Worrying that putting oils on your face will cause spots might be the number one fear of those with sensitive or breakout-prone skin.

Although you’re right to be concerned, just as you would be when putting any cosmetic product on your skin, not all oils are bound to cause spots if you know which ones to choose.

When we put anything on our skin – oils, creams, makeup etc – we effectively change the chemistry of what’s on our skin’s surface and the environment that our is normally accustomed to, which can lead to over-production of sebum as our skin attempts to repel the things it’s not comfortable with. Sebum is the oil our skin produces naturally to keep it balanced, hydrated and in a neutral state. If too much sebum is produced, the pores can become clogged and that’s when inflamed areas of skin – breakouts – can occur.

But don’t fear!

If you’re lucky, you may be able to nail the cause of your spots down to one particular ingredient or brand, but it can be tricky when there are often so many ingredients in a single item. With oils, you can figure out how likely they are to cause irritation if you know a little bit about the ‘comedogenic rating‘ of each oil. This rating scale runs from 0 (not likely to clog pores) to 5 (highly likely to clog pores and cause breakouts), and anything 2 or under is considered to pose only a minor risk.

There are only a handful of oils that are rated zero on the comedogenic scale, and argan oil and hemp seed oil are two of these.

If you already have acne-prone or oily skin, you will do much better with oils that are at the lowest end of the comedogenic scale, whereas drier skin types that can take oil more easily may be able to withstand oils with a higher comedogenic rating without breaking out, but this does vary from person to person – we are all unique after all! But by inspecting your product labels and learning which oils are best (or worst!) according to this scale, you have a better chance of avoiding those unwanted and inconvenient breakouts.

Not all oils are as good for you as you might think

If you’re a fan of natural ingredients, you might like to use coconut oil as part of your skincare routine. Yes, coconut oil does indeed have many benefits for the skin, but it’s interesting that coconut oil has a comedogenic rating of 4, which means it’s quite likely to give you spots – something worth considering if you’re using it on your face and experiencing more breakouts than usual.

How I Use The Comedogenic Rating To Design My Oil Blends

This comedogenic rating is one factor I use in deciding which oils to choose for my face oil blends, and I like to make sure that none of the oils included have an individual rating of more than 2. So, for your information, here is a list of the oils in both renew me and uplift me, with the comedogenic rating for each oil. I hope this helps you feel safe choosing fearless by nature oils for your skin.

uplift me:fearless by nature uplift me

Oil Comedogenic Rating
Rosehip Oil 1
Grapeseed Oil 2
Argan Oil 0
Jojoba Oil 2
Sea Buckthorn Oil 1


renew me:fearless by nature renew me nourishing face and neck oil

Oil Comedogenic Rating
Apricot Kernel Oil 2
Black Seed Oil 2
Meadowfoam Oil 1
Pumpkin Seed Oil 2
Castor Oil 1
Pomegranate Seed Oil 1


What about essential oils?

You might be wondering why I haven’t bothered to list the essential oils that are used in the oil blends above, and that’s because all essential oils have a rating of zero, meaning they are not likely to be the cause of breakouts.

Final word

I acknowledge that everyone’s skin reacts differently to different products, but by selecting oils that have a comedogenic rating of 2 or under, the chances of oils being the cause of spots can be minimised.



Please share!