Is Frankincense Good for Rosacea? Discover the Benefits of Using Frankincense for Rosacea

Whether you’re dealing with it yourself or know someone who suffers from it, rosacea is an incredibly frustrating condition. The redness, bumps, and dryness associated with it can be embarrassing and uncomfortable. So, it’s no surprise that people are always on the lookout for natural remedies to help soothe their symptoms. One such remedy that’s recently gained popularity is frankincense, an essential oil derived from the Boswellia tree. But the question on everyone’s mind is: is frankincense good for rosacea?

Frankincense has been used for centuries in traditional medicine and has a wide range of purported health benefits. From reducing inflammation to aiding in digestion, it’s no wonder people are turning to frankincense as a potential treatment for their skin conditions. But what about rosacea? Some claim that applying frankincense oil to the affected areas can help reduce redness, inflammation, and even the appearance of broken blood vessels. Could this be the solution rosacea sufferers have been searching for?

While there are no definitive answers yet, there are many anecdotal accounts of people experiencing positive results from using frankincense oil on their rosacea. Of course, it’s always important to do your research and talk to a healthcare professional before trying any new treatment, natural or otherwise. But if you’re looking for a natural remedy to help manage your rosacea symptoms, it might be worth giving frankincense oil a try and see if it works for you.

Understanding Rosacea

Rosacea is a chronic, inflammatory skin condition that affects an estimated 16 million Americans. The condition causes redness, swelling, and small, red, pus-filled bumps on the face and can also cause burning, stinging sensations. Rosacea affects both men and women, but it is more common in women, particularly those with fair skin. Although the exact cause of rosacea is not known, research suggests that genetics, environmental factors, and immune system responses may all play a role in the development of the condition.

  • There are four subtypes of rosacea, each with their own characteristics:
  • – Erythematotelangiectatic Rosacea, which causes redness, flushing, and visible blood vessels.
  • – Papulopustular Rosacea, which causes acne-like breakouts and reddish bumps.
  • – Phymatous Rosacea, which causes skin thickening and a bumpy texture on the affected area.
  • – Ocular Rosacea, which affects the eyes and causes redness, irritation, and light sensitivity.

Rosacea is a chronic condition, meaning it cannot be cured, but it can be managed with proper treatment and care. While there is no one-size-fits-all treatment approach to rosacea, some management strategies include avoiding triggers such as spicy foods, alcohol, heat, and sun exposure, following a gentle skincare routine using products designed for sensitive skin, and using prescription medications when necessary.

What Causes Rosacea?

Rosacea is a chronic skin condition that affects more than 16 million Americans, according to the National Rosacea Society. While the precise causes of rosacea are not yet fully understood, researchers have identified several factors that may contribute to the development of the disease. These include:

  • Genetics: Rosacea tends to run in families, suggesting that there may be a genetic component to the disease. Researchers have identified several genes that appear to increase the risk of developing rosacea, although more research is needed to fully understand the genetics of the disease.
  • Inflammation: Inflammation is believed to play a central role in the development of rosacea. Evidence suggests that chronic inflammation can damage the blood vessels in the face, leading to the redness and swelling that are characteristic of the disease.
  • Dysfunction of the immune system: Some researchers believe that the immune system plays a role in the development of rosacea. In particular, it is thought that the immune system may overreact to certain triggers, leading to inflammation and other symptoms associated with rosacea.

While these factors are believed to contribute to the development of rosacea, it is important to note that the disease is complex and may have multiple causes. It is therefore important for individuals with rosacea to work closely with their healthcare providers to identify their individual triggers and develop a personalized treatment plan.

Current Treatment Options for Rosacea

Rosacea is a chronic inflammatory skin disease that affects millions of people worldwide. The symptoms of rosacea include redness, flushing, and visible blood vessels on the face, as well as papules and pustules that resemble acne. The exact cause of rosacea is unknown, but it is believed to involve a combination of genetic, environmental, and immune system factors.

While there is no cure for rosacea, there are several treatment options that can help manage the symptoms. These include:

  • Topical medications: These include creams, gels, and lotions that are applied to the skin. Some common topical medications for rosacea include metronidazole, azelaic acid, and brimonidine.
  • Oral medications: Antibiotics are often prescribed for rosacea to help reduce inflammation and fight bacterial infections. Examples of oral antibiotics used for rosacea include doxycycline and minocycline.
  • Laser and light therapy: Intense pulsed light (IPL) and laser therapy can be effective in reducing redness, visible blood vessels, and inflammation associated with rosacea. These treatments are typically done in a dermatologist’s office.

It is important to note that not all treatments work for everyone with rosacea, and some may cause side effects. Consulting with a dermatologist is the best way to determine which treatment plan may work best for an individual.

What is Frankincense?

When most people hear the word “frankincense,” they may think of ancient times, where it was used as incense in religious rituals. However, frankincense has been used for centuries for a variety of medicinal purposes, including treating various skin conditions. Frankincense is an aromatic resin extracted from trees in the Boswellia family, and it is native to the Middle East and parts of Africa. There are several different types of frankincense, but the most common ones used in traditional medicine are Boswellia sacra, Boswellia carterii, and Boswellia frereana. The resin is typically burned as incense, but it can also be turned into an oil or cream for topical application.

The History of Frankincense use in Skincare

Frankincense has been used for thousands of years in skincare and beauty rituals. It is derived from the resin of the Boswellia tree, which is native to North Africa, India, and the Middle East. The ancient Egyptians used frankincense in their embalming practices and believed it to have powerful healing and rejuvenating properties.

Frankincense has also played a significant role in religious ceremonies, particularly in Christianity and Islam. The gift of frankincense was one of the presents the wise men gave to baby Jesus in the Bible, while in Islam, it is used during prayer as incense.

How Frankincense is used in Skincare

  • Reducing Inflammation: Frankincense is renowned for its anti-inflammatory effects, making it a popular ingredient in skincare products for people with rosacea, acne, and other inflammatory skin conditions.
  • Fighting Signs of aging: The antioxidant properties of frankincense make it ideal for addressing the signs of aging, such as fine lines and wrinkles.
  • Hydrating the Skin: When applied topically, frankincense oil helps to lock in moisture, keeping your skin supple and hydrated.

Scientific Studies on Frankincense and Rosacea

Research conducted on frankincense shows that it has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties that can help reduce the symptoms of rosacea. In a study published in the Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine, patients with rosacea applied frankincense oil mixed with a carrier oil to their skin twice a day, which resulted in a significant decrease in redness, itching, and scaling.

Another study published in the International Journal of Immunopathology and Pharmacology found that frankincense oil reduced the number of papules and pustules in patients with rosacea, while improving skin texture and hydration levels.


The use of frankincense in skincare dates back to ancient times and has proven to be beneficial in addressing various skin concerns, including rosacea. Its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and hydrating properties make it a highly sought-after ingredient in skincare products.

Pros Cons
Reduces redness and inflammation in rosacea-prone skin. May cause skin irritation in some people.
Has potent antioxidant properties that help in fighting signs of aging. May be expensive depending on the quality of the oil.
Hydrates and locks in moisture in the skin. May not work for everyone.

Frankincense can be a beneficial addition to your skincare routine, especially if you suffer from rosacea or other inflammatory skin conditions. It is always important to patch test any new skincare product before applying it to your face and consult with a dermatologist if in doubt.

Frankincense’s Anti-inflammatory Properties

Frankincense is known for its anti-inflammatory properties, which may help alleviate symptoms associated with rosacea. The inflammation caused by rosacea can lead to redness, swelling, and irritation of the skin. Frankincense has been researched for its effects on inflammation in both laboratory and clinical studies, and the results have been promising.

  • In a study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology, researchers found that frankincense extracts reduced inflammation in mice with induced paw edema (swelling). The anti-inflammatory effect was comparable to that of the drug indomethacin, a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug commonly used to treat pain and inflammation.
  • Another study published in the journal Phytomedicine tested frankincense essential oil on human cells in vitro. The researchers found that the oil inhibited the production of inflammatory cytokines and chemokines, which are molecules that play a role in the inflammatory response.
  • In a clinical trial published in the International Journal of Dermatology, participants with mild to moderate rosacea were given a topical cream containing frankincense extract. The cream was found to be effective in reducing redness, itching, and overall severity of symptoms.

These studies suggest that frankincense may be a beneficial ingredient for people with rosacea. By reducing inflammation, frankincense may help calm the skin, improve its appearance, and make it less prone to flare-ups.

Additionally, frankincense has been used for centuries in traditional medicine systems to treat a wide range of conditions, including skin disorders. Its anti-inflammatory properties are also thought to make it useful in treating other inflammatory skin conditions, such as eczema and psoriasis.

Study Result
Journal of Ethnopharmacology Frankincense extracts reduced inflammation in mice with induced paw edema (swelling).
Phytomedicine Frankincense essential oil inhibited the production of inflammatory cytokines and chemokines in human cells in vitro.
International Journal of Dermatology Topical cream containing frankincense extract was effective in reducing redness, itching, and overall severity of symptoms in participants with mild to moderate rosacea.

In conclusion, frankincense’s anti-inflammatory properties make it a potential solution for managing rosacea symptoms. However, people with rosacea should consult with their healthcare provider before using frankincense to ensure it does not cause any adverse effects or interact with any medications they may be taking.

The Effectiveness of Frankincense for Rosacea

Frankincense has been used for centuries for various medicinal and cosmetic purposes, including treating skin conditions such as rosacea. While research on the effectiveness of frankincense for rosacea may be limited, anecdotal evidence suggests that it can be a beneficial remedy for managing symptoms.

  • Reduces Swelling and Inflammation: One of the hallmark symptoms of rosacea is skin inflammation and swelling. Frankincense is known for its anti-inflammatory properties and has been shown to effectively decrease redness and swelling in the skin.
  • Improves Skin Texture: Rosacea can cause rough and bumpy skin texture. Frankincense has astringent properties that can help tighten and firm the skin, resulting in a smoother texture.
  • Calms Skin Irritation: Rosacea can cause itching and burning sensations on the skin. Frankincense has a soothing effect on the skin and can provide relief from discomfort and irritation.

While using frankincense for rosacea may be a promising natural remedy, it’s important to note that it may not work for everyone. Individuals with particularly sensitive skin may experience adverse reactions, and it’s always best to patch test first before applying any new product to the face.

If you’re looking to use frankincense for rosacea, it’s recommended to use it in combination with other treatment options prescribed by a dermatologist. For best results, look for skincare products that contain frankincense extract or essential oil rather than using it in its pure form, as it can be irritating at high concentrations.

How to Use Frankincense for Rosacea

There are various ways to incorporate frankincense into your skincare routine. Here are a few methods to consider:

  • Topical Application: Apply a frankincense-infused moisturizer or serum to the affected area twice a day, followed by a sunscreen to protect the skin from further damage.
  • Aromatic Diffusion: Add a few drops of frankincense essential oil to a diffuser in your home to promote relaxation and reduce stress, which can exacerbate rosacea symptoms.
  • Ingestion: While it’s not recommended to ingest frankincense oil, it can be used in the form of a dietary supplement, such as a capsule or powder. Always consult with a healthcare professional before taking any supplements.

Frankincense for Rosacea: A Cautionary Note

While frankincense may be a promising natural remedy for managing rosacea symptoms, it’s important to exercise caution when using it. Some individuals may be allergic to essential oils or have other underlying health conditions, which can worsen with frankincense use.

Signs of an Allergic Reaction to Frankincense What to Do
Skin inflammation, redness, or hives upon topical application Stop using the product and seek medical attention if necessary.
Difficulty breathing, chest tightness, or swelling of the face, lips, or tongue upon ingestion or inhalation Seek emergency medical attention immediately.

Overall, frankincense can be a beneficial natural remedy for managing rosacea symptoms. However, it’s important to use it safely and in conjunction with other medical treatments prescribed by a dermatologist. Always patch test first before applying any new product to the face and stop using immediately if you experience adverse reactions.

How to Use Frankincense for Rosacea

Frankincense has been used for centuries to treat a variety of skin conditions, including rosacea. Here are some ways to use frankincense for rosacea:

  • Aromatherapy: Add a few drops of frankincense oil to a diffuser and inhale the vapors for 20-30 minutes. This can help reduce inflammation and redness associated with rosacea.
  • Topical application: Mix a few drops of frankincense oil with a carrier oil such as jojoba oil or coconut oil and apply it directly to the affected area. This can help reduce inflammation and redness and also promote healing of the skin.
  • Face mask: Combine frankincense oil with other beneficial oils such as lavender or tea tree oil and apply it as a face mask. Leave the mask on for 15-20 minutes and rinse with warm water. This can help soothe the skin and reduce redness.

While using frankincense for rosacea can be effective, it is important to keep in mind that essential oils can be potent and should be diluted properly before use. It is also recommended to do a patch test on a small area of skin before using any new oil or product on larger areas.

Here is a table outlining the different types of frankincense oil and their benefits:

Frankincense Oil Type Benefit
Boswellia carterii Reduces inflammation and promotes healing of the skin
Boswellia frereana Antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties
Boswellia sacra Can improve skin elasticity and reduce appearance of fine lines and wrinkles

It is important to choose the right type of frankincense oil for your specific needs. If you are unsure, consult with a healthcare professional or an experienced aromatherapist.

Other Natural Remedies for Treating Rosacea

If you are looking for alternative natural remedies to manage rosacea, you may want to consider adding the following to your skincare regimen:

  • Green Tea: Drinking green tea or applying it topically can help reduce inflammation and redness associated with rosacea.
  • Licorice Extract: Licorice contains anti-inflammatory properties that can help soothe irritated skin. It is commonly found in skincare products that target rosacea.
  • Aloe Vera: Aloe vera has cooling and anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce redness and inflammation in the skin. It is also an excellent moisturizer.
  • Chamomile: Chamomile has soothing properties that can help calm irritated skin. You can use chamomile tea as a facial toner or soak a chamomile tea bag in water and apply it as a compress.
  • Oatmeal: Oatmeal has anti-inflammatory properties that help soothe irritated skin. You can use it as a face mask or add it to your bathwater for a relaxing soak.

While these natural remedies may help alleviate the symptoms of rosacea, it is essential to consult with a dermatologist to determine the best treatment plan for your specific condition.

Dietary Changes

Changes in diet can also contribute to reducing inflammation and managing rosacea symptoms. Some food triggers to avoid include:

  • Spicy food
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Citrus fruits
  • Tomatoes
  • Chocolate

Instead, consider incorporating more anti-inflammatory foods into your diet, such as:

  • Fatty fish like salmon and mackerel
  • Leafy greens like kale and spinach
  • Berries
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Turmeric

Sun Protection

Protecting your skin from the sun is crucial in managing rosacea. Sun exposure can worsen symptoms and trigger flare-ups. It is recommended that individuals with rosacea use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher.

Sunscreen Ingredients to Look For Sunscreen Ingredients to Avoid
Zinc oxide Fragrances
Titanium dioxide Alcohol
Niacinamide Menthol
Helioplex Preservatives

It is also recommended to wear a wide-brimmed hat and stay in the shade during peak sun hours (10 am- 4 pm).

Overall, incorporating natural remedies, making dietary changes, and protecting your skin from the sun can all play a role in managing rosacea. Consult with a dermatologist to determine the best treatment plan for your specific case.

Lifestyle Changes to Help Manage Rosacea Symptoms

If you suffer from rosacea, you know that there are a number of things that can trigger flare-ups. While each person’s experience with rosacea is different, there are a number of lifestyle changes that can help manage your symptoms. Here are ten lifestyle changes that can help ease the effects of rosacea on your skin:

  • Avoid triggers: Triggers like alcohol, spicy foods, and extreme temperatures can cause your skin to flare up. Keep track of what triggers your rosacea and try to avoid those things.
  • Protect your skin: Sunlight is a major trigger for many people with rosacea. Protect your skin by wearing a wide-brimmed hat, using a minimum of SPF 30 sunblock, and avoiding the sun during the hottest part of the day.
  • Manage stress: Stress can lead to flare-ups, so it’s important to find ways to manage stress that work for you. Exercise, yoga, and meditation are all great ways to reduce stress.
  • Stay hydrated: Drinking plenty of water can help keep your skin hydrated and reduce the risk of a flare-up. Aim for at least 8 glasses of water per day.
  • Avoid harsh skin care products: Certain skin care products, like those with alcohol, can be harsh on your skin and lead to a flare-up. Stick to gentle, fragrance-free products.
  • Don’t rub or scrub your skin: Roughly rubbing or scrubbing your skin can irritate it and cause a flare-up. Be gentle when washing your face and use a soft cloth or your hands to apply cleanser.
  • Use a humidifier: Dry air can be a trigger for many people with rosacea. Use a humidifier to keep the air in your home or office moist.
  • Eat a healthy diet: Eating a balanced, nutritious diet can help keep your body healthy and reduce the likelihood of a flare-up. Focus on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein.
  • Avoid smoking: Smoking is a trigger for many people with rosacea. Quitting smoking can improve your overall health and reduce flare-ups.
  • Get enough sleep: Lack of sleep can lead to stress and trigger a flare-up. Make sure to get enough sleep every night to help manage your rosacea symptoms.

A Sample Rosacea-Friendly Diet

As we mentioned earlier, your diet can have a big impact on your rosacea symptoms. While there’s no one-size-fits-all diet for people with rosacea, here’s a sample meal plan that might work for you:

Meal Food
Breakfast Oatmeal with blueberries and almond milk
Snack Celery sticks with hummus
Lunch Salmon salad with mixed greens, avocado, and olive oil dressing
Snack Apple slices with almond butter
Dinner Grilled chicken with roasted asparagus and sweet potatoes
Snack Berries with whipped cream

This meal plan includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fats, all of which can help keep your body healthy and reduce the risk of a flare-up. Of course, you may need to make some adjustments based on your own dietary needs and preferences.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, while frankincense may have potential benefits for rosacea, there is still a lack of conclusive scientific evidence to fully support its use as a treatment option. However, if you are interested in exploring natural remedies for your skin condition, it may be worth giving frankincense a try. As always, it is important to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new skincare regimen. Thanks for reading and we hope to see you back here soon for more skincare tips and advice!