Gone are the days when oil-free products lined our bathroom counters. Instead, our regimens are rounded out with dainty eye-dropper bottles filled with infusions that claim to smooth out lines, relieve dryness, and even clear breakouts. So, are these skin saviors worth their weight in oil? We put them to the test with the 5 Ws.
What: What is a Facial Oil and What Does a Facial Oil Do?
A facial oil harnesses the power of a natural botanical oil or oils for various skincare benefits. It is believed by many cosmetic chemists and skincare practitioners that oils better penetrate the surface layers of the skin than a moisturizer. This is because of their lower molecular weight (think thinness versus thickness).
Most oils are single purposed, meaning they rely on one key vitamin or ingredient to enhance the health of skin. Dermatologist and skincare innovator Dr. Howard Murad has recently created a multi-purpose facial treatment oil for all skin types by combining 6 key vitamins that activate recovery where your skin needs it. This means each drop contains the power to help minimize lines, even tone, boost radiance, boost hydration, shield against environmental damage, and balance skin to control oil production.
Why: Why Do I Need a Facial Oil?
Your skin is made up of natural oils (or what dermatologists would refer to as sebum). Things get complicated when oil gets out of balance. When glands produce too much oil, you’re likely to have oily skin or be prone to breakouts. When it under-produces oil, you’re likely to have dry skin and be more prone to visible wrinkles. (Dry, not dehydrated. There’s a difference, and we’ll explain it soon.)
Oil balance is critical to skin health, and a facial oil can correct the imbalance no matter what side you’re on. Adding ingredients like Salicylic Acid and Vitamin B can help clear out pores and balance the skin, while antioxidants like Vitamin E help restore and defend the skin’s barrier to help prevent moisture loss.
Who: Who Can Use a Facial Oil?
Any skin type and every skin type can and should use a facial oil. Yes, that includes you, breakout-prone skin types and oily skin types. Quick lesson: oily skin can still be dehydrated skin, because dehydration is a lack of water, not oil. Confusing the two could lead to stripping oil from your skin. This throws your oil glands into hyper drive as they will produce more oil to replace what was lost.
Adding a facial oil to any regimen can bring the essential balance skin craves to be healthier and better equipped at fighting off dryness, dehydration, oiliness, and breakouts.
When: When Do I Use a Facial Oil?
You can use it morning, night, or morning and night! Facial oils are all about you in the sense that they can fit anywhere in your regimen. But, if you’re using a facial oil with Vitamin A during the day, always finish your routine with a sunscreen.
Depending on the weight of your facial oil, it should be applied sometime after cleansing and toning and before moisturizing. A good rule of thumb is to apply skincare products in order from lightest to heaviest weight. Some facial oils are more full-bodied than serums or essences— if that’s the case for your oil, apply it post-serum. If your facial oil is lightweight or more like a dry oil that absorbs quickly into skin without a residue,
If you’re not sure if your oil is heavy or lightweight, take the easy route and mix it into your moisturizer.
Where: Where Do I use a Facial Oil?
Anywhere from your forehead to your chin, down your neck, and onto your décolleté! A little goes a long way with a quality facial oil, so there’s no need to deprive other areas of your skin if they could benefit from a little extra nourishment.
In the winter, facial oils can become dry skin’s best friend. Try a drop or two on rough elbows or dry knees. Massage a few drops onto the back of your hands before hitting the pillow. Are split ends and frizzies making you frazzled? Rub a few drops between your hands and smooth over hair ends. Facial oils have infinite uses with every drop, so get creative and enjoy the benefits.
on an eyeshadow brush helps shimmer shadow stay put.
on each cheekbone creates a natural dewy highlight.
turn a powder blush into a velvety dab-on cream.
take foundation from flat to flattering.
3 Drops or more…
turn your moisturizer into a multi-vitamin powerhouse.
work like a precleanser to dissolve waterproof makeup.
How Much Facial Oil Should I Use for My Skin Type?
Our professionals recommend the following drops by skin type. But, of course, this can be adjusted to work with how your skin looks and feels each day.
Oily Skin: 5 drops
Combination Skin: 6 Drops
Normal Skin: 7 Drops
Dry Skin: 8 Drops