Best Oils for Your Skin
Oil has been used for hundreds of years in Europe, Asia and other far-away places to condition, clean and protect the face. Only recently have North Americans embraced the benefits of cleansing, conditioning and nourishing the skin with face oil.
In a recent survey, only 17% of people have used an oil-based product for skincare – the good news is that 83% of those surveyed said they would try it.
That’s good news for manufacturers of oil-based skincare – a burgeoning trend that you might like to try – as intimidating as it may sound to some.
As with most products – select an oil-based product to suit your skin type. Here are some basic guidelines for your skin type:
Dry Skin with Fine Lines and Wrinkles
As you might expect, look for oils that are infused with anti-aging ingredients like Vitamin A or antioxidants to fight free radicals. Start by swapping your night-time moisturizer with an anti-oxidant rich oil product. Apply after cleansing and right before bed. Then graduate to using your new oil-based product during the day time. Allow it to soak into the skin for 10 minutes before applying sunscreen.
Uneven Skin Tone or Dark Spots
The key to this pick is to ensure that your oil-based product is a citrus-based product. These contain natural skin-brightening Vitamin C. Take care to avoid overuse of oils containing chinnamon, peppermint or clove oils – these do help even out the skin tone, but they can be irritating to the skin, causing hyperpigmentation – which is exactly what you are trying to avoid. If you have some sensitivity, look for a product that contains soothing chamomile and essential fatty acids to counteract the citric acid. If you do not have very dry skin, a brightening oil can replace your daily moisturizer. If your skin tends to be a little dry, simply add a few drops of the oil to your moisturizer for a more conservative approach.
Oils for sensitive skin are infused with ingredients like chamomile, rose, lavender and sandalwood to calm the skin. Look for oils that contain essential fatty acids, like a chia seed oil which are more suitable for sensitive skin. Avoid castor oil which might stimulate redness and irritation. Apply morning and night after applying your moisturizer to seal in the hydrating effects of the moisturizer. Avoid treating red or irritated areas with oil.
The old standby – tea tree oil – is a great choice for its antibacterial qualities. Argan oil is an ideal lightweight oil for oily or acne-prone skin and Squalene oil (derived from olives) can work to calm overactive oil glands. Avoid heavy oils like avocado oil which can clog the pores and exacerbate acne breakouts.
It seems paradoxical to use an oil to clean oily skin. However, oil attracts oil. So if you apply the rule that one substance can dissolve or break down substances similar to it, then your oil-based cleanser will dissolve the oils in your skin and prevent more oil from being produced.