You drank more water. You even stopped eating chocolate! Yet your forehead is still shiny and your cheeks are painful, bumpy and red. We know how frustrating the oily skin and acne struggle can be. We are here to help.
Read on to discover the perfect minimalist skincare routine to balance your oily skin and reduce the prevalence of acne, using affordable plant-based products that mimic your skin's natural biological processes.
First, things first: the science of oily skin + acne
There are a lot of myths out there around oily skin, enlarged pores and acne, but we’ll stick to the facts.
What are pores? What causes enlarged pores?
Your pores are the tiny dimples in your skin surrounding your tiny facial hairs. They contain sebaceous glands which produce sebum. Contrary to popular opinion, your pores do not open and close. However, they can appear larger if there is excess sebum, dead skin cells or dirt around them.
What causes oily skin?
Oily skin is caused by sebaceous glands (inside your pores) producing excess sebum. Because sebum is an oily substance, when there is a lot of it on the skin, it creates the 'greasy' appearance. Even scientists aren't 100% sure why sebum exists (other than to make people with oily skin miserable) though some have suggested that because the unique lipid composition of sebum reflects the composition of the natural oils between skin cells, it has a biological moisturisation function.
What causes acne?
The most straightforward explanation is that acne occurs when your pores become clogged. Simply put, acne is a pore infection. If impurities (dead skin cells, bacteria, sebum, dirt) enter your pores and clog them, an infection could develop which causes the sore, inflamed bumps we know all too well.
How to treat oily skin and acne with skincare
Now you understand the basic biology behind what causes oily skin and acne, treating it should seem more approachable.
These are the five core principles of your skincare routine: Clean, exfoliate, hydrate, moisturise, nourish.
- CLEAN (remove pore-clogging impurities)
- EXFOLIATE (exfoliate dead skin cells)
- HYDRATE (your skin loves water)
- MOISTURISE (no matter how oily it is, your skin will always need nourishing oils)
- NOURISH (pamper your skin with the nutrients it craves)
Your skin is unique
MyGloww creates customised skincare routines for people who want to gloww. We will formulate a bespoke 5-step routine tailoring the five principles of skincare to your unique skin profile.
Say good bye to wasting your money on products that only end up in the bin because they are not tailored to you. You are unique and your skincare should be too. Acne and oily skin is a different experience for everyone, so your skincare routine should be tailored to you and you alone. No gimmicks, no exaggerated claims, just simple, plant-based ingredients to cleanse, exfoliate, hydrate, moisturise and nourish your skin.
Five-step skincare routine for oily skin and acne
Since we know oily skin and acne are caused by excess sebum and clogged pores, the most important step of your skincare routine is cleaning your skin. Your cleanser should be the first skincare product you reach for, day or night. The best cleansers are gentle on your skin when removing impurities without stripping away your skin’s natural moisture. Your skin should feel soft and supple after you cleanse, rather than feeling dry or tight (a telltale sign of harsh chemical ingredients). Cleanser ingredients should ideally be natural and plant-based and best for stripping away dirt, oil, and sebum that naturally accumulates throughout the day.
Exfoliants are best used immediately before or after your cleanser. Exfoliants are used to remove dead cells from your skin’s surface to reveal smoother and softer skin underneath. Cleansers are the first step to remove impurities, but an exfoliant can go deeper without disrupting your skin’s natural balance.
After you’ve cleansed and exfoliated at night, it’s time to hydrate your skin. Our toners are always formulates with plant waters and Vitamin C to give your skin some nourishment. Make sure your toner works as hard as you do. It should contain antioxidants and other powerful ingredients that help protect your skin’s glow from damage, otherwise you might as well just use tap water!
Moisturisers pretty much do what they say on the tin - they moisturise! (This means they seal in water). This is the essential function of your skin. It seals in the water in your body, preventing dehydration. With oily skin, it's easy to think you do not need to moisturise. You do! Dryness can actually lead to excess sebum if you have oily skin. Don't be afraid of putting too much oil on your face, it is better to use smaller amounts of of a good moisturiser than none at all. A good moisturiser should contain occlusive (water-sealing) ingredients like shea butter and apricot oil, active ingredients known for intense hydration like hyaluronic acid, and retinol for cellular regeneration.
5. Oil serum
Oil serums are the perfect way to deliver essential fatty acids to your skin. Even with oily skin, you still need an oil serum. The superstar plant oil for oily skin is Rosehip oil - light, yet extremely nutrient dense, it can help reduce the impact of bacteria and inflammation without clogging your skin’s pores. If you have oily skin, we will custom formulate a unique oil serum for you (containing rosehip oil) to help balance your skin's oil production.
Take your time
You've probably developed high-level detective skills in the endless quest to pinpoint the root cause of your acne. Understanding the basic biology is a good starting point but it can still take hours of trial and error. Additional reasons for acne can include hormonal changes, stress, a high sugar diet, certain medications, genetics, etc. (the myth about chocolate causing acne has been dispelled, so at least that’s one silver lining!)
Remember to take your time. Be patient with yourself and your skin. Keep following the five principles of good skincare and don't fret if your skin doesn't turn super smooth immediately. Skincare is self-care. Over time you will see an improvement in your skin and your wellbeing.
If your oily skin and acne is causing you distress, consider seeing a dermatologist or speaking to a counsellor.
When you choose to take care of your skin, you choose yourself. You give yourself permission to be put first, you allow yourself to feel good! Acne and oily skin can often be challenging to deal with, but every time you choose to do your skincare routine, you’re becoming more comfortable in your own skin. We'd love to be a part of your self-care journey.