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Healing Skin Without Scars Using Essential Oils

Jul 14, 2008
Pure essential oils have a long history of use in natural skin care. These wonderful phytochemicals provide a great breadth of natural, medicinal components well-known for healing damaged skin, as well as reducing the appearance of old scars from wounds, acne and other incidents. Essential oil blends for these applications are gentle, safe for regular use, and have a wonderful aroma to boot!

There are a few primary oils used in skin repair; additional oils may be added to your liking (to improve aroma, or add further skin-supportive properties), but here, we'll concentrate just on the commonly used oils for skin damage. First, and possibly most important, is Helichrysum Italicum, also known as Everlasting. This oil with a lovely earthy aroma is distilled from the brightly-colored, daisy-like flowers of a strongly aromatic herb native to the Mediterranean region. Helichrysum is one of the most highly regarded oils in aromatherapy for it's broad range of healing properties for body tissues. It is strongly anti-inflammatory, and has a high concentration of regenerative diketones found only in this oil. It is a bit more expensive due to it's low yield in processing, but produces it's wonderful effects in very small doses.

Helichrysum essential oil is the cornerstone for many blends for healing the skin, and is the only one necessary for supporting currently healing skin damage - it should be used at appropriate concentrations with Rosehip Seed and Hazelnut oils, as mentioned later in this article. As noted by well-known aromatherapists Kurt Schnaubelt, "The triple unsaturated fatty acids (of Rosehip Seed oil) strengthen the cell membranes and, combined with the regnerative qualities of Everlasting oil (Helichrysum), heal wounds with minimal or no scarring".

As noted above, Lavender oil is often used for skin healing. In a 50/50 blend with Tea Tree oil, it is commonly used on small cuts and scrapes to sooth and prevent infection. Lavender has anti-inflammatory properties along with tissue regenerating effects, albeit a bit more mild than Helichrysum. It does, however, have the important added benefit of a well-liked aroma that can ease anxiety for many people.

The essential oil distilled from the leaves of common Sage is included in blends where the wounds are old - where the healing happened some time ago and has left some unsightly scarring. This can work on keloid scars, acne scars, etc., though application need be regular and should continue for 3 to 6 months. The sage oil is included in essence to break up the scar tissue and to stimulate regeneration with it's powerful components. Sage oil should be used with great care and in small amounts. While it is called for in formulas for stretch marks, it should only be use after pregnancy, and not during by expectant mothers.

Rosemary is the final essential oil we'll cover here for skin healing and scar treatment. Rosemary of the Verbenone chemotype (rather than Cineol, which does not have the same properties) contains regenerative ketones like Lavender and Helichrysum, plus has the added benefit of stimulating the skin's metabolic process. This oil can bring greater circulation to skin tissues, delivering nutrients and eliminating cellular waste and toxins.

The essential oils mentioned here must be diluted in a carrier oil for daily application. In aromatherapy, more is not better! There have been numerous studies showing the great efficacy of essential oils in low concentrations based in seed or nut carrier oils. The two most commonly used base oils for skin care are Rosehip seed and Hazelnut oils. Rosehip seed has many documented uses in skin care, with it's triple-unsaturated fatty acids and it's vitamin A compounds. Rosehip seed has the ability to support tissue regeneration like Retin A, but without the drying or redening side effects. Hazelnut oil is the most well tolerated of all the carrier oils, and with its mild astringent properties, can even be used in cases of very oily skin. It will tend to leave the skin feeling nourished without feeling greasy.

Now for the recipes. For effective wound healing of recent cuts and scrapes (and has been used successfully on surgical incisions), to 1 ounce Hazelnut oil and 1 ounce Rosehip seed oil add 1 milliliter of Helichrysum essential oil and 1 milliliter of Lavender essential oil - apply twice a day for 7 to 10 days. For older scars from wounds or acne, including keloid scars, replace the Lavender in the previous recipe with Sage essential oil. Apply regularly for 3 to 6 months. For the healing of stretch marks, post partum, use 1 ounce Rosehip seed and 1 ounce Hazelnut oil with 1 milliliter Sage essential oil and 2 milliliters with Rosemary Verbenone essential oil; again use for 3 to 6 months.

So these are just a few skin care formulas commonly used in aromatherapy. Many more exist for a great variety of skin conditions - there is much information available on the internet or in bookstores. Remember, when creating your own blends, be conservative with the amounts of essential oils - they do work in small amounts. Also, it's always fun to add to these recipes one or more of your favorite aromatic oils - Jasmine, Ylang Ylang, Rose or other oils can add a lovely complex aroma to the blend; one that you'll enjoy wearing. Be creative, be safe and have fun!
About the Author
The author is a natural health professional utilizing organic essential oils and blends.
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