Perioral Dermatitis
Health Benefits

Essential Oils for Perioral Dermatitis

| Modified on Mar 10, 2024

Essential oils can be used to treat perioral dermatitis naturally. Essential oils should be diluted for use on the skin, especially skin that is sensitive or already irritated, as in the case of perioral dermatitis.

Which Essential Oils are Useful for Perioral Dermatitis?

Nearly all essential oils have antiseptic properties. Many have anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties as well.

Oregano Oil

Oregano oil is effective against bacteria and fungus. It is a strong smelling and potent oil. Mix 5 drops of oregano oil into a tablespoon of carrier oil, like olive oil.


Lavender is one of the more gentle oils. It is soothing to the skin and pleasant smelling. Add 5 drops of lavender essential oil to a teaspoon of carrier oil like coconut oil.

Tea Tree 

Tea Tree essential oil is especially helpful for dermatitis of a fungal nature. Add 5 drops of tea tree essential oil to a teaspoon of coconut oil, olive oil, or castor oil. This oil has an antiseptic smell. Some like the smell but many people do not.

Do not use hydrogenated oils as carrier oils. Olive oil, coconut oil and castor oil are good carrier oils as they are often useful to perioral dermatitis as well.

Have you used essential oils for your perioral dermatitis? Please let us know which oil you used and how it worked for you! Continue reading to see how essential oils have helped our readers.

11 User Reviews

Posted by Pfrac (Tucson, Az) on 01/14/2017

I've had PD on my nose and eyebrow for 6 months. Applied a mixture of lavender oil, tea tree oil, and grape seed oil 3 days ago. It's almost gone. Saw results with in 12 hours.

  • 15 drops of lavender oil
  • 15 drops of tea tree oil
  • 3 table spoons of grape seed oil

mix well

Essential Oils
Posted by Floridagirl (Fort Pierce, Fl) on 12/14/2013

I had a horrible reaction to being stung by thimble jellyfish around my neck, which led to one heck of an awful rash that lasted for MONTHS, I gave up and my doc put me on a large dose of steroids. Of course that fixed the rash, but resulted in perioral dermatitis (along with a few other problems, of course). After reading a few posts on earth clinic, I decided to try to fix the issue myself. I used 2 parts tea tree oil mixed with 1 part orgainc virgin coconut oil (melted) and applied it as frequently as possible to the affected area. Once a day I would wet my face and use baking soda as a light scrub to remove the flakiness. I also took probiotics, vitamin E, fish oil, and biotin. Extra vitamin C as well. The issue hasn't resolved completely yet, as it has only been 1.5 days of treatment. However, my skin doesn't feel like it's on fire anymore, and the bumps aren't painful and inflammed. It also seems that the whole area is drying out and it has turned pink and its healing. I hope this helps someone!

Essential Oils
Posted by Catherine (Southampton, New York) on 02/19/2013

I have posted on this site before. Been battling Perioral dermatitis for years. I saw imporvement with low sugar diet and calendula cream but could never knock it out totally. I am thrilled to announce I am cured. I had read an article about how scientists were experimenting with Oil of Oregano to kill MRSA and that it worked. I figured if it worked on MRSA why not try it on whatever is lurking in my skin. I bought a little bottle and put a few drops into a tablespoon of olive oil and then rubbed it on my chin. I saw results by the next day and it is now it as been 2 months and has not come back regardless of what sugar & junk I eat. I only used the Oil for about 3 days. All those years of doxy and minocycline and experimenting with creams and diets and it's now gone! I can't believe it. It's important to get Oil of Oregano that was grown in the Mediterreanean. It should have Cavacrol in it, look for one with the biggest percentage of Cavacrol you can find. Do not apply directly to skin, it will burn. Less is more in this case. Add to olive oil and it will not burn.

Replied by Theresa

Thank you so much - I read your post and tried this and I was amazed!! I tried this and couldn't believe the difference the very next morning after applying it the night before. Today is just my second day using the oil but I am so relieved that it is working. I am so thankful I saw this post of yours!!

Essential Oils
Posted by Supersam (Lakevilla, Il) on 10/01/2012

I wanted to share my experience a little.. I Found out I had PD about 2 years ago. My skin is sensitive skin I have a sun allergy and acne not bad but I do have it. When I first got PD I thought it was just a heat rash so I used benadryl and cortizone.. Over a couple weeks it was so bad spread all around my mouth.. I was very embarressed. I tried several creams and nothing worked so I finally saw my derm.. She gave me a steriod cream, topical cream, and antibiotics. Within 4 weeks I was completly clear. I had some minor breakouts but they just went away.

Now about 2 weeks ago it just flared it was so angry it started spreading fast. I lost my insurance so my only option was home remedies. After lots of research this is what I did... I tried to cut SLS and floride out but thats almost impossible when you dont make alot of money. So when I brush my teeth I use baking soda and peroxide and every couple days I would use a regular toothpaste. I would take a wet wash cloth and press it to the rash and lightly brush it helps with the dry skin. Then I would get a Q-tip and wet it and pour tea tree oil on it, I put it all over the rash twice a day(if it doesnt sting alittle then there is not enough) The first day it still looked horrible and it really dries out your skin, but by day 3 it looked and felt so much better. Also the ladies at my moms salon told her to only use shampoo once every 2 weeks and only use conditioner instead and just scrub like its shampoo it helps with split end and crap. Shampoo that is SLS free is very expensive and I would have to order it online, so I started just using conditioner.... I started all of these things (Wet cloth, tea tree oil, aveno, and only conditioner on Monday and today is Sunday and it is 98% gone its not red and I still have a light dryness, But I will wet the cloth again and put aveno extra dry skin on it and it helps and if you are anything like me I tried to cover it with makeup which is not good but I found this guy that I really really like him and Im still alittle embarressed to tell him, He would be sweet about it I know this but I just try to cover it up. So I would shower and use the cloth in the shower, and right when I got out I would put the aveno on and let it settle, Then I would put my cover up on. It helped me feel better about it... So I know this is long but I really hope it helps everyone like it did to me. Good luck eveyone

Essential Oils
Posted by Diane (Ottumwa, Ia) on 08/11/2011

Yes on Oregano Oil for POD. Definitely try it. It works, and it is the only thing that worked on this particular breakout. I had tried everything else I could think of in the broad spectrum antifungal, antibacterial and anti-parasitcal range. My dermatitis was red bumps, with copius amounts of thick flakes of skin. They felt like small scabs. Not itchy, but very unsightly. I mixed a 50/50 mixture of oregano oil and castor oil, and applied it topically 5 times per day. Do not apply staight oregano oil to your skin, you'll burn it and things will be worse. You can probably use any oil as a carrier oil, but the castor oil is thick and keeps the scales from lifting rapidly. Coconut oil made the scales of skin just peel off too quickly. For this particular dermatitis breakout I had previously tried: GSE, colloidal siver, coconut oil, neem, ACV, zinc pyrithine, coal tar shampoo, borax, 3% hydrogen peroxide, MSM, DMSO, borage oil, borage oil, terbinifine cream and miconazole cream, all applied topically, all good things to try. Nothing worked on this particular peri-oral dermatitis. I had the rash for about 2 months, the previous treatments I tried did not get rid of it or made it worse. By the way, I also take probiotics, B-complex, and follow a very healthy diet with zero sugar. If I get another rash, I'll try oregano oil first. Hope this helps someone. GTLA

Essential Oils
Posted by Julia (Sacramento, Ca) on 06/21/2010

I was diagnosed with PD a few months ago and after trying different medications I bought Lavender Oil. I have been applying it full strength to the rash and it seems to be helping tremendously. I started by applying in the AM and again at night, but realized that my face would flair up later in the day. Now I am carrying the bottle with me and applying several times throughout the day. I have also eliminated soaps and have not been applying any lotions or creams to my face and I don't apply makeup. I have been using a Himalayan salt bar on my face every few days, otherwise I rinse my face with plain water and then apply the lavender oil. It seems to reduce the redness and helps reduce the size and inflammation of the existing rash bumps. Anyone else have experience using Lavender oil to cure Peri-oral Dermatitus??

Julia, 49
Sacramento, CA

Replied by Donna
(Palm Coast, Fl)

I am sure adding the lavender to the calendula oil I was already using has (followed by calming creme) helped tremendously! It has really toned down the redness in just a day and a half. For me it seems to be that missing link I was looking for!

Essential Oils
Posted by Moira (Minneapolis, Mn) on 12/28/2009

I mix 4 drops of Oregano Oil mixed with two table spoons of coconut oil to thin it out since the oregano oil would burn the skin if used straight. This could be mixed a little stronger, but is working well for me at this strength. I keep this mixture in a warm spot to keep the coconut oil liquid.

I have been applying this to my perioral dermatitis many times a day and my POD has just about disappeared... it is fading extremely fast. Some patches are completely gone. All bumps are gone and no new bumps have erupted since I started this about 5 days ago.

I had previously used raw honey - which helped but did not control. I had also tried plain coconut oil which didn't help much. I am thrilled!!!

Essential Oils
Posted by Beverly (Garland, TX) on 05/19/2008

Perioral Dermititis - tea tree oil (remedy): After a period of great stress (wedding, honeymoon, new home, new job and the Thanksgiving/Christmas holidays), I found little bumps near my mouth. I figured it would go away on its own, as it didn't hurt. When I found myself in the doctor's office for another problem, I inquired about the "rash" and he diagnosed it as sensitivity to facial creams, advised to go back to a brand that didn't irritate me and wrote a prescription for 2% hydrocortisone cream (anti-itch cream). I declined to fill the prescription, instead using the over-the-counter 1% hydrocortisone cream I already owned. Later, the area began to itch occasionally. Dissatisfied with the results I received applying the cream, I researched online for more information, saw pictures of perioral dermititis and with more research, discovered that doctors were not united on how to treat it. In my cosmetics drawer, I had a little bottle of pure tea tree oil. Out of curiosity, I re-read the label for what skin conditions it treats. On the label, it claimed to treat "dermititis." So I began mixing one drop with the small drop of 1% hydrocortisone cream and applying it to the affected area twice daily. I also stopped using any creams, lotions or soaps on the area during treatment. I have been applying this treatment twice daily for two and a half months now and it is almost completely gone. The redness disappeared relatively quickly, but the bumps are taking a little longer. This treatment helped me; I hope it may help someone else!

Replied by Sharon
(Mackenzie Bc)

I just wanted to share with you that the hydrocortisone cream is what caused me to have POD. I was trying to treat another skin issue and went to the doctor. I now just use a mixture of teatree, lavender and oregano oil with carrier it is helping but just like the prescription cream the doctor wanted to give to me to treat the pod, it goes and then comes back. At least I know there are no other side effects with the holistic approach... Take care.

Essential Oils
Posted by Shannon (Stillwater, OK) on 04/21/2008

I have been battling perioral dermatitis for about 6 months. I went to a dermatologist and was put on minocycline, which did clear it up. After 3 months of taking the medication, my doctor put me on doxycycline, due to concerns about negative side effects of long term use of minocycline. I could not tolerate the doxycycline, it made me nauseous and just made me feel weird, so I quit taking it and decided to look for a natural treatment. I found this website and began using a combination of remedies. I began taking pro-biotics, and evening primrose oil. I began washing my face with apple cider vinegar and baking soda. I also used evening primrose oil topically on the area of dermatitis. It seemed to be ok, until I got a cold. The area of dermatitis is around my nose, and blowing my nose constantly while I had the cold irritated it. The dermatitis began to spread.

I found a post somewhere about using tea tree oil. I had an old jar of Desert Essence Tea Tree ointment, so I began using it. I have used it for 4 days now, keeping the area covered constantly with the ointment, and the dermatitis is almost gone! It looks as good as it did when I was on minocycline. I think the probiotics and evening primrose capsules that I am taking may be helping too, but the tea tree oil was my "magic bullet." I have noticed that when I drink alcohol, the area becomes more inflamed. I'm not sure if this is due to dehydration, or the destruction of healthy bacteria in the intestinal tract.

I want to mention too that I have been under a great amount of stress, trying to finish grad school,and the dermatitis appeared during this time. I really believe stress and unhealthy eating habits/drinking alcohol contributed to the problem.

I hope this helps someone else out there. I love this website!