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Ah, essential oils. They’re like the beauty store of the plant kingdom. For almost any skin issues, from aging skin to acne breakouts, there’s an essential oil for that. They last a long time, they’re easy to use, and they often smell divine. Best of all, they’re completely natural.

If you’re new to essential oils, though, they can be a little overwhelming. There are dozens and dozens of essential oils, so which ones should you buy? How much do you use? What if you have a bad reaction?

This article lists 5 of the most common essential oils for skin and their uses. Start here and soon you’ll have a whole home apothecary! Below you’ll also find a couple quick tips for using EOs.

Tea Tree

Tea tree oil is a must for every girl’s bathroom cabinet. It’s useful for both beauty and first aid, since it’s an antibacterial and antifungal agent.

As an astringent, tea tree oil is particularly good for controlling breakouts, regulating oil production, and reducing acne-causing bacteria.


Lavender is great for simply adding to baths, lotions and other beauty items, since it’s ultra-relaxing — and relaxation is an essential part of any beauty routine! It also helps reduce skin irritation. Because it encourages skin cells to regenerate more quickly, it’s great for fading scars and sun spots.


Geranium oil is awesome for a wide variety of purposes. Firstly, it’s good for the breakout-prone, since it regulates oil production and controls acne. Secondly, it’s helpful for aging or mature skin because it improves skin elasticity and reduces the appearance of wrinkles. And lastly, it promotes blood circulation, which can help in a range of scenarios, including when you need those bruises to heal.


Frankincense is another awesome addition to your routine. It has a ton of benefits: it’s antibacterial and anti-inflammatory, and it evens the skin tone out, decreases the appearance of pores, soothes dry skin, tightens skin, reduces fine lines and fades scars. Whew! That’s a lot of power from one plant.

Ylang Ylang

Ylang ylang’s first selling point is that it smells amazing, like a tropical paradise. It’s also good for your skin, though. It controls oil production and minimizes breakouts, and for mature skin, it improves elasticity and reduces fine lines. It also helps regenerate skin cells more quickly, keeping your skin looking fresh.

As a general rule of thumb, you should follow these precautions when using essential oils:

  1. Use just a couple drops, diluted in a carrier oil such as jojoba oil. NEVER use essential oils directly on your skin unless you’ve researched that specific oil. Lavender oil, for example, is safe to use directly, but many people will have a bad reaction to undiluted tea tree oil.
  2. Test it on a small, non-visible part of your skin first. Most essential oils are perfectly safe when diluted, but it’s always good to have some extra peace of mind since everyone’s skin is different.

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