Could Facial Oils Help Cure/ Control Acne & Acne Scarring?
It feels wrong doesn’t it? Using oil on blemishes? Layering oil onto oil?
Well, let me tell you a little about the way your skin works and (hopefully) convince you that oils can actually work wonders for your acne.
Your skin’s upper layers are made up predominantly of ceramides, cholesterol and fatty acids. There’s not much water left in cells by the time they reach the surface, which is why we need exfoliation to get rid of the dry, crusty upper layers.
Your skin cells need protection, so the skin produces oils. These oils are integral to skin health as they hydrate, protect and help the skin’s natural functions to, well, function! If you strip the skin of these natural oils, the body’s going to go ahead and create more of them.
Ever heard of P. Acnes?
Speed-explanation: It’s a specific form of bacteria that is naturally present on most people’s skin but in abundance in those of us suffering from acne. It lives in your pores and follicles, it feeds on sebum and ‘cellular debris’. It causes inflammation and cysts. If your skin is producing more sebum, YAY for P.Acnes – it’s like a 24/7 buffet!
If a pore becomes blocked with ‘cellular debris’, EVEN BETTER for P. Acnes because it’s anaerobic (meaning it doesn’t need oxygen to survive… and in fact dies when oxygen is present) so without an open pore, it goes on the rampage!
P. Acnes (the acne-forming bacteria) needs certain things to survive: Sebum, Clogged Pores, Reduced access to oxygen.
Using oils on the skin that are very close in structure to the skin’s natural oils (Linoleic Acids) can do a few things to the skin:
- Hydrate the upper levels, meaning less dry, flaky ‘cellular debris’ is available to P.Acnes to feed on
- Protect the upper levels, meaning less external bacteria can enter the skin
- Regulate sebum production, meaning less for P.Acnes to feed on
- Calm & soothe inflamed skin, meaning acne spots, cysts, blemishes or scars appearance is reduced (and your skin becomes a lot more comfortable)
So which products should you be using?
I always double cleanse to ensure I’ve removed all traces of makeup and grime. I use Dermalogica’s Precleanse for my first cleanse (UPDATE: Or their new Pre-Cleanse Balm which is just divine!). It also removes waterproof mascara. Bonus!
Back to Dermalogica and their fabulous Photo Replenish Oil – this is my nighttime fave as I feel it really deep-down hydrates.
Go To’s Face Hero is also a fave. It is lightweight, radiance-inducing and super anti-inflammatory which is a BIG bonus in my book.
The Jojoba Company also has a fabulous lightweight oil that works wonders for calming and soothing skin.
If you’re on the look out for oils and want to know which are the best for acne-prone skin, look out for Safflower, Grapeseed (a fave!!), Jojoba and Rosehip (although I find this one a little heavy on my skin).
So, what are you waiting for? Go grab an oil!