Face Oils: the Good, the Bad and the Ugly
Ok, obviously there is not such a thing of ugly or bad oil of course, all oils are fantastic and are great for nourishing our skin. There are however some oils that work better on your skin than others.
What is your skin type
In order to get the best oil for your skin, you need to make sure you completely understand your skin. Some skins are dry, some are oily, sometimes only oily on the T-zone. Some are acne prone, mixed, sensitive, have rosacea…or just normal. They might have a tendency to get blackheads due to comedogenic substances blocking the pores.
If you don’t really know your skin, take some days to notice how it acts during the day (better not having any cream on so it does not impact your natural skin process). You can also look at the easy readable Neal’s Yard Remedies Diagram here.
Another thing to bear in mind is that the skin changes depending of the time of our cycle. It can get dry during the first few days of the cycle, nice and glowing during the ovulation time and greasy, acne prone during the last part.
Environmental factors such as pollution, hard water also affect how is skin feels and reacts. If you have moved to a new home and your skin has fell dryer than before, it might be because of the tap water. Then best rising your skin with some floral water and reusable cotton.
Also, if your skin is more mature, then your needs are a little bit different and you might be willing to get an oil with higher concentration of antioxydants to help fight premature skin cells.
Which oil for which skin
Any oil is excellent for nourishing the skin, and will help keep the natural hydration of your skin. I suggest you try single oil first, as you will better find which oil works best on your skin. See if you like the texture, smell, greasiness and see how it goes on your skin. Some oils are more specific for skin types, and we will see them below.
You can also go directly for a mix face oil, but please be aware that if you get any reaction, you might not know which oil exactly is giving you that reaction and you might just get the next oil wrong again because it contains that same oil.
Tips: If you are planning in playing around with single oils, I would suggest try a new oil every 6 months. Our skin gets used to a lot of things, and I find that after 6 months using the same oil, the results are not as noticeable. Getting a small 30ml bottle will get you through at least 6 months. But once finished and if you are not so happy with the results, why not trying a different oil?IF YOU HAVE DRY SKIN:
For dry skin, you would prefer going for a rich and more moisturising oil. This type of oil is called oleic oil. These oils contain oleic acid (omega-9), a monosaturated fatty acid. They are anti-inflammatory and help regenerate skin cells.
Avocado oil, Olive oil, Camellia Oil or even Buriti oil are oleic-rich oils.
Avocado oil (Oleic acid content: 75-80%): it is a very rich oil full of vitamins A, D and E and I find the texture quite thick. It penetrate well to nourish and keep the natural hydration of your skin.
Olive oil (Oleic acid content: 78%): yes I know, we usually find Olive oil in the kitchen, but it can also be used as a cheap alternative to nourish the skin! It is an excellent anti-oxidant preventing premature aging, protecting against cancer, as well as containing many vitamins.
Camellia Oil (Oleic acid content: 77-83%): Camellia oil is also known as tea oil, and is one of my favourite oil, because of its subtle and velvety consistency. It is a precious oil, and very used in Japan.
Buriti oil (Oleic acid content: 73-75%): Buriti oil comes from a palm tree in the Amazon, and is very particular. It contains a lot of beta-carotene (excellent antioxydant), and because of its high concentration, it helps absorb a little bit of UV rays. It is excellent for getting and prolonging a nice tan!
Tips: Combining an oil with a hydrating product, such as hyaluronic acid or aloe vera will enable the skin to get a boost of hydration as well as the nourishing effect of the oil.IF YOU HAVE ACNE PRONE OR OILY SKIN
Having oily skin is no fun, and acne prone even less. But there is a myth about them and unless you have given it a try and seen the result, you might not believe it! Applying oil, at night, and given the right oil of course, will help rebalance the skin.
So which oil is the best if you have this type of skin? This time is more about linoleic acid, that is a saturated fat (omega-6). That linoleic acid tends to be lacking in oily skin, which leads to an overproduction of sebum and too much oleic acid. So best is to find an oil with high concentration of linoleic acid to help restore that lack!
Rosehip oil (Linoleic acid content: 44%): Rosehip oil is a very famous oil these days for many reasons. It is known to work very well on acne, helps reducing scars, brightens the skin, full of antioxydant…that is an oil to be tried! The oil is a little comedogenic, which could mean your skin might not like it. It is the case for me, as it gives a little bit of spots.
Black Seed Oil (Linoleic acid content: 55-56%): Black Seed oil, also called Black Cumin oil (Nigella Sativa), was the first single oil I ever used on my skin. And I loved it! My skin was oily, and I was looking for an oil to help balance it. I used my little 50ml bottle for about a year and I have seen a lot of improvements! Less spots, more even toned, and less oily. It is also well know for having benefits on eczema and psiorasis.
Grapeseed Oil (Linoleic acid content: 65-66%): Grapeseed oil is another great oil, cheaper than Black Seed and Rosehip oil. The consistency is light and does not feel greasy. Therefore it’s a great oil to get if you are reluctant to use oils, this one should be great for you!
Prickly Pear Oil (Linoleic acid content: 65%): Prickly Pear (barbary fig seed oil) is a more expensive oil but its properties are excellent. It contains so much of vitamin E (much more than Argan), betalains antioxydants to protect the skin against free radicals, vitamin K to brighten the skin and help against hyperpigmentation. The consistency is also non greasy (+++).
Some oils, such as Tamanu and Jojoba oils, have a fair balance of Linoleic and Oleic Acid. Yet it does not mean excellent for Oily/Acne prone skin.
Tamanu oil (Linoleic acid content: 30%, Oleic acid content: 41%) : Tamanu oil is thick, of a greeny colour and a little sticky. It is excellent for scaring as it helps the formation of new skin cells, works well on dry skin and aging skin. The particularity of the oil is that it is antimicrobial so this is probably one of the best oil to work against acne (ie. cystic acne). NB: Tamanu oil is a little bit comedogenic.IF YOU HAVE SENSITIVE SKIN/ROSACEA PRONE SKIN
Applying your face with any oil will nourish your sensitive skin or rosacea. Any oil will help sooth inflammation due to their high content of fatty acids. There are some oils that are even more gentle on sensitive skin, such as Sweet Almond Oil or Carrot Oil. Rosehip Oil is also an all round face oil and can also be used on sensitive skin as it is so gentle.
Carrot seed oil: Carrot seed oil contains good vitamins such as vitamin C that is protecting and vitamin E that is moisturising. It has also great reputation for sensitive skin. Because of its high concentration in beta-carotene, it protects a little bit against sun damage, which could be a double win for sensitive skin!
Sweet Almond Oil: if you don’t where to start with oil, I suggest you try the Sweet Almond Oil! It has many benefits, with many antioxydants, vitamins E to keep skin cells healthy and even vitamin A for acne prone skin! This non comedogenic oil should not get you with any reaction! It is a very soft, subtle oil that penetrates well in the skin.
Again, don’t forget to hydrate your skin!
Tips: Another way to help hydration and your oil to penetrate well on your skin is to splash floral water on your skin, and straight after applying your oil. This way you are hydrating and nourishing your skin at the same time.IF YOU HAVE NORMAL SKIN
Well, here you are perfect skin. Just choose the oil you fancy the most! An oil with balanced linoleic and oleic acids is probably a great shot for you! Argan oil, Tamanu oil and Jojoba oil are balanced in both acids.
Where to buy your oil
Alway make sure your oil has been cold-pressed and organic.
They are many places where it is possible to get single oils such as Lovelula, Fushi or Neal’s Yard Remedies.
If you want to get a mix oil, I recommend the Natura Detox Oil from Nini Organics (foundhere) for Acne Prone and Oily skin.
Normal to dry and mature skins can try the Sage Facial Oil from Evering Oil (foundhere).
An all around facial oil, with a blend of 14 active natural oils, flower extracts, COQ10 and vitamin E that smells amazing is the Active Botanical Facial Serum from Maison Meunier (found here)
I hope this post helped you, and guided you to get the best oil for your skin! Please let me know in the comments what face oil you are using as I am very curious and would like to know why you like it (I hope you do 🙂 ) !
As always, thanks for reading,