When most people hear that they can apply essential oils to their skin to help clear acne, they immediately think that the oils will make their skin more oily and cause more breakouts. This is completely false. They are not really oils though. Essential oils are not made up of the fatty acids that we find in actual oils. Valerie Gennari Cooksley, who is the author of the book, Aromatherapy: Soothing Remedies to Restore, Rejuvenate, and Heal, describes essential oils as “highly concentrated plant constituents possessing potent medicinal and cosmetic qualities.” You must treat essential oils with extreme care and caution as they are very concentrated. Let’s delve into the wonderful facts and truths about essential oils.
Essential oils have amazing disinfecting properties
Most are antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal which will help clear your skin of bacterial infections and unclog oil-clogged pores to minimize acne breakouts and blackheads. Some of the most effective essential oils to fight acne include tea tree oil, bergamot, clary sage, rose, lavender, grapefruit, and peppermint.
They’re incredibly versatile
If your skin becomes easily irritated by most home cleaning products and laundry detergents, you can easily make your own homemade cleaning products and detergent with essential oils to disinfect your home and wash your clothes. *Laundry detergent recipe posted below*
Never apply an essential oil directly to your skin without diluting it
“Why dilute it and with what?” we’re sure you’re asking right about now. The reason you can’t apply a potent essential oil directly to your skin is because these oils are extremely potent and can cause serious damage to your skin including burns, rashes, and severely dry skin if not diluted/mixed with a carrier oil. For example, never apply tea tree oil right on your skin. Tea tree oil is stronger than benzoyl peroxide even though it is from nature. ALWAYS mix tea tree oil with a carrier oil like cold-pressed coconut oil, grapeseed oil, jojoba oil, olive oil, sweet almond oil, or safflower oil, just to name a few. Don’t dilute it by combining equal parts of both – your skin only needs 2-4 drops of a potent acne-killing essential oil so either first apply the carrier oil to the affected areas then apply the 2-4 drops of the potent oil over the carrier oil with a cotton ball; or combine about a ½ a tablespoon of a carrier oil to a bowl and add about 2 drops of potent oil to the bowl and mix together then apply to affected areas. Make sure to avoid the eye area. Always test out a small patch of skin for 30 minutes before applying everywhere. If a reaction occurs, rinse off gently with a mild cleanser and warm water.
Always read the labels. Because each essential oil serves a different purpose, it’s important to read all labels, instructions, and cautions before freely using any essential oil.
Never ingest essential oils. In rare cases, a few essential oils can be ingested but again, it is important to read the labels first. If you’re unsure if you can ingest the oil or not, it is best to contact the company and find out. Never assume you can because the extremely concentrated essential oils can truly damage your internal body functions.
You may become sensitive to the sun. Because essential oils are so strong, it can cause your skin to become very sensitive to the sun. Always wear sunscreen with strong SPF protection and never go out in the sun with essential oils on your skin. Cleanse your skin to remove the essential oils before direct contact with sunlight.
Essential oils do not buildup in your body. Do not be concerned that essential oils will accumulate in your body over a certain length of time. They are absorbed beautifully into the skin and then pass through the body, making them safer to use than synthetic topical and ingestible acne medications.
Essential oils are different than fragrance oils. Even if the bottle reads “Natural Fragrance” do not apply to your face. Enough said.
Dermatologists won’t recommend them. Why is this? Essential oils are natural and can’t have a patent placed on them – which doesn’t benefit the pharmaceutical companies. The facts we have regarding the benefits of essential oils come from thousands of years of personal use.
Homemade Laundry Detergent:
1 bar glycerin soap, grated
1 cup washing soda
1/2 cup baking soda
1/2 cup citric acid
1/4 cup coarse salt
Use a gallon-sized glass ball jar or a quart-sized jar if the recipe is doubled. Use a baby sock or two, fill with rice, and tie to close. It’s a homemade desiccant that will keep your powder dry. Also keep a flat screwdriver nearby to break it up if needed. Take a big sheet of waxed paper and pour all the ingredients on it and combine it all together. Use a separate food grater to grate the soap and use it strictly for this type of prep – have a separate grater for food. Grate the soap and use a knife to scraper off anything from inside the jar and keep breaking up the shreds in the pile of powder. Then use the wax paper to funnel the other ingredients into the jar then seal shut. Use only one Tablespoon per load.