About 10 years back I would have seriously laughed at an article like this one. Best oils for acne-prone skin indeed! But life changed and times changed and so did my views on skincare.
My views on skincare did change really drastically. And I used the word drastic as most of the things I believed were good for skin, I now believe are really bad for the skin. For example, I thought that benzoyl peroxide was good for my acne. Today I won’t bring it anywhere near my skin even if I have a really bad breakout. And I urge you to do the same as well.
The reverse holds true as well. What I believed was bad for the skin, I now know is good for me. These are not just pie in the sky thoughts! I have actually used them and seen what benefit they have had on my skin. Along the way, I figured out that what doctors or various article on the internet were saying, was not really helpful. One example of this would be oil.
Over the past 5-6 years, I have gone from being extremely nervous about oil – whether the oil in my skin or one that I would apply on my skin – to using nothing else but oil at times.
It all started one day when my skin was so dry and parchment-like from using a face wash. I just stopped and decided to do the Oil Cleansing Method or OCM. I did absolutely no research at that very moment and just did it as it felt completely right. The change was almost immediate. My skin stopped fighting with me and calmed down. It felt better and looked less red and irritated.
From that day I have never looked back. My theory is that if something works, it works. No matter what my dermatologist was saying, her benzoyl peroxide and antibiotics were just not cutting it any more. I have no doubt she was doing the best she could. But her best was not good enough for my skin.
In spite of all the negative opinions about oil and how it can clog pores, I have never experienced anything like it. And I have the most acne-prone and sensitive skin ever. I get red even if you just look at me too much! I even use coconut oil which is supposed to be the most comedogenic and nothing has happened to my skin.
So I am not going to complicate things but just give you a few oils you can start out with. But before we get started I want to tell you why these oils would be good for your skin and especially when you have acne. After all, what I am telling you might be contrary to everything you have heard about using oils when you have acne.
How Do Oils Help With Acne
When you suffer from acne, your skin is deficient in an essential fatty acid. This fatty acid is linoleic fatty acid which is an omega-6 essential fatty acid. Studies have shown that people with acne have low levels of linoleic fatty acid in their skin. When your skin lacks linoleic fatty acids, it produces more oil or sebum. This excess sebum is thick and sticky. It also produces an excess of oleic fatty acid. An imbalance like this in your skin leads to oily skin and acne breakouts. The substance that clogs your pores to create acne is mostly composed of oleic acid.
This imbalance can be corrected both internally and externally. A dietary supplement of omega-3 can help correct this imbalance internally. However, that is a topic for another day. In this article, we’ll look at oils which will help correct this imbalance. Studies have shown that topical application of linoleic fatty acid over a period of 4 – 6 weeks reduces the size of acne. It also prevents new acne from forming. So applying oils that have a higher percentage of linoleic fatty acids as compared to oleic fatty acids helps to restore this imbalance in the skin, leading to healthier and clearer skin with no acne.
So just to be clear when you have acne or oily skin, you should use oils that have a higher percentage of linoleic acid. These oils which have a higher concentration of linoleic essential fatty acid are the best oils for acne prone skin.
If your skin is dry you need oils with a higher percentage of oleic fatty acids.
The following oils are high in linoleic fatty acids and are the best oils for acne prone skin
- Rosehip Oil
- Evening Primrose Oil
- Grapeseed Oil
- Hemp Seed Oil
- Black Cumin Seed Oil
- Safflower Oil
- Borage Seed Oil
- Pumpkin Seed Oil
- Wheat Germ Oil
How to Use These Oils
These oils are best used at night. This allows them to be on your face for at least 8 hours while you have a good night’s sleep. Also linoleic acid is not very stable in the presence of light, so it is better to use these oils at night.
Now, as I always say, DO NOT use these oils if you have cystic acne. Wait for the acne to heal. You can try some of the methods listed in this article to heal cystic acne. If you are confused about which oil to start with, I strongly suggest you start with rosehip oil. This oil is light and is great for acne scars as well.
Follow the steps below when using the oil
- Wash your face as normal
- Pat dry
- Apply a pea-sized amount of pure aloe vera gel on your face and massage well into your skin. This provides extra hydration to your skin.
- Wait for a minute. While waiting take 3-4 drops of your chosen oil into your palm
- With the tip of your index finger dot the oil all over your face and neck.
- Massage the oil gently into your skin with your fingertips
- You can use a moisturiser at this point if you want. This is totally up to you.
You need to use any of these oils for at least a month to see some changes in your skin. All natural remedies work with your skin to heal it and they take time. This way is gentle on your skin.
Ointments like benzoyl peroxide just overpower your skin and go to war with it. And while they might work in the short term, your skin gets damaged and the acne does not really go away.
Let me know in the comments if you use any of these oils and how it has worked for you. If this article has convinced you to start using oils let me know how your experience is.