May 17, 2022
During colder months, face oils are highly praised for their ability in moisturizing the skin and bringing out that lit-from-within glow. Yet during spring and summer, these nutrient-rich oils often get put away, due to the fear of extra oiliness. So the question is, should you part ways with your oil until next winter?
The answer is, no. You just need to learn how to use them.
The outermost layer of the skin, aka stratum corneum, is made up of ceramide, cholesterol and saturated fatty acids. Together they create a water-impermeable, protective layer to prevent excessive water loss due to evaporation as well as a barrier against the entry of bacteria. However, the levels of these lipids decline with age; as a result, upper layers of the skin become thinner, the skin is more prone to dryness, dullness and conditions such as eczema and psoriasis, whilst fine lines and wrinkles become more prominent.
Worse yet, a lot of things can damage the lipid barrier——changes in temperature and humidity, constant rubbing of face masks against the face, face scrubs, foaming cleansers, face picking, inappropriate use of skincare products, pollutants and irritants, UV exposure, and so on.
By adding in an oil and replenish the lost lipids, not only will the skin feel hydrated, the skin will also be able to fortify itself, retain optimal moisture, and maintain a healthier, stronger barrier to effectively improve skin issues such as dryness, eczema, irritations, oiliness and wrinkles.
In addition, the constant air-conditioning and hot air can actually dry your skin out; and when the skin feels dry, it produces more oil to compensate, leading to extra oiliness. In fact, the right combination of oils can actually help stabilize and regulate the skin's sebum production, as well as reset the skin’s water-oil balance, which in turn, will help curb excessive oiliness even for oily skin and dehydrated skin.
Moreover, our skin gets attacked by free radicals day in and day out due to sunshine, radiation and pollution. The high concentration of various antioxidants and vitamins in oils can help prevent and reverse free radical damages, thereby slowing the aging process.
Last but not least, face oils can go through the intercellular matrix or through the follicular route, unlike water-based ingredients that can only take the intracellular route. They also have a much smaller molecular size. This is exactly why face oils of any kind have a much higher chance of absorbing into skin versus water-based serums or moisturizers, and deliver a wide array of nutrients, including phytonutrients, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that are essential to keep the skin young and healthy, deep into the skin. Some oils also have incredible soothing, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and anti-irritation properties.
Unseasonal Kind Lipid Replenishment Oil <- Click to shop
1) For Daily Moisture & Barrier Repair
Not only does our skin gets drier as we age, air-conditioning inside and hot air outside can damage the skin barrier. Skin with a damaged barrier is like a dam with a damaged gate, as it will keep losing water no matter how much hydration is given unless the barrier is repaired. It will also lose the ability to act as a barrier against the entry of bacteria, irritants and pollutants. All these result in dryness, eczema, irritations, oiliness and wrinkles.
This is where face oils come in——to replace the lost lipids, moisturize the cells deep down, and repair the skin barrier.
The truth is, you don’t need a lot of oils to achieve skin benefits. One to two drops during the day, and three to four drops at night are plentiful during summer. You may also consider using it only at night, alone after serums, or under a light hydrator or moisturizer.
Remember, apply it on damp skin. And once applied, spritz or pat some toner on top. Not only will this help with penetration, it will also remove any heaviness, leaving you with only glowy, hydrated skin.
holi(oil) Ageless Face Serum <- Click to shop
2) For Soothing Redness & Sensitivity
Most irritated skin have one thing in common——a damaged lipid barrier. When the barrier is damaged, the skin’s water retention function and its ability to resist bacteria and other external factors will decline, resulting in skin that is prone to sensitivity, and other issues like acne, inflammations, and aging. As the barrier is made up of ceramides, cholesterol and saturated fatty acids, and our level of sebum inevitably declines with age, it is vital to replenish the skin with lipids so that it can fortify and repair the barrier.
Why a face oil and not a moisturizer? A face oil is better than a moisturizer in the sense that it doesn’t contain occlusives ingredients such as lanolin, shea butter, beeswax or mineral oil. These ingredients essentially create a physical layer on the skin to seal it off to prevent water loss, but they will also trap sweat, excess sebum, dirt, bacteria, allergens, etc. in the skin, and create an oxygen-free environment that bacteria love, and kill off ‘friendly’ bacteria that keep skin healthy, resulting in prolonged irritations, clogged pores and acne.
In addition, many face oils contain soothing, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and anti-irritation properties, so they will help soothe the skin and take down redness quickly.
Serum Bioluminelle™ <- Click to shop
3) For SOS Help With Drying & Peeling
Sometimes, or skin can suddenly turn ultra dry and start to peel or crack. Flaky skin and acne scabs can also make foundation look patchy and uneven.
For ultra dry, cracking skin, here’s a trick, which combines 2 techniques from dermatologists:
You must be asking why heat the paper mask up or cool it in the fridge, and why layer it ON TOP of toner, eye serum, serum(s) and oil. Right?
First of all, heat is known to increase skin permeability, which results in better absorption of the skincare products you just put on to reach deeper into the layers of the skin. Also, at this level, the heat will relax the muscles and expand blood vessels to increase blood flow circulation, allowing oxygen and nutrients to be delivered to targeted areas for cell repair and regeneration. Just don’t heat up products in the bottle though, as it’s not good for stability.
On the other hand, when the skin is inflamed, using a cooled paper mask can help constrict the blood vessels, reduce redness, and calm inflammatory reactions.
As for flaky skin and acne scabs, try this:
MARIE REYNOLDS LONDON
Elixir™ <- Click to shop
Marie Reynolds London
Microfibre Mitt <- Click to shop
4) For Massaging to Achieve Glowy, Ageless Skin
When we feel stressed or tired, we hold a lot of tension in our faces, especially around our forehead, eye area and around the mouth. This can cause wrinkles over time. Whilst, environmental pollution can cause toxins to build-up within our skin, contributing to fine lines, puffiness, and breakouts, and bad circulation can lead to dullness, lacklustre complexion, puffiness, and aging.
By doing a facial massage, tensions and toxins are released, and blood circulation is stimulated. This helps deflate puffiness, evens skin skin tone, detoxify the skin, and reduce acne. Moreover, the additional oxygen and blood (which contains essential nutrients) sent to the skin equals increased collagen production and cell growth, resulting in a smooth, glowing complexion with less wrinkles.
To do a proper facial massage, it is best to put on a layer of face oil first, as face oils provide just the right amount of slip needed for a facial massage given their silky texture. Without it, tools like gua sha or jade roller, or even your fingers, can tug the skin, and end up causing wrinkles down the line.
Massaging with a face oil can also deliver the nutrients to every corner of the skin, and help it penetrate the skin better. Skin is thus more radiant, supple, and ageless.
LILOU Radiant Hydra Balm <- Click to shop
5) For Long-Lasting, Glowy Foundation
As mentioned above, air-conditioning and hot air can dry out the skin and your foundation, which causes makeup to crack and look patchy, and dry, fine lines to appear under foundation. Whilst, when the skin gets too dry, it produces more oil to compensate, which then ends up melting off your makeup.
This can be prevented by incorporating a face oil during the skincare step. (Unless the foundation is very drying, it is actually best to avoid mixing face oil with foundation, as it could accelerate the breakdown of your foundation.)
Here's the best way to do it:
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