While using essential oils for acne itself is a relatively widespread practice, you can also use a multitude of essential oils for treating acne scars. Scarring occurs when the skin is damaged, and the skin tries to repair itself but is unable to recreate a smooth surface. There are multiple types of acne scars: atrophic scars include boxcar, ice pick, and rolling scars, while hypertrophic and keloid scarring is more severe. Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation is also very common and is a flat area that is colored anywhere from pink, red, purple, brown, or black.
A list of the best essential oils for acne scars includes:
- Frankincense Essential Oil
- Geranium Essential Oil
- Cedarwood Essential Oil
- Tea Tree Essential Oil
- Lemon Essential Oil
- Lavender Essential Oil
These essential oils can be used with a moisturizing carrier oil like Rosehip or Argan Oil to reduce the appearance of acne scars. Apply a 3% dilution of essential oil to carrier oil for a stronger application.
Essential oils for atrophic scars:
If you have atrophic scars, characterized by a divot in the skin, the collagen boosters in oils may help reduce the appearance of the scarring. Frankincense oil is known for this and helps to generate new cells while protecting the existing skin cells. Geranium is another option for collagen-building as well as promoting cell turnover and regeneration. It is also anti-inflammatory and antiseptic. Essential oils like this can be very carefully dabbed on the scars with a cotton swab or diluted in a 2-3% ratio with a carrier oil and applied all over the face.
Jaya Jaya Myra, a best-selling author and TEDx Speaker, who is considered to be a Wellness Lifestyle Expert told us just how much Frankincense Oil has helped her skin. She raved about the oil saying "It can help soothe skin and balance skin tone, and may even help tighten skin and reduce noticeable scars. It's also anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial, so it can help prevent future outbreaks."
Rosehip oil is a carrier oil that makes it perfect for applying all over the face by itself. It contains Vitamin C and beta-carotene that promote collagen cell production. It also has many other fantastic properties, from being naturally anti-inflammatory to being packed with fatty acids that help with hydration.
Rebecca White with Prana Brush told us "When it comes to essential oils to help with acne scaring, geranium oil can be a great option. Geranium oil eliminates dead skin cells while encouraging the regeneration of new ones. With continued use, there’s also an increase in the production of collagen. Of course, make sure that your essentials oils are properly diluted before applying them to your skin. "
Essential oils for keloid scarring:
Keloid scarring is harder to work with because it occurs when the skin produces too much collagen, so you’ll want to stay away from collagen-building oils. Instead, look for oils that keep your skin hydrated and healthy to prevent new scars from forming and making the keloid worse. Examples of good types of oils for this include cedarwood, which is great for reducing inflammation, and tea tree, which can help prevent additional scars from forming with antiseptic and antimicrobial properties.
Priyank Pandey with Health Roid swears by tea tree oil for not only acne scaring but also various other skin conditions. "Tea tree oil is miraculous and is capable of targeting issues ranging from acne to dandruff to even cold sores. Tea tree оіl contains a numbеr of compounds, including tеrріnеn-4-оl, that increase the асtіvіtу оf your whіtе blооd сеllѕ, which hеlр fight gеrmѕ and other fоrеіgn invader. This germ-fighting рrореrtіеѕ of tea tree oil brings it forward as a valued nаturаl remedy to treat ѕkіn соndіtіоnѕ."
Essential oils for post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation:
Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation occurs when the skin is inflamed and heals by producing too much melanin. Although this pigmentation typically goes away on its own eventually, lemon essential oil can help lighten the skin quickly. Lavender oil is an anti-inflammatory that may help prevent the irritated skin from being pigmented in the first place. Argan oil is a carrier oil that might help hyperpigmentation due to Vitamin A removes old, dead skin cells to reveal new, glowing skin underneath.
Shadi Vahdat, MD with Live Well Integrative uses lavender oil on her skin to help with scaring, and she told us why. "Studies have shown lavender oil has the potential to promote wound healing and scars by acceleration of granulation tissue and enhanced collagen synthesis. Not to mention it's antimicrobial and antioxidant properties."
How to use Essential Oils for Acne Scarring
Essential oils can be used in many ways to help with acne scarring. Elle Meager with Outdoor Happens likes to make a blend of many of the previously mentioned oils to get the benefits of all of them. "I recommend a blend of geranium, lavender, rosemary, and chamomile. Dilute these essential oils 50/50 and apply a small amount to the scars 2 to 5 times a day. If the scars are still raw, add a drop or 2 of tea tree essential oil."