Do you suffer from oily skin? Maybe just part of your face is oily, like your T section. Perhaps you don’t start out feeling oily, but by half way through the day, you need to blot your face. Or maybe your makeup has trouble staying put throughout the day? If this sounds like you, you probably find it frustrating knowing what products are right for you, including makeup. And then there is the biggest question for oily skin sufferers… should you moisturise?
First, let’s understand where the oil is coming from.
Oily skin occurs when the sebaceous glands in the skin make too much sebum. Sebum is a waxy, oily substance that protects and hydrates the skin. Sebum is vital for keeping the skin healthy. However, too much sebum can lead to oily skin, clogged pores, and acne. Managing oily skin requires a diligent skin care routine.
Symptoms of oily skin usually include a shiny appearance, clogged pores, pimples, or skin that looks rough and a little bumpy (sometimes with little bumps just beneath the surface). Often, if you suffer from oily skin, you may have large or obvious pores on the skin. These pores can become clogged which lead to blackheads. You may have occasional acne, regular breakouts or even cystic acne (the deep lumpy acne). Sometimes, if you have had oily skin for a prolonged time, your skin can have a thickened dull look to it.
Genetics often play a large part in the way our skin looks, but this doesn’t mean that if both of your parents have oily skin you will too. There are also hormonal changes, diet and environmental factors to consider. High stress levels can also increase the production of oily sebum in the body.
What can be done?
Finding the correct products is imperative. You may feel as though you need to strip your skin of all the oil. But in many cases, excess sebum can be a symptom of dehydration. When your skin becomes too dehydrated from lack of nourishment, it screams out for natural oils. Thus creating too much sebum, which then feels oily. So it’s a bit of a balancing act when it comes to how much moisture is the right amount. Here are some helpful hints to combat your oily skin:
1. Wash regularly
Washing with warm water and a gentle cleanser can reduce the amount of oil on the skin. It’s important to use a cleanser that is not too harsh. Osmosis MD Purify is perfect. If your skin falls into the category of thick, oily and acne prone, a cleanser containing AHA’s (Alpha Hydroxy Acids) may be a good option – such as Aspect Dr AHA Cleanser or Societe AHA Cleanser. Sometimes, using an AHA cleanser in the evening and a regular cleanser in the morning is a good combination. These acids may be irritating to some skin types. When starting a new product, use it on a small area of skin first to see how it reacts.
It is very important to avoid exfoliating cloth, such as loofahs, as these can strip your skin, stimulating it to make more oil.
2. Should you use a toner?
Astringent toners that contain alcohol tend to dry out the skin. Unfortunately, this is what is in most of the toners that you purchase from department stores or supermarkets. Choosing a toner that contains botanical ingredients and Salicylic Acids, such as Societe Clarifying Prep Solution or Medik8 Daily Refresh Balancing Toner can naturally stabilise oil production and balance the pH of your skin as well as treating your skin to anti-ageing antioxidants.
3. Vitamins applied topically
You’ve heard of Vitamins A, B and C that are in many serums. Which one, if any, is right for oily skin though? While everyone can benefit from them all, Aspect Dr Multi B can really help to stabilise your oil production by balancing your skins’ natural pH. If you have acne as well as oily skin, the Aspect Dr Complete Pigment Plus Serum contains Vitamin C along with unique herbal extracts that have been clinically proven to dramatically improve the look and feel of oily skin. Aspect Dr BHA Purifying Gel is also an excellent option to apply after your serums and before your moisturiser.
Yes, you must moisturise to avoid your body overcompensating and creating too much sebum. If your oily skin comes from dehydration, then a more nourishing moisturiser is important, but nothing too heavy. Osmosis MD Quench is perfect as it contains high doses of hyaluronic acid (a hydration ingredient) without clogging pores.
If your skin is oily due to your DNA, or if you have thick, oily, acne prone skin, then an oil free moisturiser is a better choice. Aspect Sheer Hydration or Aspect Dr Oil Free moisturisers are both excellent choices.
Everyone needs it – and there are some really great ones that don’t feel greasy. Societe Prime and Defend is so good for oily skin and as it contains zinc, it is also great for acne. It contains ingredients to degrease the oily feeling on your face – bonus!
You may have trouble finding makeup that suits your oily skin, as sometimes when the makeup mixes with oil it can give it a different consistency. Using a mineral makeup that is free from chemicals is so important. You might find that a pressed powder works best as it has a mattifying effect. Jane Iredale Pure Pressed Powder looks lovely and stays on well throughout the day. They also have an oil control powder that can be applied over any kind of foundation or on its own and that is Pure Matte Finish Powder. If you prefer a liquid, Jane Iredale Beyond Matte is a heavier coverage that minimises shine.
7. Weekly masks
Face masks offer an at home treatment that will really help to get you the results that you are after. There are many masks available, but masks that are designed for oily and problematic skin are what you need. Clay, Charcoal or Salicylic Acid are great ingredients that are designed to remove excess oil and clear pores. Aspect Exfoliating Clay mask and CosMedix Clear Deep Cleansing Mask are perfect choices and can be used once to twice a week.
Oily skin that is linked to genetics can be difficult to prevent. Even oily skin caused by changes in hormones is difficult to control. The best prevention for oily skin is for an individual is to find a consistent skin care routine that works, and to stick to it.
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