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Oily facial skin is characterised by a highly shiny skin, large open pores and being prone to breakouts of pimples and blackheads. Like any skin type, taking proper care of your oily skin results in improved skin and associated health benefits and generally makes you feel more confident. Here are our top tips if you have oily skin:

(1) Understand why your skin is oily

Oily skin is usually as a result of excessive production of sebum (an oily substance that is naturally produced by skin) which leads to

  • clogging of skin pores,
  • accumulation of dead cells and
  • formation of pimples/acne.

There are various degrees of oily skin, from very mild to extreme, so take the time to understand how oily your skin is.

Once you understand your skin and what causes it to be oily it will be much easier to choose the right skin care routine and products to improve it.

(2) Avoid the temptation to pop those pimples!

Squeezing spots/pimples will NEVER improve things. Instead you’ll just be

  • irritating your skin
  • spreading infection around your face and
  • causing more pimples.

Even worse popped pimples can leave craters and scars on your face.

(3) Use the right products

The basic aim of oily skin care is to remove excessive oil (sebum) from your skin. However, oily skin care routines shouldn’t mean that you completely remove all of the oil because all you will also remove the essential nutrients and moisture which your skin needs to look and feel at its best. You can also end up producing even more oil which, of course, is the opposite of what you want to achieve.

Take the time to choose products carefully, read their labels and understand what they are made from and whether they will suit your skin. You need to use products which

  • are oil free
  • are gentle and will not irritate your skin
  • will not clog pores (look for non-comedogenic or non-acnegenic on the label). These will breakdown excess oils without actually stripping essential nutrients and moisture which your skin needs to look and feel at its best.

Not so oily?

If your skin is not too oily then you may be better off starting with products which are suitable for all skin types rather than automatically choosing those which are for more oily skin

Excessive oil?

If you have excessively oily skin and really can’t find products to suit you, then consult a good dermatologist for advice because they can prescribe stronger oily skin care products like vitamin A creams, retinoids, and sulphur creams.

(4) Step by Step

Once you’ve chosen the right products your skin care should consist of

  • cleansers such as salicylic acid, which is oil-soluble, anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, and helps to exfoliate to slow down the rate of sebum production. As a bonus, it also helps promote collagen production
  • alcohol based toner for an extremely oily skin (take care though, excessive toning can harm your skin)
  • mild moisturiser – look for oil-free, wax-free and lipid-free.

Also consider using a clay mask (but only once a week).

(5) Don’t cleanse/wash your face too often

Even if you use gentle products you shouldn’t cleanse/wash your face too often to avoid stripping your skin of the essential nutrients and moisture which it needs.

Aim for cleansing at least twice a day and by all means cleanse/wash your face after exercise or when you’ve been sweating, but aim for no more than 4 cleanses/washes a day.

Finally, remember that oily skin tends to be less prone to signs of premature aging and wrinkles so enjoy the knowledge that the benefits are yet to come.