Our skin can become more or less oily through different stages of our lives, and sometimes only in certain areas of the face. For example, many people have an oily T–zone (across the forehead and down the center of the face, nose and chin), but have dry cheeks. Also, those with oily skin can still get dehydrated and lack water in the skin. This is why it is so important to use the right products on oily skin– balance is a key!
Step-by-Step Routine for Oily Skin
Often people with oily skin like to cleanse with harsh foaming products as it leaves them feeling squeaky clean, but this can easily strip all the skin’s natural oils, resulting in the skin overcompensating by producing even more oil (Pssst! That’s not what you want!). It’s important to use gentle cleansers that don’t strip your skin but promote balance.
Exfoliation is one of the most important skincare steps for oily skin. Oily skin tends to have an extra-thick layer of built-up dead skin cells on the surface of the skin, along with a thickened pore lining. Exfoliating is the best way to remove that build up, reduce clogged pores and white bumps, while making skin feel smoother.
The best exfoliating ingredient for oily skin is salicylic acid (BHA). Salicylic acid exfoliates not only the surface of your skin but also inside the pore lining, thus improving pore function and allowing oil to flow easily to the surface so it doesn’t get backed up and plug the pores. In addition, over time, regular use of a BHA exfoliant will help fade the red marks from past blemishes.
An alcohol-free toner loaded with antioxidants and cell-communicating ingredients is an important step for oily skin. Toners that contain these ingredients help skin heal, minimize large pores by reducing inflammation, and remove the last traces of dead skin cells or makeup that can lead to clogged pores.
People with oily skin usually don’t think about the possibility of their skin being dehydrated, but it can and does happen! People may feel they don’t need a moisturizer if their skin is generally oily, but this isn’t always correct. Avoid rich, oily moisturizers and try to use an oil-free moisturizer that is packed with hyaluronic acid to keep skin hydrated (H20) but not oily.