THE BASIC PRINCIPLES OF KEEPING SKIN HEALTHY | 6 Makeup And Skincare Ingredients You Need To Avoid If You Have Oily Skin

Knowing what to edit out of your skincare routine is just as important as knowing what to add to it.

Dewy skin that glows from within may be the most coveted type, but grease is a whole different story. People with the oily skin type often find themselves swinging between the two ends of the spectrum, but that’s not where their issued end. Greasy skin makes it harder to apply makeup (and even harder to keep it on), and there’s a near constant threat of breakouts and inflammation on the oily areas. “People with oily skin are more prone to breakouts. Often in these case, the oil glands are bigger or produce more oil, which tends to make the skin more susceptible to clogged pores, and therefore, acne”, says Dr. Batul Patel, medical director and dermatologist, The Bombay Skin Clinic.

While using the right ingredients (think salicylic acid, sulphur and retinol) is key, skipping the ones that can exacerbate oil production is important too. “You should be looking for products that are as light as possible, and hydrate the skin rather than moisturize it. You want to look for cleansing ingredients that help maintain a pH and bacteria balance, but skip over-drying ingredients at the same time”, Dr. Patel adds. Ahead, the skin experts lists out all the products and ingredient you need to stay away from if you have oily skin.

Occlusive Like Petroleum Jelly

Dr. Patel suggest forgoing thick moisturizers and creams, and instead opting for a gel-based moisturizer that will hydrate your skin without piling on the grease. Moisturisers that are specifically made for drier or dehydrated skin types may contain ingredients like paraffin, mineral oils, lanolin or petroleum, which are can clog pores. Occlusive create a thick barrier on the skin to prevent moisture loss through evaporation, but they may feel too heavy or sticky on oil skin.

Face Oils Like Coconut Oil

It’s easy to lump all oils as pore-clogging, but each variant has different qualities and affects skin differently. “Natural oils work for some, but not always for everyone, since they are highly comedogenic and tend to clog pores”, says Dr. Patel. Those with a high oleic content (like coconut, camellia and hazelnut oil) are fatty acids that sit on the skin surface and clog pores. If your skin is already greasy, reach for oils with a higher linoleic content instead, like rosehip oil or evening primrose oil.

Alcohol – Based Products

There are many kinds of alcohols used in skincare – some that hydrate the skin, other that cleanse it. And if you have oily skin, you may be be tempted to pick products with alcohol for the tingling, squeaky clean feeling they leave behind. But his might not always be a good idea. For instance, strong alcohol-based toners will only get rid of the oil superficially, and can even strip your skin of its natural moisture. “Toners tend to make more oily as the product tries to compensate for the sebum that is lost during cleansing. Instead, use natural toners such as thermal spring water that will degrease without causing dryness. Aloe vera and natural rose toners help calm the skin instead of drying it”, says Dr. Patel.

Some primers, sunscreens and setting mists may contain alcohol as well, since the ingredient helps to preserve the formulas while also being light on the skin. But if your skin is particularly prone to rebound oiliness, skipping these might do you good.

Rough Physical Scrubs

Over-exfoliation, especially with formulas including harsh granules, can damage the moisture barrier, leaving skin more prone to sensitivity and imbalance. When skin is dried out, it overcompensates and creates more oil-resulting in increased chances of acne.

Silicones Like Dimethicone

Silicones help to make moisturisers and lotions silky, and can leave skin looking smooth and mattified. They are also the main ingredients in primers, as they fill in any texture issues like fine lines or large pores on the skin, creating a slightly sticky surface that helps makeup stay on all day long. Considering any ingredient that forms a layer on top of skin spells trouble for oily skin types, doctors suggest that those with severely acne-prone and oily skin use water-based primers and moisturisers instead of the silicone-based variants.

Artificial Dyes

Often used in coloured cosmetics like lipsticks and blushes, D&C dyes are made from petroleum and coal tar. While some skin types can handle these without an issue, using them on acne-prone skin can worsen the issue. Doctors suggest cutting them out of your routine to see if oiliness and acne improves in the area you usually apply them.


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