Aromatherapy Guide (Home)

Aromatherapy for Dry and Sensitive Skin

Suitable aromatherapy products for dry and sensitive skin

Dry skin is caused by insufficient production of sebum, the skin's natural moisturizer or lubricant, which is manufactured by the sebaceous glands. Dry skin is also often dehydrated, which is not quite the same condition. Dehydrated skin lacks moisture generally (and even oily skin can be dehydrated). However, the lack of sebum in dry skin diminishes the skin's ability to retain moisture, so dry and dehydrated skin often accompany each other.

Dry skin frequently looks delicate, fine and thin, with tiny pores. It is heavily affected by sun, wind and rain and wrinkles easily. It needs a lot of protection and moisturizing to maintain it well. Sensitive skin is usually fair and delicate, and shares with dry skin the need for lots of protection and moisturizing.

Sensitive skin easily reddens and itches, and only gentle, plant-based natural cosmetics should be used. It is also prone to allergic reactions caused by the alcohol and chemicals used in many commercial cosmetics and skin-care products, so these should be avoided.

Both dry and sensitive skins need more attention than normal skin. They should be moisturized several times a day, using a light base cream rather than a rich, heavy moisturizer. Cleansers and toners need to be very gentle, and plain flower waters make excellent toners. Gentle, hydrating face packs that include honey should be used once a week.

Suitable Aromatherapy Products

  • The best essential oils to use for dry skin include german chamomile, roman chamomile, rose otto, rose absolute, geranium, lavender, neroli, jasmine and sandalwood. For sensitive skins, essential oils include rose otto, rose absolute, melissa, neroli, helichrysum (also called 'everlasting' and 'immortelle'), german chamomile and roman chamomile. For sensitive skins, always use a very low percentage of essential oil, such as 1 or even 1/2 percent, and if any reaction occurs, stop using that particular essential oil.
  • Suitable flower waters for dry and sensitive skin include chamomile water, rose water, orange-blossom water, rose geranium water and lemon-balm (melissa) water.

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