Bio-Oil consists of plant extracts and vitamins in an oil base. The manufacturer claims their product improves appearance of stretchmarks and scars over an 8-week time frame.
Bio-Oil can be used for scars, stretch marks, aging skin, after sun treatment, bath oil, dehydrated skin and uneven skin tone. According to the International Journal of Cosmetic Science, Bio-Oil can improve skin appearance.
Quick Facts & Specs
Bio-Oil contains plant extracts and vitamins in an oil basis that helps to improve the look of stretchmarks and scars.
- Skin Type:All Skin Types
- Benefit:Improves the appearance of scars, stretch marks, uneven skin tone, dry and aging skin
- Uses:Works on eliminating the stretch marks, scars, wrinkles, uneven skin tone and hydrates the skin.
- Active Ingredients:Chamomile, Calendula, Rosemary, Lavender, Vitamins A and E
- Recommended by dermatologist
- Multi-use skin oil
- Smells good
- Easy to use
- Softens skin
- Improves skin texture
- Greasy to the touch
- Some users did not like the smell
- No results were obtained
- Not effective
How Does It Work? | The Science Behind Bio-Oil
Bio-Oil is an externally topical formula claiming to improve scars and stretch marks. The product contains plant extracts and vitamins in an oil base. Results may vary among individuals.
The manufacturer claims several studies support the effectiveness of this skin care product.
We checked out some studies and found the number of participants were very low. Some studies were funded by the manufacturer which would suggest a biased result. There is a lack of evidence to prove the results this manufacturer claims.
Bio-Oil Ingredients – The Breakdown
There are several primary ingredients in this product. They include:
Paraffinum Liquidum (Mineral Oil) – According to Science Direct, mineral oil is used in cosmetic products because of high skin tolerance and it protects and cleanses the skin.
Triisononanoin – According to Cosmeticsinfo.org, Triisononanoin is used in products as a conditioning agent and is generally considered safe.
Cetearyl Ethylhexanoate – In a study from International Journal of Toxicology, this ingredient is a skin conditioning agent and is considered safe.
Isopropyl Myristate – Is an emollient and is used in cosmetics to enhance absorption into skin tissue. According to International Journal of Toxicology, it is considered safe for humans.
Retinyl Palmitate – Is the major form of vitamin A found in the epidermis of skin tissue according to a study in Biomed Research International and is used to decrease roughness of the skin.
Tocopheryl Acetate – According to the Indian Dermatology Online Journal, this ingredient is used in cosmetics to deter the effects of the sun and acts as a free radical scavenger.
Anthemis Nobilis Flower Oil – In a study from the International Journal of Toxicology, this ingredient is Roman chamomile flower extract and is used as a fragrance ingredient as well as a skin-conditioning agent.
Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil – According to BMC Complementary Medicine and Therapies, lavender oil promotes wound healing and promotes collagen synthesis.11
Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Oil – According to Pharmaceutics, Rosemary oil improves the elasticity and hydration of skin.
Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract – In a study from The Journal of Clinical Biochemistry and Nutrition, this ingredient has healing properties beneficial to the skin and it also increases collagen production.
Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil – Applied Science Reports states this oil reduces symptoms of skin sensitivity and inflammation and also protects the skin from the sun.
Other ingredients include: Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, BHT, and bisabolol.
Bio-Oil – Questions and Answers
Q: What is Bio-Oil used for?
A: Bio-Oil is used to reduce skin imperfections like scars and stretch marks.
Q: What are the side effects of Bio-Oil?
A: This product may cause itching, redness, and a burning sensation in people who have sensitive skin.
Q: What directions do I need to follow for Bio-Oil?
A: Apply a few drops of Bio-Oil to fingers or directly on the skin. Massage into the skin for 30 seconds until the oil is absorbed. Apply two times daily for three months or more for best results.
Q: Is Bio-Oil Safe?
A: Bio-Oil should not be used on broken skin because of possible skin irritation. Avoid the eye area. Do not store in direct sunlight.
Bio-Oil Customer Reviews & Results
Bio-Oil received a 4.5 rating out of 5.0 on Amazon. Out of 12,559 customer ratings, 6,298 were positive and 1,678 were critical. Top scores indicated the product was excellent for sensitive skin and moisturizing.3
Bio-Oil: Prices & Where to Buy It
You can purchase Bio-Oil online at the following:
- Ulta – $9.74; $5.95 shipping cost
- Amazon – $16.19; free shipping on orders over $25.00
- Target – $8.99; Ships free with $25.00 orders
- Walgreens – $12.49; free shipping
- eBay – $16.99; free shipping
The Bottom Line
Based on scientific research, the evidence is not compelling enough to prove that Bio-Oil is effective in improving skin condition. Based on reviews, 50% of customers were satisfied with this product.
Keep in mind that several factors may influence the success of this product, including diet, age and skin type. You must decide if the cost is worth the possible benefits received from this product.
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 Bielfeldt S, Blaak J, Staib P, Simon I, Wohlfart R, Manger C, Wilhelm KP. Observer-blind randomized controlled study of a cosmetic blend of safflower, olive and other plant oils in the improvement of scar and striae appearance. Int J Cosmet Sci. 2018 Feb;40(1):81-86. doi: 10.1111/ics.12438. Epub 2017 Dec 12. PMID: 29094366
 T. Petry, D. Bury, R. Fautz, M. Hauser, B. Huber, A. Markowetz, S. Mishra, K. Rettinger, W. Schuh, T. Teichert, Review of data on the dermal penetration of mineral oils and waxes used in cosmetic applications,Toxicology Letters, Volume 280, 2017, Pages 70-78, ISSN 0378-4274, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.toxlet.2017.07.899
 Triisononanoin https://www.cosmeticsinfo.org/ingredients/triisononanoin/
 Fiume M, Heldreth B, Bergfeld WF, et al. Safety Assessment of Alkyl Ethylhexanoates as Used in Cosmetics. International Journal of Toxicology. 2015;34(3_suppl):61S-73S. doi:10.1177/1091581815617794
 Final Report on the Safety Assessment of Myristyl Myristate and Isopropyl Myristate. Journal of the American College of Toxicology. 1982;1(4):55-80. doi:10.3109/10915818209021261
 Oliveira MB, do Prado AH, Bernegossi J, Sato CS, Lourenço Brunetti I, Scarpa MV, Leonardi GR, Friberg SE, Chorilli M. Topical application of retinyl palmitate-loaded nanotechnology-based drug delivery systems for the treatment of skin aging. Biomed Res Int. 2014;2014:632570. doi: 10.1155/2014/632570. Epub 2014 Mar 19. PMID: 24772430; PMCID: PMC3977527
 Keen MA, Hassan I. Vitamin E in dermatology. Indian Dermatol Online J. 2016 Jul-Aug;7(4):311-5. doi: 10.4103/2229-5178.185494. PMID: 27559512; PMCID: PMC4976416
 Johnson W, Heldreth B, Bergfeld WF, et al. Safety Assessment of Anthemis nobilis–Derived Ingredients as Used in Cosmetics. International Journal of Toxicology. 2017;36(1_suppl):57S-66S. doi:10.1177/1091581817705620
 Mori HM, Kawanami H, Kawahata H, Aoki M. Wound healing potential of lavender oil by acceleration of granulation and wound contraction through induction of TGF-β in a rat model. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2016 May 26;16:144. doi: 10.1186/s12906-016-1128-7. PMID: 27229681; PMCID: PMC4880962
 Montenegro L, Pasquinucci L, Zappalà A, Chiechio S, Turnaturi R, Parenti C. Rosemary Essential Oil-Loaded Lipid Nanoparticles: In Vivo Topical Activity from Gel Vehicles. Pharmaceutics. 2017 Oct 21;9(4):48. doi: 10.3390/pharmaceutics9040048. PMID: 29065483; PMCID: PMC5750654.
 Chandran PK, Kuttan R. Effect of Calendula officinalis Flower Extract on Acute Phase Proteins, Antioxidant Defense Mechanism and Granuloma Formation During Thermal Burns. J Clin Biochem Nutr. 2008 Sep;43(2):58-64. doi: 10.3164/jcbn.2008043. PMID: 18818737; PMCID: PMC2533690
 Stoia, Mihaela & Oancea, Simona. (2015). Selected Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Topically Applied Sunflower Oil. Applied Science Reports. 10. 45-49