Have you lathered oils all over your face & body? A few months ago I began looking for natural alternatives to many of my beauty concerns and I began to learn about the many benefits of natural oils! I always thought oils would not work for me since I have oily, acne prone skin and an oily scalp.. little to my surprise, I now find that I cannot live with out them!
I had no idea how many different types there were but in all my reading I did keep coming across two types: Carrier Oils and Essential Oils. Since oils have become one of my favorite natural ways of caring for my hair & skin, I thought I would share with you the many beauty benefits of both Carrier and Essential Oils. Although I am not an expert on natural oils, I am excited to share what has worked for me.
I use certain carrier oils every single day! These are vegetable oils that come from the fatty portion of a seed, nut or kernel. Most contain many different vitamins and can be used alone or can be combined with essential oils.
I’m sure you have seen many DIY recipes that include carrier oils but I don’t see many people discuss the comedogenic effects that they may have when used on your face. So before I continue with the Beauty Benefits let me briefly touch on that topic.
Some carrier oils are more comedogenic (more likely to clog your pores) than others. Below you will find a quick list of popular Types of Carrier Oils listed from less-comedogenic to most likely to be comedogenic on a scale from 0 – 5. This is not to say that oils with higher ratings are bad for you, a lot of people use them with out a problem. It all depends on your skin type and how your skin reacts to each oil. This scale is to be considered when applying oils to your face. Now when you want to apply these oils to your body, this scale is not as important because the skin on your body is not as sensitive as the skin on your face.
(Example: Cocoa Butter is more likely to clog pores than Argan oil)
1. Carriers of Essential Oils: The reason why they are called “carrier” oils is because they safely “carry” essential oils onto the skin (in the next section you will read about essential oils). Essential oils are thinner in consistency and have super strong concentrated aromatic scents that need to be diluted with (not-so aromatic) but much more moisturizing (thicker) carrier oils.
2. Moisturizer: When we use cleansers, we sometimes strip our skin of all natural oils that are produced by our body. That’s why it’s a good idea to moisturize after cleansing. Carrier oils can serve as a natural alternative to your regular moisturizer. If you want to use carrier oils as a standalone face moisturizer I recommend you use oils with a 0-1 rating on the comedogenic scale.
3. Makeup Remover: I personally use Argan Oil and Shea butter as my eye makeup removers. Not only do they totally remove my eyeliner, eyeshadow, concealer and mascara, but they also leave the skin around my eyes feeling super soft. I actually used to have dry (flakey) patches of skin in my under eye area and these 2 oils made those disappear and my skin is now super soft.
4. Eczema/ Psoriasis Relief: Certain carrier oils are great at treating skin conditions like Eczema & Psoriasis. For example, I know a few people who have seen tremendous improvement using 100% Unrefined Shea Butter (Grade A). It contains Vitamins A, E & F and these nutrients help heal dry, damaged and inflamed skin. Check out “Complete Shea Butter Reference Guide with Over 50 DIY Recipes.”
5. Anti-Aging/ Wrinkle Prevention: Although they may not reverse the wrinkles you already have, using them will keep the skin hydrated which will restore elasticity & may prevent new wrinkles from developing (drinking lots of water also helps). Argan, Avocado, Almond, Apricot kernel & Coconut oils are rich in Vitamin E which is a great antioxidant. Rosehip Seed Oil is lightweight and it contains essential fatty acids that allow it to sink into the skin and improve its tone, texture and appearance.
These oils are made from the stems, bark, flowers, roots and other parts of a botanical. They normally contain a very strong concentrated aroma (way stronger than the scent of carrier oils) and unlike carrier oils, they evaporate with out leaving any oil residue. It is very common to combine carrier oils with essential oils to dilute the very powerful properties of the essential oils. They are normally very potent and SHOULD NOT be applied on skin without the use of a carrier oil because they may irritate the skin. Popular Types of Essential Oils include:
Lavender, Peppermint, Tea Tree, Eucalyptus, Bergamot, Lemon, Rosemary, Frankincense etc…
Normally you only need a few drops of essential oils to reap their benefits. When combined with carrier oils, essential oils can have many beauty benefits:
1. Acne Remedy: Essential Oils like Frankincense, Lavender, Tea Tree and Rosemary are known to aid in the healing of acne scars and reduction of breaks outs. They should be combined with carrier oils and there are many recipes out there that provide exact measurements for optimal results.
2. Foot Soak: Now you don’t need to wait until you go get a pedicure to enjoy an invigorating foot soak. Just by adding a few drops of essential oils to your foot tub you will feel like you’re at the spa. Oils like Tea Tree, Eucalyptus, Peppermint & Lavender smell great and also contain anti-fungal/antiseptic properties.
3. Body Scrubs: Some of the best all natural body scrubs include Essential Oils. They don’t just add an amazing scent to a DIY scrub, each oil has it’s own unique set of properties (antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, vitamins etc..) that are left behind after the skin is exfoliated.
4. Pamper Nails: A natural way to moisturize and strengthen your nails is by massaging your favorite essential oils (mixed with carrier oils) onto your nails and cuticles. You can do so 3 times a week, preferably at night, when you won’t be too busy working with your hands. Some oils that promote nail growth are Myrrh, Lemon, Lavender, Eucalyptus and Frankincense. You can find many awesome recipes on YouTube and Pinterest.
5. Itchy Scalp/Dandruff Relief: When mixed with carrier oils or certain vinegars or in your conditioner, essential oils like Lavender, Eucalyptus and Tea Tree can help treat dry/itchy scalp and dandruff. These oils and others help balance oil production instead of stripping all natural oils from the scalp.
I invite you to consider the use of natural carrier oils & essential oils as part of your skin care routine. You may find that they provide many of the same results as other cosmetic products already in your beauty arsenal. I also encourage you to check out this video by NATURAL Youtube Beauty Guru Curly Penny. Her entire skincare & hair care routine revolve around natural products and in this video she shares some her favorite uses for her Carrier and Essential Oils:
* The information on this blog is not a substitute for a face-to-face consultation with your physician, and should not be construed as medical advice. This post is for entertainment purposes only. You should address any skin care concerns with a skincare professional. *
If you like this article check out: “Complete Essential Oil Reference Guide & Recipe Book”
Do you already use carrier oils or essential oils as part of your beauty routine? If so, I would love to learn about your recipes so feel free to leave a comment below.