38 Amazing Benefits Of Camphor (Karpur) For Your Skin, Hair, And Health January 30, 2017

Beautiful skin and crowning glory are any girl’s dream. To achieve that we follow every advice given to us.

What if I told you there is a simple ingredient which can give you great looks? Also, it is as effective as all those cosmetics you spend a fortune on! Well, we are talking about camphor, an easily available ingredient. And what more, camphor can do good to your health as well! Now you know camphor’s use is no more limited to worship.

Here’s a peek into the list of amazing benefits camphor has to offer.

Camphor- A Brief

Botanical Name- Cinnamomum camphora
Origin- Japan, Vietnam, and China
Tree Height- Up to 100 feet
Other Names- Karpur (Hindi/Marathi/Bengali/Gujarati), Karpooram (Telugu), Pachai Karpooram (Tamil), Kalpooram (Malayalam), Karpoora (Kannada), and Kappur (Punjabi)

Only 50-year-old trees can produce oil from the active component, which can be found in each and every part of the tree. And steam is used to extract camphor oil from the tree.

Chemical make-up of camphor is a combination of the following:

  • Pinene
  • Camphene
  • B-pinene
  • Sabinene
  • Phellandrene
  • Limonene
  • 1,8-cineole
  • Y-terpinene
  • P-cymene
  • Terpinolene
  • Furfural
  • Camphor
  • Linalool
  • Bornyl acetate
  • Terpinen-4-ol
  • Caryophyllene
  • Borneol
  • Piperitone
  • Geraniol
  • Safrole
  • Cinnamaldehyde
  • Methyl cinnamate
  • Eugenol

Camphor Benefits—Skin, Hair & Health

Read on to find out why camphor finds a place in skin and hair products and provides relief from many health issues.

Skin Care

  1. Relieves Skin Itching And Irritation
  2. Alleviates Pain
  3. Soothes Burns
  4. Cures Acne
  5. Treats Eczema
  6. Cures Nail Fungus
  7. Good For Filling Up Cracked Heels
  8. Soothes Skin Rashes
  9. Fungal And Bacterial Infections

Hair Care

  1. Strengthens Hair Roots
  2. Boosts Hair Growth
  3. Improves Hair Texture
  4. Fights Hair Loss
  5. Kills Lice And Bugs

Health Benefits

  1. Antioxidant Properties
  2. Works As A Stimulant
  3. Antiseptic Properties
  4. Relief From Gastric Trouble
  5. Pain Relief
  6. Anesthetic
  7. Best For Pregnant Women
  8. Aphrodisiac
  9. Anti-Neuralgic
  10. Anti-Inflammatory
  11. Sedative
  12. Decongestant
  13. Tranquilizer
  14. Treats Cold And Cough
  15. Treats Diarrhea
  16. Cures Osteoarthritis
  17. Good For Asthma
  18. Treats Spasmodic Problems
  19. Protects Against Genotoxicity
  20. Helps Treat Cardiac Failure
  21. Promotes Blood Circulation
  22. Narcotic Effects

Miscellaneous Benefits

  1. Work As An Insecticide
  2. Used In Aromatherapy

Camphor For Skin Care


Image: Shutterstock

Did you know that Ayurveda relies on the use of camphor for many of its treatments?

Camphor oil can be a panacea for skin related issues. Therefore, many skin lotions and ointments use camphor as one of the ingredients.

[ Read: Camphor Oil For Treating Acne ]

Trivia: Camphor has received the nod from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for skin care use, only if the concentration of camphor in the product is between 3 percent and 11 percent.

Whoa, that’s one impressive thing, isn’t it? Well, let’s learn about more benefits!

1. Relieves Skin Itching And Irritation

The cool and aromatic camphor can be used to alleviate skin itching and irritation. So fellas, next time you feel like scraping your skin red, apply camphor paste for instant relief.

Why Does It Work

By applying camphor on the affected areas, the compound in camphor activates the nerve endings, and this produces a soothing sensation. It not only provides relief from itching and irritation but also reduces incidences of redness on the skin (1).

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2. Alleviates Pain

Camphor can be used to relieve pain caused by sores on the skin and insect bites. It can be used as a rub and applied directly onto the skin.

Why Does It Work

The soothing and calming effect of camphor is a perfect solution for subduing the pain (2).

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3. Soothes Burns

Camphor can be used as a treatment for minor burns and can be employed to remove the burn scars as well. To do so, you need to dissolve a small quantity of camphor in water and apply on the area affected by burn or cut. This needs to be done on a daily basis till the scars disappear.

Why Does It Work

It has a super calming and cooling effect on the skin and nerves, thus bringing down the pain caused by the burn (3).

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4. Cures Acne

Did you know that you can get rid of stubborn acne by using the miraculous camphor? This compound is known to be an excellent remedy for acne as it reduces redness and irritation. I use vapor-rub on a daily basis to bring down my acne, and it works wonders, trust me!

Why Does It Work

Camphor is fantastic for acne as it works well with the skin, bringing down the pain and swelling. With the help of camphor, you can regain your flawless and blemish-free skin. Camphor is undoubtedly one of the best treatments for pimples and acne. Camphor is endowed with anti-inflammatory properties; it reduces the tendency of the skin to break into pimples and acne (4).

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5. Treats Eczema

The worship-room essential, camphor is also used to relieve eczema and control itching. This is the best remedy you can turn to when your eczema flares up, and you are looking to control the inflammation and itching.

Why Does It Work

As we already mentioned, camphor’s cooling and itch-relieving factor help keep eczema away (5).

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6. Cures Nail Fungus

Ew, growing up fungus in your toenail is both gross and painful but, using camphor paste can bring down the growth. Nail fungus can be stubborn and has a tendency to recur. If you keep treating your nails with camphor, it minimizes the chances of the fungus returning.

Why Does It Work

Camphor has been found to be effective in treating nail fungus because of its undeniable antiseptic and anti-fungal properties (6).


Image: Shutterstock

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7. Good For Filling Up Cracked Heels

Are you one of those wearing socks with all kinds of shoes to hide your cracked heel? No matter how well dressed you are, cracked heels can kill your confidence. But guess what! Camphor can soften your cracked heels.

What You Need To Do

For relief from cracked heels, you need to soak your feet in a solution of camphor and water and then scrub the feet. Following this, you may apply a cream, moisturizer or petroleum jelly on them. This will keep your skin moist and prevent cracks from occurring.

Why Does It Work

The antiseptic and cooling properties of camphor is beneficial in the treatment of cracked heels (7).

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8. Soothes Skin Rashes

Camphor, when dissolved in water, and applied on skin rashes can actually make them vanish after a couple of days of repeated use. Camphor particularly is good for skin rashes that occur due to excessive heat and perspiration.

Why Does It Work

Needless to say, camphor’s anti-inflammatory property is the reason behind its work against rashes.

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9. Fungal And Bacterial Infections

Cool and calm camphor is used in many skin ointments that are used to treat a whole range of fungal and bacterial infections.

Why Does It Work

The antifungal and antibacterial properties of camphor has made it a must use ingredient in the cosmetic industry (8).

Note: It is important to ascertain whether you are allergic to this chemical compound before using it to treat skin problems. If it does not suit you, it may aggravate the skin condition. Further, it should not be applied on broken skin. It can enter the body through the broken skin and cause poisoning, especially if the concentration of camphor in the body goes up.

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Camphor For Hair Care

Bad hair days is any girl’s worst nightmares. The culprit here is the poorly maintained hair. We girls spend so much on buying hair care products so we can have our crowning glory. And more often than not we get disappointed when they don’t satisfy our needs. What if I gave you a cheaper yet effective option? Here you go.


Image: Shutterstock

10. Strengthens Hair Roots

Hair fall is a common problem for most of us. Use of camphor oil can alleviate this issue without causing damage to the hair.

Why Does It Work

Camphor oil can reinvigorate the hair roots. Egg or yogurt combined with camphor oil can supply your hair with the much-needed nutrients. Not only does camphor oil promote hair growth, but it can also fight hair-loss (9).

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11. Boosts Hair Growth

Who doesn’t want Rapunzel-like hair? But we all know it’s easier said than done. Long hair in today’s polluted environment is more an illusion than an achievable reality. But wait, don’t give up yet for we have a solution for hair growth.

Why Does It Work

When camphor oil is combined with essential oils, it can boost hair growth. You can use any essential oil. Lavender and chamomile essential oils can leave your hair smelling fresh and fragrant (10).

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12. Improves Hair Texture

Winds and harsh heat can make our strands of hair look like a broom. Use of camphor oil can make your hair smooth and soft.

Why Does It Work

Periodic use of camphor oil can improve the texture of your hair making it soft (11).

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13. Fights Hair Loss

Use of camphor oil can reduce hair loss and boost hair growth.

Why Does It Work

Massaging the scalp and hair with camphor oil on a regular basis can boost hair growth and fight hair fall (12).

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14. Kills Lice And Bugs

Do you find yourself scratching your itchy scalp for some instant relief? You could have lice. If anti-lice shampoos have failed to help, then try camphor. They are proved to be beneficial in killing lice.

Why Does It Work

Camphor oil mixed in water can be used for bathing. It acts as an excellent cleaning and disinfecting agent. It can also kill lice and prevent infestation (13).

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Health Benefits Of Camphor


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Camphor has many health benefits. It can alleviate a range of health issues. Its aroma itself can be healing. It is well-known for its medicinal properties. In a nutshell, camphor acts as a decongestant, antiseptic stimulant, anesthetic, anti-neuralgic, sedative, and as a nervous pacifier.

[ Read: Medicinal Uses Of Camphor ]

Let’s go through all the benefits camphor offers

15. Antioxidant Properties

Camphor is known to have antioxidant properties which help in lessening the process of oxidation in the body, thus killing away free radicals which are responsible for health issues like tissue ruptures, liver diseases and cardiovascular troubles (14).

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16. Works As A Stimulant

Camphor is known to boost the activity of the circulatory system. It acts as an impetus to metabolism and improves digestion. The functioning of the excretory system too gets a boost with camphor oil. Thus, it can be used in the treatment of ailments related to metabolism, circulation, and digestion (15).

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17. Antiseptic Properties

Camphor seeds can make for a good antiseptic. You can apply a paste of the seeds to minor cuts and scrapes to ward off infection. The soothing and cooling properties of camphor prevent infection and pain (16).

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18. Relief From Gastric Trouble

Thanks to irregular eating habits and the easy availability of ready-to-eat foods, most of us fall prey to gastric troubles one day or the other. The next time you have any such trouble remember camphor.

Why Does It Work

Those with gastric problems find relief with camphor. It helps in reducing the formation of gas (17).

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19. Pain Relief

We all rub all types of balms and sprays to get rid of that joint pain or inflammation, but did you know that most of these balms carry camphor?

Why Does It Work

Camphor oil can be used for pain relief, especially for back pain. The oil also eases muscle tension because of its anti-inflammatory properties (18).

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20. Anesthetic

Numbing the sensory nerves in the area where it is applied is one of the many properties of camphor, and therefore, it can be used as a local anesthetic. It lowers the intensity of nervous disorders and helps bring some calm to victims of chronic anxiety (19).

21. Best For Pregnant Women


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Camphor is a pregnant woman’s best friend as it soothes down the muscle cramps and spasms. Rubbing it lightly on the protruding belly calms down the pain and relieves us. It is indeed a very efficient antispasmodic.

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22. Aphrodisiac

Want a healthy sex-life? Use camphor to improve your libido.

Why Does It Work

Remedies that include camphor in permitted concentration help activate those regions of the brain that stimulate desires and sexual urges. It is a powerful stimulant, so an external application of camphor oil can treat erectile dysfunction (20).

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23. Anti-Neuralgic

Camphor oil is known to treat a very painful condition called Neuralgia. Let’s see how!

Why Does It Work

Camphor oil treats this condition by helping the blood vessels contract. It can relieve the pain in the ninth cranial nerve, which is affected by the condition (21).

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24. Anti-Inflammatory

The far-reaching effects of camphor oil can reduce all types of inflammation. Application of camphor oil on the affected area can bring down swelling and reduce pain (22).

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25. Sedative

Camphor oil can help relax the body and mind. It provides a rejuvenating effect when mixed with bathing water. During summer, drops of camphor oil in water used for a bath can make you feel cool. Rubbing it on your pillow also brings a good night’s sleep (23)!

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26. Decongestant

The power and lingering aroma of camphor oil can be a good decongestant. It can instantly alleviate congestion of the nasal tracts and lungs. No surprise why many of the balms and cold rubs have camphor as one of their ingredients (24).

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27. Tranquilizer

If you suffer from acute pain, camphor can give you a respite. With its calming properties, it helps to heal the pain. But most importantly, it reduces the sensation of pain by relaxing your mind and refreshing your body (25).

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28. Treats Cold And Cough


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Camphor is found to be very effective against cold and cough. No wonder then that it is used in the preparation of vapor rubs and balms.

How To Use

There are many ways to use camphor to get rid of a cough and congestion including inhaling, rubbing and using it as a steam vaporization. Dissolving camphor in hot water for ten minutes and inhaling it via a steam can work wonders. It even soothes throat irritation and treats bronchitis.

Why Does It Work

The soothing and anti-inflammatory properties of camphor are a big reason for its effectiveness against cold (26).

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29. Treats Diarrhea

Diarrhea can be one of the most embarassing as well as tiring conditions to be in. Here’s a home remedy for you.

Why Does It Work

Intake of camphor prevents the formation of gas in your body. As such, you get rid of gas related ailments that subsequently lead to severe conditions like gastroenteritis and diarrhea (27).

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30. Cures Osteoarthritis


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Do stiff and painful joints make you feel old already?Replace your medicinal creams with camphor paste and see the difference.

Why Does It Work

Camphor used as an ingredient in creams can treat stiff joints. Along with other compounds, it relieves osteoarthritis faster. So it is an effective remedy for joint pain (28).

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31. Good For Asthma

We all know how severe asthma can be. Besides your regular medication, try camphor steam inhalation.It works!

Why Does It Work

The odor of white camphor is known to relieve asthma. Regular inhalation can largely mitigate such respiratory problems (29).

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32. Treats Spasmodic Problems

The antispasmodic properties of this medicinal substance help to calm the nerves. Aromatic camphor oil vapors are believed to promote a sense of calm by reducing stress. Camphor can also be inhaled by adding camphor to a vaporizer and inhaling the steam (30).

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33. Protects Against Genotoxicity

Camphor has found to be effective against controlling genotoxicity. There have been many tests and researches that have proved camphor’s effect on decreasing the risk of genotoxicity on animals (31).

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34. Helps Treat Cardiac Failure

Camphor, when combined with other medicines, has been known to treat cardiac failure (32). It is also useful in the treatment of the following conditions:

  • Measles
  • Flu
  • Hysteria
  • Food poisoning
  • Epilepsy

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35. Promotes Blood Circulation

We all know abnornmal blood flow in our body leads to many health problems, but thankfully for us, inhaling camphor corrects that (33).

Why Does It Work

Camphor stimulates the circulatory system. When blood circulation improves, it can alleviate rheumatic diseases, gout, and arthritis. Camphor also helps reduce the swelling of body parts.

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36. Narcotic Effects

Camphor does have narcotic effects. It can provide relaxation and momentarily desensitize the nerves. If consumed in excess, it can cause a person to lose control. The smell of camphor oil can be addictive. Many are known to get addicted to its smell or even ingest it (34).

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Miscellaneous Benefits

37. Work As An Insecticide

Camphor seeds double up as an excellent germicide, insecticide, and disinfectant. A drop of camphor oil mixed with plenty of food grains gives protection from insects. Burning a cloth soaked in camphor oil is a good way to keep bugs and germs at bay (35).

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38. Used In Aromatherapy

Camphor oil is used in aromatherapy and is often mixed with basil, Melissa, and lavender oil (36).


Image: Shutterstock

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A Word Of Caution

While camphor can lend magical properties to the skin, hair and overall health, the key to realizing its benefits rests in using it in moderation. Even a slight overdose can manifest severely in the body causing poisoning, vomiting, and drop in body temperature.

Remember to store camphor products away from children. An overdose of camphor can result in seizures in children. Usually, symptoms of overdose and poisoning show up within minutes. Overdose can causeto irritation of the eyes, skin, and mucous membranes. This can lead to diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, headache, fainting and even convulsions.

How To Use Camphor

We can use camphor in a variety of ways, let’s look at a few of them!

1. Use As Liniment

To get instant relief from pain, you can make your pain-relief spray at home by using camphor.

What You Need
  • 2 Drops of camphor essential oil
  • 1 ounce pure grain alcohol
  • 1 Glass spray bottle

Take alcohol and add the asked amount of camphor essential oil to it. Pour the solution in a glass spray bottle and store it for application on sore muscles and the area of sprains.

2. Use As Chest-Rub

You can even make your vapor-rubs at home.

What You Need
  • 1 ounce olive oil
  • 2-inch cubes beeswax
  • 3-5 drops of camphor essential oil
  • Glass jar

Start by heating up olive oil in a pan and adding beeswax to it. Stir until the wax melts. Now, add camphor essential oil in it and blend thoroughly. Store the mixture in a jar and cool it. Now, save this mixture in room temperature and use when required. The best part of this rub is its long shelf life. It can even last a year.

3. Use As Bath Soaks

Nothing relaxes you better than a long bath. But, using regular soap may not really relieve your tired muscles. So, add camphor essential oil to a tub of water and enjoy the nerve-relaxing bath. Adding 2-3 drops of this essential oil soothes sore muscles and enhances blood circulation in the body. It also helps people suffering from cold and flu to get rid of the uncomfortable congestion.

4. More Uses

Adding camphor to your regular cold creams and antiseptics, enhances its power, giving you instant relief.


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So, here’s what we had to tell you about this wonder medicine. Should you have any that we have omitted here, feel free to share. We would love to hear from you. Can’t wait to read your views in the comment section.

Take care!

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The one with a constant energy that can leave you awed, Tanya can jump around and talk for the whole day. If not found writing away the desired articles, she can easily be spotted glued to the youtube, eyes wide, spazzing over the perfection of her favorite singer. Functioning without music (Bollywood, Hollywood, Spanish, German, Korean, Chinese, Japanese, Thai and what not- Because music is music), and a big cup of tea is an impossibility for her. Ever heard of a totally weird soul that could go frenzy over the smell of a book, especially if it's a Dan Brown or Lee Child? Yep! That would be her.
  • http://www.stylecraze.com/ StyleCraze

    Hi Simpi, the synthetically derived camphor is called ‘Karpooram’ in Tamil. The synthetically derived camphor for burning during prayers and rituals. The edible camphor called pachai karpooram for cooking, to add aroma to certain sweet dishes. Camphor essential oil, extracted from the tree also is widely used to treat a variety of diseases. But make sure to to mix it with base oils and practice caution, when using the essential oil on pregnant women. We get chemically derived camphor in both small pellet form and as a single big chunk. We use the small pellets form for using it for our prayers at home and the big sized camphor is used in temples. Pachai karpooram is sold in air tight sealed plastic covers in India and when using camphor always remember that little goes a long way. Even in dishes, if you add a little bit more of the edible camphor, it will spoil the taste. When storing camphor, make sure to store them in airtight boxes and when using it on fire to make oils, be careful as it is highly flammable. Both types of camphor has amazing uses and benefits for health and is mostly used for external applications.