Understanding Comedogenic Ratings

Have you ever pondered which oils are best and whether they may clog pores? I will explain a bit about the comedogenic ratings and provide a list of the oils that Innova Essential Skin uses and its comedogenic ratings!

What does Comedogenic mean?
First, maybe we need to figure out how to pronounce it:  Kŏm – ĭ – dō – jĕn - ĭc 

Now, that was super easy!! Just like riding a bike! Comedogenic is a term to describe the potential to clog pores, especially by forming blackheads. YUCK!

Comedogenic Ratings:

A Comedogenic Rating of 0 is believed to be non-comedogenic and will not clog pores.

A Comedogenic Rating of 1 there may be a slight chance that the oil will clog pores.

A Comedogenic Rating of 2 majority of people will not experience clogged pores, however some may notice clogged pores.

A Comedogenic Rating of 3 depending on the skin type will determine if there will be clogged pores.

A Comedogenic Rating of 4 this rating will likely clog pores, depending on skin type.

A Comedogenic Rating of 5 majority of skin types will experience clogged pores.

When studies have been done to determine the comedogenic ratings, these scientific studies have used models (not like Cindy Crawford or Gisele Bündchen), and the models do not represent all skin types or environments (usually in a lab).

Now, please do bear in mind that everyone’s skin is different, everyone’s lifestyle is different, and everyone’s diet is different, and these are all factors in skin health and how one’s skin will react to the different oils on the comedogenic rating scale.

Another determining factor for the comedogenic ratings is the ratios of the essential fatty acids that each oil contains.

Fatty Acids and Their Roles

Oils are made up primarily of essential fatty acids. Below are fatty acids that determine how low or high the oil falls on the Comedogenic Rating Scale and they are also in the Innova Essential Skin products:

  • ALA (Alpha Linolenic Acid)– an omega-3 fatty acid with a Comedogenic Rating of 3-4. Helps protect the outer most barrier of the skin.
  • Arachidic Acid– a saturated fatty acid with a Comedogenic Rating of 1. Extremely moisturizing and protective for the skin.
  • Capric Acid (aka Decanoic acid)– a saturated fatty acid with a Comedogenic Rating of 2. Known to be antibacterial and anti-inflammatory for the skin.
  • Caprylic Acid (aka Octanoic acid) a saturated fatty acid with a Comedogenic Rating of 2. It exhibits strong antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-infection properties.
  • Eicosenoic Acid– an omega-9 fatty acid. Has a Comedogenic Rating of 2. Enhances the absorption of other skincare ingredients, is very soothing for the skin, and very emollient in nature.
  • Erucic Acid– an omega-9 fatty acid. Has an unknown Comedogenic Rating. Known for its exceptional “slip” and smooth feel on the skin.
  • Lauric Acid– a fatty acid. Has a Comedogenic Rating of 3-4. Has antibacterial properties. 
  • Linoleic Acid – an omega-6 fatty acid with a Comedogenic Rating of 1. Helps fight acne, softens the skin, and keeps it supple and youthful.
  • Myristic Acid– a saturated fatty acid with a Comedogenic Rating of 3. Known to be cleansing for the skin.
  • Oleic Acid – an omega-9 fatty acid. Has a Comedogenic Rating of 3-4. It is promoted as having various advantages, such as reducing wrinkles or fighting oxidation.
  • Palmitic Acid– has a Comedogenic Rating of 2. Has barrier restorative properties, moisturizing, emollient, and soothing for dry irritated skin.
  • Palmitoleic Acid– an omega-7 fatty acid. Has an unknown Comedogenic Rating. Known to be rejuvenating, restorative, healing, and anti-aging for the skin.
  • Stearic Acid– a saturated fatty acid with a Comedogenic Rating of 2. Suitable for dryer skin types due to its excellent hydrating properties but can clog pores if used on oily or acne prone skin.

Innova Essential Skin List of Oils, Their Comedogenic Rating and Essential Fatty Acids They Contain:

Babassu Oil - Comedogenic Rating: 1-2

Capric Acid- 1-8%
Caprylic Acid- 2-11%
Lauric Acid– 40-48%
Myristic Acid– 15-20%
Palmitic Acid- 7-11%
Oleic Acid– 10-15%

Babassu Oil comes from Brazil, the Babassu tree is known as the "The Tree of Life," because the oil is thought to have healing properties and is commonly used in beauty regimens across the country. Due to being rich in essential acids, it promotes healthy cells, restores skin’s strength, reduces water loss for better skin hydration. It is great for soothing inflamed skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis, rosacea, acne, and other distressed skin conditions. It calms redness and itchy inflamed skin. Babassu Oil is a light, mild moisturizer that melts on contact with the skin with a dry oil texture making it suitable for most skin types.

Baobab Seed Oil - Comedogenic Rating: 2

Alpha Linolenic Acid- 1-3%
Arachidic Acid- 0-2%
Linoleic Acid– 25-37%
Oleic Acid– 30-44%
Stearic Acid- 2-9%

Baobab Oil comes from Southern and East African countries, like the Babassu tree, the Baobab tree is also called “The Tree of Life” by the Africans and for good reason! It has also been called “the superfood for skin”! It absorbs quickly and easily into the skin effectively smoothing out rough, dry patches, eases symptoms of eczema and psoriasis, promotes wound healing and helps combat early signs of aging by reducing the appearance of fine lines. It is soothing, helps maintain radiance, and supports the elasticity of the skin.

Jojoba Oil - Comedogenic Rating: 2

Eicosenoic Acid– 65-80%
Erucic Acid- 10-20%
Oleic Acid– 5-15%
Palmitic Acid– 3%
Palmitoleic Acid– 1%

Jojoba Oil is actually not an oil, it is a liquid wax. The structure closely resembles the sebum that our bodies naturally produce. It penetrates the skin with ease. It is perfect for aging and mature skin due to it humectant qualities, which help seal in moisture and provide a protective barrier. The antibacterial benefits are amazing for acne prone skin. When first starting to use Jojoba Oil, one may often experience a “purge” of toxins. This will pass and reveal clear pores and revitalized skin.

Rosehip Seed Oil - Comedogenic Rating: 1

Alpha Linolenic Acid- 22-38%
Arachidic Acid- 1%
Linoleic Acid– 35-50%
Oleic Acid– 13-18%
Palmitic Acid- 2-5%
Stearic Acid- 3%

Rosehip Seed Oil is fantastic for cleansing and moisturizing acne prone skin. It is also thought to have more Vitamin C than an orange or lemon, which is high in antioxidants (improves texture and revitalizes skin). Vitamin C fights free radicals, supports collagen production (helps to reduce wrinkles) and may increase wound healing. Rosehip Seed Oil also contains Vitamin A, which is believed to reduce and reverse sun damage and help treat acne.

Sea Buckthorn Oil - Comedogenic Rating: 1

Alpha Linolenic Acid- 1-3%
Linoleic Acid– 4-16%
Oleic Acid– 6-15%
Palmitic Acid– 28-40%
Palmitoleic Acid– 32-42%
Stearic Acid- 2%

Sea Buckthorn Oil is an oil that deeply penetrates the skin, while reducing redness, inflammation. The saturated fatty acids soften skin and prevent water loss, Omegas 3, 6, 7 and 9 reinforces and smooths skin’s surface, helps to regulate natural over production of sebum and improves signs of aging. It is known to promote healthy skin structure and skin elasticity.

Tamanu Oil - Comedogenic Rating: 2

Alpha Linolenic Acid- 1%
Linoleic Acid– 20-38%
Oleic Acid– 36-53%
Palmitic Acid– 10-18%
Stearic Acid– 11-20%

Tamanu Oil is known to be the best oil for healing acne scars and fading old acne scars. It is also known for its moisturizing, antioxidant production, and an anti-inflammatory effect. It stimulates collagen production to promote wound healing and has some antibacterial properties, particularly against the bacteria associated with acne.


Oils are an excellent source of providing the natural nutrients your skin needs, but caution should be taken on exactly what oils are best for your skin. Here at Innova Essential Skin, we have researched and used the Comedogenic Rating Scale to help assure the oils that we provide are the best oils to help you have healthy, supple, and radiant skin.


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