What causes oily skin? How can you reduce your oily skin? Is there anything you can do to prevent oily skin? In this article, I’ll answer all of these questions and more, presenting ten tips on how to reduce oily skin that you can use immediately. When you’re done reading, you’ll know everything you need to know about preventing and reducing oily skin – naturally!
Understand the anatomy of oily skin
Our skin produces an oily substance called sebum, which moisturizes our skin and hair. When we have too much sebum in our pores, it can cause oily skin and acne. And while there’s no sure-fire way to prevent acne, there are some things you can do to help control your oily skin. First off, you should shower at least once a day with mild soap or body wash that’s free of fragrance and other additives that could irritate your skin (some people recommend using bar soap). While it won’t make your oil production go away completely, washing will keep your pores clean and open.
1) Keep your face clean with microfiber cloths
The oil that causes acne and breakouts is transferred from your hands to your face, so try using a clean microfiber cloth every time you touch your face. Use a gentle cleanser: Wash twice a day with an anti-bacterial, gentle cleanser like Neutrogena’s Purifying Facial Cleanser with Salicylic Acid. Don’t use anything harsh on your skin or allow it to get dry.
2) Steer clear of soaps and harsh chemicals
These tend to irritate already delicate skin. Instead, use an oil-free moisturizer on clean skin two or three times a day. Look for moisturizers with salicylic acid—it’s anti-inflammatory and can help reduce acne. Skip cleansing altogether by using a toner with witch hazel (the astringent liquid is made from distilled witch hazel bark). The alcohol content helps dry up blemishes without over-drying your skin. Bonus: It also works as a natural deodorant!
3) Experiment with non-soap cleansers for oily skin
When you have oily skin, it can be tempting to reach for a bar of soap or a facial cleanser that says oil-free on its label. Don’t do it! These products will strip your skin of essential oils and may even lead to dehydration. The best way to care for oily skin is with gentle cleansing agents such as Cetaphil or Dove, which are made from oil instead of soap and won’t rob your skin of its natural oils. You should also avoid astringents and alcohol-based toners. As you get older, these cleansers can actually irritate your skin and make it more likely to break out.
4) Use makeup products designed for oily skin
Not all makeup products are made equal, so you’ll want to look for those specifically designed for oily skin. These often come in a powder form, which is great because they tend to stay put better and leave less residue behind on your skin. Invest in blotting papers: Blotting papers are super-thin sheets of paper that soak up excess oil and give you a matte finish. They’re especially good at taming shine on hot days or when you’ve been wearing makeup for long periods of time. Throw them in your purse or bag to use when you need an extra touch-up during a long day.
5) Practice Good Hygiene
First things first, you’ll want to wash your face at least twice a day—preferably in the morning and before bed. Make sure that you’re using a gentle cleanser (low pH is best) and no hot water—it’ll dry out your skin. Also, be sure that you’re washing with warm water when possible; hot will open up pores and can lead to even more oil production. Don’t forget about exfoliation either! That’s essential for helping prevent blackheads. For those prone to redness, consider picking up an AHA or BHA exfoliant which won’t irritate your skin but will help keep pores clean and prevent breakouts.