Between large pores and unwanted pimples, there’s no doubt that oily skin can be difficult to control. And as oil production is tied to natural hormonal changes in the body, the amount of oil produced is primarily out of our hands. While we cannot stop the production of oil, there are some tweaks to our daily skin care routine for oily skin that can make it easier to manage. Read on for some tips on how to make your oily skin feel clearer and more in balance.
Skin care routine for oily skin:
Step 1. Wash often, blot often
This step is obvious, but it’s worth repeating: cleansing the skin is a vital first step for oily skin types. Wash your face 2-3 times today, depending on how much sweat you have, to clear up the oily buildup and keep your pores dirt-free. Look for a gentle cleanser free of sulfates and other harsh ingredients that can dry out your skin and cause it to produce more oil to compensate for the dryness. Cleansers that contain benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, glycolic acid, or beta hydroxy acid can help with clearing up acne and blackheads. If you aren’t able to use your face cleanser during the day, then be sure to keep some blotting sheets at hand. Merely absorbing some of the oil throughout the day will really help keep the shine down.
Light moisture are the magic words
While your first thought might be to avoid any moisturizer or oil in the market if you have oily skin, it is vital for your skin to stay moisturized; in reality, a lack of moisture can spur oil production in the skin, thereby worsening the problem. The essential solution here is to look for lightweight, water-based moisturizers that are oil-free and non-comedogenic (meaning they won’t clog pores). Skin care experts advise looking for formulas with glycerin and sodium hyaluronate, a water-based hydrating ingredient that keeps skin cells plump with water.
Step 2. Avoid the T-zone
The T-zone (the area from the forehead down the nose to the chin) has more sebaceous glands (glands that produce oil) than other areas of the face, meaning that it can be particularly problematic for people with oily skin. To prevent breakouts and blackheads around this area, you’d better avoid it altogether when applying serums and liquid-based foundations. If you are still in need of a foundation, try using a powder formula on this area instead.
Stay away from drying and clogging ingredients
People with oily skin want to prevent two things from happening: creating more oil production and trapping oil against the skin. Sulfates, especially sodium or ammonium lauryl sulfate, and alcohols dehydrate the skin. It is important to look for sulfate and alcohol-free products to include in your skin care routine for oily skin. Mineral oil and petrolatum work towards sealing the skin, which can have a pore-clogging effect you’ll want to avoid as well.
Step 3. Exfoliation is your friend
Exfoliation is a significant part of the skin care routine for oily skin. It is especially beneficial to those with oily skin who have an extra thick layer of buildup and dead skin cells. Exfoliating sloughs off those dead skin cells, helping to clear pores and preventing pimples from occurring. Exfoliate up to three times a week, depending on how your skin feels. You want to be careful not to exfoliate too much as it can be damaging to your skin. Try an exfoliator containing salicylic acid (BHA). This ingredient penetrates deep inside the pore lining, helping to clear up blemishes.
….And don’t forget to wear sunscreen
The sun is extremely drying and damaging to the skin. For people with oily skin, the drying effects may seem pleasant at first as they can help reduce the shiny look. However, this drying effect will only lead to more problems in the long-term; extended sun exposure can also increase the risk of skin cancer. Keep your skin safe and pimple-free by applying a lightweight, non-greasy sunscreen or a powder sunscreen. Mineral powder sunscreens have come a long way since their original versions. These non-greasy powder formulas are made up of titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, and iron oxide particles that won’t clog pores while they block UV rays and offer broad-spectrum protection.