The Essentials a Skin Care Routine for Oily Skin

Jun 1, 2020
The Essentials a Skin Care Routine for Oily Skin

We believe that everyone should have a daily skin care routine (and nighttime skincare routine too!) - 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 to reveal bright, healthy skin!

What is Oily Skin?

Oily skin is really an overproduction of something called sebum that is produced by your sebaceous glands. 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 an oily skin type. 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
  • Stress
  • Enlarged or clogged 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 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. When excess sebum production occurs only in your T-zone, you have what 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 complexion or combination skin care routine to determine which is best for you.

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. 

1. Look at the Ingredients

The first things 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:

Some Ingredients to Avoid

  • 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.

Best Ingredients for Oily Skin

Everyone’s skin is different, but try to look for more natural ingredients to help unclog pores and prevent breakouts. Look for these ingredients in your skincare product cabinet:

  • Aloe vera
  • Rose Oil
  • Tea Tree Oil
  • Retinol
  • Hyaluronic acid (or HA)
  • Squalene

2. 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. 

3. 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 that could make your condition worse. The good news is that there are plenty that are designed just for 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. 

Step-by-Step Skin Care Routine for Oily Skin?

Step 1: 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 wash that won’t strip all of your natural oils away especially if you have sensitive skin. 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 foaming cleanser as a two-step process.

Step 2: 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, dirt dead skin cells. 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.

Step 3: Tone It Up

Once you’ve exfoliated, you can use a a href="">toner for oily skin 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 remove 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. 

Step 4: 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.  Opt for a lightweight moisturizer during the day to keep your face feeling fresh.

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.

Step 5: 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! 

Step 6: Protect Your Skin from the Sun!

Arguably the most important step to any morning skincare routine is to add a daily sunscreen. Sunscreen is an essential product for any skin type and especially for oily skin as the sun can dry out your skin and cause huge damage. We recommend using a mineral sunscreen to protect your skin barrier. Read more about mineral and chemical sunscreens here!

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 create 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. 

We aim to provide you with the most honest and credible information possible. This article was reviewed for accuracy by The Honest Team and was written based on trusted sources that are linked at the bottom of the article.