8 Ways to Use Lavender Essential Oil for Skin

woman in sweater holds DIY lavender oil and a sprig of dried lavender flower

Treehugger / Sanja Kostic

One of the most popular essential oils in skincare comes from the lavender plant. The floral-scented oil not only adds a distinct fragrance to lotions and bath salts, but it boasts a number of beneficial ingredients that can simplify your beauty routine while helping your skin look its best.

Using lavender oil is an easy way to put natural plant compounds to work while steering clear of overly processed chemicals. The small environmental footprint of lavender essential oil is a very big deal, too. The lavender plant does not use heavy amounts of fertilizers and pesticides. 

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For Acne

woman adds lavender oil to aloe vera gel as a cleanser for face acne

Treehugger / Sanja Kostic

If you’re dealing with stubborn acne, lavender oil could make the perfect addition to your skincare routine. The anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties of lavender oil pack a one-two punch for fighting blemishes. Combine some with aloe vera or witch hazel to make a DIY toner for acne-prone skin.

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In the Bath

hand adds lavender oil to bathtub for relaxation and moisture

Treehugger / Sanja Kostic

To get a spa-like experience in your own bath, try mixing a few drops of lavender oil with unscented castile soap or other unscented liquid soaps and adding it to your bathwater. Not only will it smell heavenly in your bathroom, but the lavender oil can help improve circulation in the skin, giving you an extra glow.

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For Wrinkles

woman in pink sweater with pink nail polish dabs lavender oil from bottle into hands

Treehugger / Sanja Kostic

Looking to reduce the appearance of wrinkles? The antioxidants found in lavender oil could help fight off the free radicals that can cause fine lines and wrinkles. Combine lavender oil with a carrier oil like grapeseed or jojoba and apply it to areas where you’d like to see improvement.

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For Scars

woman in pink sweater displays finger with bandaid to connote scar for lavender oil healing

Treehugger / Sanja Kostic

Cuts and scrapes have the potential to leave nasty scars behind. Luckily, the same antioxidants that could reduce the visibility of wrinkles may also increase tissue generation after injuries. This may reduce the amount of scarring that happens during wound healing. 

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For Skin Conditions

hand adds lavender oil to glass jar of coconut oil to help with skin conditions

Treehugger / Sanja Kostic

For people who suffer from eczema or psoriasis, combining lavender oil with coconut oil and applying it to the affected skin may just help soothe and calm patches of inflammation and irritation, thanks to the antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties of lavender oil. Using coconut oil as the carrier for lavender oil adds an extra layer of anti-inflammatory and moisturizing protection.

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To Avoid Bug Bites

person wearing ankle bracelets applies lavender oil to legs to avoid mosquito and bug bites

Treehugger / Sanja Kostic

Insects can cause some pretty nasty-looking bites, not to mention the itch and discomfort they leave behind. One of the compounds found in lavender oil, linalool, is already used in plenty of products designed to control bugs. This non-toxic ingredient is naturally derived and less energy- and water-intensive to make than most synthetic insect sprays.

Try putting a few drops of lavender oil into an unscented lotion or mixing with a carrier oil, then apply it to exposed skin to ward off biting bugs. Already have bites? Lavender oil can also help calm the itch and irritation caused by mosquitoes and other pests.

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For Dark Spots

woman applies lavender oil to skin just below eyes for dark spots and wrinkles

Treehugger / Sanja Kostic

If you deal with hyperpigmentation or dark spots on your skin, you might want to try adding a little lavender oil to your skincare regimen. Linalyl acetate, a natural ester found in lavender oil, helps fight inflammation and can promote skin cell turnover and lead to fresher, brighter-looking skin. 

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To Look and Feel Rested

sprigs of dried lavender flowers on wrinkled white pillow next to rumpled bed blankets

Treehugger / Sanja Kostic

Sometimes all you need to look your best is a good night’s sleep. That’s where lavender oil comes in. Introducing this fragrant essential oil can be a total game-changer for helping you calm down and relax before bedtime. Several small studies have shown that smelling lavender before bedtime helped people fall asleep more quickly and improved the overall quality of their sleep. A solid night of sleep can help reduce dark circles under the eyes and leave you feeling energized and refreshed. 

View Article Sources
  1. Seo, Young Mi and Jeong, Seok Hee. "Effects of Blending Oil of Lavender and Thyme on Oxidative Stress, Immunity, and Skin Condition Atopic Dermatitis Induced Mice." Journal of Korean Academy of Nursing, vol. 45, no. 3, 2015, pp. 367-377., doi:10.4040/jkan.2015.45.3.367

  2. Djemaa, Ferdaous Ghrab Ben, et al. "Antioxidant and Wound Healing Activity of Lavandula aspic L. Ointment." Journal of Tissue Viability, vol. 25, no. 4, 2016, pp. 193-200., doi:10.1016/j.jtv.2016.10.002

  3. Koulivand, Peir Hossein, et al. "Lavender and the Nervous System." Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, vol. 2013, 2013., doi:10.1155/2013/681304