Does your skin shine instead of glow? You may have overactive sebaceous glands. They play an important role in maintaining your moisture barrier, but too much oil leads to bacterial infections, acne, and unpleasantly slick skin. Fortunately, you can do a lot to treat this condition on your own.
Wash Your Face the Smart Way
When you have a lot of oil on your face, your knee-jerk reaction is to scrub it off. You may actually be making the problem worse, however, through your cleansing habits. Wash your face very, very gently, and try to only wash using warm water. Roughing up the surface of your face actually promotes sebum generation. Your skin sees the excessive exfoliation as a threat to your moisture barrier, and the extra sebum is meant to help soothe the damage. Loofahs and rough wash clothes create the same problems. Remember, exfoliation removes dead skin. It does nothing to stop oily skin.
Pay attention to what kind of cleanser you use, too. Anything with added fragrances or moisturizers may trigger more sebum secretions. Particularly harsh chemicals that dry out the skin also lead to – you guessed it – more sebum. Make things gentle, and keep your products simple.
Dry with Care
Remember what we just said about rough washcloths causing more problems? The same is true of towels. Rubbing anything against your face is a bad idea, and towels are actually a lot rougher than you probably realize. They exfoliate very well, and when you have an excess sebum problem, unnecessary exfoliation is a very, very bad thing. The solution is pretty simple. Use the softest towels you can, and pat your face dry. Just act like you’re blotting away the water.
Try a Toner
A toner cleans your skin in a different way than a cleanser can. The right product can help remove excess sebum without creating the kind of irritation that leads to even more oil. Choose carefully, though. Harsh chemicals, such as the alcohol found in many regular toners, only irritate skin. Natural alternatives like witch hazel may work as an anti-inflammatory. This gentle cleaning helps you get rid of the oil and soothe the irritation that may be partially responsible for your condition.
Look for a Moisturizer with Aloe
Moisturizing seems counter intuitive when there’s too much oil on your face. As we’ve established, many cases of excess sebum stem from irritation and dryness. Using a moisturizer with at least ten percent aloe can help solve underlying issues that cause oily skin. Aloe is more than a great moisturizer. It’s a powerful healing agent, too. Adding it to your skincare routine may be help you take a big step towards less oily skin. Again, beware of any products containing alcohol. Alcohol can undo all the good work the aloe provides.
Your skincare routine is powerful. A few simple changes can help your skin heal, calming your sebaceous glands for a complexion with more glow and less shine. Be gentle, be smart, and check the ingredient lists of all your skincare products.
About the Author
Jessica Houghton is a skincare specialist at B22 Health, where beauty experts and health professionals unite to discover the secrets to youthful, radiant, skin