The treatment of rosehip oil for acne has been used for generations. Acne can be painful, both emotionally and physically, and it can seriously affect a person’s confidence and entire day. Whether you’re at school and your skin is exploding in what feels like volcanic eruptions on your face, or you’re an adult going through the same experience, it doesn’t matter. Whatever stage of life you’re at, acne is not fun. Here is everything you need to know about using rosehip oil for acne!

What is Rosehip Oil?

You would be forgiven in assuming that Rosehip seed oil smelled of roses, but this oil has an earthy, woody scent, as it is pressed from the seeds of the ‘Sweet Briar’ rose variety (rosa rubiginosa) and sometimes the ‘Musk Rose’ (rosa moschata), but not the flower itself.

Rosehip oil is known as a dry oil. What does this mean for your skin? It means that it is fast-absorbing and therefore won’t leave a greasy residue. Check here Rosehip oil benefits

Rosehip oil for Skin and Health: A Brief History

‘When man moves away from nature, his heart becomes hard’: this Native American proverb is a reminder that our ancestors from ancient times were at one with nature, and it was their greatest resource. It’s weird to think of acne as an ancient problem, but the Mayans, Native Americans and Ancient Egyptians all used rosehip oil for many reasons, because of its great healing ability. Skin issues would have been one of them.

Hieroglyphics and burial sites prove that the ancient Egyptians used oils on their skin, and it is easy to imagine that Cleopatra most likely had it lined up on her skincare shelf, right next to In ancient Chinese medicine, rosehip was used to treat various ailments such as muscle cramps and stomach upsets.

As the vitamin c levels in rosehips is 10 times higher than any other citrus fruit, they were used to treat and prevent coughs and colds in world war two.

Although Rosehip oil has been recognised for centuries, it wasn’t until the 1980s that this wonder oil was pushed into the limelight of the modern day. Doctors Pareja and Kehl lead a two-year study and then published a paper called Contributions to Identification and Application of Active Components Contained in Rosa Aff. Rubiginosa (Rosehip Oil) in December 1988. During the two years, two groups were studied: 180 patients with surgical, traumatic and burn scars, and a group with prematurely aging skin. Rosehip oil was applied to their skin: scars and wrinkles were reduced significantly, and premature aging was halted. These results are down to rosehip oils high content of unsaturated essential fatty acids, which support cell regeneration and renewal, regulate skin elasticity and restore skin moisture. Here is the study for more information.

Rosehip oil for Acne: Why?

This oil is full of antiaging essential fatty acids that maintain cell membranes whilst supporting skin renewal and regeneration. The vitamin c levels in rosehips is 10 times higher than any other citrus fruit, so they were used to treat and prevent coughs and colds in world war two. As rosehip oil is extremely high in vitamin c, it is an ideal oil for maintaining supple, smooth and youthful skin. This is because vitamin c plays a vital role in collagen synthesis.

So why would you choose rosehip oil for acne? Well, its magic ingredient is linoleic acid, a fatty acid that treats both acne and the devastating scars this skin condition leaves behind. In skincare, linoleic and oleic acids are vital. Fatty acids are a part of all oils, including the sebum of our skin. People who are acne-prone have been found to have lower levels of linoleic acid in their skin. The main point is: you can treat acne through applying linoleic acid to the skin. So, this is another reason why using rosehip oil for acne is a good idea.

A lot of people’s first instinct when treating acne is to smother the skin with many different products, often with harsh chemicals, with the belief that the more we apply, the more positive results we will achieve. Simply put, this is not true. This can suffocate the skin, sometimes aggravating the inflammation of acne further. Less is often more with skincare, and keeping it simple is a gentle, effective way to treat the skin without overwhelming it. Using every product that catches the eye can slow down the skin’s natural surface renewal process, which is counter-productive and not to mention; expensive. The linoleic acid found in rosehip oil is a safe option for treating acne.

Instead of using layer upon layer of skincare, it is better to keep it to a minimum of three different products, especially if your skin is oily. And instead of going to the drugstore and buying a prescription product, or buying every product off the supermarket shelf, why not turn to what nature gave us?

What Type of Acne Can Rosehip Oil Work for?

Papules, pustules, cysts and nodules are all inflammatory forms of acne, which rosehip oil is ideal for since it’s anti-inflammatory.

Rosehip oil may be good for treating and preventing clogged pores, including blackheads and whiteheads, as the Vitamin A and linoleic acid present in rosehip oil regulates sebum production.

Considerations When Using Rosehip Oil for Acne

  • Consideration number one: use sparingly! An excess of oil on your skin can achieve the opposite effect of what you’re aiming for. You only really need a few drops.
  • Use rosehip oil daily for the most desired results, or use it as directed.
  • Always do a patch test on your elbow before using rosehip oil, as you never know what your individual skin will react with. Sensitive or allergic skin can occasionally react with this oil. If your skin is irritable or red after the test, it is not the right treatment for your acne, and maybe there is another oil treatment for you out there.

How to Apply Rosehip oil for Acne?

  • You can use rosehip oil as a moisturiser on the face by massaging it onto the face. You can also find skincare recipes and make your own organic skincare products.
  • Rosehip oil is a multi-tasking product and can be used as your daytime moisturiser, night cream and make-up primer.
  • Although rosehip oil is great for preventing and reducing acne scars, you should avoid applying it directly to active acne.
  • Rosehip oil should not be used to protect against sunburn.

How to Know if Rosehip Oil for Acne is Your Match

  • Keep your beauty routine simple for the few weeks before testing out rosehip oil. This way, once you introduce your skin to the oil, the effects of it will be clearer, and you will know if you are gaining positive or negative results.
  • Doing less to your skin and keeping products to a minimum can be beneficial for acne. You may notice calmer, less inflamed skin once you simplify.
  • Always patch test any oil you try by massaging a few drops into your skin, as you never know which oils or products your individual skin will react with.
  • Look for pure rosehip oil instead of buying the oil with added essential oils. When starting out, you want to test how rosehip oil reacts with your skin, and essential oils may cause irritation and photosensitivity. Essential oils can have great skincare properties, but in the beginning it is better to test without them, and if your skin loves rosehip oil, you can start experimenting with essential oils.

Notes on Keeping Rosehip Oil

  • Avoid direct sunlight after applying rosehip oil as it increases the skin’s sensitivity to burn.
  • Keep away from children and pets.

You Can Use Rosehip Oil on Hair Too!

We know that using rosehip oil for acne and for skin health in general is a good thing, but rosehip oil really is a multi-purpose product and can be used for the hair as well. Here are some of the benefits your hair can gain from using rosehip oil:

Hair Growth

There is nothing worse than touching your hair and unexpectedly pulling out a clump. This could be due to stress, or perhaps harsh chemicals in your haircare products, but whatever the cause, it is not the best feeling in the world. Rosehip oil is a great choice to nourish and strengthen the hair, as the essential fatty acids help in the renewal and healing of hair follicles. Not only this, but another effect these essential fatty acids have on the hair is lustre and shine, as they improve the elasticity of the hair and moisturise the skin underneath the hair. Vitamin C and A stimulate hair growth and beta-carotene normalises hair’s oil production, keeping hair strong.


As rosehip oil is easily absorbed into the scalp’s skin, it is a nutrient rich oil that deeply penetrates, enabling the oil to moisturise the hair from the roots, encourage healthy and strong hair to grow and renew damaged scalp tissue.

Suffer from an itchy or irritated scalp? Rosehip oil is soothing and can reduce conditions such as dandruff.

Natural Conditioner

Rosehip oil is deeply nourishing and conditioning and can be applied as a deep conditioning treatment. Apply it to hair fifteen minutes before getting in the shower. Massage it into your scalp and through to the ends. Rinse off and wash with your shampoo as normal.

What are the Other Benefits?

We know that you can use rosehip oil for acne and hair, but there are other ways your skin can benefit. Here are some more that prove rosehip oil is a multi-purpose product: Rosehip oil uses

Photo-aging Protection

Spots, wrinkles and discoloration can be the detrimental effect to laying under the sun for too long, as nice as this can feel at the time. Rosehip oil is good for tackling the attack the sun’s rays makes on the skin, as its antioxidant rich content helps improve pigmentation and the skins texture.

The vitamin C abundant in rosehip oil counteracts decreased collagen caused by sun exposure.

Moisturizes Dry Skin

Rosehip oil is a natural lipid, which the skin needs to form and sustain skin membranes and as a result maintain the water in your skin. It also improves your skin’s flexibility and permeability.

Prevent and Treat Stretch Marks

Sudden weight gain in pregnancy causes stretch marks, but by massaging rosehip oil into the skin you can improve the appearance of stretch marks by 43%.

Prevent and Treat Fine Lines and Wrinkles

As well as containing vitamin c which is essential for wrinkle fighting collagen production, rosehip oil also contains transretinoic acid. This acid is known as tretinoin, and is a derivative of vitamin A that revitalises and regenerates skin cells, firms the skin and smooths out fine lines and wrinkles. The US National Library of Medicine states that tretinoin works by lightening the skin, replacing older skin with newer skin, and by slowing down the way the body removes skin cells that may have been harmed by the sun. The turnover process replaces damaged skin cells with new, healthier skin cells. The result is fresher, smoother looking skin.

Skin Cell Regeneration

Polyunsaturated acids such as oleic acid, cis-linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid form lipids which act as a guard for the outer layer of the skin to protect it from moisture loss and environmental stressors, like pollution or the UV rays of the sun.

Another acid called transretinoic acid is anti-inflammatory, which supports a faster skin cell regeneration. Luckily for us, rosehip oil contains roughly 80 percent fatty acids, and this is highly nourishing for our skin.

Tips for Buying Rosehip Oil

Always look for cold-pressed which maintains the purity of the ingredients. Another thing to consider are organic certification labels, which confirms that the product was manufactured in an ethical, sustainable way.

If a product is labelled organic, it means that at every stage of the supply chain organic standards have to be met and certified to prove it. Buying a product with the Soil Association Certificate logo can ensure that the products contain the purest ingredients.

More information about how to choose the best rosehip oil

Are you going to try out Rosehip Oil for acne? Or perhaps for something else? Maybe you have been hearing about rosehip oil for a while now, and it is time to trial it!

Written by Jess Burman

Wellbeing writer

BA (Honours) in Writing