Using essential oils for teenage skin

By Alison Angold CIDESCO ITEC

Essential oils could be a natural, effective way to carefully treat teenage skin.

Here is your ultimate skincare guide for using essential oils for teenage skin, to get effective results, while maintaining the gentle and delicate balance of young skin.

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The best essential oils for teenage skin

The most effective oils to use on teenage skin are;

  • Tea Tree
  • Grapefruit
  • Ylang Ylang
  • Chamomile
  • Orange

Essential oils for teenage skin

Tea Tree

This is probably going to be the best and most used oil for skin suffering from spots or acne. Tea Tree is antiseptic and can be used to reduce any infection or surrounding redness of a spot.

Tea Tree is one of the only oils that can be applied directly onto the skin. Use a clean cotton bud to apply a very small amount of the essential oil, onto the spot.


Grapefruit is a very useful oil for excessively oily skin. It acts as an astringent which means it will help clear oil on the surface of the skin without stripping its useful oils.

Add a couple of drops of Grapefruit essential oil to a pure orange flower water to make an effective toner. Apply with damp cotton pads on the skin twice a day.

Ylang Ylang

This essential oil balances the production of oil in the skin, and can help draw a spot out. This is useful if there is a lot of congestion underneath the skin.

Make a facial oil. Add 2 drops of Ylang Ylang to 20 ml of Jojoba oil, and use sparingly each evening on clean skin. Use a tinted dropper bottle to store the oil in. The jojoba oil WILL NOT make the skin more oily! In fact, it balances sebum and dissolves excess sebum, so really beneficial!


Chamomile is a really soothing oil and great for sensitive skin. So if sensitive skin or sore spots are an issue, chamomile is an ideal oil. It is an anti-inflammatory oil, so calms and soothes any ‘angry’ conditions.

Either make a facial oil, as detailed above or add to a natural moisturiser. Try this very natural Vitamin E cream and add 3 drops of Chamomile essential oil to the tube.


Orange is a really refreshing and uplifting oil and a really good tonic for dull or oily skin.

Use in any of the methods above.

Purchase your oils here……..

Teenage skin – when to begin?

A close-up of 2 teenage girls.  Essential oils for teenage skin

I often get asked when a teenager should start using skincare.  It’s such a difficult question to answer! 

There is no set age. It all depends on what the teenager is doing to their skin and their natural skin type.  If make-up is not yet being worn, and the skin is clear, then the skin should be left alone as long as possible.

I would suggest a small amount of moisturiser to combat surface dryness, protect from the elements, and begin to prepare the deeper layers of the skin for the future.

However, as soon as make-up is being worn, or hormones have kicked in and the skin is showing signs of congestion and spots, a simple routine needs to be in place to ensure that the skin is kept clean and smooth and that no dirt or make-up can be left trapped in the skin – which could cause further congestion and breakouts. 

And remember, we are not just talking about girls here – boys should be encouraged to look after their skin too. My 2 teenage sons are using a daily routine at the age of 13 & 15. It may just be a couple of products, but it all helps to ease any spots they have and protect their skin for the future.

Teenage skin – what is happening beneath the surface?

During puberty, hormones within the body are much more active. These hormones can cause havoc in our teenagers!

Alongside the moods and the mono-syllabic conversations, the skin can be affected too! The hormones travel around the body and stimulate the sebaceous glands in the skin.

At the very least, the sebaceous glands will secrete more oil, giving the surface of the skin a greasy shine. At their worst the stimulated gland will be irritated so much, that it causes a spot to appear at the surface of the skin: (

Read more on ACNE and the specific essential oils needed.


  • Use a gentle cleanser in the evening to remove any dirt or makeup.  The cleanser could be a light lotion or a cleansing facial wash.  Ensure that gentle movements are used. You are not trying to scrub away all the oil on the surface of the skin, just effectively remove surface debris.
  • A toner should follow.  This is an essential product at this stage as it will remove any last traces of cleanser or makeup.  A toner will also help cleanse any congestion lurking under the skin.
  • A light moisturiser or anti-shine balm should be applied day and evening.  This will hydrate the uppermost layers of the skin and create a good, smooth base for makeup. What we don’t want to do, is clog the pores, so ensure the moisturiser is light and not too heavy.
  • A light SPF should also be used.  Teenagers won’t be too bothered about this product, but it’s essential to start protecting the skin from a young age.  UV exposure is the biggest cause of premature aging, and while the young ones won’t care about that now, they may be grateful for the advice later!
  • Use a facial scrub twice a week. An exfoliator should be used once or twice weekly.  This will ensure that the lumps and bumps that come with blackheads and congestion under the skin are kept smooth.  A facial scrub also helps to deep cleanse pores, so lessens the chances of blackheads and spots forming. Again, don’t go mad with scrubbing! Enough pressure to have an effect, without disrupting any spots that may be there.


  • Do not over-cleanse the skin! Don’t be tempted to clean and clean and clean the skin in an attempt to rid of the surface oil.  A certain amount of oil is meant to be there, and if you scrub away too much, the skin will over-compensate and just make more!
  • Do not pick spots! It’s a myth that you should squeeze and squeeze a spot until nothing else comes out.  By doing this you are creating a big, bleeding hole in your skin. And bacteria love blood! Therefore, the spot will not go away, and most likely just get worse.  This is the same for blackheads. While blackheads can be gently eased out, they should never be forced. Forcing a blackhead out can irritate the skin, causing a spot to appear, in the same place.
  • Don’t use strong astringent products! The tendency with young, oily skin, is to strip the skin completely of the oil. Astringents (products containing large amounts of alcohol), will do this.  But not only will the skin just create more oil, but you will be leaving the skin exposed to more spots and blackheads, as you have also removed the skin’s protective barrier – the acid mantle!

Try this Dermalogica Starter kit;

Eve Taylor teen actives skin kit
Eve Taylor Teen Skin Actives is ideal for teen skin.


And that’s about it!  Teenagers don’t need an extensive skincare routine, or a cupboard full of products. Treat the skin gently but well and regularly.  Getting into good habits at a young age will ensure the skin is prepped and primed for future years.

Essential oils should, at a young age, be used sparingly, and if in any doubt do a patch test with the chosen oil first. Mix one drop of essential in a little oil or lotion and apply to an area of skin – not the face. If no reaction occurs after 24 hours, then the essential oil is fine to use on the face,

It should be noted that if the skin condition is severe, or severe acne is present, a doctor’s advice and prescribed medication may be needed.

Please also note, that if ever in any doubt about the use of essential oils on any skin type or for any condition, please seek the advice of your local aromatherapy practitioner or contact me for a consultation.

About the Author
Alison Angold is a fully qualified (certified) beauty therapist, massage therapist, and aromatherapist from the UK. She has over 25 years of experience in this industry and has worked in a variety of beauty salons, spa’s as well as running her own successful beauty and massage business. Her career has allowed her to treat many, many clients, with skincare concerns, medical conditions, and a whole variety of other ailments and issues, which has enabled her to work closely with essential oils, prescribing specific blends for these clients to help with these conditions. Her qualifications in the use of essential oils and aromatherapy, allow her to share this knowledge with others, in a safe, reliable way.

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