January 16, 2020
When facial oils first came on the market, there was a collective gasp from beauty lovers everywhere. Oil? ON YOUR FACE? It was counterintuitive to everything we thought we knew about beauty (namely, that you don’t want oily skin) and struck fear into the pores of women everywhere, scared they would become clogged and result in unforeseen breakouts. A few years on and that fear has subsided. The facial oil market has exploded, and we have not, in fact, seen a pimple epidemic. But that hasn’t made them any less confusing. Here’s everything you need to know about facial oils, and why you need to have them in your life.
They’re not the reason for oily skin - An oily skin type is largely due to genetics… not what you put on your skin. One of the most common mistakes of people with oily skin is to use stripping, astringent products because they want that “squeaky clean” feel. But here’s the thing: stripping skin of its natural oils only makes it go into overdrive, working harder to put that much-needed sebum back into the skin (which we need to protect us from environmental factors). In fact, some (like jojoba) can actually help regulate the sebum for you.
Not all face oils were created equal - And we’re not just talking about reputable brands vs the $2 shop variety either (which of course should be a given). Just because something is an oil, doesn’t mean that it’s good for your skin. This comes down to the molecular weight of the oils and how it will be absorbed by the skin. Mineral oils, olive oil, and even coconut oils are actually not great for the face because they’re all comedogenic – which means they’ll clog pores. Whereas other oils, like jojoba, have similar properties to your skin’s own sebum, meaning it’s fast to absorb and can get down to the deeper layers of the skin. As with all skin care you need to choose the one that’s best for your specific skin type, and no, you can’t just use your body oil either. Make sure you read the ingredients, especially avoiding any with mineral oil.
They don’t moisturise - Just to get all technical with you for a moment, oils don’t actually moisturise your skin. It’s confusing, yes, because it feels all soft and hydrating, but in fact the way oils work is by putting a final barrier (a seal) on your skin, trapping in all the moisture beneath it. This is why, in your skincare routine an oil should be the final step – so that you really get the benefits of all the things you’ve put on before it.
They are great for anti-ageing - A few things happen to our skin when it ages, it loses elasticity, and another is that it becomes drier. Both of those things contribute to fine lines and wrinkles – and make them show up on the skin more. As oils help lock in moisture, skin will appear plumper, which means fine lines are less visible.
They’re full of antioxidants - This is just one of the reasons oils reached cult status. Each oil will have it’s own composition, benefits, vitamins and essential fatty acids that are unique to it. But all will have them. These are the things that will help repair the skin, and protect it from free radicals and environmental damage that will speed up the ageing process.
They can double as a highlighter - Everyone is seeking that elusive glow, but not everyone gets the eight hours of sleep and copious green juices it requires to get there. Luckily, this makeup artist hack can help you get there. Just dab a drop onto your finger and lightly tap over the orbital bone so the gloss can hit the light and glow.
It’s easy to see why facial oils have become a big deal these last few years. Not only are the benefits huge, they won’t break the bank either. If you’re not already a convert, here’s a few of our favourites to try: