If your skin looks greasy even after washing your face, then it’s pretty likely you have oily skin. Oily skin needs a little bit of extra care because it tends to develop acne easily. Living with greasy skin can be uncomfortable, too, particularly when it’s hot.
On the other hand, having oily skin isn’t all bad. Compared to different skin types, it ages slowly. You’re guaranteed to age better than your friends who don’t have oily skin, and the disadvantages can be managed. Relax.
Why Does My Skin Get Oily?
Sebaceous glands located under the skin secrete sebum, a type of natural oil. This is a natural process and vital for your skin’s protection. It’s when the sebaceous glands work overtime that your skin gets oily.
High levels of DHT (dihydrotestosterone) contribute to oily skin. While this hormone is essential for masculine development, too much of it forces your sebaceous glands to produce more oil than necessary.
Other causes are genetics, climate changes, and enlarged skin pores. Some kinds of food may make your skin oily too, but you might have to check with a dietician or a dermatologist to find out which food is the culprit. Processed, fried, or excessively salty food, dairy products, and alcohol intake can also cause oily skin.
How Do I Manage Oily Skin?
1. Use the Right Product
Whether it’s soaps, cleansers or moisturizers, make sure they are made using mild, all-natural ingredients. Most products will specify what skin type they are suited for. If not, look for oil-free cleansers to balance the pH level of your skin. Cleansers with tea tree oil or peppermint oil have antibacterial properties that help soothe oily skin. Ensure that you use only men’s grooming products.
2. Limit Face Washing
You might be tempted to scrub the grease off as soon as you feel it. Don’t. No matter how many times you wash your face, you’ll still feel that layer of slick. That’s because frequent washing irritates your skin, which pumps up oil production. If you’re splashing your face to remove a product that you’ve put on, that won’t hurt, but try to limit washing your face to once or twice a day.
3. Ditch the Handkerchief
You might feel like wiping away the excess oil with a handkerchief, but this will only irritate your skin further. Wipes are oily skin’s new best friend. They’re soft on the skin and do a great job of absorbing oil from your face. Remember to pat and not rub your face with them - it might take some practice, but this will take care of the greasiness.
Look out for wipes that double up as cleansing agents: they’re excellent for oily skin. Most wipes now come in handy packs, which you can carry with you everywhere.
Exfoliation breathes new energy into oily skin. It removes dead skin cells, which help to keep your skin young and healthy. Regular exfoliation also prevents bacteria build-up and unclogs pores. Don’t take the word ‘scrub’ literally; in fact, be as gentle as you can because irritated skin will respond with more oil production. Try to find a men’s scrub suited for oily skin, but don’t despair if you can’t - a scrub with natural ingredients will be as effective. Exfoliating all that grime and slick away is a wonderfully satisfying experience, but make sure you do it only once or twice a week.
5. Tone It Down
A toner helps soothe the skin immediately after shaving or cleansing it. It helps to maintain the pH balance of your skin, preventing any extra oil secretion. Pat a few drops on your skin, and you’re done. Remember to choose a mild, all-natural toner that doesn’t contain any alcohol-based ingredients.
6. Moisturise, Moisturise, Moisturise
Surprise! Every skin type needs hydration, particularly oily skin. If this feels new, just follow the Cleansing-Toning-Moisturising sequence. Buy an oil-free, mattifying moisturizer which is light on your face. Make sure to apply a little bit, just enough to ensure hydration. A light moisturizer penetrates the skin easily, enabling oil control and enriching it with nutrients. It doesn’t clog your pores, and what’s more, it prevents aging too.
7. Mask That Face
Face masks are the new trend in men’s grooming products. Ricky Martin is believed to be a fan of face masks (and it shows, too). A good face mask not only removes excess oil but also enlivens your skin with antioxidants, keeping it healthier, younger, and nourished.
8. No Alcohol
… in your shaving cream or aftershave lotion. They wreak havoc with oily skin. Look out for menthol too - it will dry your skin out and stimulate oil production. The men’s grooming aisle in most supermarkets today is full of great products for different skin types. Natural products are gaining popularity, so you can easily find products that are alcohol and chemical-free.
9. What Goes In, Shows
Everyone knows the basics of a healthy diet. You can be using the best products, but if your diet isn’t right, it’ll show on your face. Oily and processed foods should be avoided. Keep yourself hydrated at all times.
Remember...well-hydrated skin doesn’t produce excess oil. (Why not drink a glass of water while you’re reading this?)
Oily skin is an uncomfortable situation, but with smart management and a regular skincare routine, it can be controlled. Investing your time and effort in good skin care will go a long way in helping you feel confident and at ease with who you are.