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If applying an oil to your face conjures a face-dripping-with-oil image, we totally understand – it does sound scary if your skin is already oily. But not all facial oils are the same. And while the majority is great for dry skin, there are other nourishing face oils that are super-beneficial for oily skin type as well.
In today's article, we'll share the top 5 benefits of using facial oils, which ones could work best for your skin type, and how to use them in your skincare routine.
Benefits of Using Facial Oils
As the name suggests, facial oils are typically plant-based (botanical) oils as well as essential oils specifically formulated to be used on the face. They are filled with fatty acids, antioxidants, and plant extracts that provide a feeling of softer and well-nourished skin.
In addition, they maintain the barrier function and thus protect the skin from moisture loss and external influences—the perfect choice if you need an extra dose of care.
So, here's a list of some potential benefits of incorporating facial oils into your skincare routine:
Many facial oils are rich in fatty acids and other nourishing ingredients that keep your skin hydrated and moisturized. Incorporating a facial oil into your routine might just be what your dry skin needs, especially during harsh winters, when cold winds and dry air squeeze the last bit of moisture out of your skin.
Facial oils create a barrier on top of your skin, shielding it from the elements and preventing the water from escaping it. They also support and heal the skin's natural barrier, keeping it plump and soft.
Some facial oils, such as argan oil and rosehip oil, are high in antioxidants, which can protect the skin from damage caused by free radicals and may help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Even if you don't have any wrinkles yet, you can still greatly benefit from using facial oil because it can delay skin aging and improve your skin's overall texture.
Facial oils can balance the natural oil production of your skin, which can be particularly helpful for people with oily or combination skin. To achieve precisely these results with your facial oil, it would be best to go for those that mimic the oil your skin naturally produces, the so-called sebum. Facial oils similar to sebum are jojoba oil and squalane oil, for example.
These oils will send the signal to your skin that there's already enough oil on your face and won't trigger it to produce more. Over time, your skin will learn how much oil (or sebum) it needs.
Some facial oils, such as chamomile oil and almond oil, have soothing properties, which can be helpful for people with sensitive or irritated skin.
So, suppose you're using skincare with irritating ingredients, such as tretinoin, AHAs, or benzoyl peroxide. In that case, you'll find facial oil's soothing and anti-inflammatory properties pretty handy. In addition, if your skin is prone to irritation and redness due to some skin conditions, like rosacea and psoriasis, using a calming facial oil can be of tremendous help.
The best part about facial oils is that they can be used in a variety of ways. So, once you find the perfect face oil for your skin type and needs, you can use it as a moisturizer, makeup primer, and oil cleanser. This makes them a few-in-1 product, an excellent budget-friendly option.
It's essential to keep in mind that not all facial oils are created equal, and some may be more suitable for specific skin types or concerns than others. So here's a rundown of the best facial oils for different skin types:
Best Facial Oils for Dry Skin
Facial oils are certainly a great option for those with dry, flakey skin as they add moisture and nourishment to the skin. Here are a few facial oils that may be particularly beneficial for those with dry skin:
- Argan oil is rich in fatty acids and vitamin E, all the goodness your dry skin craves. Plus, it has additional antioxidant properties as it protects the skin from environmental damage and prevents premature aging.
- Avocado oil is chock-full of moisturizing agents, such as omega-3 fatty acids as well as vitamins E and D, repairing the skin's natural barrier and keeping it hydrated. It can also improve skin elasticity.
- Coconut oil is another essential fatty acids-rich oil, keeping the skin barrier strong and preventing water loss. It also has natural antibacterial properties, making it a good option for those with dry, sensitive skin.
Best Facial Oils for Oily Skin
If you have oily skin, you may be hesitant to use facial oils, as you may be worried that they will make your skin even oilier. However, certain facial oils can actually be beneficial for oily skin, as they can help balance the skin's natural oil production and keep your skin hydrated without feeling greasy.
Here are some facial oils that may be suitable for oily skin:
- Jojoba oil is similar in structure to the natural oils produced by your skin, which means it can be easily absorbed and won't leave a greasy residue. Jojoba oil is also non-comedogenic, making it less likely to clog pores.
- Squalane oil is similar to jojoba oil, as it also mimics the natural oils of your skin, moisturizing it without making it greasy.
- Grapeseed oil is another oil that's lightweight and won't overwhelm your oily skin. Plus, it's also high in antioxidants, which can help protect the skin from damage caused by free radicals.
- Tea tree oil is known for its acne-fighting properties, and it's also non-greasy and easily absorbed by the skin. However, it's best used for spot-treating acne instead of applying it to your whole face.
Best (Anti-Aging) Facial Oils for Mature Skin
Facial oils can be an excellent option for those with mature skin who want to get rid of signs of skin aging, like fine lines, wrinkles, and sagging. Here are a few facial oils you should go for if you have mature, aging skin:
- Rosehip oil is high in essential fatty acids and vitamin C, which can improve skin texture and reduce fine lines and wrinkles.
- Apricot kernel oil is a lightweight carrier oil that's also sometimes used in aromatherapy. It's rich in vitamins C and E, a potent duo that fights wrinkles, fine lines, and loss of elasticity.
- Marula oil is filled with amino acids, like glutaminic acid and l-arginine, and is an excellent anti-aging ingredient as it nourishes, hydrates, and protects the skin.
- Geranium oil is an essential oil that helps stimulate collagen production in the skin, keeping the skin looking firm and youthful. It also tightens and tones the skin, which can help with fine lines and wrinkles.
How to Use Facial Oils
As we already mentioned, facial oil is your friend if you're doing skincare on a budget, as it's quite a versatile product. Here are a few different ways you can use facial oil in your skincare routine:
As a Moisturizer:
You can use facial oil in place of your regular moisturizer, or you can mix a few drops of oil into your moisturizer for extra nourishment. Just make sure to use it as a last step in your skincare routine because oils won't let other water-based skincare products penetrate it.
As a Facial Mask:
Simply, mix a few drops of facial oil into your favorite facial mask. This would be especially useful if you're using a face mask that tends to dry out the skin, like charcoal masks or clay masks.
As an Oil-Based Cleanser:
Your facial oil can serve as an effective first cleansing step when you need a double cleanse. First, massage the oil into your face to dissolve all the makeup and dirt, and remove the residue with a wet washcloth. Then follow up with your regular cleanser.
As a Facial Massage Oil:
You can use facial oil as a massage oil to help stimulate blood flow and promote relaxation. Massage your face using gentle circular motions to work the oil into your skin, starting from the center of your face and working your way outwards. After applying the oil, give it a few minutes to absorb into your skin before applying any other skincare products or makeup.
As a Makeup Primer:
Rub the oil between your hands to warm it up, then gently massage it into your cleansed skin. Be sure to apply the oil evenly across your face, paying particular attention to any dry or rough areas. Allow the oil to absorb into your skin for a few minutes before applying your makeup. This will give the oil time to fully penetrate your skin and create a smooth, hydrated base for your makeup.
As a Spot Treatment:
You can apply a small amount of facial oil to dry or dehydrated areas of your skin as an overnight spot treatment, like the area around your eyes. Or, you can use it to spot treat blemishes and pimples.
As you can see, your skin can greatly benefit from using facial oils. So choose the right oil for your skin needs, and incorporate it into your skincare routine – and soon enough, you'll enjoy smooth, soft, and supple skin.
However, it's essential to remember that everyone's skin is different, so it may take some trial and error to find the facial oil that works best for you. It's also a good idea to do a patch test on a small skin area before using a new product to ensure it doesn't cause any irritation.
What are the benefits of using face oils?
Facial oils have many skin benefits, such as repairing and strengthening the skin's natural moisture barrier, preventing aging, and keeping the skin hydrated. Plus, they can be used in a variety of ways, like as a makeup primer, moisturizer, or oil-based cleanser.
Should facial oils be used every day?
You can use your facial oil every day, especially if you have dry skin. On the other hand, if your skin is oily, you may benefit from using facial oil less frequently or only in the evenings.
Is face oil better than moisturizer?
While face oil can sometimes be used instead of a moisturizer, but we wouldn't say it's always better. Face oil is best when combined with a moisturizer, especially during winter when you need that extra nourishment and hydration.
How long should I leave oils on my face?
You can leave facial oil on your face as long as you want. For example, leave it overnight if you're using it as a part of your nighttime skincare routine. If you're using it as a makeup primer, give your skin a few minutes to absorb it before applying your foundation.
Which is better, face oil or serum?
Facial oils and serums are two completely different skincare products that serve different purposes. Facial serums target specific skin issues, like skin aging or hyperpigmentation, and are best applied after cleansing and toning. In comparison, facial oils lock in moisture and are best used last in your skincare routine.