I watch one of my children really struggling with acne and I can absolutely relate. As a teenager and even as a young adult I had a really bad skin and it affected my entire personality. I just wanted to hide from the world. I used to cover up all those blemishes which made it even worse.
I have tried before to suggest using essential oils but my advice was dismissed. I will need some scientific proof to convince this child of mine. Can essential oils really help for acne?
Well, let’s have a good look at acne and which would be the best essential oils for acne.
What is acne?
Acne is a common condition among many teens and young adults and is due to over activity of the sebaceous glands in the skin combined with a bacterial infection.
Too much of sebum which is an oily substance produced by the sebaceous glands are spread all over the face. Dirt and dead skin cells stick to the sebum and it now is a perfect breeding ground for bacteria.
Pores become blocked now due to dirt and bacteria and form blackheads. The congested hair follicles become infected which causes ‘spots’ or pimples.
Acne lesions can spread into nodules which are deep within the skin. Acne also can form cysts which is when these nodules don’t drain.
Pustules are infections deep inside the skin and they can break down the soft tissue.
Untreated cysts and pustules can lead to scarring and also pitting. You will need professional help with this grade of acne.
Approaching acne from a systemic approach is always great. Often the food that we eat can affect your skin.
What cause acne?
- 1) Hormonal imbalances due to an excess of testosterone.
- 2) Too much sebum
- 3) Irregular or excessive shedding of skin cells inside the pore.
- 4) Build up of bacteria inside the pores
- 5) Stress can aggravate the condition
Essential oils can be very helpful in :
- 1) Reducing the amount of sebum that is produces.
- 2) Dealing with the infection
Massaging the area will stimulate the circulation and helps the body to eliminate toxins.
A proper skin hygiene routine
You do not need to scrub your face squeaky clean. This actually makes it worse. It damages the protective barrier of the skin.
Gentle regular exfoliation
Beta Hydroxy acid or BHA is fat soluble and therefor can exfoliate the inside of the pore as well. BHA is also called salicylic acid and is great to calm the inflammation.
One of the reasons why essential oils is a good choice to add to your acne treatment plan is due to the antiseptic and antibacterial properties of the oils.
That being said though, if your acne needs medical attention then go and see a dermatologist before reaching for the essential oil bottle.
Do NOT pick at acne or squeeze the living daylights out of any pimple. This will only cause scarring. Always make sure your hands are clean before you touch your face.
Best essential oils for acne
- Great for dehydrated skin. This is sometimes really frustrating when you have the acne but your skin feels so dry and thirsty. I can remember my face feeling dry and itchy and super irritated. The sandalwood will help with the inflammation and the itching.
- Astringent – helpful to clear oiliness
- Antiseptic properties which are very helpful when the skin gets infected.
- Helps with low self esteem
- Soothing and healing. Promotes healthy skin cells.
- You can read more about Lavender here.
- Anti-depressant. Often feeling depressed because of your acne and feeling as if you just want to hide from the world. The depression sometimes can make it worse and your skin reacts more to this negative emotion.
- Read more about Bergamot here.
- Help to balance the secretion of sebum.
- Stimulating on the lymphatic system and helps to clear toxins from the body. This would be a great oil to use for body massages and can be combined with Rosemary.
- Brings an improved flow of blood to the skin.
- You can read more about Geranium here
Best carrier oils for acne
- Wheatgerm oil
Helpful for scarring. It is a nourishing, healing oil.
- Sweet almond oil
This is my go-to oil because it is a fine oil and non-drying for all skin types
- Apricot oil
A light oil for all skin types.
You can read more about different carrier oils here.
Zinc stimulate immune system and is helpful for wound healing
- Avoid dairy if you can.
- Drink enough water daily to ensure adequate hydration of the skin.
- Eat more fiber rich foods. Fiber absorb waste testosterone in the gut and prevent it from being reabsorbed into the system.
Take care of you so that you can take care of those you love