Oily skin is one of the most common skin types in a tropical, humid country like ours. Add in excessive heat during most months of the year, overwhelming pollution and unparalleled UV damage, it damages your skin a lot more than you might think. Oily skin refers to the production of excess sebum over and over again on the top layer (epidermis) of your skin, resulting in a shiny oil film all day long. If you can see sebum on your skin within an hour of cleaning your skin, you have oily skin. Since oily skin can invite many unwanted guests like acne, blackheads, melting makeup and more, it is always subject to a list of tips and tricks. But are they really worth following? In most cases not, which is why we debunk 5 myths about oily skin you need to stop believing.
Myth 1: Oily skin doesn’t need to be hydrated
This is one of the most common myths that you should stop following RN. Every skin needs to be hydrated, no matter what. Read that again. Oily skin can also become dehydrated, which is why using a moisturizer specifically designed for this type of skin will be ideal. “The key to treating oily skin is to hydrate it without adding extra oil from other products. Your skin would become dehydrated if there was no moisture and would start to overcompensate by producing more sebum. Choose a lightweight moisturizer that won’t clog your pores, ”says Dr. Niketa Sonavane, famous dermatologist and founder of Ambrosia Aesthetics, Mumbai. Choose a light, oil-free, non-comedogenic moisturizer.
Myth 2: Oily skin is a reflection of an unhealthy (fatty) diet
While what we eat plays a central role in determining our overall health, the appearance of oily skin is not stimulated by an oily and unhealthy diet. Yes, it can make it worse, but there are other things like genetics and environmental conditions that need to be taken into account as well. “There are many factors that can contribute to your oily skin, from your genes to your hormones to your environment; a lot of things can impact the condition of your skin. Poor food choices can also make your skin condition worse, ”says Dr. Sonavane.
Myth 3: Regular exfoliation helps control sebum production
Want to unclog your pores and get all that dirt out of them? We understood. But nothing is good when you overdo it. It is believed that oily skin types require more exfoliation than other skin types, but that doesn’t mean every day. You can damage your sebaceous glands, causing more oil to be produced than before. Likewise, you can limit washing your face with a cleanser to twice a day, to avoid removing natural oils and drying out the skin. “Exfoliating oily skin can help keep pimples, blackheads and clogged pores at bay. But keep in mind that even oily skin can turn red and itchy if you use too much exfoliator, which can lead to increased fat, ”warns Dr. Sonavane.
Myth 4: SPF makes oily skin more oily
No, oily skin is not resistant to sun damage, which is why wearing an SPF is a non-negotiable deal. Like any other skin type, oily skin is also susceptible to sun damage, and sunscreen is your only protector. Use a gel-based or mattifying sunscreen that does not leave a white streak or oily film while ensuring that your skin is protected from the harmful effects of the sun.
Myth 5: oily skin has acne
Oily skin is one of the contributing factors to acne as sebum clogs pores and traps oils in dirt, grime, and dead skin that can stimulate acne. But, it is not the only one. If you suddenly experience a multitude of rashes, you may want to visit a dermatosis and look for an underlying condition. Plus, the right mix of ingredients and skin care practices can help keep acne at bay.
Also read: Editor’s Pick: 5 Lightweight Moisturizers That Won’t Clog Your Pores