Treatment for an Oily Face

Cheerful woman cleaning face cotton pads bathroom
The right skin care can help you minimize breakouts. (Image: CandyBoxImages/iStock/Getty Images)

Some people deal with oily skin every day; others only notice extra shine when the temperatures outside heat up. Whether you're dealing with summer skin or year-round oil, finding a treatment for an oily face can keep breakouts to a minimum and prevent that telltale shine from announcing your skin problems to the rest of the world.


If you want to treat an oily face, the first step is to make sure you're dealing with oily skin. According to "Real Simple" magazine's beauty department, you can recognize oily skin by its tendency to shine within a few hours of washing. You may also have more breakouts and bigger-than-average pores. If you notice these indications only show up on parts of your face -- like your forehead, nose and chin - -you may have combination skin rather than oily skin.


Treatment for oily skin needs to address a few different issues. First, it needs to clean out your pores so that excess oil doesn't trap pimple-causing dirt and residue in them. At the same time, it's important to mop up excess oil so that it doesn't clog pores or make your skin shiny. And like all skin, oily skin needs hydration and protection from sun damage.


To clean out pores, opt for a cleanser that contains a low percentage of salicylic acid or alpha hydroxy acids, and don't wash your skin more than once a day, recommends "Real Simple." Use a gentle, nonalcohol toner or blotting papers to soak up excess oil during the day, recommends "Elle" magazine. Opt for a lightweight moisturizing lotion instead of heavy cream, and blot it with a tissue to make sure your skin isn't greasy, recommends makeup artist Angela Levin in "Elle." And choose an oil-free sunscreen to protect your skin without clogging your pores, recommends Leslie Baumann, the author of "The Skin Type Solution."


Be wary of using too-harsh acne-fighting treatments if you only have occasional breakouts, warns dermatologist Howard Murad. Unless you're a teenager dealing with hormonal breakouts, high concentrations of benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid can strip your skin's natural oils, forcing your sebaceous glands to produce even more oil to compensate for the damage.

Expert Insight

If your face is super shiny when you wake up, it might be because your nighttime hormone levels are causing your skin's sebaceous glands to pump up production while you're sleeping. To combat the problem, use an oil-fighting treatment that works all night such as Vichy Normaderm Night.

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