All skin has oil in it. The oil comes from the sebaceous gland under the skin's pores. The sebaceous gland produces a natural oil - sebum. It's what keeps skin healthy and hydrated. When your skin constantly looks shiny, it's because the sebaceous gland is producing too much oil. Oily skin doesn't have to be a problem but your first have to identify why your skin is producing too much sebum.
Age - younger skin may produce more oil. As you age you may outgrow this. As skin ages it loses proteins - collagen - and the sebaceous gland begins producing less oil. This is why younger skin tends to have acne more often. The sebum mixes with the dead skin and clogs your pores. There is, however, a benefit too: oily skin does not usually show signs of aging as soon as those with drier skin.
Genetics - if you parent had active sebaceous glands, it's likely you will too.
Your Environment - if you live in a hot, humid climate your more likely to have oily skin, especially in the summer. If this is your problem, you may need to have different skin care routines for summer and winter. Using a matte foundation will also help as it soaks up excess oils.
Large Pores - whether natural or due to age or previous acne or even weight fluctuations, these can also produce more oil. Blotting oily areas throughout the day can help.
Using Incorrect Skin Care products. If you think your skin is a combination skin instead of oily, you may be using creams that are too heavy. While a heavier cream or moisturizer may work in fall and winter, you may need to change to more lightweight products for spring & summer.
Over-cleansing or excessive exfoliation can also make your skin more oily. When you strip away too much of the sebum, the sebaceous gland will go into overdrive, producing even more oil. Even very oily skin only needs to be washed twice a day.
Thinking your oily skin doesn't need a moisturizer. It's simply not true, especially when you are using acne treatments like salicylic acid. Instead of not using a moisturizer, select a lightweight, water-based product. The key is to cleanse, tone and then moisturize.
There are some steps you can take to minimize oily skin:
- Wash your face every morning and evening using a gentle, foaming cleanser that is labeled "oil free" and "noncomedogenic" so your pores are unclogged. That means making sure you remove all make-up too.
- Moisturize every day with a product that contains an SPF of 30 or higher. Your sebaceous gland will produce more oil as the sun dries out the skin.
- Use make-up that is oil-free, water based.
- Use blotting papers throughout the day, pressing one gently against your face and leave in placed for a few seconds to absorb the oil. If you rub with the paper it will only spread the oil to other areas.
- Avoid touching your face. This only spreads dirt and oils from your hands to your face.