Oily skin is a cause of worry for many of us. Excess oil production can not only make your face look dull and lifeless, but also cause breakouts. Your skin becomes oily if your sebaceous glands produce high quantities of sebum. This can happen for several reasons ranging from genetics to poor diet. Read on to know more about oily skin, what causes it, and how you can keep your skin’s oil production under control.
Table of contents
- What causes oily skin?
- Why is oily skin bad?
- Why is my skin so oily all of a sudden?
- How can I control excess oil on my skin?
- What products should I use if I have oily skin?
What causes oily skin?
Oily skin is a result of high sebum production. Sebum is a wax/oil-like substance consisting of lipids like cholesterol, squalene, wax esters, free fatty acids, etc. Your body contains sebaceous glands that produce sebum for a number of reasons. These include:
- Sebum can reduce the loss of water from the skin and keep in moisture.
- Sebum protects the skin from UV radiation.
- Sebum has a pH level between 4.5 and 6.0 that makes it acidic in nature. This protects your skin from bacteria and thus reduces the chances of infections.
- Sebum can also help transport antioxidants to the skin’s surface.
So, you see, sebum is not always a bad thing. The troubles begin only when it is overproduced.
Why is oily skin bad?
Oily skin can make visible changes to your appearance. It can make your pores look larger and your skin greasy. Oily skin can make it hard for your makeup to stick on your face too. It may also cause your foundation to look flaky. In addition to this, excess sebum can clog pores and cause blackheads and acne.
Why is my skin so oily all of a sudden?
Wondering what might be the root cause of oily skin? Well, oily skin can be a result of various factors. The most common one is genetics. If your parents had oily skin, chances are they have passed it on to you too. But if you were not born with oily skin and see a sudden change in your skin’s texture, it could be for the following reasons:
- Change in weather: Hot or humid weather can make your skin produce more sebum compared to cold weather. This is why your skin gets oily in summer and dries out in winter.
- Using harsh products and tools: Products containing harsh chemicals can strip your skin of its natural moisture. Similarly, if you rub your face with a rough towel or use an abrasive exfoliator, you can interfere with the skin’s natural moisture. To compensate for this, your skin produces more sebum and you get oily skin.
- Not drinking enough water: Your skin is made up of 64% water. If you do not hydrate enough, your skin begins to lose its moisture. As a result, it amps up its sebum production and causes oily skin.
- Not using a moisturizer: Skipping the moisturizer can actually lead to excess oil. You might think moisturizing can cause pimples if your skin is already oily. But a light moisturizer can actually balance your skin’s oil production. When you moisturize regularly, your skin stays hydrated, and the sebaceous glands do not secrete more sebum.
- Using medication: Some birth control or hormonal pills can interfere with your body’s natural mechanisms and cause excess oil production.
How can I control excess oil on my skin?
Here are some things that can help control excess oil:
- Do not over-wash your face to maintain its natural hydration levels.
- Avoid using harsh tools like exfoliators, rough washcloths, etc.
- Drink enough water and stay hydrated.
- Use a moisturizer - yes, even on oily skin! - all year round.
- If you are on some medication, it may be advised to take a doctor’s opinion on what you can do to keep sebum under control.
- Some studies have shown that certain food products like dairy and sugar can increase sebum production in your body. So, it can help to reduce their intake.
Keep in mind that oil production is entirely natural and can be controlled with simple measures.
What products should I use if I have oily skin?
If you have oily skin, the following products can be added to your skincare routine:
Applying cider vinegar helps minimize the pores and keeps your skin oil-free. It also contains natural antibacterial and antifungal properties. An ACV face wash can be a great way to keep the excess oil in check as it balances your skin’s natural pH level.
Activated charcoal is a natural cleanser suited for oily skin. It can remove excess oil, dirt, and sweat from your pores and unclog them. This paraben-free activated charcoal face wash can remove impurities and soothe your skin.
You can also use a face mask along with the face wash for better results in preventing clogged pores. Just put a thin layer on your face and neck and wash after 15 minutes.
Adding a Vitamin C face wash to your skincare routine can help reduce inflammation caused by acne. It also brightens your skin and helps fight skin aging. The Vitamin C face wash with silicone bristles is mild on the skin and helps with easy application.
Adding this Ayurvedic concoction of chickpea flour, turmeric, and saffron to your skincare routine can help revive dull skin. Chickpea flour also absorbs excess oil from your skin and helps restore its original balance.
The ubtan scrub is a gentle exfoliator that can remove dead cells and clear clogged pores without being harsh on the skin.
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