8 Best Essential Oils For The Skin Of Men

Welcome back my manly followers of all things Essential Oils. Today I am going to talk about the best essential oils for the skin, or more importantly, for the man-skin. I have been dabbling in this area recently after complaining that my skin was itchy due to dryness. Being a typical male, I have never considered anything to do with my skin apart from applying sun cream when I am outside and then washing myself in the shower afterwards. My wife has more moisturizers than you can poke a stick at and applies them liberally at different times of the day and night… Ok, let’s see if there are essential oils for the skin of men.

Read more: The Best Carrier Oils for Essential Oils - Man versus Oils Investigates

My list of essential oils for the skin of men

So to start, I did some close up investigations of my skin. I did actually notice that most of my protruding limbs are dry with rough patches, little cuts, scabbed insect bites and scrapes causing itchiness. Excessively dry skin can lead to increased skin infections, itchiness (which I can attest to) and, in extreme cases, medical issues such as dermatitis and eczema. Dry or irritated skin in men is usually caused by a number of things such as:

  • Lack of water intake
  • Working with or exposure to chemicals
  • Insect bites
  • Harsh soaps
  • Salt water
  • Sun exposure

Alternatively, over oily skin can also cause undue itchiness and greasiness. If you are suffering from dry, oily or some sort of skin irritant due to the manly issues listed above, here are some chemical free remedies. They may just provide you with a little relief, and keep your manly epidermis as smooth as a babies’ bot bot in the process. And in true man versus oils spirit, I have tried to keep the list as manly as possible, meaning if it smells florally, it is not manly. After all, we might as well smell good at the same time hey!

essential oils for the skin - dry back

Tea Tree essential oil

Tea Tree (Melaleuca Alternifolia) makes it to first on the list due to its overwhelming use in the skin care industry. It has strong antiseptic and antimicrobial properties and is good for skin blemishes and spots, dry skin and acne. It’s anti-inflammatory properties also make it good for relieving itchiness bought on by overly dry or oily skin. In terms of actual research in this field, there is some. But, as with most essential oil research, the results are there, but minimal at best.

How to Use

To use:

  • Mix 1 to 2 drops of tea tree oil to every 12 drops of a carrier oil.
  • Apply to affected part of the skin a couple of times a day.

Some research I have seen proposes the addition of Witch Hazel to the above mixture when treating acne. This will make for a much stronger mixture, so always test on a small area first.

Whilst not considered a ‘hot’ oil, Tea Tree oil is still quite strong. So I highly recommend always using a carrier oil prior to application to the skin. Jojoba or avocado is probably best.

Sandalwood essential oil

Sandalwood has been used for centuries as a calming remedy and skin moisturizer. It is also a great soothing agent for dry and inflamed skin. It has been, and continues to be used in Chinese medicine for this purpose, with some positive initial studies in the western world. Oh, and it is right up there in its manly aromaness!!

How to Use

To use:

  • Mix 1 to 2 drops of sandalwood oil to every tablespoon of a carrier oil.
  • Apply to affected part of the skin a couple of times a day.

Sandalwood is not a strong oil and can be used directly on the skin to relieve insect bites and minor itchiness. However, if you are using it for a more all-over man-moisturizer, then a carrier oil is a necessity.

P.S. Looking for a chemical free moisturizer for that someone special. Click here to check out this chemical free sandalwood moisturizer.

Cypress essential oil

Cypress is another essential oil with a manly aroma that is also good for that tough exterior we like to carry around! As with Sandalwood, it is a great moisturizer. Its anti-inflammatory properties help moisten the skin and remedy any of those annoying itches! Cypress also has high anti-bacterial properties. It’s good for all of those manly blemishes, bumps and bites as well as a good substitute for tea tree when dealing with acne. Unlike Sandalwood, I couldn’t find any direct research into this but I did find it as a main ingredient in many off-the-shelf skin care products. So I guess there must be something there…

How to Use

To use:

  • Mix 1 to 2 drops of Cypress oil to every tablespoon of a carrier oil.
  • Apply to affected part of the skin a couple of times a day.

Cypress is not a strong oil and can be used directly on the skin to relieve insect bites and minor itchiness.

Best Essential Oils For The Skin Of Men - man arm

Lemongrass essential oil

This may be getting monotonous but Lemongrass Essential Oil (which is not a citrus oil) is another one with antifungal, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and insecticidal properties. It is especially good for use on the face as an aftershave treatment. It has some scientific backup as an anti-inflammatory for the skin. Lemongrass essential oil is also good for the hair. So, use it on the skin under your manly face covering for a double skin and hair benefit whammy!

How to Use

To use:

  • Mix 1 to 2 drops of Lemongrass oil to every tablespoon of a carrier oil (coconut or jojoba).
  • Apply to affected part of the skin a couple of times a day or into the beard after your evening shower.

Lemongrass is not recommended to be used directly on the skin.

Frankincense essential oil

Yep, usual benefits here… Anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, anti-oxidant. I have discussed frankincense at length in a couple of posts as it is one oil we use quite regularly here in the Man Versus Oils household. We use this as a spot fixer. If we get an insect bite, scrape, rash or anything like that. We live at the beach so there is always something that can attack the skin. We apply it directly to the spot and it seems to work.

I suffer from insect bites that itch, then stop, then start itching again in a few days. Since we have been using this, that no longer happens. I have researched this in the past and there is some proof to this but it works for me, so have not done so for this particular section.

How to Use

To use:

  • Apply directly to affected part of the skin when necessary.

Frankincense essential oil can be used as a natural moisturizer so if you are doing so for this reason, then a carrier oil is definitely required. If applying directly, then as usual test on a small area first to ensure there are no adverse reactions.

essentail oils for the skin - man in sun

Ylang-Ylang essential oil

Ylang Ylang is probably the least manly of the oils listed here. But its benefits to the skin of man make it a worthy addition to this list. It is great at killing bacteria which is a major contributor to many skin issues that affect us men. It is widely researched for its abilities to reduce scarring on the skin as well as a relaxant. Stress is another major contributor to skin issues in men.

How to Use

To use:

  • Mix 1 to 2 drops of Ylang Ylang oil to every tablespoon of a carrier oil (coconut or jojoba).
  • Apply to affected part of the skin a couple of times a day.
  • Add a couple of drops to your nightly man-bath for an all over skin soothing sensation.
  • Add to your aftershave mixture for added soothing and as a natural relaxant.

Ylang Ylang essential oil is not a strong oil and can be used directly on the skin. Apply to a small area first to check for any skin reaction.

Lavender essential oil

Ah yes, lavender… Ruler of all the essential oils. It is always on all of the lists, except the manly oils smells ones but hey, you can’t have everything. Lavender is used in so many skin care products that it is impossible not to include it here. It is soothing with just the right amount of anti-everything benefits that it truly is an absolute must for our daily man-skin routines. It is especially good for burns, scars, rashes and bites but is also a good moisturizer.

How to Use

To use:

  • Mix 1 to 2 drops of lavender oil to every tablespoon of a carrier oil (coconut or jojoba). We use a mixture of lavender and frankincense as a blend to sooth the skin and assist with sleep.
  • Apply to affected part of the skin a couple of times a day
  • Add to your aftershave mixture with a spruce or a ‘wood oil for added soothing and as a natural relaxant.

Lavender essential oil is not a strong oil and can be used directly on the skin. Apply to a small area first to check for any skin reaction.

Bergamot essential oil

Bergamot is the only citrus oil to make the list. It has so due to its abilities to reduce itchiness caused by environmental irritants, stress, or inflammation. It has a studied ability (Albeit brief and mainly in petri dishes) to inhibit the growth of germs which then reduces the chance of infection within the skin. Bergamot essential oil is a major ingredient in many skin soap products.

  • Mix 1 to 2 drops of bergamot oil to your chemical free man-soap for a nice smelling, germ killing shower experience.
  • Add to your aftershave mixture with a spruce or a ‘wood oil for added soothing and as a natural relaxant. Citrus works very well with grounding wood sourced oils.
  • Adds a couple of drops to your man-bath to soothe the skin.

Bergamot is not a strong oil but is still a citrus so take care if you wish to apply directly on the skin.


Well that is it my clean skinned friends, another list of manly stuff to do with oils. As usual, there is a bit to choose from so have a look at what you think might work well for you (or what you have in the place) and let me know how you go. As usual, if you (or someone you know) has a killer skin care remedy that they use, please do not hesitate to share below.

Until next time and as always…

Have fun


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My name is Paul and I live on the east coast of Australia with my wife and six year old son. I also have 19 and 23 year old daughters. I am an ex government and bank worker who took a bit of a sea change and opened my own business by the beach with my amazing wife. If you can do it, try it. You will never look back. You want to know more about me, read my About Me page

21 thoughts on “8 Best Essential Oils For The Skin Of Men”

  1. I absolutely adore Young Living essential oils-they are seriously the best oils I have come across, and I have tried a few! As soon as you smell them you just get this strong sense they are very high quality. I always make sure I have some on hand during the winter months to help get through the colds and flus of the season, and to apply to cuts and cat scratches and insect bites. All very handy! The great thing about the oils you have mentioned here for skin is that many of them also have great psychological benefits too. So, not only are you helping your skin, but also helping your mood!

    • HI Liz

      Absolutely! I often choose an oil for a double benefit of say, skin and mood…

      Glad you enjoyed the article


  2. Wow, I’m completely blown away by the info, especially in regards to bergamot. I had no idea that it could act as an anti-irritant. I did know that it has germ reduction properties, which is why it’s one of my favorite oils. Also, now I have a few more to add to my list to check out.

    Thanks again for the recommendations. I’ll definitely be grabbing the Ylang-Ylang now!

  3. Hi Paul! Taking care of our skin as men is an important health topic. Most of us rush through every day carelessly concerning our skin. In some cases, exposing it to more sun than it needs and not feeding it with the proper nutrients.

    But awareness of our deficiencies is the first step to amend. And taking care of our skin goes hand in hand with oils.

    I really like Sandalwood and Lemongrass. I also appreciate you have dedicated a section in each case to describe how to use each one of these oils.

  4. Well written article and very educative. I suffer from dry skin too and I have been on my toe to reduce the dryness because it causes some damages to my skin and its making me feel bad. Though I take lots of water but it doesn’t reflect on my skin moisture rate. Could it mean some people could naturally have dry skins ? And could all dryness be treated? Thanks!

    • Hi Peter, 

      Absolutely some people have naturally dry skin and these ideas are one way that you could try to remedy that.  Having said that, sometimes overly dry skin can be due to more serious coonditions such as diabetes and dermatitis.  If skin stays overly dry even after using a moisutiser of some type and drinking plenty of water then I would recommend a visit to a medical professional for sure.

      Thanks for stopping by


  5. Thanks for sharing the informative article for men. I have heard about tree tea oil out of the 8 mentioned in this article  but have not really know much about how effective it is . Good to see more other oil as well. I have been looking for a way tí get rid of the skin rashes but seems I have found the solution here. Thanks for sharing. 

  6. Dear Paul,

    I personally appreciate all the research and hard work you put into creating this helpful post. As always I got great insights from your post and thanks a lot.

    You not only addressed the problems of skin care and the reasons for the cause but you have also provided with the solution which is helpful. The description about each oil and the instruction on how to use it is very helpful. I really enjoyed the content and in the manner that you presented it.

    Great information, you have really given a lot of value here.

    Much Success!


  7. lovely article on the various important of oil on man skin.it is no doubt that keeping a smooth and free spot skin is a sign of 

    of healthy living.there is no how we can talk about healthy living without talking about how to take care of our skin. 

    I will like to purchase Lemongrass.but I have a question apart from coconut and ojoba is there any other  tablespoon of a carrier oil I can use like Moringa Oil or Sweet Almond Oil.thanks

    • Hi Ajibola, you can abslutely use those oils if they are what you have – I tend to use grapeseed for most things as that is what we commonly have in the house.

      Check out this post for more info on Carrier Oils


  8. Oh dear!  Paul, you just saved a life. I hate body creams, it takes time to apply all over and makes me uncomfortable. It’s almost like I am a man when it comes to my relationship with body creams and moisturizers even though I have oily skin, still itchy, get insects bites and cracks and don’t have anything to soothe or help heal it. Now, I can explore one your 8 best essential oils for the skin. I  just hope whichever one I choose to try first wouldn’t be stick and make me uncomfortable. Which do you think is best for oily skin?  

    • Hi Vapz – If your skin is oily I would probably go with the Lemongrass to start with or then Tea Tree or Begamot.  If your skin is easily irritated however then maybe try Ylang Ylang – or another I haven’t listed here which is Geranium.  Make sure you use less drops and a good carrier oil such as Jojoba.


  9. Thank you for the post it was a great read, it was very informative and i must not be your ordinary men as i do not mind a bit of a florally aroma, especially if it is going to help my skin in a more natural way. I am a big fan of the smell of lemon grass when i cook with it, does the it smell similar?

    The other question on lemon grass is you say it has anti fungal properties, do you think it would help with athletes foot?

    Me and my wife both use essential oils and like them a lot, but we only have used them with the diffuser. My wife likes the lavender for bed and we use the tea tree and eucalyptus for colds and flues. I was unaware that it had other applications, especially for skin repair. I will have to give it a go this summer during the landscaping season when my hands take a betting, thanks for teaching me something new.  

    • Hy Paul, acording to the research I have found, lemongrass should be good for it for sure.  I would maybe add some tea tree to the concoction as well as it has some anti-bacterial properties as well.  but Lemongrass on its own is definitely worth a try.

      Thanks so much for your comments and let me know how you go.


  10. Hello Paul,

    I am very impressed with your site.

    Every time I thought of a question, I looked around and found the answer. You must be in my mind, which is where you need to be if you are trying to help us learn about essential oil usage.

    I have been looking into the use of essential oils lately, due to conversations with friends. You have very good information here. You have given me ideas I had not thought of before.

    I have a beard and use a beard oil, commercially mixed. After reading your beard article, I am now thinking of creating my own mix.

    All your oils are from Young Living. Are there other essential oils with the same quality? Is there a cost to becoming a member to get the discount? And if you become a member, what do they expect?


    • HI David, yes, I choose Young Living oils but yes, there are a few other manufacturers out there that are of the same quality – check out this post on some tips on how to tell what you are looking at.  

      To become a member you do need to purchase a starter kit (they start at around $200)..  Once you become a member you get the dscount off everything you purchase from then on.  From there there is no expectation on my behalf for you to continue to purchase if you have what you want – unless you want to of course.  Neither myself, nor young living will contact you to hassle you to purchase more or sell to your friends.  That is not what I am about nor this site – however whether you purchase or not, I am here to answer any questions you may have in regards to essential oils.



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