This or That: Italian Cypress vs. Blue Cypress

by Annie Mascia September 26, 2022

This or That: Italian Cypress vs. Blue Cypress


Cypress rose to fame well before Van Gogh's numerous paintings of Cypress trees. Famous for their longevity, historically, Cypress trees hold spiritual significance. The trees grow tall and point straight upward, and were thought to help the newly departed make their way to heaven more easily. 

Found throughout subtropical regions of Asia, Europe and North America,[1] many grow in a conical shape up to 80 feet tall. In the Cypress family, there are 12 species of evergreen conifer.

In this guide we will compare two Cypress species used to produce essential oils: 

  • Italian Cypress (Cupressus sempervirens) 
  • Blue Cypress (Callitris intratropica) 

Cypress Vs Blue Cypress Essential Oil

The differences and similarities between these two delightfully fragrant Cypress essential oils are many including where they grow and what plant part is used to make their respective essential oils. 

While these oils have some resemblance to each other, there are several differences. One striking distinction is their color. While Italian Cypress has a clear constitution, Blue Cypress oil from Australia is a captivating pale light blue. Even this subtle difference hints at the benefits these oils offer.

Another contrast between the oils is the plant part used to make their corresponding essential oils. Italian Cypress is made by steam distilling its leaves, cones and twigs. With Australian Blue Cypress oil, the wood is steam distilled. 

We can relate these plant parts to our bodies, supplanting where the strength of each oil lies in the tree itself. For example, leaves have a vital responsibility to assist plants with respiration. Likewise, oils made from the leaves of plants tend to support the respiratory system and fortify the lungs. Furthermore, the wood is the structure of a tree that gives it fortitude, strength and musculature but also influences its external appearance. In correlation to wood’s purpose in trees, oils derived from wood are known for their ability to aid the skin as well as mollify joints and muscles. Wood oils are also capable of grounding oneself when feeling unsettled emotionally. 

Italian Cypress Essential Oil (Cupressus sempervirens)

Cypress essential oil is distilled from the leaves, cones and twigs of the Cypress tree and is cultivated along the Mediterranean. When distilled, this oil comes out crystal clear and has an elegant, slightly smoky, woodsy aroma with hints of pine. 

It is also referred to as Italian or Mediterranean Cypress. Italian Cypress is a middle note which signifies that its aroma will not make itself immediately known in a blend - coming into the forefront only after the top notes have drifted off. 

Cypress properties include:

  • Antiseptic
  • Reduces overactive sweat glands
  • Circulation
  • Eases tension
  • Respiratory support

Because of its thin consistency and high monoterpene content, Cypress is best known for its ability to assist clear breathing and safeguard your health during seasonal shifts. It also “possibly demonstrates a deodorant effect by inhibiting the growth of the bacteria that lead to body odor.”[2] 

It has a shelf life of three years and may easily oxidize so be sure to keep the cap on your essential oils to reduce oxidation. You can also easily extend its shelf life by keeping Cypress essential oil away from heat and direct sunlight and by storing it in a cool dark place.

Because of its ability to alleviate chest tension, Cypress is a wonderful addition to chest rubs. To make your own, combine 1 oz carrier oil such as Jojoba, 5 drops of Cypress (Cupressus sempervirens), 4 drops of Eucalyptus- Globulus and 4 drops Frankincense (Boswellia carterii).

This oil blends especially well with base notes and resinous oils such as Frankincense as well as:

Safety Note: This oil is non-toxic and non-irritating unless oxidized where it could cause skin irritation/sensitization. Italian Cypress is also safe for kids ages 2 and up. 

Blue Cypress Essential Oil (Callitris intratropica)

Blue Cypress essential oil is cultivated in Australia, steam distilled from its wood and has a dazzling blue tinge that arises during the steam distillation process due to the constituent guaiazulene. Guaiazulene has been touted as an anti-inflammatory[3] compound similar to chamazulene found in Chamomile- German. 

It's a slightly thicker essential oil with a subtly sweet, smoky and woodsy aroma. This oil is a base note derived mostly from its sesquiterpenol and sesquiterpene content. As a base note, it's a great fixative for essential oil blends and its long shelf life of eight years can extend the life when added to blends with top note oils. As with all essential oils, we advise storing them away from sunlight and heat. 

This dazzling blue oil has been used for thousands of years among the Aboriginal people of Australia for its anti-inflammatory, analgesic (muscles, joints and abdominal pain) and antibacterial actions.[4] This species of blue gold oil is exceptional to add to blends for the skin - assisting with the reduction of irritation, redness, oily skin and itchiness and mollifying skin conditions such as psoriasis, hives and even bug bites. Blue Cypress has the potential benefit of reducing inflammation and hypervascularity of psoriasis.

The Aboriginal people also give a history of using Blue Cypress to relieve achy muscles and joints by reducing inflammation and swelling of arthritic conditions. We recommend combining it in a carrier oil to massage into achy muscles and joints. To do so, mix 7 drops each of Chamomile-German and Blue Cypress and 3 drops of Black Pepper in 1 oz of carrier oil (Grapeseed, Jojoba or Tamanu).

 Blue Cypress’ properties include:

  • Analgesic (muscle and joints)
  • Anti-inflammatory (skin conditions, circulation)
  • Anti-viral
  • Anti-bacterial
  • Wards off insects & insect bites
  • Reduces soreness (muscle and joints)
  • Assists anxiety & stress relief

And that’s not all! Blue Cypress is an aromatic base note that aids those during times of emotional discomfort and unease by grounding the user while building nerve and determination - calming anxiety and reducing stress response.[6] To reduce stress make a diffuser blend by combining Blue Cypress with Bergamot and Lavender.

Blue Cypress blends well with:

Safety Note: Avoid use during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Otherwise, non-toxic, non-sensitizing and safe for children 2 and older. 


  1. Cypress
  2. Cypress oil as a deodorant and a problem with citing books as references
  3. Chemical composition and antibacterial activity of Blue Cypress Essential Oil, Callitris intratropica R. T. Baker 
  4. Essential oil and extracts from Callitris intratropica heartwood, sapwood and bark obtained by hydrodistillation, solvent extraction and headspace solid phase microextraction
  5. Purification and characterization of −(−)guaiol from the essential oil isolated by steam distillation from Callitris intratropica wood and bark
  6. Witter,Lakisha S., Effects of Aromatherapy on Academic Success, Perceived Stress and Coping Skills of Graduate Students, Minnesota State University, Mankato, 2020

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Edens Garden

September 6, 2022 at 9:26 am

Hi Donna! We can relate to kids crying at school because they don’t want us to leave! If you feel she’s mature enough, you could have her keep an inhaler of the essential oil blend and tell her to inhale it every time she needs a dose of comfort. Her mother can also wear that essential oil scent so that your granddaughter associates the smell with her mother. There are other methods as well, like having her mother write her note, or telling her that there is an invisible string connecting her to her mother so she can retain a sense of closeness to her throughout the day. Know that it gets easier, as difficult as it is now! ❤️

Donna Pressley

September 6, 2022 at 9:01 am

Hi I am looking for some oils to help my granddaughter who has just started kindergarten she has never ever been away from home I’ve kept her from since she was a baby. She is petrified at leaving her mother in the mornings and just cries and sobs begging her Mommy not to leave her.
I’ve tried different oil mixtures for her, using lavender orange lemon, bergamot, vetiver, geranium cedarwood and grapefruit. I used a 1% dilution for her. She is 5 and will be 6 in November. Would it be safe to move up to a 2% dilution?
Should I try any other oil/ oils?
Thank you for taking the time to try to help me with my granddaughter.

Edens Garden

March 17, 2022 at 10:15 am

Hi Lorie! Please contact our aromatherapists for more info:


March 17, 2022 at 10:14 am

Hi – which cypress is better when used for macular degeneration? Thanks

Edens Garden

June 30, 2021 at 8:39 am

Hi KC! Of these two oils, we would suggest Cypress though we offer quite a few oils that are more sedative and calming such as Lavender, Clary Sage, Coriander Seed, Ylang Ylang, Roman Chamomile, etc. Cypress can be used effectively for body aches and cramping.


June 30, 2021 at 8:27 am

Which one is a sedative with a calming, relaxing effect on the body? For muscle aches & cramping


May 7, 2021 at 8:01 am

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Edens Garden

March 24, 2021 at 1:39 pm

Hi Suzi! Cypress is not a suitable substitute for Blue Cypress in most cases. We may be able to offer you some alternative suggestions if you let us know what the intended purpose of the oil is 😊


March 24, 2021 at 8:05 am

Hi :) I am doing some research to use essential oils with scrubs and one of the ingredients is a few drops of blue cypress essential oil. However I cannot find any local but, found some cypress essential oil. I was wondering if I can use the cypress essential oil?