Skip to content


Manuka oil Acne research by the University of Otago, NZ

Recent scientific studies at Otago University in Dunedin, New Zealand have shown conclusively that essential oil extracted from Manuka (Leptospermum Scoparium) plants growing in the East Cape region of the North Island provide total control of Acne Vulgaris bacteria.

The following is a summary of research conducted by:

University of Otago, New Zealand
Department of Microbiology
3 April 1998

This study was to test the antibacterial activity of East Cape Manuka essential oil against bacteria associated with acne vulgaris.

The bacterial species associated with acne vulgaris are:
Staphylococcus aureus
Staphylococcus epidermidis
Propionibacterium acnes
Peptostreptococcus species
Bacteriodes species

A range of concentrations of Manuka oil were tested from 10% v/v down to 0.03% v/v.

0.03% Manuka tea tree oil inhibited bacterial growth to between one quarter and one half of the control, and 0.07% v/v completely inhibited bacterial growth of all the tested species.

It can be concluded from this study that East Cape Manuka essential oil displays antibacterial activity against all of the species of bacteria associated with Acne vulgaris in concentrations as low as 0.03%

In totally unrelated studies at Waikato University in Hamilton, New Zealand, Active Manuka honey containing the “Unique Manuka Factor” (UMF®) has been confirmed as having unrivalled antibacterial activity, controlling even the Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus bacteria that are proving very difficult to combat with traditional drugs.

These two Manuka plant extracts are great news for both teen and adult Acne sufferers, as it means that you are now able to treat your Acne with products containing natural active ingredients and not have to resort to using prescription drugs that can be both expensive and cause harmful side effects in some people.

Previous article Manuka honey , MGO vs UMF, what it means