If your skin is often shiny in complexion, there’s a good chance it's producing an excess of natural oils. Natural oil isn’t bad but, like all good things, too much of it is always going to end up being a problem.
Luckily, there’s a wealth of information out there on how to properly manage oily skin. From the right powder foundation to the best home remedies, we’ve gone through as many sources of information as we could find to bring you all the insight you need.
Beginning with an explanation of why oily skin is such a common issue, read on to find out the best ways to manage oily skin, the ideal types of products to look out for, and beneficial treatments that will lead to a more balanced skin complexion.
Why is oily skin so common?
First and foremost, it’s important to reiterate that the oil your skin produces is a perfectly natural substance. This oil is known as ‘sebum’, due to it being produced by the sebaceous glands found under each and every pore in your skin.
We need sebum to maintain a healthy complexion. It’s a critical component of your skin’s composition, and without it, skin becomes dry and dull. However, excess production of sebum can lead to clogged pores, acne, and a somewhat greasy look.
Blemishes and acne flare-ups are often associated with youth, but that’s only because sebum production declines with age. Combine this insight with the fact that oily skin can be caused by a whole host of reasons, and it’s easy to see why shiny skin is such a common issue.
What causes oily skin?
According to the vast majority of medical experts, oily skin can be caused by a wide variety of unrelated factors, such as genetics, climate, and skincare routines. There’s not much we can do about genetics or age, but it’s quite easy to figure out if you’re using the wrong skincare products or a routine that’s too aggressive.
Do you have composition skin or oily skin? Many people with oily skin assume that they have combination skin, which leads to the use of products like heavy cream, for example. Take time to learn specific differences between dry skin, oily skin, and combination skin; or consult a dermatologist for a professional opinion.
Besides using the wrong products, washing your face too often is another way to give yourself oily skin. Frequent face washing deprives your skin of sebum, which makes your sebaceous glands go into overdrive.
On the bright side, there are a few things you can do to counter the worst effects of oily skin. Along with the correct frequency for face washing, here are five aspects of skincare that should be integrated into your routine as soon as possible.
Wash regularly, but not too much
Wash your face in the morning, in the evening, and after exercise. Try not to scrub your skin; oily skin tends to be sensitive, and scrubbing can irritate the surface and trigger sebum production.
Use a gentle foaming wash that’s both non-allergenic and non-irritating. Gels or bar soaps tend to be better than cream-based washes but when in doubt, look for “oil-free” and “non-comedogenic” labels.
Dead skin can trap sebum in your pores, leading to acne flare-ups and other blemishes on the skin. In order to prevent a build-up of dead skin, use a light exfoliator every couple of days.
Ideally, you want to exfoliate twice or thrice a week. Use gentle sweeping motions to clean your skin and finish off with your morning/evening face wash. Keep in mind that exfoliating can easily irritate sensitive skin.
Contrary to popular belief, not all moisturizers make oily skin worse. In fact, it’s imperative that you apply moisturizer after cleansing (or exfoliation) to prevent your skin from becoming too dry.
Use moisturizer once a day for the best results. Find a non-comedogenic one with a thin consistency that doesn’t clog your pores. For maximum efficiency, look for a product that comes with broad-spectrum sunscreen.
Avoid oil-based or alcohol-based products
By now you’ve probably noticed that it’s generally a good idea to stay away from oil and alcohol. Using products with cocoa butter, coconut oil, or petroleum jelly will make oily skin worse, so you need oil-fighting products in your skincare regiment.
Products with green tea, vitamin B3, and amino acids like L-carnitine can manage oily skin well. Clay facial masks are also great for oily skin, as they extract excess sebum extremely efficiently.
Don’t touch your face
We know how hard it can be, but it’s essential that you keep your fingers away from your face throughout the day. Touching your face spreads bacteria and dirt over the surface, which traps sebum and increases the likelihood of acne problems.
If oily skin is causing you to want to itch and scratch, blotting paper works well as a preventative measure against sebum build-up.
If you’ve read through and applied all of our tips, yet you’re still struggling to manage, the best solution is to seek the advice of your private physician or find a dermatologist in your area.