By: Dr. Loretta Lanphier, ND, CN, HHP, CH
What Is Oily skin?
People with oily skin are usually very much aware of their skin type. Our skin produces a substance called sebum, which is designed to act as a lubricant. Skin is classified as oily when it manufactures too much sebum. Oily skin is typically shiny, thick, and easily susceptible to black heads and acne. It also tends to attract more dirt and grime than normal or dry skin.
Sebum is produced by special oil glands in your skin known as sebaceous glands. These glands are larger and found in greater numbers in certain areas of the body, such as on the neck, chest, and back. Sebum glands are located all over the face, but they are most active on or near the nose. Even folks who don’t have oily skin can have trouble with blemishes on their nose.
Who Gets Oily Skin?
Problems with oily skin are experienced most often during the teenage years because of the hormonal changes that occur during puberty. But they can affect people of any age, sex, or ethnic background. Most of the time, the older we get, the drier our skin becomes. People with combination skin can also experience oily skin on certain parts of their face.
What Causes Oily Skin?
Oily skin can result from numerous factors. Genetics or family history can pre-dispose some people to having oily skin. Others may have a glandular condition that causes the over-production of sebum, resulting in skin that appears greasy or oily. Hormones also play a role. During puberty, the body increases amounts of certain hormones, known as androgens. Androgens cause the sebaceous glands to produce more sebum. Additional causes for oily skin include diet, pregnancy, various medications, and other environmental factors.
Caring for Oily Skin
People with oily skin have special needs. If you have oily skin, here are a few pointers to keep it looking and feeling its best throughout the day.
Choose a natural, organic cleanser that is specifically designed for oily skin. Avoid the use of harsh or abrasive soaps. They do not clean your face any better than a natural cleanser, and in fact they often irritate the oil glands causing the production of additional sebum. Use warm, purified water to loosen the dirt on your skin. Next, massage the cleanser softly into your skin and rinse with more warm water. Use of a toner, like Hydra-Tone™, is recommended for oily skin to provide added cleansing and moisturizing.
If you have very oily skin, you probably don’t need a moisturizer. However, if your skin is moderately oily, you may wish to use a light moisturizer. This will help to lock in natural moisture and keep your skin well hydrated throughout the day. Be sure to choose a product that is especially formulated for oily skin. I recommend Purely Ageless by Oasis Advanced Wellness.
Protecting your skin from the ultraviolet rays of the sun is critical. Oily skin is less susceptible to sun damage than other types, such as dry skin. However, people with oily skin should use a light natural sunscreen such as UV Natural.
Oily Skin Care Diet Tips
Your diet can have a significant impact on the health of your skin. Loading up on green leafy vegetables and limiting sugar and salt can help minimize problems due to oily skin. You should also avoid alcohol, chocolate, soft drinks, and junk food in general. A wholesome, nutritious diet will help keep your skin hydrated and healthy. A lack of vitamins, especially B2, can trigger oily skin. Good dietary sources of vitamin B2 include wheat germ, whole grains, nuts, beans, and royal jelly. Lots of iron is excellent for oily skin as well. Foods high in iron include whole grain rice, buckwheat, and black beans. What you drink is important to the health of your skin too. Drinking ample amounts of pure, clean water helps to both circulate nutrients and eliminate waste products more efficiently.
Herbs for Oily Skin
Aloe Vera offers many outstanding benefits for your skin. It boosts the overall health of your skin, and can help keep oily skin under control. Apply it topically to your skin whenever you feel the need.
Burdock root, chamomile, horsetail, oat straw and thyme are excellent at both nurturing your skin and eliminating the amount of oils it produces.
Lavender is known for its ability to keep natural skin oils in check. Try misting often with lavender water or Hydra-Tone™.
Witch hazel is very effective at absorbing oil from the skin. Witch hazel is a natural astringent that has oil absorbing qualities. It also is beneficial for preventing acne.
Cucumber juice is a favorite skin care remedy for many people. You can both drink it and apply it to your face by misting several times a day. It tends to control skin oil production, and is great for the general health of your skin as well.
About the Author
Loretta Lanphier, ND, CN, HHP, CH is a Doctor of Naturopath, Clinical Nutritionist, Holistic Health Practitioner and Clinical Herbalist in Houston, TX and Founder / CEO of Oasis Advanced Wellness. Under her leadership, Oasis Advanced Wellness is known and respected as one of the leading companies in providing safe and clean hi-tech natural health and wellness solutions. Because of the need for high-end natural and organic skin care products, Dr. Lanphier has developed Lanique Organics, an all-natural skin-care line which promotes natural health for the skin.