Essential Oils for Anti-Aging

When it comes to taking care of our skin many of us don’t want to invest time and energy in laborious and usually expensive skin care programs. The great news is that we don’t have to! Many over-the-counter beauty products contain harmful chemicals and there’s no telling what harm they may be doing to our health and wellbeing. Aromatherapy is a completely natural and holistic treatment. This means it works on the whole of your mind, body and spirit, so not only are you getting a beauty treatment, but you’re giving a boost to your physical and emotional well being too. It is also cost effective with a small bottle of oil lasting years, if kept properly. Essential oils are incredibly beneficial for the skin as they are ‘cytophylactic’. Basically they stimulate the re-generation of new cells, which means skin stays healthy and younger looking for longer!


Photo credit: Pat Kight @ flickr

As we get older our skin begins to slow down the production of collagen. It loses elasticity and becomes dry, making it prone to wrinkles as well as saggy patches, especially around the eyes and mouth. Gone is the plump, fresh face of youth, but it doesn’t have to be this way! Some of the best essential oils to use in the battle against Father Time are frankincense, lavender, lemon, carrot seed, sandalwood, neroli, patchouli and rose. The choice of base oil is also very important to consider. They are not just used to help dilute essential oils; they also play a vital role in helping to nurture your skin.

One of my personal favourite combinations is 9-drops frankincense, 6-drops neroli, 3-drops lemon and 3-drops lavender mixed with 40ml jojoba and 30ml apricot kernel base oil. Apply to the face and neck 1-2 times a week to help keep skin looking soft and supple. Alternatively 2 Tablespoons of the blend can be added to the bath for a luxurious beauty soak. Jojoba oil is not only intensely moisturizing but the high level of Vitamin E it contains helps eliminate the free radicals responsible for damaging skin. Apricot kernel locks in moisture and being rich in omega-6 oil it also keeps the skin firm and toned. No more saggy skin! I find this blend has an intoxicating aroma that leaves me feeling deeply nourished and cared for from the inside out.


Frankincense is one of the top oils for rejuvenating mature skin. Along with neroli it has been used for thousands of years in beauty rituals, religious rites and in the case of the Egyptians, also for embalming! If you think about it, King Tutankhamen didn’t look too shabby after being entombed for more than 3000 years!  Neroli is used in many over-the-counter beauty products as well, but it is far more beneficial to use the real, unadulterated essential oil. It can help improve the quality of your skin, softening wrinkles and improving the appearance of broken capillaries. Lavender and patchouli are two of the best oils to help heal the skin and encourage new cell growth. Over time they may even help diminish the appearance of old scar tissue. Carrot seed oil can be tricky to find but it is well worth the search. This oil has a wonderful, earthy aroma and its benefits include helping to restore elasticity and tone to older skin. It really makes the skin glow with youth! Sandalwood is a great choice for men who may not like the floral aroma of other oils, while lemon is astringent and helps tone droopy skin.


Age spots are unsightly, dark spots that usually start appearing on the backs of hands, shoulders, and face after the age of 40, but they can affect those even younger. Caused by over exposure to the sun, these blemishes, also known as liver spots, can be treated effectively with Aromatherapy. Lemon is a natural bleaching agent but it must be used with caution. It can be irritating to skin so always has to be applied in a much weaker dilution than other oils. Combine 4-drops lemon and 1-drop lavender essential oil in 20ml coconut oil and apply to age spots daily. Please note that lemon is a photosensitizing oil, meaning it increases the skin’s sensitivity to the sun. So don’t use blend before going out.

Sadly it isn’t just our skin that is affected as we age. Our hair can also show the tell tale signs of getting older. Often hair will become thin, brittle and lose much of its youthful lustre. Fortunately Aromatherapy can work to restore the shine, fullness and strength of youthful hair. Massage plain jojoba oil into the scalp and cover your head with a hot towel for 1-2 hours. This is a fantastic once a week conditioning treatment but of course essential oils can be added to intensify the process. If you have dark hair add 3-drops rosemary to 3 Tablespoons of jojoba oil, or substitute 3-drops of chamomile for blonde hair. These oils will nourish your hair and add shine, softness and manageability. They also help stimulate the scalp, which can encourage hair growth. It’s possible to use the oils as a final rinse after normal shampooing by adding them to cider vinegar or water, but really the use of jojoba oil is ideal, as it will care for your hair from root to tip!