In the viral TikTok video, the creator rubs a “thyme pop” (aka, frozen cubes of thyme tea) on their skin and claims that this remedy works better for them than benzoyl peroxide, another common acne fighter. 

But why are these two being compared in the first place? Well, benzoyl peroxide works to reduce breakouts by killing acne-causing bacteria on the skin. While it’s certainly effective, it can cause irritation (especially for those with sensitive skin), resulting in redness and even physical discomfort if overused. 

According to research, thyme essential oil also has both antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties1. And depending on how you use it, the ingredient may be able to provide those beneficial properties sans irritation. 

What’s more, this study2 analyzed the topical scalp application of a blend of essential oils including thyme, rosemary, lavender, and cedarwood, all diluted in a carrier oil blend of grapeseed and jojoba oil. When used in combination with scalp massage, the essential oil blend significantly improved the appearance of alopecia areata—a specific type of hair loss that results in sporadic bald patches. Translation? Thyme oil may help encourage hair growth, too.



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