It seems like facial oils are a big trend happening in the skin care world. Oils such as grapeseed, avocado, argan, olive, jojoba, coconut, flaxseed, tea tree, sunflower and a plethora of others are gaining popularity in diets and used topically on the skin. I often get asked if using facial oil is good for your skin.
Your skin naturally produces oil called sebum which is excreted through your sebaceous glands; the skin also produces lipids (other fats and oils). The main function of these oils is to keep the skin soft and supple, seal in hydration and protect against allergens and pathogens. People with dry skin produce less oil, while people with oily skin produce excess oil.
Most people are adding facial oils into their skin care regime because they think it will hydrate their dry skin. However, when it comes to putting oils on your skin it really comes down to the molecular size of the fatty acids in the particular oil. The majority of oils out there have a larger molecular size that can’t penetrate into the skin. Most oils are classified as an occlusive or emollient, which don’t actually add hydration to the skin, but help to lock in moisture and prevent water loss, leaving your skin feeling more soft, supple and hydrated. If you have drier skin, a facial oil could be a great addition to your home care regime, especially during the winter months when it’s drier outside.
If on the other hand, you have acne or acne prone skin I would recommend you stay away from facial oils all together. Those larger fatty acid molecules can clog skin pores causing more breakouts. My clients who have oily skin to begin with usually can’t stand feeling like an oil slick and would rather die than add more oil to their skin. Although I don’t recommend oils for people with oily or acne skin, I do believe if you have these skin types you still need moisturizers. Especially because people with these skin types typically use other products with more drying ingredients such as acids, clays or peroxides. I hate to say it but, oily skin likes to be oily, the more you dry out your skin to combat the oiliness, the more oil your skin will produce. So keeping your skin moisturized and hydrated is the trick.