The Benefits of Oil-Based Skin Products: Which One is Right For You?

bareface_box_pdp_2If you’re prone to breakouts, you probably stock up on oil-free skin products and steer clear of anything else.

But some oils actually could be beneficial to your skin, experts say.

“Oil is something that really protects and functions well with all skin types, and even addresses skin conditions such as eczema,” celebrity facialist Joanna Vargas says.

In most cases, she says, they can even cure the skin of its sensitivity issues.

Oil fights oil: You may be relieved to hear some oils can actually fight the bad oils. “Oily skin, a condition in which there is an over-production of oil, desperately needs to be signaled to stop producing so much oil. If you give the skin oil, the skin will get that signal,” Vargas says.

She recommends using jojoba oil, which mimics the body’s own oil. Avocado, olive, and almond oil also are known to restore the skin’s lipid layer while protecting against sun damage and loss of elasticity.

Dr. Elizabeth Tanzi, co-director of the Washington Institute of Dermatologic Laser Surgery in Washington, D.C. suggests avocado oil for skin that tends to get shiny. “It’s a super-food for a reason,” she says. “It’s a favorite of mine because it works for everyone. It’s loaded with B vitamins and fatty acids, so it really soothes and restores the skin while helping to stimulate the lymphatic system.” However, if you have sensitive or dry skin she suggests trying Argan, Marula, and Helichrysum oil.

Founder of Julep beauty products and beauty expert Jane Park is a big fan of rosehip seed oil and green coffee bean oil, the main ingredients in Julep’s Bare Face Cleansing Oil ($28, julep.com). “They promote cell turnover and great for those with acne-prone, dry, and/or mature skin.”

In fact, many experts say these two types of oils can work wonders. NYC-based cosmetic surgeon Dr. Stafford Broumand says rosehip seed oil is full of vitamin C, which fights free radicals, and fatty acids, which help to reverse signs of aging.

Vargas agrees, “Green coffee bean oil is awesome for skin because it has the same pH as the skin does. This means that it can control and heal extreme skin conditions like acne.” She says It is also known to relieve eczema and psoriasis and contains as much anti-inflammatory and anti-aging properties as green tea.

Working oil-products into your beauty regimen: Tanzi suggests starting with an oil-based cleanser to determine whether your skin tolerates the new formulation well. “Since it’s a rinse off, this is a great way to introduce oils into a skincare routine.”

Park says night is the best time to swap out beauty products. “Your skin repairs and replenishes itself at night without any interruption, and is therefore very responsive to nourishing treatments.”

Products to avoid: While oil-based skin products have their benefits, there are certain skin types that really do need to steer clear. Tanzi warns that the oiliest skin types need to avoid coconut and rosehip seed oil. “Even if the packaging says the oil is fine for acne-prone skin, they can still cause breakouts. The exception is tea tree oil.” She also discourages using vitamin E, since many people tend to be sensitive to it.

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