Essential Oils For Acne

Essential Oils For Acne

Acne is a very common skin condition that affects many teenagers and young adults in the 10 to 30 age bracket. According to Healthline, the condition is caused by clogged pores attributed to factors like hormones, excess sebum, ingrown hairs and dead skin cells.

The subtypes of acne include cysts, blackheads, whiteheads, nodules and pustules. Whiteheads (closed comedones) and blackheads (open comedones) types of acnes are non-inflammatory and do not cause swelling. A number of prescription medicines and chemicals have been developed to fight acne, but some of these are ineffective and may aggravate the situation. 

If you’ve been using harsh chemicals to fight acne with little success, you may consider using the gentle but effective essential oils. The use of essential oils in the treatment various ailments can be traced back over 3,000 years to countries like Egypt, Ancient China and India.

The oils are usually obtained from different parts of the plant, most notably the seed, flower, leaf and bark. The oils are typically consumed via inhalation, ingestion and topical application. A number of studies have been conducted that show many potential benefits of essential oils. These benefits emanate from the anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and antioxidant properties. 

Commercial Essential Oils for Acne Treatment 
Acne usually attacks the sebum glands on the skin barrier. When using essential oils to treat acne, results may vary depending on factors like the severity of the acne attack and type of skin.

According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) portal, here are 7 commercial essential oils for acne treatment:(1)


Essential Oils For Acne

Tea Tree Essential Oil (Huge 4oz Bottle) Bulk Tea Tree Oil - 4 Ounce
Tea Tree Essential Oil
GET BETTER RESULTS WITH SUN ESSENTIAL OILS - With what we believe to be superior sourced and harvested ingredients, we think you will agree that our oils are by far the most effective on the market - a wonderful smell that can't be beat!
Cymbopogon flexuosus Being amongst the most popular and demanded oils on the market, Lemongrass is capable of catering to your every need. With refreshing citrusy and herbaceous aroma, the oil brings splendid benefits. Applications: Aromatic, Topical, Internal  
Eucalyptus globulus Eucalyptus essential oil is primarily gathered from Australian eucalyptus trees, so perhaps it is appropriate that it is most widely used to promote relaxation!* Applications: Aromatic, Topical  
Salvia sclarea Clary sage essential oil has numerous health benefits for the mind and body. The floral scent of this oil can calm the mind, and topical applications can improve the look of hair, skin, and nails.* Applications: Aromatic Topical Internal  
Lavandula Angustifolia Cherished for over centuries, lavender essential oil is renowned for its unmistakable aroma as well as myriad benefits. With topical, internal and aromatic applications, the oil definitely has a lot to bring on the table. Applications: Aromatic, Topical, Internal  
Rosmarinus Officinalis Being amongst the most aromatic essential oils on the market, Rosemary is a constant participant in almost all sorts of aromatherapy sessions. It also brings a lot of other benefits. Applications: Aromatic, Topical, Internal


1. Tea Tree Essential Oil

a) Description and Treatment

The yellowish colored tea tree oil is one of the most widely used essential oils. Tea tree oil contains many organic chemical compounds that give it different characteristics, including medicinal properties.

Aboriginal communities living on swathes of Australia’s East coast have long used it as an antiseptic for treating skin conditions. The dermatological uses of Tea tree oil as listed by NCBI include: acne, blemishes, abrasions, and fungal infections.

The fungal infections include ringworm, tinea and athlete’s foot. In a recent study, researchers from the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMCC) established that topical application of Melaleuca alterafolia, a popular Australian tea tree oil could potentially suppress blackheads, whiteheads and pustules. The oil effectively penetrates the skin to disentangle the sebaceous glands before drying out the breakouts.

The antifungal and antibacterial properties of tea tree have been shown to be effective in fighting inflammation and swelling. This is the reason tea tree oil has become an important ingredient in skin products.

When buying tea tree oil from the herb store, try to get an effective product containing 100% pure tea tree oil. There are a few side effects of using this essential oil. The most pointed is skin sensitivity arising from exposure to the sun’s UV rays.


b) Instructions for Use

  • You need 2 to 3 drops of the essential oil and cotton pad or Q-tip for application.


Before applying the essential oil, you need to perform a patch test. Start the test by applying small quantities of the oil in your elbow. Wait for about 24 hours to check for signs of irritation or discomfort. If none of these signs are recorded, the essential oil is safe for use.


2. Lemongrass Essential Oil

Lemongrass Essential Oila) Description and Treatment

Lemongrass oil is extracted from the lemongrass (Cymbopogon citrates), a tall natural grass toner native to the India and the Philippines Archipelago. The refreshing lemon flavor of the oil has potent dermatological ability to regulate and treat acne, hyperhidrosis, fungal infections and oily conditions. The antimicrobial and antioxidant properties in Lemongrass have been shown to be effective in fighting the bacterium that causes acne. 

The antioxidants have a rummaging ability to neutralize free radicals in the skin. The presence of the potent monoterpenes geranial and neral compounds makes this essential oil an effective formula for reducing skin inflammation. In aromatherapy, Lemongrass is widely used in relieving stress and anxiety. Because of the numerous benefits, Lemongrass is used in products like shampoos, freshener’s and deodorants.

b) Instructions for Use

  • Mix 20 to 25 drops of this essential oil to essential herbs for treating acne
  • Place the mixture on 1 ounce of a preferred carrier oil blend
  • Use finger, brush or cotton pad to apply the mixture to the affected area of the skin
  • The mixture can be used every day until the desired results are achieved


3. Eucalyptus Essential Oil

Eucalyptus Essential Oila) Description and Treatment

Eucalyptus whose common name is Eucalyptus globulus is a well-known anti-bacterium effective in improving healing rates and reducing inflammation and odor. Because of its anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial activity, Eucalyptus oil can treat athlete’s foot, blisters, dermatitis and chicken pox. Eucalyptus oil also contains antiseptic and antibacterial qualities that can fight acne and prevent future breakouts. 

The antibacterial properties can also inhibit the amount of oil released by the sebaceous glands. According to a study carried out by researchers at the University of Maryland Medical Center, eucalyptus oil is nontoxic when used topically. However, extra precaution should be taken by asthma patients. Women who are pregnant or lactating should also seek medical advice before using the Eucalyptus essential oil to treat acne.

b) Instructions for Use

  • Place 2 to 3 drops of the essential oil on a preferred moisturizer and mix exhaustively. 
  • Apply the cream on the affected area or the entire face. 
  • Take every precaution when applying the eucalyptus oil to avoid irritating the respiratory faculties.


For effective results consider adding eucalyptus essential oil on a moisturizing or cleansing cream. 


4. Clary Sage Essential Oil

Clary Sage Essential Oila) Description and Treatment

This essential oil is extracted from the Salvia sclarea herb. The herb produces a pleasant odor prized by perfumers and Aromatherapists. According to NCBI, the dermatological uses of Clary Sage include: wrinkles, cell regeneration, oily conditions, acne, ulcers and abscesses. 

Because of its calming and desirable healing qualities, Clary sage has the potent ability to treat and manage blackheads and boils. A study appearing on the Advances in Dermatology and Allergology documents the effectiveness of Clary Sage on a number of drug resistant strains of bacteria known to affect the skin cause breakouts.


b) Instructions for Use

  • Apply 2 to 3 drops of the essential oil on 10mL of your favorite carrier oil and mix well. 
  • Alternatively, add 1 or 2 drops of the essential oil to a face mask or body lotion 
  • Apply gently over the affected area of the skin 
  • Depending on the severity of your acne, apply the oil 2 to 3 times a day to obtain better results.


Although essential oil is known to possess anti-inflammatory qualities that can clear blemishes and marks from breakout attacks always ensure the oil is diluted.


5. Lavender Essential Oil

Lavender Essential Oila) Description and Treatment

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) is a pleasant smelling essential oil that is effective in eliminating P. acnes bacterium and reducing skin irritation. The imbedded antimicrobial and antioxidant properties have been shown to help reduce the dark spots on the skin. According to NCBI, the other key dermatological uses of Lavender include boils, eczema, oily conditions, insect bites, blisters and dermatitis. 

A 2003 study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology showed that inhaling lavender produced a calming effect, which helped reduce tension and stress. The effect can go a long way to improve the quality of sleep and aid the development of healthier, more radiant skin. In-vitro evidence also shows Lavender is recommended for aromatherapy.


b) Instructions for Use

  • Add 10 to 12 drops of the essential oil on a heated bowl of water 
  • Inhale the steam from the container 
  • Allow the face to dry up naturally


Lavender oil can be used as part of everyday beauty regimen.


6. Rosemary Essential Oil

Rosemary Essential Oila) Description and Treatment

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is widely used as a food spice and treatment for fungal growth in packaged foods. Its history dates back to the ancient Greeks, Egyptians and Romans. The evergreen herb contains powerful compounds with the ability to reduce swelling and kill bacteria. According to NCBI, Rosemary’s diverse dermatological uses include: acne, oily conditions, dandruff, balancing sebum, dermatitis and eczema. 

Tests conducted in the laboratory by Taipei Medical University (TMU) researchers show Rosemary oil has the potential to destroy Propionibacterium acnes, the bacteria responsible for breakouts and inflammation. The anti-inflammatory properties are also effective in eliminating the acne induced skin redness and puffiness. The other potential health benefits of Rosemary oil include memory boost and the ability to relax muscles.


b) Instructions for Use

  • To prepare the mixture, you need 6 drops of the essential oil, ½ cup each of rose water and green tea and ¾ cup of oatmeal. 
  • Have all the ingredients finely mixed to create a smooth paste 
  • Apply the paste on the affected area and allow it to dry before washing. 
  • For effective results, apply the Rosemary oil laden paste daily before bath.

Each of the ingredients used in preparing the acne blend work concertedly to clear acne and blemishes. Rosemary oil and green tea have potent antibacterial properties, which is critical in fighting bacteria and germs common on the skin.

On the other hand, the oatmeal and Rose water have the ability to soothe the skin. For precaution, people suffering from epilepsy and pregnant women should avoid using essential oil to prevent skin sensitivity. 



Embarrassing breakouts remain a huge concern for many people. A study published in BioMed Research International shows acne affects up to 80% of young adults and adolescents in the 30 to 11 age bracket. Essential oils have earned a magical reputation when it comes to treating acne and other common skin conditions.

This is all due to the virucidal, anti-parasitical, bactericidal and fungicidal effects. The most preferred essential oils in the fight against acne and other skin conditions include: Rosemary oil, Lavender oil, Tea tree oil and Eucalyptus oil. In spite of the many benefits, necessary precautions must be taken to protect the user. According to WebMD, the following are the Do’s and Don’ts to consider when using Essential oils:

  • Dilute the essential oils appropriately because undiluted oils may be too strong or have a negative impact on the user. Essential oils can be diluted using vegetable oils, bath gels and creams. 
  • Essential oils should not be applied directly on injured or inflamed skin to prevent skin damage and unwanted reaction. 
  • Always make the point to check the quality of essential oil before use. One way to do this is get a product (preferably 100% pure oil) from a trusted producer. 
  • Age is an important factor when using essential oils. Children below 6 years and the elderly may experience skin sensitivity due to the presence of potentially harsh chemicals like methyl salicylate. People who fall under these ages need the consent of pediatrician.