We believe that everyone should have a daily skin care routine - not only for the sake of keeping your skin looking clear and healthy but also because it can be so therapeutic and relaxing. For those of you that are prone to oily skin it is even more important not to skip it! Read on for our recommended routine and usage of skin care products for oily skin types.
What is Oily Skin?
Oily skin is really an overproduction of something called sebum. This is the oil that is naturally produced by your body as a way to help keep skin feeling supple and soft.
Unfortunately if your body produces excess sebum than it actually needs, your oil glands will increase in size. This is part of what makes pores look so much bigger in people with oily skin. All that excess oil then sits on your skin and becomes a breeding ground for pimples, blackheads, and acne.
Why Your Skin is Oily
There are a number of things that can contribute to oily skin type. The medical term for oily skin is seborrhea and it is often brought on during puberty. This is related to fluctuations in hormones and increased androgen levels.
Of course, puberty is not the only time hormones fluctuate, so oily skin can plague anyone at any age. There are also other triggers for oily skin.
- Your age
- Your genetics
- Where you live
- Enlarged pores
- Over washing your face
- Under washing your face
- Skipping moisturizer
- Washing with hot water
- Eating a poor diet
Signs You Have Oily Skin
If you find yourself blotting your face frequently, complaining that your skin’s surface looks shiny, keeps getting pimples, or if you notice that your makeup just doesn't seem to stay put like it should, you likely are suffering from oily skin.
Other signs of oily skin are:
- Skin that looks greasy or shiny
- Skin with persistent clogged pores, acne, pimples, and blackheads
- Skin with occasional clogged pores, acne, pimples, and blackheads
- Skin with large, noticeable pores
- Skin with a thick or rough appearance
- Skin with orange peel texture
Difference Between Oily Skin and Combination Skin
Sometimes you might hear people talk about something called the T-zone. Draw an invisible line down the middle of your face and a line across your forehead to find it. Oily skin in this location is considered combination skin. True oily skin means your whole face will be oily. Knowing the difference between the two, allows you to properly assess an oily and combination skin care routine.
How Do You Get Rid of Oily Skin?
There are a couple things that you can try for oily skin care, depending on what the root cause is.
Assess Your Products
The first thing to look at are your skin care routine and products. Make sure they don't have any ingredients that might be harsh or cause dry skin. You also don't want to use any products that are too heavy because they might clog the pores. Be careful of products with:
- Coconut oil
- Vegetable oil
- Cocoa or shea butter
- Petroleum jelly
Keep in mind that some gentle oil cleansers can actually be good for your oily skin, but you don’t want to use any heavy products that will make your acne prone skin worse. When in doubt, look for water-based skin care products and skip anything that has alcohol in it.
Assess Your Diet
Another step you can take is to tweak your diet. Consume foods that may help slow down the production of oil, such as foods high in vitamin K. Try grapefruit or kale. You should also make sure you're eating plenty of omega-3’s such as tuna, salmon, and walnuts. Try to skip the alcohol as much as you can, as well as spicy food. Both can trigger sweating which only makes oily skin worse.
Assess Your Stress
When your body is stressed, cortisol increases. This can not only affect your health it can affect the health of your skin as well. Oil production increases can clog pore and as a result, you’ve got a bunch of breakouts and shine for days. Try ways to decompress, such as meditation, walks around the neighborhood, or other acts of self-care that help you relax.
Go Au Naturel
The truth is, if you have oily skin, there are certain products which could make your condition worse. The good news is that there are plenty that are designed for just such a one as you!
Look for lightweight makeup formulas that offer both hydration and coverage, and consider using a mineral powder instead of your usual liquid foundation. Mineral powder also helps to absorb extra oil and keep your face shine-free.
What is the Best Skincare Routine for Oily Skin?
Girl, Wash Your Face!
The best thing you can do for your skin is to commit to a daily oily skin care routine with the proper order of face products. It’s important to cleanse your face both in the morning and at night. Once a day will not suffice. Look for a gentle facial cleanser that won’t strip all of your natural oils away. It might sound counterintuitive, but there are some oil-based cleansers that can actually be helpful when you have oily skin.
By using a gentle cleanser that is oil based the oil in the cleanser binds to the sebum in your skin. This allows you to rinse both away, without removing all of the natural oils from your face. Try a gentle, cleansing oil, followed by a non-drying foam cleanser as a two-step process.
Try a Gentle Exfoliator
If you have visible pores, try gently exfoliating your face. Exfoliating can help to minimize the look of large pores and remove the build up of oil, toxins, and dirt. Just be careful that you don't go overboard. Gentle is the name of the game, don’t you any scrubs that are excessively rough or you will simply create inflammation.
Tone It Up
Once you’ve exfoliated, you can use a toner to help restore your skin’s pH balance and control the production of oil. Toners work to tighten your skin, making your pores look smaller and removing any remaining impurities that might be left on your skin’s surface.
Look for toners with natural ingredients that are soothing to the skin and that help calm inflammation. If you want a toner that offers some deeper cleaning, look for products that contain AHA's or BHA’s. You could even try an exfoliating toner and skip the last step! Just make sure that you don't use any formulas that will dry out your skin. The goal is to reduce oil but keep your face properly hydrated.
Don’t Forget to Moisturize
Speaking of hydration, don’t forget to moisturize your skin. Look for a moisturizer with SPF for your morning routine. While using a moisturizer is another one of those measures that may seem counterintuitive for oily skin, you actually need proper hydration to allow your skin to function optimally.
When your skin is doing its job properly, it doesn’t produce excess sebum. Moisturizers help to trick your skin if you will, into believing it has enough moisture and doesn't need to produce any more oil to help hydrate. Look for lightweight moisturizers that are formulated to help control oil and minimize pores.
Pamper Your Oily Skin
If you really want to give your face a treat that will help also control oil, try applying a charcoal or clay face mask. Charcoal is great for drawing out impurities like oil, dirt, and bacteria. The best part is that you get to pamper yourself a little. Self-care is a requirement for stress reduction and if you can reduce your stress, your face and skin will thank you!
Can Oily Skin Go Away On Its Own?
Oily skin is not likely to resolve on its own, especially if it’s genetic. If your skin is oily because of puberty you might grow out of it, but everyone has hormone fluctuations throughout their entire lives. Stress-induced skin issues may resolve with stress relief techniques and you can work to improve your daily habits, but most people can’t just do nothing and expect their oily skin to resolve on its own.
Other Ways to Help Minimize Oily Skin
Getting plenty of sleep every night is vital for your overall health and well-being, including the health of your skin. When you are tired and not sleeping well, usually the first place it becomes noticeable is in your face. Worse, a lack of sleep can trigger insulin resistance. This leads the body to creating the hormone IGF-1, which stimulates sebum production. Also, make sure you keep your bedding—especially pillows cases—clean so that you aren’t spreading bacteria around.
If you still find your face is constantly shiny, try using blotting sheets in between your facial routine, throughout your day. Don’t rub or wipe, just press gently against your skin and hold it in place for a few seconds to allow it to absorb the excess oil. This can help keep your shine to a minimum and works great as part of a daily oily skin care routine.