If your skin tends to get shiny within a few hours of washing your face and your makeup runs because of excess oil, you probably have oily skin. Though oily skin may be slower to show signs of aging -- which are exacerbated by dry skin -- it's also more prone to breakouts, since all that oil has the potential to clog your pores. Choosing the right face cream can help you prevent pimples and look your best.
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Even oily skin needs moisturizer to help it stay healthy and hydrated. But unless you're in the middle of a harsh winter or live in a place with extreme temperatures, you probably don't need a heavy moisturizing cream, reports the beauty department at "Elle" magazine. Instead, opt for a lightweight lotion to boost daytime moisture, and save heavier moisturizing creams for nighttime cell turnover and skin repair.
In addition to moisturizing ingredients, a good face cream for oily skin should contain added elements to help prevent clogged pores. Look for a cream that contains oil-fighting ingredients such as salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide; pore-minimizing ingredients such as caffeine; or inflammation-soothing ingredients such as niacinamide, recommends dermatologist Doris Day in "Allure" magazine. Using a cream that contains these ingredients will reduce your risk for moisturizer-caused acne.
If you think your face is oily enough not to need to moisturizer, you may be causing more skin problems for yourself. If your skin becomes dehydrated, your sebaceous glands will start pumping up production to compensate, causing your oily skin to become even slicker, explains Leslie Baumann, author of "The Skin Type Solution." The exception to this rule is your nose, which almost never needs moisturizing because of the large number of oil glands in it, says Day in "Allure."
Don't be afraid to change your face cream as the seasons change. You may need a heavier cream to moisturize your skin in January and a lightweight gel or lotion to hydrate your skin in July. If you're getting more breakouts, take your moisturizer down one notch, recommends "Allure" magazine; if you're dealing with dryness, increase one intensity level.
If you're worried about clogged pores from your moisturizer, apply your face cream normally, then pat it lightly with a tissue when you've finished. You'll soak up any excess so that it won't have a chance to clog your pores. If your skin is extra oily, focus on applying cream to your driest parts -- cheeks and the area under your eyes -- and just dab a little onto the rest of your face, recommends "Seventeen" magazine's beauty department.