Tens of millions of Americans suffer from acne. In fact, approximately 70 percent and 90 percent of young adults, both men and women, suffer from acne. And recent studies show that the prevalence of acne in adult women has increased.
However, many do not seem to find a treatment that really works! Most resort to prescription drugs or chemical treatments, investing in the latest “solution to cure acne” that has suddenly come to market and answer all your prayers.
The truth is that these products often contain aggressive chemicals that have side effects or simply do not work at all. That is why I advise you to look for homemade and natural remedies for acne that have been used for thousands of years. These remedies include essential oils that address the root of the problem and are gentle on the skin.
In fact, a major study found that tea tree oil was almost six times more effective than placebo in the treatment of mild to moderate acne. My four best essential oils for acne will nourish your skin and fight the causes of acne naturally, without adding insult to injuries with products that irritate the skin.
Why Use Essential Oils for Acne?
People of all ages are affected by occasional outbreaks and chronic acne plagues. Acne can cause painful and unpleasant outbreaks on the face, chest, back and even arms. When left untreated, acne can lead to a decrease in self-esteem and scarring.
The main causes of acne include clogged pores, bacteria, excess oil production and dead skin. Other factors, such as hormones, diet, stress, and certain medications, such as corticosteroids, androgens, birth control pills, and lithium, can also make acne worse.
Why do so many teenagers, especially, suffer from acne? Well, it may be due to genetics, changes in hormone levels, stress or irritating activity of the skin. For example, the friction of sports equipment and backpacks can irritate the skin and cause acne breakouts on the chin, forehead, jaw, neck, chest and back.
But it’s important to know that aggressive chemicals and over-the-counter or prescription medications can cause more irritation, which exacerbates the problem. Essential oils have the power to kill bacteria on the skin naturally. Some essential oils for acne, such as lavender oil, soothe and protect the skin from irritation and stress.
But acne does not only affect teenagers; Recent studies show that the prevalence of adult female acne has increased. This may be due to stress, hormonal imbalances and lack of sleep, according to a study conducted in 2014 in Brazil.
Essential oils for acne, such as lavender and sage, have the ability to relieve feelings of stress and anxiety, combat insomnia and sleep deprivation, and balance hormone levels. They are also gentle on the skin and have a number of benefits that go beyond fighting acne and promoting skin health.
Top 4 Essential Oils for Acne
1. Tea Tree
Some benefits of tea tree oil include its antimicrobial and antifungal properties. Over-the-counter acne treatments that contain tea tree oil are now widely available, and the evidence indicates that they are a common choice among people who treat their acne.
A scientific review of the efficacy, tolerability and possible modes of action regarding the treatment of acne with tea tree oil indicates that tea tree products reduce the number of lesions in patients with acne, have similar tolerability levels to other topical treatments and antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory activities associated with the treatment of acne.
A 2007 study suggests that tea tree oil is an effective treatment for mild to moderate acne vulgaris. Sixty patients were divided into two groups: one group was treated with tea tree oil and one was placebo. The participants were followed every 15 days for a period of 45 days. The response to the treatment was evaluated by the total count of acne lesions and the acne severity index.
The results of the study showed a significant difference between tea tree oil gel and placebo in improving the total acne lesion count, since tea tree oil was 3.6 times more effective than placebo. In regards to the overall severity of acne, tea tree oil was 5.8 times more effective, which shows that tea tree oil is an effective and natural treatment for mild to moderate acne.
To use the tea tree as an essential oil for acne, add 2-3 drops to a clean cotton ball and apply it topically to the area of concern. The tea tree can also be added to your daily face or body wash, such as my Face Wash for clean skin, or it can be added to a spray bottle filled with water and sprayed on the face or body.
Lavender oil has profound benefits on your skin due to its antimicrobial and antioxidant characteristics. Soothes and nourishes the skin: treats acne, heals dry skin and reduces the appearance of dark spots and scars caused by acne. Other benefits of lavender oil include its ability to reduce the stress and anxiety associated with acne breakouts in adults and its therapeutic properties that improve the quality of your sleep, thus promoting healthy and radiant skin.
A study published in the Journal of the Medical Association of Thailand found that lavender oil provides a relaxing effect when inhaled. Twenty volunteers participated in a study that investigated the effects of lavender oil on the central nervous system, the autonomic nervous system and mood responses. The results revealed that lavender oil caused a significant decrease in blood pressure, heart rate and skin temperature. The participants were characterized as more relaxed and fresh after inhaling lavender oil.
Studies suggest that stress and acne are connected, explaining why people often experience acne outbreaks at times of increased stress and anxiety. This may be because the cells that produce sebum (the fatty substance that mixes with dead skin cells and bacteria to clog the hair follicles) have receptors for stress hormones. Researchers believe that an increase in acne may be due to higher levels of sebum that occur during times of stress; Therefore, lavender essential oil serves as a powerful tool because of its abilities to reduce stress.
To use lavender oil to alleviate the feelings of stress that can trigger the production of sebum, spread 5 drops of oil in the home or apply topically on the wrists, the back of the neck or the temples. Lavender essential oil also has antibacterial properties and can be used directly on the skin to fight acne.
3. Clary Sage
An important ester present in sage, called linalyl acetate, reduces inflammation of the skin and functions as a natural remedy for acne and skin irritations. It also regulates oil production in the skin, a factor that is often associated with outbreaks. Clary Sage also slows the growth and spread of bacteria, relieves feelings of stress and anxiety and supports hormonal balance.
Stress is a major cause of acne in adult women because it is associated with an increase in the levels of the stress hormone cortisol. A 2014 study published in the Journal of Phytotherapy Research found that inhaling clary safe oil has the ability to reduce these cortisol levels by 36 percent. The researchers concluded that Clary Sage has a statistically significant effect in reducing cortisol levels, and has an antidepressant effect, improves mood and combats anxiety.
A recent study published in Advances in Dermatology and Allergology found that sage essential oil is an active natural antimicrobial agent. After testing the effectiveness of Clary Sage in multiple drug-resistant bacterial spots, Clary Sage Oil was active against bacteria that cause skin infections that can cause acne outbreaks or skin irritation.
To develop natural remedies for anxiety and stress, spread 5 drops of sage oil at home. This also helps with restlessness and insomnia, two conditions associated with acne outbreaks. To kill the bacteria that clog pores and cause acne, apply 1-3 drops of sage oil in the area of concern. It can be applied with a clean cotton ball or by diluting with jojoba or coconut oil and then massaging the mixture on the skin.
4. Juniper Berry
Juniper berry essential oil has natural antibacterial and antimicrobial properties, which makes it one of the most popular natural remedies to combat skin irritations and infections. It serves as a home remedy for acne and supports beautiful skin. It also has detoxifying and stress reducing properties that protect the body against the toxins that lead to acne.
A 2005 study published in Pharmaceutical Development and Technology states that juniper berry oil has an antibacterial activity that serves as a topical solution against acne. The antimicrobial activity of juniper berry oil was studied since it made contact with acne vulgaris. When used with a clean application or after dilution with carrier oils, juniper berry essential oil showed a promising activity against acne; The modifications did not diminish the antibacterial activity of the oil.
Several studies indicate that juniper berry essential oil is a powerful antibacterial agent that fights acne when used topically. This is due to specific compounds, such as alpha-pinene, p-cymene and beta-pinene.
Use the juniper berry as an essential oil for acne by applying 2-3 drops topically in the area of concern. For sensitive skin, dilute the juniper berry with coconut oil or jojoba before topical application.
How to Use Essential Oils for Acne
Topical Use – The best way to use essential oils for acne is to apply 2-3 drops topically in the area of concern. These oils are safe for a clean or direct application, but can also be combined with a carrier oil such as jojoba or coconut oil.
In fact, when you use coconut oil for skin health, you will notice amazing benefits. Coconut oil moisturizes the skin and is able to penetrate it at a deeper level than its average product due to its low molecular weight and the way it binds with proteins.
Jojoba oil is also a beneficial carrier oil that improves the health of the skin by working as a protector and cleaner. It is rich in iodine and combats the growth of harmful bacteria that lead to outbreaks. It can accelerate the healing process and reduce skin lesions, too.
Face Wash for Clear Skin– This face wash is full of probiotics to tone the skin and eliminate the bacteria that cause acne. Combine the following ingredients:
- 1 tablespoon of coconut oil
- 3 tablespoons of honey
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 20 drops of tea tree oil
- 2 capsules of live probiotics.
Mix the ingredients and mix with a hand blender. Then pour the mixture into a convenient bottle and store it in a cool place.
Another powerful recipe for face washing is my simple home-made face wash that leaves skin fresh, hydrated and clean. Essential oils and coconut oil work together to kill bacteria while providing nutrients and hydration to the skin.
Natural Acne Scar Treatment — For a natural treatment of acne for scars, make a paste by mixing the following ingredients:
- 2 teaspoons of raw honey
- 3 drops of lavender oil
- 3 drops of tea tree oil
- 3 drops of incense oil
Wash and dry the face, then apply the paste and let it rest for an hour before rinsing.
Soap Bar for Skin Hydration – To moisturize and soothe your skin, try my bar of homemade lavender soap. Not only does it kill the bacteria on the skin that causes acne, it also relieves the mind and causes feelings of peace and satisfaction.
Possible Side Effects
These four essential oils for acne are safe and effective. Remember that a little goes a long way, so using 2-3 drops on the skin should do the trick.
If you have sensitive skin, dilute the essential oils with a carrier oil before applying topically. Also, avoid direct exposure to sunlight when treating acne with essential oils. UV rays can increase the sensitivity of the skin and cause irritation or redness. If the use of any of these essential oils causes skin irritation, do not use that oil; Try a softer oil like lavender instead.