Tired of greasy, oily skin? You’re not alone. Keep the oil where it belongs — in your food — with these oily skin remedies.
*Feature image via Savvy Naturalista
9 Oily Skin Remedies That Actually Work
If being dependent on blotting sheets has gotten frustratingly annoying to you, you’re probably left wondering what else you could possibly do to banish the oil slick that’s currently sitting on your face. As oily-skinned ladies know *raises hand*, oily skin can be a pain to deal with. The accumulation of excess oil can lead to other, even more annoying skin problems like whiteheads, blackheads, blind pimples (which are the freaking worst), and other skin issues.
I’ve been dealing with this problem for years and, after many futile attempts, can still safely say oily skin is one of my biggest skincare concerns. However, with that said, there’s always…
Looking on the bright side! While oily skin is annoying now, if this is your skin type, be thankful because those with oily skin tend to age better and develop fewer wrinkles than those with dry or normal skin (hurray!). Not such a bad trade-off, right? At the age of 30, no one can guess my age correctly. Most people guess between the ages of 23-26, and I’m more than okay with that. However, having oily skin does require more attention since you need to keep those over-productive pores in check by regulating the amount of sebum they produce. The key is a gentle, but firm hand. What you want to do is wash away dead skin cells, dirt, and excess oil without irritating your skin. Irritation could potentially cause even more sebum production which is the absolute last thing you want.
Now that we know excess oil is the result of sebaceous glands in the skin producing excess sebum, we know what exactly to look for when searching for oily skin remedies. Our goal for today? Minimize the excess sebum! Let’s get started, shall we?
1. Wash Your Skin Well
It starts with proper washing. To properly cleanse your face,
- Wash your face with lukewarm water and choose the right cleanser. If you’re currently fighting an acne breakout, choose an antibacterial soap that’s formulated with benzoyl peroxide or triclosan. These discourage the growth of acne-causing bacteria.
- Use a liquid face wash that contains alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs), such as citric acid, lactic acid, or glycolic acid. AHAs work by sloughing off dead skin cells, reducing the oil in your pores, and combating infection.
2. Make Your Own Toner
After you’ve washed your face, soak a cotton pad in distilled witch hazel and dab it on problem areas. Use this toner twice a day for 2-3 weeks. After the 3rd week, reduce the frequency of application to once a day. Witch hazel contains tannins which have an astringent effect that tightens the pores as it dries.
The herbs yarrow, sage, and peppermint also have astringent properties. To make a homemade skin toner that will improve the look and feel of oily skin, put a tablespoon of one of these herbs in a cup, then fill to the top with boiling water. Let steep for 30 minutes. Strain the liquid and let it cool before you dab it on your face. Whatever’s left can be stored in a squeeze bottle. It will stay fresh for three days at room temperature, or five days if you keep it in the refrigerator.
Hyssop, a member of the mint family, also makes for an excellent herbal toner. In folk medicine, it’s considered good for the complexion. Add 1 tablespoon hyssop to 1 cup water. Boil for ten minutes, then strain. Let the mixture cool. After cleansing your skin, apply the toner with a cotton ball.
A combination of lavender and neroli essential oil (derived from orange blossoms) acts as a skin cleanser and toner. Pour some lavender floral water in a spray bottle, then add a drop of neroli oil. Spray the mixture on your skin several times a day.
3. Egg Whites
High in vitamin A, egg whites can effectively dry out skin blemishes as well as tone and tighten up oily skin.
- Whip one egg white until stiff and spread it on your skin. Allow it to dry and then wash it off with warm water. Do this twice a week.
- Whip one egg white, add the juice from half a lemon and mix it well. Apply the mixture on your face, leave it on for 15 minutes and then rinse it off with warm water. This will tighten the skin and soak up excess oil.
4. Lemon Juice
Lemon juice is a good source of citric acid that works like an astringent. It also has antiseptic properties that can lighten skin discolorations and restore the skin’s pH balance.
- Mix one teaspoon of fresh lemon juice with one-half teaspoon of distilled water. Apply it on your skin using a cotton ball. Leave it on for 10 minutes and then wash your face with warm water. Lemon juice can dry out your skin, so apply some oil-free moisturizer afterward. Do this once daily.
- Mix one tablespoon of lemon juice, one-half tablespoon of honey and one tablespoon of milk. Apply this paste on your face and leave it on for 10-15 minutes before washing it off with cold water. If done once daily, this remedy will give you positive results within a week.
5. Mashed Banana
Here’s a little twist of the above remedy:
6. Clay Mask
Clay masks remove dirt, makeup, dead skin cells, and other impurities from the skin while tightening pores. This will give you a clearer, more refined skin tone.
To do this,
- Mix rosewater or plain water into 3 tablespoons of Fuller’s Earth to make a paste.
- Apply to face, leave on 20 minutes.
- Rinse with water.
- Repeat once a week.
7. Apple Cider Vinegar
Both white and apple cider vinegar exfoliate skin and balance the hormones responsible for over-production of oil.
To treat oily skin with vinegar,
- Use a cotton ball to apply vinegar to your face.
- Leave it on for 5-10 minutes, then rinse with cool water.
- Repeat for 3 weeks.
- Note: Vinegar can also be chilled or frozen into ice cubes and rubbed over the skin.
At first, I was like what? Salt on my face? But then I figured I might as well give it a try, right? As a disinfectant and natural drying agent, salt is one of the most effective ways to remove excess oil.
To treat oily skin with salt,
- Fill a spray bottle with tepid water and add a teaspoon of salt.
- Close your eyes and spray the salt water on your face.
- Do not rinse.
- Repeat daily to get rid of oil skin.
9. Hit Two Birds with One Stone
Oily skin and large pores are Partners in Crime. To target both of these concerns at the same time, start by treating enlarged pores (typically the nose and cheek area) with a clay mask. Clay masks are like magnets that suck out dirt and oil, which stretches the pores when oxidized, creating the dreaded blackhead. After the clay mask, treat oily skin with a gentle detox mask. Look for a mask that will remove impurities without stripping the skin of its natural moisture barrier. If you lose that, your body will produce even more oil which is no bueno at all.
Last, But Not Least: Choose Your Makeup Wisely
Below are products meant for oily-skinned beauties and raved about by beauty enthusiasts and editors alike.
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