Grapefruit essential oil has potent antibacterial and antimicrobial effects.
Test-tube studies show that it displayed antimicrobial properties against potentially harmful bacteria like Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus faecalis, and Escherichia coli (9, 10).
One study comparing five essential oils found that grapefruit essential oil was one of the most powerful in regards to its antimicrobial effects against MRSA — a group of bacteria that’s usually harder to treat, as it’s often resistant to common antibiotics (11, 12).
Lastly, it may also help to prevent stomach ulcers caused by the bacteria, H. pylori.
For example, a test-tube study examining properties of 60 essential oils found that white grapefruit essential oil had antibacterial effects against H. pylori (13).
Research shows that grapefruit essential oil may be effective in fighting certain fungal strains as well, such as Candida albicans, a yeast that can cause infections in humans, especially in people with weakened immune systems (14, 15).
Grapefruit essential oil may contribute to healthy skin by preventing and treating skin conditions like acne (20).
Many brands of face lotions and creams include citrus essential oils because of their refreshing scent and potent antibacterial and antioxidant activity.
These oils could help keep your skin bacteria-free, which may promote the acne healing process.