Should I Use A Moisturizer If I Have Oily Skin
Oily, Dry or Combination skin? It can be difficult to know the ideal skin care routine for your skin type, or even what type of skin you have. These questions can be cleared up with a quick visit to your dermatologist. But for those who are certain that they have naturally oily skin, we have a few tips on how to moisturize.
“Many cleansers and exfoliating agents remove the superficial layers of the skin, exposing you to external agitators which in turn, can cause irritation and dryness,” says Dr. Miriam Hanson, a board certified dermatologist and cosmetic expert in Austin, Texas. “Toners, astringents, and certain alcohol-based serums can further aggravate this problem.”
The body compensates for the bare, exposed and irritated skin by increasing its sebum production. Sebum is in fact the natural oil produced by sebaceous glands to moisturize and lubricate the skin. Individuals with oily skin appear to have an excess of sebum production.
Do I Still Need A Moisturizer If I Have Oily Skin?
Shiny skin, large pores, and greasy looking skin are all the hallmarks of oily skin. Sebaceous glands are found over the body but have the highest concentration on the face. “Many people with oily skin think that they should skip moisturizing, but applying a moisturizer is still recommended by dermatologists,” shares Emily Johnston, certified physician assistant at Sanova Dermatology.
Keeping the skin hydrated stops the signal telling the body to produce sebum. Therefore, an external moisturizer applied to the skin can help quiet your body’s response and decrease the amount of sebum is produced. The result is a decrease in shine and oil!
Which moisturizer is right for you?
There are three ways moisturizers deliver hydration to the skin. The goal, of course, is using a moisturizer that will hydrate but not add oil to the skin.
- Occlusive agents. Occlusives include things like vaseline, petroleum jelly, silicone and heavy oils. These agents work by creating a barrier on the surface, ultimately decreasing the amount of water that evaporates from the skin. Occlusives tend to be a bit too heavy for oily and acne-prone skin, but are suitable for post-procedure healing such as after chemical peels or laser skin resurfacing.
- Emollients. These moisturizers have some occlusive properties but are effective in treating dry, flaky skin. “We often use emollients in patients with severe xerosis, psoriasis or eczema because they help restore and repair the skin barrier,” says Dr. Hanson.
- Humectants. These agents attract and bind water, moisturizing the skin without choking it. A lightweight, non-comedogenic, humectant moisturizer is best used for those suffering from oily skin. Non-comedogenic products won’t clog pores, contrary to the oiliness. Additionally, some moisturizers also contain ingredients such as talc to control shine and help mattify the skin throughout the day.