What is oily skin?
It’s perfectly normal to have oily skin. Oily skin is among the four commonly known skin types, along with dry, combination, and normal skin.
People with oily skin tend to have an overproduction of sebum, produced by the sebaceous glands whose primary function is to regulate oil on the skin necessary for skin barrier health. Excess sebum production causes clogged pores, blackheads and acne. Oily skin requires special care. 1
NB: If you are not sure about your skin type, take our skin quiz here to find out and receive personalised Uncover skincare product recommendations.
So what exactly causes oily skin? Read on to find out more.
Causes of oily skin
Younger people tend to have oilier skin. This is because skin changes as we get older, producing less and less sebum becoming drier. Check out our blog on how to care for dry skin here. Well there is some good news here, oily skin gives the benefit of showing signs of ageing much slower.
If one of your parents has oily skin then you’re likely to have oily skin too. Oily skin runs in families as it can be passed on through the genes. Larger or overactive sebaceous glands are hereditary.
- Failing to moisturise
Contrary to popular belief, a moisturiser does not make your skin oilier. Infact, the right moisturiser helps prevent overproduction of sebum. Look for non-comedogenic (meaning it doesn’t clog pores), lightweight or even water-based moisturizers for oily skin.
Shop our lightweight, non-comedogenic Neulii natural squalane desertica moisture cream perfect for oily skin here.
- Geographical location
Where you live and even the time of the year has an impact on your skin. The climate in Kenya, for instance, is hot and humid therefore people tend to have oily skin compared to those whose weather conditions are on the opposite side of the spectrum. The skin also tends to be oilier in the summer as compared to winter.
- Having the wrong skincare products or skincare routine
Having a proper oily skincare routine is vital. A basic 3-step routine comprising a cleanser, moisturizer, and sunscreen can work for oily skin, but if you want to go the further step, and target your oily skin concerns, we recommend our acne skincare kit. Shop here. If you’d like to build a routine from scratch check out our skincare beginner’s guide.
Men have larger, more active sebaceous glands than women, that means sebum production is two times more than women. Men also have a skin pH level that is significantly lower meaning men are prone to acne and impurities by all standards.
7 tips for controlling oily skin
- Wear sunscreen daily
Sunscreen (SPF 30+ specifically) is a MUST-HAVE in your oily skincare routine. Remember to apply generously, spread evenly, apply daily even when it’s cloudy, reapply every 2 to 3 hours, and highlight important areas.
Skipping sunscreen results in skin drying or getting dehydrated which then increases sebum production.
- Use exfoliating toner pads
Exfoliation helps to remove dead skin cells and unclog pores. We’re here to tell you that you can never go wrong with incorporating our curated by Uncover skincare exfoliating toner pads for sensitive skin into your oily skincare routine. The pads are soaked in Beta Hydroxy Acids (BHA’s) which remove oil, dirt, debris, blackheads, and whiteheads with their anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties. Shop for the exfoliating pads here.
- Treat acne using AHA’s and BHA’s
Both Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHA’s) and Beta Hydroxy Acids (BHA’s) are oily skincare routine essentials. AHA’s are most effective when used in concentrations of 10% or lower, at a pH of 3.5 and above, and when used with sunscreen.
BHAs, on the other hand, penetrate the skin to control excessive amounts of sebum. Salicylic acid is the most common type of BHA. Click here to learn the difference between AHA’s and BHA’s.
- Check your labels
Opt for non-comedogenic skincare products when shopping for your skincare products to avoid clogging your pores and making your skin worse in the process of trying to take care of it.
- Adjust your diet
A healthy, nutrition filled diet is necessary to manage oily skin from within. Switch the junk for foods like bananas, broccoli, whole grains, lentils, green vegetables, and (you’d never guess it) – dark chocolate! Life wouldn’t be so bad after all, are we right? :p
Extra oily skin tips:
Here’s some extra helpful oily skin tips for you:
- Kiss your active pimples and its cyst-ers goodbye with our pimple patches
We know just how frustrating breakouts tend to be when you have oily skin. That’s why we created Uncover skincare “I Am Spotless” pimple patches infused with acne-fighting salicylic acid and Centella Asiatica to shrink pimples faster. Shop here to add to your oily skincare routine.
The pimple patches also help to reduce inflammation, protect the pimple from irritants, and prevent picking and popping which results in hyperpigmentation.
- Consult an expert
Book your private skincare consultation with our in-house certified skincare therapist to receive answers and expert guidance on your oily skincare routine, products, and how to tackle your skin concerns. Schedule a one-on-one consultation here.
Which of the tips above are you incorporating in your skincare routine? Let us know in the comments below.
- Campos P, Melo M, and Mercurio D, ‘Use of advanced imaging techniques for the characterization of oily skin ‘ (2019) 26/10 ADV. IMA. TECH. CHAR. OIL. SK. pp. 254.