The premium skincare community is always coming up with new ways to treat various skin conditions. Recently, we have seen lavender oil skincare on the rise. Commonly known for its relaxing scent, lavender oil’s effects actually extend beyond the smell of lavender and can have a direct impact on the appearance of your skin when applied topically. We checked in with the Kate Somerville skin care clinic esthetician Michelle Freese to learn more about the soothing benefits of using lavender in skin care.
Lavender Oil Benefits
Lavender oil for skin can have a number of benefits that may surprise you. It is a powerful herb boasting a variety of properties that can help address a variety of skin concerns. “It is obviously known for its soothing and calming effects as a fragrance, but these spa-like effects actually have a similar result on the skin,” says Michelle. She walked us through some of the properties of lavender and its most notable benefits.
Reduces Acne Lavender oil has antibacterial properties 1 that helps to kill acne-inducing bacteria and clogged pores. By unclogging pores and reducing inflammation when you put it on your skin, lavender helps prevent acne from developing while treating existing blemishes.
Minimizes Inflammation Similar to the calming effects of lavender scent, it can soothe irritated skin 2 as well due to its natural anti-inflammatory properties. As a result, lavender may help treat certain skin conditions, such as eczema or psoriasis. By the same token, lavender can help to treat sunburns and other pain and inflammations of the skin. For taking preventative measures, wear sunscreen every day. Read our related post that explains how sunscreen works.
Speeds Healing Some research 3 indicates that lavender oil may promote the healing of skin tissue. In which case, next time you have a cut, scrape, or another wound, reach for the lavender oil to help speed up the healing process.
Slows Aging As lavender contains antioxidants, it may help protect against damaging free radicals which can dramatically age the skin. These free radicals are at least partly responsible for the development of fine lines and wrinkles on the face so blocking them with an antioxidant could have some anti-aging effects. Check out Kate Somerville’s wrinkle cream and read more about how to reduce eye wrinkles with our anti-aging products.
Potential Side Effects
Despite all its soothing effects and wonderful benefits, lavender is actually a common allergen for many. However, the reaction those people experience tends to be relatively mild in nature and can be minimized if caught early. The signs of an allergic response to lavender oil are the same as any contact dermatitis including rash, itching, and redness. If you experience these symptoms stop use immediately and seek out advice from your primary care doctor, dermatologist, or esthetician.
Lavender Oil Products
How you use lavender oil depends on the condition you are trying to treat. While you can choose to use pure lavender essential oil, such as that for aromatherapy, you must be careful when doing so. Because an essential oil is so concentrated, using it directly on your skin is more likely to cause irritation. So if you want to give it a try, use a carrier oil such as coconut oil to form a moisturizer. However, this sort of at-home remedy is rather unnecessary given the ample number and variety of products currently available.
For example, Kate Somerville’s Nourish Face Moisturizer utilizes lavender oil and green tea extract to help soothe stressed skin and combat the damaging effects of free radicals while providing deep hydration to create an instant glow and increased radiance. Plus, it’s clinically tested to be safe for sensitive skin.
Clearly, lavender oil benefits the skin in a number of different ways and can help address a variety of skin concerns including acne-prone skin, aging, and inflammation. But as with any new skincare ingredient, it is important to pay close attention to how your skin reacts to its application. If you have any allergy, you may end up with skin irritation worse than before you began using lavender oil. If you choose to use lavender essential oils rather than a product, be sure to dilute it with a carrier oil. Otherwise, it is best to stick with a store-bought product to reap the most benefits of lavender oil.