Essential Oils for Keratosis Pilaris: Natural Remedies to Soothe Bumpy Skin

Essential Oils for Keratosis Pilaris
Essential Oils for Keratosis Pilaris

Are you tired of those bumpy, red, and irritating patches on your skin that resemble goosebumps? If yes, you might be dealing with keratosis pilaris(KP). It’s a common skin condition that affects many people and it can cause a lot of frustration and embarrassment. The good news is that there are natural remedies that can help you reduce the prevalence of these annoying bumps and one of the most effective is essential oils.

Essential oils have anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that can soothe the skin irritation caused by keratosis pilaris.

This blog post will explore using essential oils to treat keratosis pilaris and naturally get smooth, beautiful skin. So, let’s dive in and discover the power of keratosis pilaris.

What is Keratosis Pilaris (KP)?


Keratosis pilaris (KP) is a common skin condition that affects many people. It manifests as small, rough, raised bumps that can be skin-colored, red or white. The lumps are usually found on the back of the upper arms, thighs and buttocks, but they can also appear on other body areas.

KP is caused by the overproduction of keratin, a protein that protects the skin from infections and other harmful elements. When keratin builds up in hair follicles, it forms plugs that block the opening of the follicle, resulting in the appearance of bumps.

While KP is typically not harmful and painless, it can still cause annoyance and self-consciousness for those affected.

What are the Causes of Keratosis Pilaris(KP)?

The condition known as keratosis pilaris is a frequently occurring skin issue that results in the formation of rough and uneven patches on the surface of the skin. While the cause of this condition isn’t fully understood, several factors might be involved.

Researchers have yet to fully understand the exact causes of keratosis pilaris (KP). However, they believe that the condition arises due to the formation of plugs in the hair follicle openings caused by the buildup of keratin.Keratin is a type of protein that provides structure to hair, nails, and the outermost layer of the skin, known as the epithelial cells. It plays a vital role in the skin’s regenerative process.

Usually, dead skin cells containing keratin are naturally shed from the skin. However, in individuals with keratosis pilaris, keratin accumulates within the hair follicles, leading to the blockage of pores. This results in the characteristic small, rough bumps associated with the condition.

Finding one or more twisted hairs within these plugged hair follicles is possible. Some scientists hypothesize that keratosis pilaris may be caused by thick hairs that form large coils beneath the skin’s outer layers, called the superficial epidermis.

Studies supporting this theory suggest that the circular hair shaft can rupture follicle cells, triggering inflammation and the abnormal release of keratin.

Genetics – keratosis pilaris

The development of it is believed to be influenced by family history and exposure to specific skin irritants and dryness. Keratosis pilaris appears to be more prevalent among those who are allergic or have asthma than those without these conditions.

A study conducted in 2015, involving 50 patients, found that 67 percent of them had a family history of keratosis pilaris, indicating a genetic predisposition to the condition.

Environmental factors

The condition can worsen in individuals with dry, dead skin, particularly during winter or in low-humidity weather conditions. A survey conducted at Amersham General Hospital in the U.K. involving 49 patients revealed that 80 percent reported seasonal variations in the severity of keratosis pilaris symptoms. Of those patients, 49 percent experienced improvements during summer, while 47 percent said worsening symptoms during winter.

Even though this condition has no cure, it is possible to keep its signs under control through hydrating creams and regular exfoliation.


It commonly appears in childhood, reaches its highest prevalence during adolescence, and tends to improve or disappear by adulthood. A study published in the British Journal of Dermatology reported that keratosis pilaris symptoms enhanced with age in 35 percent of the participants, with an average age of improvement noted at 16 years.

The causes of keratosis pilaris are not entirely known, but the buildup of keratin leading to the formation of plugs in hair follicles is believed to be involved. Genetics, environmental conditions, and age contribute to the development and severity of this skin condition.

Overview of essential oils and how they can help with KP

Essential oils are natural extracts of plants that are highly concentrated, meaning they are a very potent form of medicine. While their exact composition varies depending on the plant, what remains consistent is how effective they can be when used to treat skin conditions.

Research has shown that essential oils can reduce swelling, pain and itch, help cleanse away dirt and oil and even soothe irritated skin. All these benefits help make necessary oil treatments attractive for skin problems.

Additionally, essential oils are incredibly aromatic and come in various delightful scents. Whether you’re drawn to lavender, tea tree or chamomile, these naturally offer the perfect holistic approach for managing this common skin condition.

Importance of using natural remedies for skin conditions

Essential oils can help with KP in several ways.

Here’s a list of how essential oils may potentially help with keratosis pilaris:

Anti-inflammatory Effects

Some essential oils have properties that can help reduce inflammation in the affected skin, potentially alleviating redness and swelling.

Skin Softening

Certain essential oils can help soften the skin, making it smoother and reducing the rough texture associated with keratosis pilaris.

Soothing and Calming

Essential oils with relaxing properties can relieve irritated skin, promoting a sense of calm and comfort.

Antimicrobial Properties

Some essential oils possess antimicrobial properties, which may help eliminate microbes and germs that can worsen the condition and lead to the formation of pus-filled lesions.

Itch Relief

Certain essential oils have soothing properties that can help relieve itchiness and discomfort associated with keratosis pilaris.

Drying Effect

Some essential oils may have a drying effect on the bumps, potentially helping to reduce their size and prominence.

Redness Reduction

Certain essential oils may help minimize redness in the affected areas, contributing to an improved overall appearance.

Cooling Sensation

Essential oils with cooling properties can provide a soothing and refreshing sensation, helping to cool down and alleviate irritation in the affected area.

It’s important to note that individual responses to essential oils may vary, and it’s recommended to perform a patch test and consult with a healthcare professional before using essential oils for keratosis pilaris.

Essential Oils for Keratosis Pilaris
Essential Oils for Keratosis Pilaris

Top 8 Essential Oils for Keratosis Pilaris

If you’re struggling with keratosis pilaris, you may wonder how to eliminate those pesky lumps on your skin. Luckily, essential oils can be a natural and effective solution to soothe and smooth your skin.

Here are some of the top essential oils for keratosis pilaris:

1. Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil has been used in many skin care remedies for centuries because of its antifungal and antibacterial properties, which can be effective against KP. It is especially beneficial for those with very dry skin, itchy skin and irritated and inflamed skin caused by KP bumps.

To use tea tree oil for KP, mix a few drops into your favorite lotion or body wash and apply the mixture directly to affected areas.

2. Lavender Oil

Lavender oil is another excellent option for relieving KP-prone skin due to its calming and soothing properties. Its anti-inflammatory properties may reduce redness and irritation associated with KP.

To use lavender oil for relief from KP, add 1-2 drops of lavender essential oil to a carrier oil like jojoba or almond, then massage this mixture onto your bumpy skin twice daily.

3. Frankincense Oil

Frankincense oil is made from the Boswellia tree’s resin and is known for its anti-inflammatory properties, which can help soothe redness and irritation associated with KP.

You can use frankincense oil on your skin by adding a few drops to your facial cleanser or moisturizer. Alternatively, mix it with a carrier oil like jojoba or coconut oil and apply it directly to affected areas.

4. Peppermint Oil

Peppermint oil has cooling, refreshing effects that can reduce the itching associated with KP. As with frankincense, you can add peppermint oil to your skincare routine by mixing a few drops of pure peppermint essential oil into your favorite cleanser or moisturizer.

For more intensive relief, mix peppermint essential oil with a carrier oil and gently massage over affected areas. The aromatherapeutic properties of peppermint may also calm stress levels that often exacerbate KP symptoms.

5. Eucalyptus Oil

Eucalyptus Oil has anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce redness and irritation caused by the condition. Additionally, it has a cooling effect that can soothe the affected areas and relieve itching.

6. Rosehip Oil

Rosehip Oil is rich in vitamin A, which promotes healthy skin. It also contains essential fatty acids that can improve the skin’s texture and appearance, making it an effective remedy for Keratosis Pilaris.

7. Geranium Oil

Geranium Oil is another essential oil that can be used to treat Keratosis Pilaris. Geranium Oil has astringent properties that can help tighten and tone the skin, reducing the appearance of the bumps associated with the condition.

8. Juniper Berry Oil

It is extracted from the berries of the juniper plant, which can alleviate excessive dead skin cell buildup and reduce inflammation. Many people feel an immediate improvement in their symptoms after using Juniper Berry Oil. It is a natural exfoliant that unclogs pores while restoring your skin’s delicate pH balance.

Carrier Oils for Diluting Essential Oils

Carrier oils are vegetable oils used to dilute essential oils before applying them to the skin. Essential oils are highly concentrated and can cause skin irritation or allergic reactions if applied directly. Carrier oils help to reduce the concentration of essential oils and provide a base that makes them easier to apply.

There are many carrier oils available, each with its unique benefits. Some of the most commonly used carrier oils include:

1. Coconut oil

Coconut oil is a great carrier oil for diluting essential oils. It’s a multifaceted natural oil that delivers the therapeutic benefits of your essential oils and has excellent moisturizing and skin-nourishing properties. It’s an inexpensive, widely available option to take your essential oil experience to the next level.

2. Jojoba oil

Jojoba oil is an excellent carrier oil for diluting essential oils. Rich in fatty acids, it has a long shelf life and can nourish and moisturize the skin when used topically. Furthermore, its ability to quickly absorb into the skin makes it the perfect base for aromatherapy.

3. Sweet almond oil

Sweet almond oil is one of the most popular carrier oils to dilute essential oils. It has a mild, nutty aroma and absorbs quickly into the skin. It’s an excellent choice for any skincare recipe, as it is rich in Vitamin E and nourishes your skin. Plus, it’s lightweight and perfect for use on sensitive skin areas like your face.

4. Grapeseed oil

Grapeseed oil is a great carrier oil for those looking to properly dilute essential oils. Lightweight and odorless, it’s a go-to for diluting in skincare recipes that don’t need the additional scent. Its antioxidant-rich properties make it perfect for helping skin retain its natural moisture balance.

5. Avocado oil

Avocado oil is a great carrier for diluting essential oils since it has numerous healing benefits like nourishing, repairing and regenerating skin. Its emollient properties make it the best choice for protecting and moisturizing the skin. Its mild odor makes it easy to blend perfectly with other fragrances.

When choosing a carrier oil, it’s important to consider your skin type and any specific concerns, high-quality, cold-pressed oil to ensure its purity and effectiveness.

How to Use Essential Oils for Keratosis Pilaris

Precautions and safety tips

Taking the necessary safety precautions when using essential oils for treating keratosis pilaris is important. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

1. Make sure you do a patch test before using the oil on larger areas of your skin.

2. Try diluting the oil with a carrier oil such as coconut or jojoba oil so it won’t be too strong for your skin.

3. Avoid applying essential oils directly to open wounds or sores, which can cause irritation and allergic reactions.

4. If needed, consider using a few drops of essential oils in an emulsifier, such as aloe vera gel, shea butter or glycerin instead of straightening the oil. This can reduce irritation and redness associated with keratosis pilaris.

5. If you have sensitive skin, always check with your doctor before using essential oils, as some may not be suitable for your skin type and cause further irritation or inflammation.

Recipes for DIY essential oil blends

Essential oils have anti-inflammatory properties that soothe irritated skin and reduce redness. They also help balance oil production in the skin and keep bacteria at bay, contributing to healthy skin.

DIY roll-on recipe

One of the easiest ways to use essential oils for treating keratosis pilaris is through a DIY roll-on recipe.

To make this solution, you will need

10 drops of Tea Tree essential oil

10 drops of Lavender essential oil

10 drops of Frankincense essential oil

as well as fractionated coconut oil (found at most health food stores).

Add the essential oils drop by drop into a roll-on bottle and then top with fractionated coconut oil before rolling onto affected areas once or twice daily after a shower.

Keratosis Pilaris Soothing Serum


  • 10 drops of tea tree essential oil
  • 10 drops lavender essential oil
  • 5 drops frankincense essential oil
  • 2 oz jojoba oil
  • 4 oz amber glass dropper bottle


  1. Combine all the essential oils in an amber glass dropper bottle.
  2. Add the jojoba oil and shake well to blend the ingredients.
  3. After showering, apply a small amount of the serum to the affected areas, gently massaging it in.
  4. Use daily for best results.
  5. Calming Sugar Scrub

Exfoliating Lavender Sugar Scrub


  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil (melted)
  • 10 drops of lavender essential oil
  • 5 drops chamomile essential oil
  • 8 oz glass jar


  1. In a bowl, mix the granulated sugar and melted coconut oil until well combined.
  2. Add the lavender and chamomile essential oils and stir again to distribute the oils evenly.
  3. Transfer the mixture into a clean glass jar and seal tightly.
  4. Use the scrub in the shower, gently massaging it onto the affected areas in circular motions.
  5. Rinse off with warm water and pat dry. Follow with a moisturizer.
  6. Use the scrub 2-3 times a week for smoother skin.
  7. Nourishing Body Butter

Soothing & Nourishing Body Butter


  • 1/2 cup shea butter
  • 1/4 cup cocoa butter
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 10 drops tea tree essential oil
  • 10 drops of lavender essential oil
  • 10 drops of chamomile essential oil
  • 4 oz glass jar


  1. In a double boiler, melt the shea butter, cocoa butter, and coconut oil together.
  2. Once melted, remove it from the heat and let it cool for a few minutes.
  3. Add the tea tree, lavender, and chamomile essential oils to the mixture and stir well.
  4. Transfer the mixture to a glass jar and allow it to solidify.
  5. Apply a small amount of body butter to the affected areas after bathing or showering.
  6. Use daily to moisturize and nourish the skin.

Remember to perform a patch test before using any new product or recipe, and discontinue use if any irritation occurs.

6 Natural Treatments for Keratosis Pilaris

Keratosis pilaris is a prevalent skin condition that causes rough, bumpy patches. While there is no complete cure for this process. You can use some natural treatments to relieve the symptoms. Natural therapies such as:

1. Exfoliate Regularly

Exfoliating regularly can help to reduce the bumps of Keratosis Pilaris. First, exfoliation is an important step that can be done with a body scrub or loofah sponge and you should focus the scrubbing action on the areas affected like the upper arms and legs.

Additionally, it may help to use products containing salicylic acid or lactic acid. Bath scrubs formulated with oatmeal have also been found to alleviate irritation associated with this skin condition.

2. Apply a Moisturizer

Applying a moisturizer is an easy and effective natural treatment for keratosis pilaris. Adding moisture to the skin helps to soften the rough patches and bring relief. Using a thick ointment-based moisturizer may provide the greatest benefit.

Additionally, look for one that contains aloe vera, coconut oil, shea butter or lactic acid, as they yield good results. Use this treatment gently and avoid harsh scrubbing, which can further aggravate skin irritation. With regular application, you should start to see improvement after a couple of weeks.

3. Eat Anti-Inflammatory Foods

Eating an anti-inflammatory diet can be valuable to those with keratosis pilaris, which causes rough patches and small bumps on the skin. Incorporating fruits and vegetables, olive oil, moderate amounts of fish and whole grains into one’s diet.

Treating the condition naturally without harsh chemicals or invasive treatments is possible. Despite reverting to this traditional source of healing, any improvements should still be monitored to ensure they remain safe and effective over time.

4. Apply Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is a great remedy for keratosis pilaris. Its acidic properties work to exfoliate the skin and get rid of any excessive buildup of dead cells. If you decide to give it a try, make sure you mix apple cider vinegar and water in equal parts before applying it to the area that needs help. Leave it on for 10 minutes and then rinse off with warm water. You may feel some tingling at first but don’t worry – that’s just your skin reacting to the vinegar.

5. Use a Humidifier

A humidifier is an essential item that can help drastically reduce its unpleasant symptoms. The extra moisture that a humidifier adds to the air in your home will help keep your skin hydrated and healthy. It’s an easy and natural solution for keratosis pilaris without other treatment methods. Allowing you to breathe more easily while reducing inflammation, itchiness and irritation on your skin.

6. Use Mild Soaps

Harsh soaps can irritate the skin and make the bumps even more noticeable. Switching to a gentle, non-abrasive soap can reduce inflammation and make your skin look smoother and more even. Try using a soap made with natural ingredients like shea butter or coconut oil to keep your skin moisturized. It’s a simple step that can make a big difference in the appearance of your skin.

Conventional Treatment

Conventional treatment approaches for keratosis pilaris (KP) focus on managing the symptoms and improving the appearance of the skin. While there is no cure for KP, various treatment options are available to help reduce the roughness and bumps associated with the condition. It’s important to note that the effectiveness of these treatments may vary from person to person, and what works for one individual may not work for another.

Topical Retinoids

Prescription retinoid creams or lotions, such as tretinoin, can help improve the texture and appearance of the affected skin. These medications help to promote cell turnover and prevent the plugging of hair follicles. It’s essential to follow the instructions provided by your healthcare provider when using retinoids, as they can cause skin irritation and increased sensitivity to sunlight.

Topical Exfoliants

Over-the-counter or prescription-strength exfoliating products containing ingredients like glycolic acid, lactic acid, or salicylic acid can help remove dead skin cells and unclog the hair follicles. Regular and gentle exfoliation can improve the smoothness of the skin.

Topical Steroids

In some cases, short-term use of topical steroids may be prescribed to reduce inflammation and redness associated with keratosis pilaris. However, prolonged use of topical steroids can have adverse effects, so they should be used under a healthcare professional’s guidance.

Laser Therapy

Specific laser treatments, such as pulsed dye laser or intense pulsed light (IPL), may target and reduce the appearance of redness and inflammation associated with KP. These treatments work by targeting blood vessels and decreasing redness.

Chemical Peels

Superficial chemical peels, typically containing alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) or salicylic acid, can help exfoliate the skin and improve its texture. However, chemical peels should be performed by a trained professional and may only be suitable for some.


It’s important to consult with a dermatologist or healthcare provider to determine the most appropriate treatment options for your specific case of keratosis pilaris. They can evaluate the severity of your condition and recommend a tailored treatment plan that considers your needs and medical history. Additionally, maintaining a good skincare routine that includes gentle cleansing, moisturizing, and avoiding harsh soaps or abrasive scrubbing can help manage the symptoms and improve the skin’s overall appearance.


Keratosis pilaris (KP) is a common skin condition that can be difficult to manage. Fortunately, essential oils have been used successfully in treating KP and relieving the symptoms.

Using essential oils can reduce the redness, inflammation and dryness associated with KP. Essential oils can also help improve your skin’s overall appearance making skin look healthier.

If you are looking for an effective and natural way to manage KP, essential oils may be just what you need. Try them today and see the difference they can make in your skin.


Frequently Asked Questions

How do you get rid of keratosis pilaris naturally?

Turmeric is an effective and natural treatment for keratosis pilaris. Its antioxidant content helps protect the skin from environmental damage. Applying a turmeric paste or lotion to affected areas can help improve symptoms and clear up the condition. For added benefit, try mixing turmeric with other natural oils such as coconut or jojoba to create a moisturizing paste that can be applied directly to the skin.

What vitamin deficiency is keratosis pilaris?

Keratosis pilaris is a skin condition characterized by small bumps on the skin. It is often linked to a deficiency in vitamin A. Vitamin A is essential for maintaining healthy skin and a lack of it can cause the rough, bumpy texture often seen in keratosis pilaris.

Which oil is best for keratosis pilaris?

Coconut oil is an excellent option for those looking to relieve keratosis pilaris. Applying it directly to the skin can significantly reduce facial and body redness, irritation, and dryness. Coconut oil’s high lauric acid content helps fight bacterial infections, reducing inflammation.

How do you get rid of keratosis pilaris fast?

Keratosis pilaris is a common skin condition that presents as dry, itchy and bumpy patches. It can be a very uncomfortable and irritating problem to manage, but there are some practical steps that you can take to get rid of this skin condition fast. From special cleansers, moisturizers and exfoliation techniques to laser treatments and topical retinoids, the right combination of treatments tailored to your fair skin needs can help you regain smoother skin quickly.

What is the fastest way to get rid of keratosis pilaris?

When getting rid of keratosis pilaris, your best approach is to keep your skin and body healthy. This means regular exfoliation to shed the dead skin cells, followed by moisturization to help soften and condition the remaining bumps.
Additionally, consider making dietary changes that help reduce inflammation in the body. This could be something like adding more omega-3 fatty acids or avoiding dairy products. Doing so can bring about a notable improvement in the appearance of your skin over time.

Does vitamin E oil help keratosis pilaris?

Vitamin E can improve the symptoms of this skin condition; conversely, other studies have suggested that even though it may relieve the irritation associated with keratosis pilaris, it may not be effective at eliminating it.

How to Diagnose Keratosis Pilaris?

Diagnosing keratosis pilaris is as simple as looking at the affected area of the skin. Once the characteristic small, red or tan bumps on the skin are identified, a diagnosis can be made. The condition is often self-diagnosable, although seeking a medical professional for confirmation and additional information on the best way to treat the issue is wise.

Is castor oil good for keratosis pilaris?

With its rich concentration of ricinoleic acid, castor oil can quickly unclog clogged pores and reduce skin inflammation. This fantastic ingredient not only alleviates the symptoms of keratosis pilaris but also helps to improve your complexion in the short term. As always, consulting with your doctor or dermatologist is highly recommended if you consider using castor oil as part of your skincare routine; they can advise on its usage relative to other treatments available properly.

Which serum is best for keratosis pilaris?

For those looking for the best serum to treat keratosis pilaris. A product containing alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and lactic acid. These two components work together to gently exfoliate the skin and moisturize the area thus softening the formation of keratin plugs. By finding a suitable serum with these ingredients, you should be able to reduce the appearance of this condition without irritations.

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