The Best Clean Facial Oils For Your Skin Type
One of the recent key advances in the skincare world, is the consumer's realization that oils can be beneficial for all skin types and do not necessarily cause breakouts. As consumers warmed up to the idea, skincare brands started launching all types of mixtures, appealing to many of us, product junkies, that have filled our medicine cabinets with various oils, each promising different results. We wanted to take a couple of minutes to go over some basics before we share our faves.
There are two major types of oils:
1- Plant oils, otherwise known as carrier oils: They are typically pressed. A few examples are Almond, Grape-seed, Olive, Jojoba, Rosehip, Safflower, Camellia and Coconut oil. They generally provide antioxidants, hydration, and cleansing properties. Some are more occlusive than others. When shopping for a suitable oil for your specific skin type, please follow this simple guideline:
- Normal to oily skin types: Look for Argan, Sesame, Grape-seed, Camellia, Rosehip, Evening Primrose and Safflower oils. If they are listed within the first few ingredients, that means they make up the majority of the formulation, and hence the overall consistency should be lighter and more suitable for your skin type. A plus is if the oil is hydrolysed, meaning refined and broken down to smaller molecules allowing better absorption into the skin.
- Dry skin types: You want to select richer oils that will provide long-lasting hydration and glow to your skin. Best options are Apricot, Avocado, Jojoba, Olive, Coconut and Almond oils.
2- Essential oils: these are used in abundance in perfumes and skincare products. They are mostly produced through a distillation process, using alcohol. They tend to be very concentrated and volatile. Many have medicinal properties and can be effective in treating certain skin conditions. Cosmetic companies love to use these because they can still maintain the claim of using natural ingredients, while providing a highly perfumed pleasant-smelling product. I hope that, by now, you know that natural in no way equals safe or suitable for use on your skin. Depending on the type of the essential oil, some can cause quite a bit of damage to the lipid barrier if used consistently or in high concentrations. The biggest culprits are citrus oils. They are widely used in skincare because they deliver the fresh uplifting scent that most of us enjoy and love. Meanwhile skin is being sensitized as the surface layer is compromised overtime.
Oxidation is another term that we've heard quite a bit about in recent years. To put it simply, it is when an element that comes in contact with oxygen, changes in appearance. This applies to our skin as it is exposed daily to all the toxins, chemicals, pollution, sun rays and many other elements in the air, which cause aging. That is why it is advisable to use Antioxidants which are generally effective in fighting against oxidation of our skin cells. Skincare products are also susceptible to oxidation when they come in contact with air, that is why it is always advisable to use products housed in airtight container versus jars. Manufacturers also use preservatives that help prevent or slowdown oxidation in skin care products.
When it comes to oils, especially in natural formulas, some clean brands have been avoiding the use of preservatives to limit the amount of toxins and synthetic materials in their formulas. While that's great, we need to remain conscious of the fact that oils oxidize quite fast, especially when stored incorrectly, and being exposed to air and light. This not only renders the oil ineffective, but in fact, harmful to your skin as it may result in increased oxidation of your skin cells and therefore; inflammation and aging.
Here are some best practices to follow when you shop for your facial oils, and while you use them:
1- Only buy one oil product at a time. Use it up, then try that other one you've been dying to buy. Many of us accumulate several oils, which stretches the amount of time we own each product. Also, think about the amount of time that product might have sat in a warehouse, then on a store shelf before it even made it to your home.
2- Smaller is better: I know, I know! Larger sizes are the better values, but not in this instance. I would rather pay a little extra and have a product that is fresh and good for my skin, for the duration of time that I use it, than have a large bottle of oxidized oil that can potentially age my skin.
3- ONLY buy oils in airtight opaque packaging or dark glass bottles, and store them in a cabinet away from heat and direct sunlight. If your favorite formula is packaged in a clear glass bottle, we'll approve, but only under one condition; please store it in a dark place and put it away immediately after each use.
Now that we got the basics out of the way, lets get to the fun part and discover the best of the best. Our list has been carefully vetted. All recommended oils are natural, clean, ethical. We've added a 'SHOP' page on the Beauty Doctrine site to make the best choices available in one place, but also added some of the most popular clean oils on Amazon that have great reviews to our list for the sake of variety and transparency. Here we go:
1- Lina Hanson Global Calm Soothing Face Treatment: Number ONE in our book for many reasons; an active ingredient list you can count on two hands, 100% natural, lightweight consistency, cruelty-free, vegan and free of gluten and essential oils. The principle ingredient in this ultra soothing elixir is Kalahari Melon, harvested by cooperatives in Namibia, using sustainable practices. An oil that's been used for centuries in ancient Egypt to heal and repair damaged skin, reduce inflammation, regenerate, moisturize, and support skin's cellular matrix. Amazonian Passion Fruit treats acne while moisturizing and delivering antioxidants and essential Vitamins A and C. And lastly, Cucumber Seed Oil known to treat skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis while increasing skin's suppleness and elasticity.
2-Henné Organics Illumine Face Oil: While using oils has been a no-brainer for drier skin types, oily skin types continue to struggle finding suitable options. The search stops right here with this incredible elixir. This face oil is brimming with vitamins, essential fatty acids and phyto-nutrients that work collectively to brighten, hydrate and revitalize the skin. The main ingredient featured, Camellia oil, is the lightest type of oil which is perfect for combination/oily and acneic skin.
3- ODACITÉ ALL-EMBRACING SERUM WATERMELON + HIBISCUS: If you've ever thought that clean isn't powerful, think again! We're not sure how Odacité did it. The texture in unbeatable - so light and fast absorbing, you'd never believe it's packed with Shea Butter, Oatmeal powder, Vitamin-E, Watermelon, Chia, Apricot and Sea Buckthorn Oils. This powerhouse ticks every box and works for every skin types. A skincare product that truly lives up to it's name; ALL-EMBRACING! We can't move on without touching on the gorgeous smell and color for those of you that want it all ;)
4-Taïla Prana Face Oil: This amazing face oil is rich in argan oil, which is ideal for dry skin. The exquisite formulation provides multi-correctional brightening and immediate nourishment. Made from an Ayurvedic blend of active antioxidant-rich botanicals that help reduce fine lines and wrinkles, boost collagen production and treat hyper-pigmentation.
6- Blübiome Botanical Facial Oil: For those with compromised skin conditions, such as psoriasis or rosacea, this oil will be your new best friend. This facial oil uses fermented oils to help rebalance sensitized skin's microbiome.
7-Henné Organics Serene Face Oil: Serene is a universal oil that balances, calms and nourishes without any essential oils - perfect for sensitive skin. This fast absorbing and non-comedogenic formula allows easy blending with moisturizer, foundation or sunscreen.
One last, but essential, point on this topic; No matter how incredible an oil formula is, from a hydration perspective, it is NEVER enough for your skin, and can never replace your moisturizer. You ask why? What your skin needs more than oil, is water. So make sure to incorporate a good alcohol-free toner, spray, essence, or water-based moisturizer into your routine, and add the oil to seal the deal, and trap all that goodness into your skin for long-lasting comfort and hydration.
Be well. Be safe. Be Beautiful!