I have struggled with acne all of my life. As a teenager I would stare disappointingly at my blotchy, uneven face in the mirror squeezing the angry red pustules…and pray for the day I would reach adulthood and have smooth, clear skin. Sadly, although I turned thirty a few days ago the acne problem has not gone away. I have frequented the offices of both dermatologists and aestheticians who have recommended me an undisclosed number of expensive products which I have sheepishly purchased with mixed results.
From a dietary perspective I am both dairy-free and gluten-free and avoid all forms of processed sugar. I try to eat a healthy, traditional diet that supports my hormonal balance. Even after dutifully doing all my homework and eating a healthy diet, I still get acne. Don’t get me wrong, I have made progress and I actually have things under control now more than I ever have. On good days I only have one or two medium size pimples at various stages of development. However, when my diet is not impeccable my face is covered in cystic acne.
If you don’t believe me here’s my face after I cheated with some delicious butter. Never. Again.
My Eureka Moment
A few weeks ago I ordered some new essential oils and a fancy diffuser. This was an attempt to help balance my stress levels, which in turn would balance my hormone levels. I purchased a beginner’s kit and one of the bottles that came in the mail was frankincense. I wasn’t sure what to do with it so I put it at the bottom of the box while peppermint, lemongrass, lavender, and lemon became my favorites.
Finally, one afternoon I opened the frankincense to see if I could mix it up with other oils to diffuse. The smell took me back to my childhood orthodox church. I instinctively poured a few drops in my hand and dabbed it on my chest as perfume, but I had so much of it that I placed some the frankincense on my face to get rid of the excess. Yes, I am aware that essential oil are highly concentrated and you shouldn’t apply them directly to your skin unless you know they are safe. I didn’t follow my own advice. I was too busy reliving my childhood.
The next morning when I woke up the painful acne spots on my chin were dried out and my skin looked impeccable. Being used to living the life of the detective when it comes to my face I immediately grabbed the frankincense, did a happy dance holding it gingerly and began doing some research.
What You Should Know About Frankincense For Your Face
Frankincense has astringent properties, making it an ideal essential oil to use for your face. It dries out acne, reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and tightens the skin. I normally dilute frankincense with other carrier oils to use on my face; however, if I am fighting a particular stubborn pimple or if my skin needs a boost I apply it directly to my face – one small drop on the problem area and then massage it in. Your skin will absorb it right away. I don’t do this often though because I would have to buy frankincense by the bucketfull and it’s an expensive little bottle…and you can also overdry your skin. So I came up with an oil blend that incorporates frankincense and a few other oils that seem to take good care of my skin.
The Other Main Players:
- Jojoba Oil – Being the plant based carrier oil that is most like our own skin’s sebum, organic, unrefined jojoba oil is a great base carrier oil. It is structurally close to the secretion of the sebaceous glands in the skin hence readily accepted and tolerated. Learn all about carrier oil options here.
- Jasmine Essential Oil – This is an optional essential because it can be difficult to locate, but if you get your hands on a bottle it is a wonderful balancing oil especially for oilier skin and it promotes cell regeneration and scar healing. Due to the large amount of acne my poor face has seen I need lots of jasmine oil. Although not cheap, you can grab a beautiful jasmine absolute here.
- Vitamin E – This is a wonderful healer! It’s powerful emollient that complements the jojoba oil and the essential oils and keeps the skin hydrated, heals acne scars, and smooths fine wrinkles. Always seek out a non-GMO Vitamin E.
- Lavender Essential Oil – Helps with inflammation and redness, and lavender essential oil actually inhibits the growth of bacteria that can cause a small pimple to grow into something larger than life.
This blend is really quite simple to make. Let us know what you think! 🙂
- Mix all ingredients and pour it a dark bottle to avoid the oxidation of the oils. For easier use I make this into a dropper bottle.
As with all essential oils, before you apply it on your face first test it on your hand to make sure you are not allergic.