action.

An overview of the Atlas cedar and its essential oil.

The Atlas cedar is a tree native to the Atlas, a mountain range in North Africa, and later introduced to Europe (France, Italy, Bulgaria). Immense and imposing, it can reach a height of 50 m and live between 1,000 to 2,000 years. It is rot-resistant and is part of the sacred wood trilogy of King Solomon's temple in Jerusalem (cedar-cypress-sandalwood). The Egyptians embalmed mummies with compositions of essential oil in which that of cedar held a significant place.

The essential oil of Atlas cedar is extracted by hydrodistillation from the bark of the tree, that is, by steam distillation. The principle involves heating a mixture of water and bark to evaporate the volatile molecules and collect them following condensation. This method allows obtaining two extracts, namely the hydrosol and the essential oil, with a yield of 2 to 5%. The essential oil of Atlas cedar presents itself as a viscous liquid, dark yellow in colour, with a woody smell. Its composition contains ketones (gamma-atlantone) and sesquiterpenes (beta-himachalene, alpha-himachalene, gamma-himachalene).

In terms of its therapeutic indications, this essential oil is recommended for stimulating arterial circulation. It also has lipolytic properties, hence its presence in certain anti-cellulite treatments.

The virtues of Atlas Cedar essential oil for skin and hair.

Due to its biochemical composition, this essential oil offers numerous benefits.

  • As a scalp tonic, it combats hair loss.

    The termalopeciais the scientific term used to describe hair loss. As a reminder, this phenomenon is normal and natural: on average, we lose between 50 and 100 hairs per day. However, it can be considered abnormal if the loss exceeds more than 100 hairs per day. The causes can be internal and external (genetics, hormonal imbalance, smoking, nutritional deficiencies, illnesses, stress, medical treatments, pollution, etc.). Several studies have highlighted a slowdown in this phenomenon in male subjects following the application of a treatment with Atlas cedar essential oil to the scalp.

  • Lipolytic, it promotes the reduction of cellulite appearance.

    The sesquiterpenic ketones found in Atlas cedar essential oil promote the breakdown of fatty substances (lipolysis). This activity is sought after in the fight against cellulite.

  • Anti-inflammatory, it soothes redness.

    An in vitro study revealed that Atlas Cedar essential oil, and more specifically the sesquiterpene hydrocarbons it contains exhibited good inhibition of 5-lipoxygenase, a protein at the start of the inflammatory cascade. This essential oil notably helps to alleviate irritations and inflammations caused by acne.

Furthermore, the dry, warm, and woody scent of this essential oil is appreciated in cosmetic care.

Atlas Cedar Bark Essential Oil: What are the contraindications?

Like the majority of essential oils, Atlas cedar oil has the potential to cause allergies (primarily due to the presence of ketones). It is not recommended for use by pregnant or breastfeeding women, as well as children. Under no circumstances should it be applied undiluted to the skin or mucous membranes. It should be mixed with a carrier oil.

Note: It is advisable to test the essential oil before using it (two drops in the crook of the elbow for at least 24 hours to ensure that there is no reaction).

In which Typology treatments can one find Atlas Cedar Bark essential oil?

Typology has developed two treatments based on essential oil from Atlas cedar bark.

  • The toning body scrub with green coffee & lemongrass is a melting exfoliating gel with micro grains of apricot kernels. It smooths, firms and tones the skin while reducing the appearance of cellulite.

  • The anti-dandruff shampoo containing 1% Piroctone Olamine and Jujube extract reduces the proliferation of dandruff, regulates flaking, and soothes scalp irritations.


  • Shinde UA & al. Preliminary studies on the immunomodulating activity of Cedrus deodara wood oil. Fitoterapia, (1999).

  • Hay IC, Jamieson M, Ormerod AD. Randomized trial of aromatherapy – successful treatment of Alopecia areata. Dermatology, (1998).

  • Baylac S, Racine P. Inhibition of 5-lipoxygenase by essential oils and other natural fragrant extracts. International Journal of Aromatherapy, (2003).


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