Oil Slick: Caring For Oily Skin



Oily skin appears excessively thick and dull colored, usually with coarse pores and pimples. This is because the oil glands of the skin are overactive and oil builds up in the skin, making it prone to the formation of blackheads. A greasy shine of the excess of oil characterizes oily skin. Overall, the skin appears coarse. Many people do not have oily skin but combination skin, meaning oily in some areas but dry or just normal in others. While oily skin has its disadvantages, it has the main advantage that it ages slower than other skin types.

Like dry skin, genetic causes are at play in the case of oily skin. Other factors contributing to the development of oily conditions of skin include: diet, hormones, cosmetics, pregnancy (in case of women), contraceptives, and environmental conditions like a hot and humid climate. Since high levels of hormones, especially testosterone, make the oil glands over active, oily skin is more frequently seen in teenage years. The same reason accounts for oily skin condition in women who are pregnant or in menopause.

Regular cleansing with hot water and soap is needed to prevent oil build up and clogging of skin pores. However, take care not to use harsh soaps and other products that make your skin dry. If you use dehydrating products on the skin, the upper layer goes dry and shrinks, resulting in obstruction in the flow of oil through the pores. The result is clogging of the pores.

Wash the skin with hot water (but not burning hot) rather than tepid water. Hot water dissolves the oil better. Do not use cleansing creams. Go for an antibacterial cleansing lotion or a mild medicated soap. After cleansing, treat the skin with a natural oil-free moisturizer.

If your skin is too oily and you are younger than 30 years of age, you should do four cleansings daily and should use little or no moisturizer after cleansing. Use your fingertips to massage your face well during the cleansing.

A clay or mud mask can help bring the oily condition of the skin to normal. For sensitive skin, white or rose-colored clays are better as a mask. Women, before wearing make up, may use an antiseptic day cream that reduces the activity of oil glands.

Diets rich in protein but lacking sugar, fluids, and salt is recommended for oily skin conditions. Vegetables and fruits are a must; especially important being foods that are rich in vitamin B2. These include whole grains, beans, nuts, and royal jelly. Use minimum oil in your diet and abstain from alcohol, soft drinks, sugary drinks, chocolate and other junk food. Talk to you doctor for more help with oily skin problems.


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