Is using oil on oily skin a good idea?

Megan Dominion

If you have oily skin, you might be tempted to think cosmetic products containing oil are not suitable for you.

But recent studies have found that using oil on oily skin can actually be beneficial. In fact, it can help regulate the skin’s natural production of oil, preventing your skin from becoming too oily.

First, let’s understand why your skin is so oily?

Your skin produces oil to protect itself from the environment. This natural oil is called sebum, and your skin’s sebaceous glands produce it.

Sebum is made up of triglycerides, wax esters, and squalene. It’s designed to keep your skin healthy by providing a barrier against water loss, environmental pollutants, and infection.

However, sometimes your skin can produce too much sebum. This can happen for a variety of reasons:

Hormonal changes. During puberty, your body produces more hormones, which can cause your sebaceous glands to produce more sebum. This is why acne is common during puberty.

Certain medications. Some medications, such as steroids and testosterone, can increase sebum production.

Diet. A diet high in sugar and unhealthy fats can cause your sebum production to increase.

If your skin produces too much sebum, it can

Look shiny and greasy.

-Lead to clogged pores, which can cause acne.

-Make your makeup look oily and cause it to slide off your face.

So, what oil can you use for your oily skin?

Oils rich in linoleic acid are more suitable for oily and acne-prone skin. There is evidence that acne is more likely to occur in people whose skin has low levels of linoleic acid.

Oils rich in oleic acid, however, are better suited to dry skin. They can clog pores and are greasier than oils rich in linoleic acid.

Since we established that it’s ok to use oil on your oily skin, let’s see the best oils.

Best oils for oily skin

There are many non-comedogenic oils for oily skin, but a few stand out.

Besides improving your skin’s overall health, the oils below help prevent acne and restore your skin’s glow.

Let’s take a closer look at these amazing oils.

  • Argan oil: Argan oil is rich in linoleic acid and oleic acid. It’s also high in vitamin E, which can help to protect your skin from damage. Argan oil is light, so it’s unlikely to clog your pores.
  • Jojoba oil: Jojoba oil is very similar to our skin’s natural sebum. This makes it an excellent choice for people with oily skin, as it can help to regulate sebum production. Jojoba oil is also non-comedogenic so that it won’t clog your pores.
  • Rosehip oil: Rosehip oil is rich in linoleic acid and vitamin C. These nutrients can help to reduce inflammation and brighten your skin.
  • Tea tree oil: Tea tree oil is a powerful anti-inflammatory agent. It’s also effective against acne-causing bacteria.
  • Almond oil: Almond oil is rich in oleic acid and vitamin E. It’s a light oil that’s easily absorbed by the skin. Almond oil can help to soothe dry and irritated skin.

How to use oil on oily skin?

Now that you know which oils to use, let’s see how you can apply them on your skin. Here are our top tips for incorporating facial oils into your skincare routine.

  • Choose the right oil. As we mentioned before, choose an oil suitable for your skin type. Ask a skin care professional for advice if you need help deciding which oil to choose.
  • Start with a clean face. Make sure to clean your face thoroughly before applying oil. This will help to prevent your pores from becoming clogged.
  • Apply a small amount. Start with a small amount of oil and gradually increase the amount until you find the right amount for your skin.
  • Massage the oil into your skin. Use gentle circular motions to massage the oil into your skin.
  • Follow with a moisturizer. If you have oily skin, you might not need to apply a moisturizer.

Common mistakes when using oil on oily skin

You use oil too often

Just like with anything else, you can overdo it with oil. And even if the oil you use is non-comedogenic, using too much of it can still lead to clogged pores and breakouts.

So, how often should you use oil on your face?

As a general rule, you should only use oil a few times a week. If you have acne-prone skin, you might need to use it even less often.

 You don’t have a good skincare routine

You must have a good skincare routine to get the most out of facial oils. This means cleansing, exfoliating, and moisturizing your skin regularly.

You use too much oil

As we mentioned, too much oil can lead to clogged pores and breakouts. So, start with a small amount and increase the amount gradually until you find the right amount for your skin. If your skin tends to become oily, we advise using an exfoliator. If will help to absorb de oil better.

You are using it at the wrong time

If you want to get the most out of your facial oil, apply it at the right time. The best time to use oil is after cleansing and before applying moisturizer. This will help to lock in the moisture and prevent your skin from becoming too dry. Also, ideally, you should use the oil at night when your skin produces less sebum.

Bottom line

Facial oils can be a great addition to your skincare routine, but only if you use them correctly. So, please choose the right oil for your oily skin, start with a small amount, and don’t use it too often.

Megan Dominion

Megan Dominion is SILKUP's Managing Editor. She's been down both the curly hair and skincare rabbit holes many times and loves that there's always something new to learn; a new science, method, product or personal experience.