Cedarwood Oil For Sleep: How To Use It

Cedarwood Oil For Sleep: How To Use It

Cedarwood oil has a variety of uses. Many may recognize cedarwood in its use of warding away moths from attacking your clothes in your closet. Others may recognize its woodsy scent in colognes and aftershaves. 

Among one of its other best-known uses is in products that are centered on helping you feel relaxed and promoting a good night’s sleep. Keep reading to find out how cedarwood can help reduce feelings of tension and have you (and your baby!) feeling soothed and ready for some quality shut-eye!

What Is Cedarwood Oil? 

Cedarwood oil is an essential oil that is extracted from the cedarwood tree. This oil can be extracted from all parts of the tree, like its needles, bark, leaves, and even berries. 

Cedarwood trees are not usually found in warmer climates. They are most typically found in higher altitudes and colder temperatures. Many are reminded of cologne and aftershave with its woodsy scent when smelling cedarwood oil. 

What Is Cedarwood Oil Good For? 

You may already be aware of using cedarwood planks or clothes hangers to ward off moths in your closet. Cedarwood oil is also known for its insecticidal properties. It is used in natural bug sprays and gardens to ward off pests. 

Cedarwood has also been found to help reduce the appearance of acne and scarring with its anti-inflammatory properties.  

With its woodsy-grounding scent, cedarwood can help soothe feelings associated with jumbled nerves and tension -- and even help your sweet baby feel relaxed and ready for bed. 

Why Is Cedarwood Good For Sleep? 

Cedarwood oil is quite a multi-use oil! It helps reduce the appearance of acne and pests from damaging the clothes in your closet or veggies in your garden. 

Going back to the woodsy smell of cedarwood – if you’ve ever stepped foot in a forest, the smell of the trees can be very relaxing and comforting. Smelling cedarwood oil can take you back to that moment, where you can almost feel a gentle breeze and the tweets of birds in a forest. It is a comforting smell that increases feelings of relaxation, which we could all use a little of after all of life’s daily stresses! 

Support for Serotonin Production 

When we feel relaxed and soothed, it is easier to sleep and feel well-rested. Cedarwood oil has been found to support serotonin production through its sedative properties. Serotonin is key in keeping our moods regulated and promoting healthy sleep patterns. Our body uses serotonin to make its own natural melatonin, which we need to help us sleep. 

Reduced Feelings of Tension 

Cedarwood oil may help reduce feelings of tension. Cedarwood contains compounds known as sesquiterpenes

These compounds include calming properties that can help when you’ve had a stressful day and need to unwind. Trying to sleep after a stressful day can be stressful as well! You are watching the clock and thinking to yourself, “If I fall asleep now, I’ll have eight hours of sleep.” 

As the minutes drag by and you keep computing, your total amount of sleep reduces and your tension increases. It is not a fun cycle to go through.

Help Sleep Quality 

Even if we are getting seven to eight hours of sleep at night, it may not make a difference if we are not getting quality sleep. 

REM (rapid eye movement) sleep is essential for your body to make all its necessary repairs and stimulate your brain to process all of the thoughts and memories you have obtained from the day before. Infants and toddlers will experience more REM sleep at this age than any other.

Quality sleep is of utmost importance to our little ones as we want their body and mind to grow strong! REM sleep is also the stage where you experience most of your dreams. 

Studies have found that cedarwood oil reduces the amount of sleep disturbances. Each cycle of REM sleep can range from 90 - 110 minutes. The less trouble you have during the night, the better sleep quality you’ll experience. Better sleep quality helps you feel more rested, which of course, is key in experiencing better moods and being more productive. You know the awful feeling of a poor night’s sleep! Groggy, irritable, and you can’t work effectively because all you are thinking about is resting your help on your soft pillow. 

Promote Relaxation 

Using cedarwood essential oil can help with promoting feelings of relaxation and provides an almost sedative effect when inhaled. Studies have shown that respiratory rates decrease when exposed to cedarwood. 

Think about when you are nervous or anxious. Your breathing may become rapid and shallow as you feel the pressure of whatever decision or task you have before you. When you are relaxed, you take deeper, longer breaths. This decreases your respiratory rate and helps you feel calm.. 

Relief from Discomfort 

Cedarwood oil has also been studied for its analgesic properties. Cedarwood oil can be found in massage products to help alleviate muscle aches and discomfort. 

Cedrol is another compound that is found in cedarwood. Cedrol has been found to increase dopamine levels. Dopamine is a hormone created by the body that is associated with feelings of well-being, which can help with relief from the discomfort you may be experiencing.

How Should Cedarwood Oil Be Used? 

Just like many essential oils, you can use cedarwood by diffusing its aroma so you can enjoy the scent, or you can use it topically to enjoy any physical properties the oil may have. 

Power of Scent 

The scent is a powerful sense. Scent and memory have been studied and are shown to go hand in hand with each other. One whiff of vanilla, and you’re back at your childhood home baking Christmas cookies. The smell of popcorn takes you back to fond memories of movie nights with friends. 

The power of scent may help with feelings of relaxation. When using certain scents with bedtime routines, we begin to associate these scents with feelings of peace and happiness.

Cedarwood is commonly blended with other essential oils, like lavender or ylang-ylang oils — the woodsy scent of cedarwood pairs nicely with sweet scents for an aroma that is not overpowering. When using oil blends, you can diffuse them with an oil diffuser or put a few drops on cotton balls to set them in inconspicuous areas. 

Using scents in daytime or nighttime routines can help associate certain smells with feelings. 

If you diffuse citrus or mint oil during the day, you may associate those scents with productivity and motivation. Likewise, diffusing oils like cedarwood or lavender at nighttime will help you associate relaxation and sleepiness with those aromas. 


Topically, cedarwood can help with minimizing feelings of muscle aches and discomfort. When used topically, cedarwood should be diluted with a carrier oil. 

Make sure that you patch test on a small area of skin before using it topically to ensure you do not have any reactions to the oil. Cedarwood can also be blended into shampoos, lotions, and perfumes. 

The Bottom Line 

Cedarwood essential oil is beneficial in helping with feelings of relaxation and sleepiness. It may also help reduce the time needed to fall asleep. 

Little Yawn Collective has harnessed these qualities of cedarwood oil in their NaturalSnooze fragrance, which is expertly crafted to help your little one fall asleep and stay asleep. Just like adults, when our babies don’t get quality rest, they may be cranky and irritable. 

We are also well aware that if our babies are not getting quality rest, good chances are that we aren’t either! 

Our Soothing Shampoo & Body Wash with Calendula, Nourishing Body Lotion with Oat and Shea Butter, and our Relaxing Pillow and Linen Spray contain our NaturalSnooze fragrance. 

We’ve expertly blended this fragrance to create a dreamy and cocooning effect for your little one, which has been dermatologist-tested and pediatrician-approved.  

No matter how many of our products you use, creating a relaxing environment with a consistent sleep routine will have you and your little buddy resting easy. 

Learn how Little Yawn Collective is here to make bedtime a breeze for you and your little buddy. 


Commercial Essential Oils as Potential Antimicrobials to Treat Skin Diseases | NIH 

A Systematic Review of Essential Oils and the Endocannabinoid System: A Connection Worthy of Further Exploration | NCBI

Sleep Basics: REM & NREM, Sleep Stages, Good Sleep Habits & More | Cleveland Clinic

Effects of Inhalation Aromatherapy on Symptoms of Sleep Disturbance in the Elderly with Dementia | NCBI

How scent, emotion, and memory are intertwined — and exploited | Harvard Gazette

Effect of the natural fragrance “cedrol” on dopamine metabolism in the lateral hypothalamic area of restrained rats: A microdialysis study | ScienceDirect

Autonomic responses during inhalation of natural fragrance of Cedrol in humans | NCBI 


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