Useful Essential Oils
Which essential oils are effective for wrinkles and aged skin?
The following essential oils have traditionally been used for wrinkles:
- Helichrysum essential oil – Dilute to 2% in Rosehip Seed Oil (10 drops per tablespoon) and apply to the skin
- Carrot seed essential oil – Dilute to 1-2% in any carrier oil or unscented facial care product (5-10 drops per tablespoon) (see this Aging skin page for more details).
The following formulations are also said to be useful for aging skin:
About the Condition
What causes wrinkles, age spots, and aging skin?
Aging skin and wrinkles are a natural part of getting older. As we age, our skin cells stop dividing as quickly, causing the skin’s inner layer – the dermis – to thin and be less elastic. Our skin also starts to have a harder time holding onto oil and moisture. All of these situations causing wrinkles. Age spots on the other hand are typically caused by excess sun exposure.
While wrinkles and aging skin are a part of aging, there are some lifestyle habits that tend to accelerate the deterioration of your skin. These are:
- Sun damage: Too much sun exposure can damage the skin causing wrinkles, age spots, and blotches.
- Smoking: This produces free radicals which slow down your skin’s collagen production, reduce elasticity and damage the skin cell’s membranes.
- Stress: Scrunching the forehead with a frown or a scowl can cause premature wrinkles.
- Dehydration: When your skin is dry, it has a harder time repairing itself. It becomes dull and less elastic.
- Harsh beauty products: Products with alcohol and chemicals can dry up the skin. Over cleaning strips the skin of its natural oils and moisture.
What are conventional medical treatments for wrinkles and aging skin?
There are many conventional approaches to reducing wrinkles. Most of them involve chemicals or harsh treatments to scrape off layers of skin. Many of them have side-effects and are pricey. These are a few options:
- Topical Retinoids: This medication is said to remove wrinkles and pigmentation, but its side-effects include peeling, itching, sensitive skin and redness.
- Botulinum toxin type A (Botox): Popular in recent years, botox relaxes muscles in the face and lessens wrinkles on the face.
- Filers: Chemicals are injected into skin folds to improve the skin tone and texture.
- Lasers: This procedure removes layers of your skin while stimulating collagen production causing new skin cells to form and removing some wrinkles and age spots.
- Dermabrasion: This “sands” the skin, removing the layers of the skin and smoothing the wrinkles.
- Chemical Peels: This “burns” the skin removing the layers of the skin and smoothing the wrinkles.
- Face Lifts: In this procedure excess skin is removed and then stretched. As with all surgical procedures there are a lot of risks.
All of these conventional approaches have side effects.
What are alternative treatments for aging skin and wrinkles?
Most treatments for aging skin require prevention and lifestyle changes. Here are some things you can do now for prevention and for healing of the skin:
- Sun protection: Excess sun exposure can cause your skin to age faster. Cover your skin when outside with hats and protective clothing and use chemical free sunscreen at the strongest time of day if you are in the sun.
- Hydration: A lack of water can cause skin to age. Drinking plenty of water hydrates the skin and gives it a supple look.
- Diet: Diet plays an important role in the appearance of your skin. Eat a well rounded diet with plenty of omega 3’s, antioxidants, and leafy greens. All of these foods will nourish the body and skin.
- Use oil in your skin care routine: After shower moisturizing body oils help the skin retain moisture and boost elasticity.
- Reduce stress: Sleep more and include meditation, yoga, or deep breathing into your daily routine.
And of course, essential oils have also been used to revitalize and rejuvenate aging skin. For more information, see the Useful Essential Oils tab.