The phrase “oily skin” is loaded with tons of things we want to avoid: acne, shiny complexion, makeup that melts off our greasy t-zones. We all struggle with oily skin at one time or another, some of us more often than others. But did you know when it comes to preventing oily skin, most people go about it all wrong? The truth is oil is not our enemy—oil actually plays an important role in the healthy function of our skin and complexion.
The goal should not be to deprive your skin of all moisture, but rather to maintain a balanced, nourishing level of skin oils. In fact, by trying to keep your face oil free, you’re actually making it far more oily in the long run!
First, a little background…
Our faces are covered with glands, which secrete an oily substance called sebum. Sebum provides natural lubrication and protection for both our skin and hair. You see when healthy, our skin is slightly acidic and naturally oily, which provides among other things defense against blemish-causing bacteria. It’s when the sebaceous glands are producing an excess of sebum that oily skin becomes a problem, clogging our pores and causing both black and whiteheads.
When we want to treat oily skin, we all tend to think “cleanse, cleanse, cleanse. Avoid oils at all costs!” However, excessive or harsh cleansing strips our skin of the natural moisture it needs to stay balanced, causing irritation and dryness. Our bodies then compensate by overproducing more natural oils like sebum, leading to breakouts and excessively oily, shiny skin.
In other words, by trying to fight and prevent oily skin, you’re actually making your own skin wayyyy more oily! Did you know that drier, less oily skin ages far more quickly, too!? Constantly trying to dry out our skin ultimately leaves it in a state of stress, causing more wrinkles, fine lines, and slowing down our body’s ability to heal damage from acne, scars, sun exposure, and more.
As outlined above, stripping your skin of its natural oils and constantly avoiding products containing healthy oils almost always leads to more skin problems, extra oily skin included. So how can you safely use oils on your face while avoiding unnecessary breakouts? The answer: essential oils and oil cleansing.
When used correctly, a skincare routine with the correct essential oils and periodic oil cleansing can help you avoid overly oily skin and blemishes, not to mention wrinkles, sun damage, dry skin, and other noticeable signs of aging. We’ll show you exactly how to incorporate oil cleansing and essential oils into your skincare routine below:
If like us you’re constantly struggling with oily skin, it’s time to rethink your cleansing routine. We suggest swapping out your traditional soaps and scrubs, which tend to rob our skin of the moisture and natural oils it needs to remain balanced and healthy, for oil cleansing, a process that repurposes oil as a way to purify skin of excess bad oils, grime, bacteria, and more.
Cleansing with just the right amount of nourishing oils not only gets rid of excess sebum (which you’ll remember causes the bad kind of oily skin), but also helps unclog pores and wash away old makeup, dirt, and yucky germs.
HOW TO OIL CLEANSE
First you need to pick a carrier oil. Jojoba is our personal fav, as it’s both effective at cleansing and acts like the oils our skin naturally produces. It also has antibacterial properties that many believe help prevent acne and other skin blemishes. We also recommend grapeseed, hemp, pumpkinseed, avocado, and argan oil.
Start by mixing half a teaspoon of your chosen carrier oil with half a teaspoon castor oil and 3 drops of the anti-aging powerhouse, immortelle essential oil (aka Helichrysum italicum). Apply this oil mixture to your dry face using your fingertips. Massage it into your skin with small circular motions, applying firm but gentle pressure for about 60 seconds.
There are a couple ways to remove the oil after cleansing. You can gently wipe the oil away using warm water and a soft washcloth. Or, you can simply use a gentle cleanser. We suggest testing out both to see which is better for you and your skin type.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I OIL CLEANSE?
As with any new product or routine, listen to your skin and monitor it closely to see how it reacts to oil cleansing. To start, we suggest doing your oil cleansing routine at night roughly 2-3 times per week.
Realize your skin might take some time to adjust to oil cleansing, but don’t panic. This is normal. If after a couple weeks, your skin is still experiencing side effects like additional breakouts, irritation, redness or puffiness, adjust to a less frequent schedule, maybe only once or twice a week. If you’ve been rinsing with just water, try using a gentle facial cleanser to thoroughly remove the oil instead.
After each oil cleansing session, remember to spritz your face with the soothing Lavender Anti-Aging Toner, which targets the hidden dirt, oils, and makeup that cause common skin problems like acne, puffiness, and inflammation.
When you experience breakouts, do your very best to avoid picking at your skin. Popping blemishes tends to make things far worse, further inflaming your skin and pushing whatever bacteria, dirt, and oils are clogging your pores deeper down inside. And if that doesn’t scare you enough, permanent scarring and nasty infections are also common side effects of popping pimples.
Instead, treat your next breakout or blemish with this simple and super effective DIY spot treatment, which includes anti-aging immortelle essential oil:
- 2-3 drops immortelle oil (aka Helichrysum italicum)
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- ¼ teaspoon of a carrier oil, such as jojoba
Mix the ingredients into a paste and apply it to breakouts, blemishes, inflamed skin spots and blackheads. Then, let it sit on your skin for about 15 minutes before rinsing it off.
Turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory and will help reduce any puffiness caused by blemishes or acne. The immortelle essential oil will also help reduce inflammation, redness, and help restore your skin to its non-irritated, balanced state.