Frankincense Oil – What Is It? Why It’s So Amazing For Your Skin [History, Uses and Skin Benefits]

By Valeria D.

If you search “essential oils” in Google, frankincense oil will undoubtedly be one of the first to come up — and for good reasons.

Today I am going to tell you why frankincense oil is so unique, why it is soooo freaking expensive, and what amazing things it can do for your skin!


​What Is Frankincense Essential Oil?

Frankincense oil - Boswellia Tree - Pretty Blooming; Frankincense Oil is made from the resin of Boswellia Trees.

Production of frankincense oil comes from the resin of Boswellia trees. These trees grow in Africa and the middle east —  mostly in Oman, Somalia, and Ethiopia.

In a BBC interview, Oman tour guide Mohammed Al-Shahri says frankincense oil has been produced in Oman as far back as 7,000 BC. According to him, the cultivators wound the trees using a traditional chisel-like tool, after which a milky white liquid (sap) leeches out of the hole.

It forms the so-called frankincense "tears." They do not gather the first sap to cleanse the wood of impurities. Once it dries, the hole is enlarged for a new sap to come out and dry.

Two weeks later, the tears are collected. From there, the sap or resin is delicately distilled, and essential oils are extracted.

You can read the whole interview with the guide here. Al-Shahri talks about frankincense oil tradition and productions an export.

​History of Frankincense Essential Oil: Why is it so pricey?

  • According to the Gospel of Matthew, frankincense was one of the three gifts brought to the baby Jesus by the three wise men. According to Omanis, it was given to Jesus "to ward off evil spirits and snakes."
  • ​One Boswellia tree can produce a couple of pounds of resin each year. If the trees are cared for properly, they can produce resin for hundreds of years
  • ​ To be able to produce the resin, the Boswellia trees need to be at least ten years old.
  • ​Climate and politics also play an essential role in the pricing of the oil. For a time, frankincense trade made southern Arabia the wealthiest place on Earth, and the Romans wanted to get into this trade. However, because of the heat and aridity, the Romans never conquered the area and were driven back. (Source BBC)
  • ​The oil is widely used in the medical and cosmetic industry, for religious and spiritual rituals, and often named to be a cancer remedy. And like any other commodity, supply and demand play a significant role in the market costs of essential oils.

​Different uses of Frankincense Essential Oil 

Here are the various uses of frankincense oil:

  • For reducing arthritis
  • Improving gut function
  • Improving asthma
  • Maintaining oral health
  • Fighting certain cancers

It is also used for aromatherapy to deepen breathing and aid in relaxation. Diffusers are a must in aromatherapy as they disperse the essential oil as a fine vapor into the air so the body can gently absorb them through the respiratory system.

Skin Benefits of Frankincense Oil

​Besides being a costly, religious, and fragrant gift, the benefits of frankincense oil are numerous.

Here is how your skin can benefit from it:

Skin Benefits of Frankincense Oil - Pretty Blooming; Besides being just a costly, religious and fragrant gift, the benefits of frankincense are numerous. Here is how your skin can benefit from it:

Fights Acne​

Frankincense essential oil is a natural antiseptic and disinfectant. It can eliminate bacteria causing acne. It is also used to clean wounds or cuts and speed up the healing process. 

Regeneration of skin​

Frankincense can reduce wrinkles and fine lines by regenerating healthy skin cells. 

Scar reduction

If used consistently, frankincense can help in fading away acne scars. 

​Tightens the skin 

It can be used to help reduce the appearance of large pores and tighten skin — leaving it refreshed and smooth. 

Moisturizes and Nourishes the Skin​

When added to creams and moisturizers, frankincense oil hydrates and rejuvenates the skin in-depth.

​How to Use Frankincense Oil for Skin 

Frankincense oil blends well with carrier oils like shea butter, jojoba oil, or apricot kernel oil.

You can combine it with other essential oils depending on the benefits you're seeking. Here is a DIY anti-aging serum that uses frankincense oil along with other essential oils to keep wrinkles at bay and maintain smooth and supple skin.

​DIY Anti-Aging Serum


How To Prepare and Use It?

1. Mix the ingredients in a bowl. Stir well.
2. Pour the mixture into a glass dropper bottle.  
3. Use 1/2 dropper (or less) full of serum on clean face and neck. You can use the serum in both mornings and evenings.

NOTE:  The essential oils are potent and powerful, so be sure to follow the measurements. Proper dilution is vital for your safety. Read more about diluting essential oils here. Before using new essential oils, be sure to do a test patch on a small area to see how your skin reacts. If your skin is sensitive, feel free to increase the amount of the carrier oil (jojoba and rosehip). Read more about the difference between carrier and essential oils here.

​Is Frankincense Oil Safe? 

Frankincense oil has been used for thousands of years and is generally safe. However, we must always practice caution in anything applied topically.

Like all essential oils, you must dilute frankincense oil in carrier oils. Here is a guide on adequately diluting your essential oils.

Always perform a patch test when using a new oil by placing a drop of it on the inner part of your arm.

For safety purposes, it is not advised for pregnant women to use essential oils.

For children and the elderly, it is highly advised to contact your physician or doctor before using essential oils.

How to choose Frankincense Essential Oil

As with all essential oils, remember not to buy frankincense oil from food stores. Apart from this reminder, here are the things you should look for when choosing your frankincense oil:

  1. 100% essential oil
  2. Therapeutic grade​
  3. Steam-distilled
  4. Undiluted
  5. Unadulterated

I highly recommend Plant Therapy's frankincense oil. You can be sure that you get your money's worth with their 100% pure, therapeutic grade frankincense oil.

Frankincense Oil – What Is It? Why It’s So Amazing For Your Skin [History, Uses and Skin Benefits] - Pretty Blooming

To wrap it up

​Along with myrrh, frankincense oil is one of the most special essential oils you can find on the market. It is so versatile and potent and has been used for thousands of years.

Besides its numerous skin benefits, frankincense oil offers excellent stress-relief properties and is also said to help cure cancer. The supply and demand of this oil can indeed make it pricey, but a small container of this oil goes a long way — it truly is worth the expense.

Do you use frankincense oil? Do you have any DIY recipes you love that includes frankincense oil? Share your wisdom in the comments below.

Thank you for reading my blog; I truly appreciate it!

Stay tuned and take skin care 💋

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The Information on this website has not been evaluated by FDA and is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure or prevent any disease. The content is for educational purposes only and not intended to substitute medical advice. You should seek the advice of your health care practitioner before undertaking any health changes. 


Some of the links in the posts are affiliate links, meaning, at no cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

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