How to Get Rid of Oily Skin With Home Remedies

Is your face always shiny like you just got out of the gym? Do you have problems with large pores and breakouts? If your answer to these questions is Yes, then you probably know how frustrating it can be to deal with oily skin.

November 4, 2021 8 minutes read
Woman with healthy skin

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Struggling with oily skin can feel like a never-ending battle, where each day brings a shiny T-zone, persistent breakouts, and the endless search for blotting papers. If you're nodding along, knowing all too well this slippery struggle, then you're in the right place. Welcome to our guide on How to Get Rid of Oily Skin With Home Remedies, where we turn to the wisdom of natural solutions to tackle this greasy dilemma.

So, no reason to despair! There's nothing that can't be fixed with a little bit of persistence and effort, and, of course, nature's best. But, before we do that, let's find out what causes oily skin in the first place and debunk common myths and misconceptions about oil-prone skin.

What Causes Oily Skin

While it may not look so attractive, having oily skin comes with a few perks as well. People with natural shine usually have a bit thicker skin, resulting in fewer fine lines and wrinkles. However, these perks come at a price. People with oily skin on the face struggle with acne, larger pores, super shiny face, and makeup that melts away just after a few hours.

Extra shiny skin is a result of excess sebum. Sebum is a waxy and fatty substance produced by our sebaceous glands. These glands are located just under our skin surface. It's a natural oil that coats our skin, moisturizing it, and protecting it from outside influences.

Sebaceous glands usually cluster in specific areas of our face, such as around the nose, forehead, chin, and mid-cheeks – the infamous T-zone. The problem is, however, the overproduction of sebum, leaving the skin oily with large and clogged pores, acne, and blackheads.

Several factors can cause this problem – internal factors such as improper diet, hormonal imbalances, genetics, stress, other health disorders, and external factors such as wrong skincare routine.

Myths About Oily Skin

According to dermatologists, people are massively misinformed when it comes to oily skin causes and treatments. There's too much confusion as you can find numerous overhyped myths about oily skin.

The info you can find all over the Web is often contradicting – Do this..., Don't do that... – and you can end up doing everything or nothing at all.

To make it easier for you and try to clear the confusion, we found some of the most common myths that circle the Internet:

Myth #1: My skin is already oily, so I don't need a moisturizer.

Fact: This is so far off the mark. In fact, skipping moisturizer can only make your skin oilier. If you don't moisturize, your sebaceous glands will go into over-ride and produce even more oil to protect the skin's barrier. Instead of skipping it, consider using lightweight and water-based moisturizers.

Myth #2: I just need to cleanse several times a day.

Fact: Another dangerous misconception. Similar to skipping moisturizer, over-cleansing can send a signal to the sebaceous glands to produce more oil. While it may feel nice, obsessive cleansing can create even more problems over time.

Myth #3: Sunscreens make me shine even more.

Fact: Sunscreens are a necessary step in any skincare regimen. They can prevent premature aging, but more importantly, they prevent skin cancer. It won't exacerbate your problem... On the contrary. While some sunscreens can be heavy indeed, there are also plenty of options made specifically for oily and acne-prone skin.

Myth #4: It doesn't matter what I eat; it has nothing to do with my skin.

Fact: Food and lifestyle play a significant role in your skin's health and look. It's well established that beauty starts from within, and your skin will reflect your overall health. A balanced diet will provide all the essential vitamins and nutrients, while exercising and proper sleep help manage stress – one of the main culprits and triggers for oily skin.

We admit – managing oily skin can be pretty challenging, but the news is not all that bad. There are ways to treat oily skin that don't include prescription drugs or expensive med spa visits.

Home Remedies For Oily Skin

Here are 11 home remedies that are affordable, simple, and effective, and that you can try from the comfort of your home. All of these ingredients are gentle and nurturing to the skin, and will help you get the much-desired shine-free and clear complexion.

Honey and Oatmeal

honey and oatmeal

Both honey and oatmeal are antibacterial agents and can be especially beneficial for acne-prone skin because they help calm skin inflammation. While honey acts as a natural humectant, oatmeal absorbs excess oils and moisturizes the skin [source]. Together, they can do wonders and are incredibly effective.

Use finely ground oatmeal mixed with honey, and apply a thin layer on your face. Let it dry for about 15 minutes, then rinse with lukewarm water.

Aloe Vera

aloe vera leaves

The benefits of Aloe Vera are amazingly versatile. It's saturated with many vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and acids, particularly beneficial for oily skin prone to acne. It nurtures and cleanses the skin, leaving a smooth and healthy complexion [source].

You can extract the gel out of the Aloe Vera plant yourself. The best way would be to cut the outer leaves as they are the thickest. Use a knife or scissors, and cut the leaf at its stem. After washing it, cut it in half and scoop the gel out with a spoon. Apply a thin layer of the gel on your face and leave it for an hour. Immediately, you will feel refreshed.

Lemon and Egg Whites

lemon slices

Another great DIY face mask that absorbs oils and tightens the pores. The lemon acid gets rid of excess oils, while nutrient and protein-rich egg whites boost your skin's hydration [source].

The preparation of this face mask is quick and easy. Mix one teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice and one egg white. Leave it on the skin until it dries. Then, rinse it and pat dry.

Jojoba Oil

jojoba oil

Believe it or not, you can actually use oil on oily skin. While it may sound counterproductive, it really works. By applying oil on your face, the sebaceous glands get the signal that there's already enough oil on your skin, so they rest, keeping the oil levels balanced.

Jojoba oil is lightweight and full of vitamins and minerals. It also has anti-inflammatory properties, making it ideal for oily, acne-prone skin [source].

You can make a face mask using clay and jojoba oil and apply it a couple of times a week. It will heal mild acne and skin lesions. The oil is also an excellent choice for a face massage. But, remember that a little goes a long way. All you need is a few drops, warm them up with your fingers, and apply them gently to your face.

Apple Cider Vinegar

apple cider vinegar and apples

Although it might seem harsh to put vinegar on your face, organic apple cider vinegar is surprisingly beneficial for the skin. Apple cider vinegar contains alpha-hydroxy acids that act as a mild exfoliant removing the sebum plugs and cleaning the pores [source].

We would recommend diluting the vinegar with water first. To start with, make a 3:1 ratio, 3 being the water. Apply it to your face with a cotton pad and leave it on for about 10 minutes (avoid it if you have extremely sensitive skin). Then rinse of with lukewarm water and apply your moisturizer.


cucumbers and cucumber slices

Besides being a great salad ingredient, cucumbers can also greatly compliment your skincare routine [source]. There are many variations of the cooling cucumber mask, rich in antioxidants and minerals beneficial for the skin. Besides protecting the skin from free radicals, it also nurtures the skin cells, making the skin fresh and glowy.

You can use slices of cucumber on their own, or combine them with other ingredients. There really are no rules; you are free to use whatever your skin likes. Here's one DIY face mask idea:

You will need half a cucumber, one tablespoon of Greek yogurt, one teaspoon of Aloe Vera gel, one teaspoon of honey, and a dash of lemon juice. Blend it all together, and apply on moist skin. Leave it on for half an hour. The results will be visible at that very moment.

Green Tea

green tea, tea bag, and tea pot

You probably know that having a cup of green tea (or Matcha green tea) now and again is good due to its antioxidant properties [source]. But you can also use green tea to make face toners, cleansers, and masks, or simply add it to your existing skincare products. It will clean your skin by removing the oils, leaving your complexion brighter and clearer.

Bring about 120 ml of water to boil, which is approximately one cup, and then dip a green tea bag in it. If you have green tea leaves, you can add about 1 tsp. Let it boil a minute or two, and after cooling it down, pour your DIY toner in a glass bottle and keep it in a fridge. After cleansing your face, dab your green tea toner with a cotton pad. It will probably be good to use for about a weak.

Cosmetic Clay

cosmetic clay

Also known as healing clays, these are a very popular treatment for oily skin. They are highly absorbent and rich in good minerals that nurture the skin. They are very efficient and much gentler than peel-off masks.

You can DIY a spa-worthy clay mask with just a teaspoon of clay powder mixed in filtered or rose water. Once you get the desired consistency, apply it on your face, and leave it until it dries. Remove it with lukewarm water and pat your face dry.

Blotting Papers

woman using a blotting paper on her face

These small and thin papers are a quick and easy fix while at work or throughout the day when you can't do the full-on cleanse but need to collect excess oil from your face.

It's always a good idea to have a pack of blotting papers in your purse in case you need an instant fix, getting rid of excess shine. Trust, in some cases, they are a life-saver!

Daily Skincare Routine for Getting the Oil Under Control

young woman in bathrobe getting ready for her skincare routine

Oily skin requires special care. All the masks and toners of this world won't help if you don't master some basic steps in your daily skincare routine. As promised, we will share a simple five-step everyday routine for mornings and evenings that is essential in oily skin treatment:

Step #1: Cleanse

Whether you have normal, dry, or oily skin, this is the step you shouldn't jump over. Clean skin is the basis for a healthy complexion. It would be best to cleanse it every evening before going to bed and every morning after getting up.

Again, it's important to note that you shouldn't use harsh soaps and detergents because stripping your skin of all the oils will just make your sebaceous glands go out of control.

Step #2: Tone

After you've cleansed your face of all the oily residue and makeup, it's time to tone your skin, using different toners that contain hydrating, soothing and cleansing ingredients, such as hyaluronic acid, aloe vera, and green tea. You may benefits from toners that contain exfoliating acid as well, such as AHAs (glycolic acid or lactic acid) or BHAs (salicylic acid). Exfoliating is pretty important skincare step for oily skin, getting rid of dead skin cells and unclogging pores.

If you prefer to have exfoliating and toning as separate steps in your routine, then you should use your exfoliator before your toner. Also, you shouldn't exfoliate more than once or twice a week.

Step #3: Treat

If you are fighting with all the oily skin challenges, it's highly likely that you will need some additional treatment for oily skin. You can target acne or treat the whole face with different masks and serums.

Here, you can make use of the clay mask, as well as honey and oatmeal or cucumber masks. For targeting acne, you can use tea tree oil.

Step #4: Moisturize

Maybe, you think since your skin is already oily, it doesn't need any extra moisture. But, as we already established – this is a huge misconception! Just as every skin type needs a cleanse, a.m. and p.m. moisturizing cream is another essential skincare step.

Sometimes, instead of a moisturizer, you can apply jojoba oil, rosehip oil, or Argan oil. These oils are lightweight and absorb quickly, and they won't feel greasy or heavy.

Plus, in the A.M. – Step #5: Protect

Use sunscreen every day. While it might be challenging to find the right sunscreen for your skin type, don't get discouraged. Once you find it, you won't be able to imagine your skincare routine without it.

Some Parting Words of Advice...

If you want to get rid of that extra shine and large pores, proper hygiene and a skincare routine are essential. Nevertheless, if your oily skin is still refusing to be managed and you're battling with breakouts frequently, our advice would be to visit a dermatologist.

Suppose the cause of the problem is some of those internal factors we mentioned in the beginning. In that case, you might have to resort to prescribed medication and cosmetics.


How do you get rid of oily skin naturally?

You can DIY a face mask using a number of ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen, such as lemons, cucumbers, aloe vera, honey, oatmeal, apple cider vinegar, green tea, and clay masks. A proper skincare routine is also important - cleanse your face twice a day, and don't skin your moisturizer and sunscreen.

Which natural ingredient is best for oily skin?

The best natural ingredients for oily skin are aloe vera gel, cucumbers, oatmeal, honey, lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, jojoba oil, green tea, egg whites, and cosmetic clay.

Can oily skin be cured?

Oily skin can't be cured, but it can be managed. Pay attention to the skincare products you're using, and choose those that are formulated specifically for acne-prone and oily skin.

Does drinking water help oily skin?

Staying hydrated is essential for the health of your skin and drinking enough water can help your skin balance oil production, helping with excess shine and acne.

What ingredients are bad for oily skin?

Ingredients that are likely to clog pores are the ones to steer clear of. Coconut oil, for example, is one of those comedogenic ingredients. While those with dry skin may enjoy all the benefits of coconut oil, those with oily skin may find it too heavy, clogging your pores and causing breakouts.

What are the reasons for oily skin?

When your sebaceous glands produce too much sebum (natural oil), your pores will easily get clogged, leading to acne, blackheads, and a constantly shiny complexion. The reasons for this are varied and can be related to your diet, hormones, or genetics.

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