Having oily skin is a common problem. Our skin produces a kind of natural oil to protect itself from the environment and remain hydrated: This substance is more commonly known as sebum and is produced in the sebaceous glands. However, there are cases in which this fat is overproduced resulting in skin which is oily, shiny and prone to outbreaks of spots.
Why do we have oily skin?
There are several factors which can affect the condition of our skin, including stress, hormonal changes, use of oral contraceptives, pregnancy and, of course, there is also some genetic tendency.
The good news is that oily skin tends to develop fewer wrinkles than dry skin in older age.
1. Daily cleansing
A daily skin cleansing routine is essential to keep excess sebum under control and the following recommendations may be helpful:
Use warm water, as this facilitates cleansing for the oil.
Do not use moisturising products to wash your face, it is true that in the market there are bars of soap with creams or oils that are designed for dry skin, but in the case of oily skin, it is best to use a mild soap or a soap designed for oily skin. If you regularly suffer from spot breakouts, you should use an antibacterial soap for dermatological use.
Dry your skin with a towel or clean handkerchief by gently patting and not rubbing. After washing your face, apply an astringent lotion: an excellent ingredient to achieve this is witch hazel. Dip a cotton ball in witch hazel liquid and pat it on by moistening your face. This lotion helps to close the pores and maintain sebum at a normal level.
Note: In addition to witch hazel, you can use a sage infusion for the same purpose, prepare a cup of sage infusion, and repeat the same procedure every day, using it as a lotion.
2. Massage and Blotter Masks
Some of the following ingredients are easy to find at home and may be sufficient to remove excess oil on the face:
Oatmeal: It is quite absorbent and helps to exfoliate our skin while leaving it smooth and soft. Use two tablespoons of oatmeal and add witch hazel water to make a paste. You must apply the paste on your face and gently massage without pressing with the tip of our fingers, but instead using circle motions. Finally, leave on for roughly 15 minutes and then rinse off with warm water. Repeat this treatment twice a week.
Facial Massage with yoghurt: Take two teaspoons of plain yoghurt and dilute with a little witch hazel. Take the mixture on your fingers and apply to the face like a cream. Leave to dry for 10 minutes and rinse off with warm water.
Egg Mask: It is very easy to make an egg mask for oily skin. All you have to do is separate the yolk and use the egg white. Add a tablespoon of honey and mix, before applying with a brush or with your fingers. Leave to dry before rinsing with warm water.
3. Exfoliate the skin
Keeping your skin clean and free of impurities can help improve oily skin: You can use various natural ingredients for this purpose:
Apple cider vinegar: If you have sensitive skin, do not use apple cider vinegar directly on your skin. Try to dilute it in water with a ratio of 50/50. Apply with a cotton ball and allow to dry for 10 minutes before rinsing it with cold water. Remember to apply two or three times per week.
Almond Flour: This is obtained from finely ground almonds which form a grittiness used to exfoliate well. Add a tablespoon of honey to this ground mixture and apply as a mask, avoiding the eye area. Leave it on for 10 minutes and remove with warm water. This mixture helps remove dead skin cells as well as to balance oily skin.
4. Aloe Vera
This is a beneficial plant with astringent properties and also promotes wound healing and skin cell regeneration. It is an excellent remedy for many skin conditions and can be useful for combating oily skin.
Take a piece of aloe plant and apply the gel on the skin of your face, leave to dry – if your skin feels tight do not worry – then wash with cold water without rubbing your face. You can also use the gel that is sold commercially if you do not have an aloe vera plant and you can apply two or three times during the day, but you must be consistent.
5. Eat a healthy diet
A diet rich in fibre, ie with lots of foods of plant origin such as fruits and vegetables, is essential. Vitamins and minerals that are contained in fruit and vegetables help maintain healthy skin and they will help a lot if you have oily skin.
In addition, drinking sufficient natural water improves hydration and the appearance of our skin. Finally, try to consume oil and good quality fats, such as vegetable oil, olive oil and oily seeds.
Avoid high fat meats, try to eat white meat where possible and vegetable proteins such as legumes (beans, lentils, etc).