Carrier Oils & Their Comedogenic Level

With natural skin care on the rise and face oils back in its glory, it is important to understand which carrier oils are suitable for your skin - one factor to observe is the comedogenic level. Carrier oils are essential when applying essential oils to skin as essential oils need to be diluted for safety of use.

With natural skin care on the rise and face oils back in their glory, it is important to understand which carrier oils are suitable for your skin - one factor to observe is the comedogenic level. Carrier oils are essential when applying essential oils to the skin as essential oils need to be diluted for the safety of use. 

What Does Comedogenic Mean?

Comedogenic is synonymous with acne; its literal definition is anything that is pore-clogging. There are 120+ comedogenic ingredients known in the beauty industry, scientifically proven to trigger and cause breakouts for acne-prone skin. 
It is vital to know the comedogenic level of carrier oils in oil-based products - to find the products that work with your skin and are best for your skin.
Those who are prone to breaking out, blackheads, and whiteheads should avoid highly comedogenic oils, while people with dry skin could benefit from more emollient oils to nourish and protect the skin. 
The Comedogenic Scale is a 0-5 scale where 0 indicates that the ingredient is least likely to clog pores and five is the most likely to clog pores, leading to skin problems. 

Some common non-comedogenic carrier oils include: 

  • Argan oil

  • Grapeseed oil

  • Jojoba oil

  • Sunflower oil

  • Sweet almond oil

  • Rosehip oil

  • Sea Buckthorn oil

  • Hazelnut oil

  • Castor oil

  • Pomegranate oil

  • Neem oil 

With that said, here is a breakdown of the best oils for each skin type; 

Normal Skin: Jojoba oil, sweet almond oil, grapeseed oil, sunflower oil

Dry Skin: Olive oil, avocado oil, sweet almond oil, argan oil

Oily Skin: Sunflower oil, jojoba oil, grapeseed oil, sweet almond oil

Mature Skin: Sesame oil, jojoba oil, rosehip oil, apricot oil, and sweet almond oil

Combination: argan oil, tamanu oil

Sensitive Skin: Sesame oil, sweet almond oil, apricot kernel oil, jojoba oil

Argan Oil - Comedogenic Rating: 0

Antioxidant and vitamin E rich

Multipurpose - hair, nail, skin

Anti-aging and skin softening

Helps restore the skin's hydro-lipid layer to reduce wrinkles and fine lines

Quickly absorbs without leaving a greasy residue 

Castor Oil - Comedogenic Rating: 1

Detoxing and purging

Increases cell turnover - minimizes signs of aging, effective acne treatment

Use to thicken and condition hair, prevent and treat scars, athlete’s foot

Rosehip Seed Oil - Comedogenic Rating: 1

High in fatty acids - nourishes, smoothes, and softens skin

Regenerates, firms, and improves skin elasticity

Reduces scarring, improves skin texture

Calms inflammation and redness

Tamanu Oil - Comedogenic Rating: 2

Rich in antioxidants and fatty acids

Antibacterial - suitable for acne-prone skin

Healing for inflamed and irritated skin, stretch marks, sunburns, and scars

Jojoba Oil - Comedogenic Rating: 2

Light-weight, fast absorbing, and non-greasy

Anti-inflammatory

Moisturizing and healing for all skin types

Mimics skin’s sebum, able to carry ingredients deep into the skin

Avocado Oil - Comedogenic Rating: 2

High in omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins A, D, and E

High in anti-inflammatory sterolin and other antioxidants

Heals age spots, blemishes, sun damage, and eczema

Excellent overall moisturizer

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