Scars can serve as reminders of happy memories enjoying time in nature or getting into childhood adventures, but they can also be a feature that you’re not a huge fan of aesthetically. Luckily, the skincare benefits of essential oils have the potential to reduce the appearance of scars or heal cuts and scrapes effectively before they have time to leave a lasting mark.
Essential Oils for Healing Wounds
There are a number of essential oils that should be part of any nature-based first aid kit due to the antiseptic benefits they offer. Some oils ease the pain while others protect against bacteria. Others encourage healing by triggering the production of new collagen cells.
Essential Oils for Pain Relief
Blue Tansy Essential Oil
A natural analgesic, blue tansy also helps protect against bacteria, so using it will protect a wound, making it less likely to become infected. It also acts as an anti-inflammatory.
Peppermint Essential Oil
Clove Essential Oil
Before dentists had other options, clove oil was the go-to choice to help ease dental pain. The antibacterial properties of clove essential oil have also been shown in studies to be as effective at inhibiting bacteria as some pharmaceutical topicals.
Essential Oils with Antibacterial Properties
Tea Tree Essential Oil
Tea tree oil is so versatile, and it acts as a natural antiseptic. According to a 2006 study from Australian researchers that appeared in Clinical Microbiology Reviews, tea tree oil is an effective antimicrobial that can keep wounds free from bacteria while they heal.2
Helichrysum Essential Oil
According to the Wound Care Society, the helichrysum essential oil contains compounds that stop bleeding, making it an excellent option for treating cuts and scrapes. A 2012 study that appeared in Natural Product Communications found that helichrysum offered numerous compounds conducive to wound healing, including humulene and bornyl acetate.
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Anise Essential Oil
Anise contains limonene, which acts as both an antibacterial and anti-inflammatory. Not only can it help protect wounds during the healing process, but it can also speed healing due to antioxidants that encourage the healthy production of collagen at the wound site.
It also offers free radical protection, so fresh wounds are protected from oxidative stress.
Allspice Essential Oil
The most powerful ingredient in allspice is eugenol, which is both an antiseptic and anti-inflammatory, so it protects against bacteria. It is an ideal option for applying to mild cuts and scrapes, and it also offers powerful relief from pain.
If that’s not enough to convince you, eugenol also acts as an antioxidant, so as new skin cells form at the wound site, they are protected from free radical activity.4
Blue Cypress Essential Oil
Not only does the essential oil offer moisture to soothe injured skin, but it also contains several antibacterial compounds including camphene and guaiazulene which can help protect skin from infection during the healing process.
A 2014 study from Egyptian and Saudi Arabian researchers that appeared in Biomed Central Complementary and Alternative Medicine found that that the antimicrobial compounds in blue cypress essential oil made it a viable option for use as a natural pharmaceutical.5
Lavender Essential Oil
Lavender is a gentle antiseptic that can protect cuts and scraps from developing an infection. It also moisturizes and can ease slight pain.
Essential Oils for Healing the Skin
Chamomile Essential Oil
Chamomile essential oil is a good option for scrapes, according to the Wound Care Society, because it has antioxidants that help promote healing without damaging the skin surrounding the damaged area.
Cinnamon Leaf Essential Oil
This essential oil contains the monoterpene linalool, which encourages the production of vitamin E, a skin-friendly antioxidant that can help protect new collagen cells that form at the site of a wound.
Lemon Essential Oil
The vitamin C in lemon oil—and other members of the citrus family—help encourage the production of collagen, so wounds heal faster. Lemon is also an antiseptic, so it can protect against infection during the healing process, according to the Wound Care Society.
Most essential oils should be used with a carrier oil to protect the skin. Borage seed oil is a wonderful option for wound care, as it contains gamma-linolenic acid, but evening primrose oil is also a good choice because it eases inflammation at the site of the wound, amplifying the benefits provided by any essential oil.
Once you’ve selected your essential oils and a carrier oil, you’re ready to use these natural plant compounds to achieve the skincare benefits that you desire.
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