The Men's Skincare and Fragrance Blog since 2011

Be careful when trying to reduce oily skin

Be careful when trying to reduce oily skin

It’s no myth that men’s skin tends to be more oil-prone. This can leave you shiny, blemish ridden and feeling more like a teenager than a man. So many products out there, lining the shelves of department stores and supermarkets promise to reduce shine, reduce oil and leave your skin fresh.

The problem is that most of these products contain whopping amounts of alcohol and other nasties that break down the oil in the skin, dealing with the symptom rather than the cause. They often rebalance the skin to pH neutral rather than pH 5.5, as the skin is slightly acidic – have you ever touched a fresh cut with your finger and it stings from the oil on your hands?

In turn, these products temporarily alleviates shine and excess oil, but the second you stop using these products – it comes back full force – so you associate the oil with not using this product and buy more – locking you into this vicious cycle. It’s the same principle that some anti-dandruff shampoos use, and even cigarettes!

The underlying problem is often dehydration. When the skin lacks water, it tries to overcompensate by producing excess oil. Instead of reducing the oil, add in the water.

The skin is very smart and will try and correct itself more often than not (with simple skin imbalances, anything more severe will always need something specialised – acne, rosacea etc).

So once you’ve got your skin better, using more appropriate products, you might still have a little shine. Some people just do! I’m one of those people and I get it around midday.

So instead of using harsh nasties, alcohols and other stripping products, my favourite new product is the Stay Matte Universal Blotting Powder. It used to be Bobbi Brown’s, which is good, but this lasts longer! It’s very, very lightweight too.

Stay Matte Universal Blotting Powder. £26. Clinique Online.
Stay Matte Universal Blotting Powder. £26. Clinique Online.

Granted, it’s not the most manly packaging, but a few pats of this on the skin, and you’re good to go. Try to use it only on the T-Zone or where you’re most oil rather than all over the skin, otherwise you’ll look a bit ‘makeuppy’.

I also recommend using a powder brush, as particularly when applying to oily skin, those sponges aren’t the most hygienic at all and can cause blemishes after a while. Also be sure to wash your brush regularly.

Face & Body Brush. £16. The Body Shop.
Face & Body Brush. £16. The Body Shop.

Remember that healthy skin is not matte, but should have a healthy, dewy glow.

In brief

  • Don’t strip oil with harsh ingredients. Instead, hydrate first.
  • Make sure you don’t use harsh gel cleansers
  • Use products at a pH of 5.5 (same as the skin – slightly acidic)
  • Use a powder to blot shine when needed
  • Don’t use powders all over, keep the skin looking dewy.

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