My poor skin took a turn for the worse a couple of weeks ago, after a terrible picking incident in a hotel bathroom (those magnifying mirrors should be banned!).
Fortunately, I’m lucky to have an arsenal of goodies stashed here, there, and everywhere that are ready to help at my command. Plus, I figured this would be the best way to discover what works and what doesn’t. Let me tell you, most products did not deliver!
It led me to discover an outstanding product line that I’ll be reviewing soon because the products really cleared me up overnight and that’s no exaggeration! (I’m not one to get overly excited about a product line for my skin, but this one worked wonders, and I can’t wait to share it.)
Meanwhile, I had a “EUREKA” moment during some experimenting in an attempt to relieve my skin of a troublesome scar.
After applying this methodical preparation from my home apothecary—VOILA! I kid you not, my scar was gone by day’s end. Of course leaving this concoction on most of the afternoon and having a little beauty sleep never hurts either. Sleep is life’s regenerating mechanism, after all.
A small word about scarring: Scars develop to repair damage done to the dermis, the outer layer of skin. It forms new collagen fibers—a protein that gives skin elasticity and strength. The “repair job” usually doesn’t look as smooth and flawless as before the injury. Sometimes it needs a bit of coaxing along. (When it appears on the face, it’s never fast enough!)
So here’s my recipe for treating and vanishing scars. You can modify it by using just honey and aloe vera, but I think the outstanding healing oils put this elixir over the top.
- One small spatula scoop (or 1/4 tsp.) raw manuka honey (I used Manuka Health Flora MGO 550+ Honey)
- One pump Shea Terra Organics Cape Aloe Topical Healing Gel or a squirt or two of aloe vera gel from the cut leaf of the plant (highly recommended to have around the house.)
- One drop lavender and lemon essential oils. I used doTerra essential oils for the lavender and lemon, but Young Living oils and others are good too. (Not to be used on open wounds because it will sting, though that’s not necessarily a bad thing).
- One drop tea tree oil (I used Melaleuca’s tea tree oil)
- One drop Shea Terra Organics Black Seed Oil
- One drop Now Neem Oil
- One drop Slice of Nature Tamanu Oil
This produced less than 5 mL of a golden-colored liquid that I used on the scab several times a day with astounding results. It has a cooling feeling when applied. I did not experience any burning or stinging, even on an open cut.
There are some very aromatic oils in this mix. Interestingly enough, the end product actually has a nice, mild fragrance that is not overpowering or cloying. It’s sort of a faint citrus scent that’s slightly pungent due to the Tamanu and Black Cumin Seed oils. I’m glad because when I’m mending something that looks kinda nasty, at the very least, I want to smell good!
Why I chose these ingredients
I needed a strong healing base for the oils I wanted to use. My go-to skin healer has been raw honey. I chose that and super-healing aloe vera gel as the big one-two punch.
Raw Manuka Honey offers antioxidant, oxygenating, exfoliating, and humectant effects. If that’s not enough, it’s also a natural antiseptic. When massaged into the skin, antibacterial hydrogen peroxide is produced in manuka honey, which oxygenates the pores, drawing and lifting out debris and impurities. Read more amazing feats of honey here. The methylglyoxal (MG) is the main antibacterial component of manuka honey. The higher the concentration of MG, the stronger the antibiotic effect. The one I used rates 550+ MG.
Aloe Vera is probably one of the best investments in a house plant that I’ve ever made. My little plant rests on my kitchen windowsill, a modest place for such an illustrious succulent, a.k.a. “the plant of immortality” and “Wand of the Heaven.” Not surprisingly, aloe vera produces at least six natural antiseptics, which are able to kill mold, bacteria, fungi, and viruses, due to its high saponin, sterol, vitamin, mineral, and amino acid content, as well as 130 other active chemicals. It can be used on burns and to accelerate healing of many skin ailments, hence its inclusion in my formula.
For this formula, I ended up using Shea Terra Organics Cape Aloe because it’s one of the best bottled options that I’ve found. For those who wish to know, among the fully-disclosed ingredients are two preservatives: potassium sorbate (scored a 3 on the EWG Skin Deep Database) and sodium benzoate (scored a 1 on the website). Some of you may understandably wish to avoid these.
A note about using essential oils: quality does matter. I prefer using therapeutic grade essential oils when it comes to topical use. It’s one thing to burn a decent grocery store brand for aromatherapy and another to use it on the skin. You will find that a finer oil feels completely different, gentler, and more pure. It may not even be diluted by a carrier oil giving it full potency. Always patch test essential oils first to make sure your skin tolerates their use.
Lemon essential oil detoxifies and purifies. The scent makes me happy. I use it here as a skin brightener, along with its other therapeutic qualities. Remember how lemon juice bleaches hair? It’s photosensitive so be careful going out in the sun with lemon juice on (unless you desire those effects). But it’s great for cleaning up a wound and lightening the scar. I don’t mind the mildly astringent sting that sometimes accompanies lemon use. It always makes me feel like a product is working—as long as it doesn’t start irritating or burning the skin.
Lavender oil soothes and calms the skin and the senses. It is also known for promoting healing in wounds and on burns without leaving a scar. Harness its anti-inflammatory properties to treat dandruff, reduce itchiness and redness on the skin, and ease bloating and poor digestion.
Tea Tree oil is another versatile oil with healing abilities galore. It’s naturally anti-fungal, antiseptic, and antibacterial, as you can tell from its aroma that can rapidly decongest sinuses with just a few whiffs.
Next, I randomly pulled therapeutic oils with great reputations for topical use. These too offer an abundance of healing abilities, as well as a smell that would drive a caravan of cows out of the way. (Not sure where that came from so I’m just going with it).
Neem Oil is mild, nourishing and naturally rich in fatty acids, and has similar therapeutic properties to that of tea tree. Neem has been known to relieve dry skin and in ancient times was referred to as Sarva Roga Nivarini or “curer of all ailments.” (From iherb website.)
Black Seed Oil contains thymoquinone, a compound with antioxidant effects. It can be taken internally to help with rheumatoid arthritis, allergies, diabetes, and even cancer. As a natural anti-inflammatory, it seemed like a good oil to include in scar therapy. Sarah Villafranco, M.D. of Osmia Organics incorporates black cumin seed oil, or nigella sativa, in the Facial Callibration Serum for an infusion of vitamins and nutrients. That was a good enough reason for me, as I fully trust her well-formulated line.
Tamanu Oil is another top-notch healing oil. I’m quite impressed with Slice of Nature. This company’s oils are cold-pressed, raw, and organic—even for some hard-to-find raw oils, like argan oil (which incidentally has a natural scent that is absent from other processed versions). That means, in most cases, the oil is extracted in its purest, therapeutic form with all nutrients in tact. Heat and other extraction methods can change an oil’s benefits, as seen when an oil is hydrogenated.
Slice of Nature Tamanu oil is no exception to their high standard. It has a strong scent as is normal for a quality tamanu oil. Here’s the awesome description on the website. It naturally heals scars thanks to its antibiotic, antioxidant, anti-neuralgic, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties. PHEW! It’s a powerhouse.
Do you have trouble with scars of any kind? I’d love to hear your experience using this blend. Please share any thoughts or tweaks in the comments section.
- Black Seed: The Remedy For Everything But Death (greenmedinfo.com)
- Stimulating an increase in methylglyoxal puts the breaks on cancer (cancerfightingstrategies.com)
- 101 Uses for the Intro Kit: Lavender, Lemon, & Peppermint essential oils (doterraeveryday.com)
- Use lemon juice to lighten hair (wikihow.com)
- 40 amazing uses for aloe vera (health/howstuffworks.com)
- Herb Profile: Lavender (wellnessmama.com)
Disclaimer: This post is not meant to treat or diagnose any condition. It is merely a recommendation of what worked for me. I have no affiliation with any of the product lines mentioned and get no benefits from mentioning them.