I never thought that a beauty product could change my life. Backpacking Southeast Asia? Yup. Falling in love? Definitely. Adding oils to my beauty routine? O-M-G, where do I even begin?
I grew up with a mother who was fascinated by naturopathy and was perpetually crafting her own toxin-free beauty products. She specialized in skincare and would always make small-batch products to give to her clients. I watched her clientele grow from the hundreds to thousands and noticed that they weren’t just loyal to her services; they were obsessed with her handmade products! As a teenager, I was blinded by media and advertising and never realized that I kept reaching for beautifully packaged toxins when more natural, effective, luxurious goods were right in my mother’s workshop.
My journey with natural cosmetics began with facial oils. Before Josie Maran, Sunday Riley and Linda Rodin became household names, I had in my possession a custom blend of argan, tea tree and rosehip oils (concocted by Mama) which dramatically changed my life. At seventeen, my complexion was riddled with breakouts. It was only after adding this oil blend to my routine did I start to see a change in the look and feel of my skin. No amount of ProActiv, Clinique, salicylic acid or Retin-A helped me the way that these oils did. As the months passed, I saw a lightening of acne scars and a general glow that was always present on my cheekbones. I became a believer and have not been without these miracle workers since.
Facial oils (or serums) are formulas made entirely of natural oils. They can be single plant-based oils, such as argan or avocado, or a blend of different carrier and essential oils. When searching for an oil, be sure to look out for buzz words such as cold-pressed, extra virgin and unrefined as these will bring the most benefits.
Whatever your skin concern is, it can be resolved with oils. Those with oily, acne-prone skin may shudder at the thought of slathering oil on their face, but contrary to this fear, oils can actually help blemishes! Oils alone will not cause blemishes. Blemishes are caused by different factors including hormones, bacteria, dead skin cells and stress. Simply put, facial oils will help dissolve the oil that has hardened with impurities, clogged within your pores and rebalance the sebum production on your skin.
Also, oils are actually more effective at hydrating than a conventional moisturizer. Despite their slick texture, plant-based oils absorb fairly quickly and they’re exceptionally nourishing. Different oils will have different benefits, ranging from emollient to antioxidant properties. In the following paragraphs, I will discuss these in more detail.
"Oil dissolves oil. One of the most basic principles of chemistry is that “like dissolves like.” The best way to dissolve a non-polar solvent like sebum/oil, is by using another non-polar solvent similar in composition: Other oils. By using the right oils, you can cleanse your pores of dirt and bacteria naturally, gently and effectively, while replacing the dirty oil with beneficial ones extracted from natural botanicals, vegetables and fruit that heal, protect and nourish your skin. When done properly and consistently, the OCM can clear the skin from issues like oily skin, dry skin, sensitive skin, blackheads, whiteheads and other problems caused by mild to moderate acne–while leaving your skin healthy, balanced and properly moisturized." - Wellness Mama
This oil is extracted from the kernels of the Moroccan argan tree, and is chock-full of fatty acids, antioxidants, and vitamin E, which give it serious moisturizing and restorative powers. It's great for more than just skin, but hair and nails, too.
Try: Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil, $50
Derived from one of our favorite and sweetest smelling flowers, this oil is packed with vitamin C and vitamin A. The latter can have a natural retinol-like effect, which means it stimulates rapid cell turnover while protecting your skin from environmental damage.
Try: Kosmea Pure Rosehip Oil, $40
This oil is extracted from the marula fruit of Southern Africa and contains four times more vitamin C than an orange. The antioxidants help fight off harmful free radicals that cause visible signs of aging, and enhance the skin’s natural healing process to reduce discoloration from sun damage and aging.
Try: African Botanics Marula Oil, $120
The oils derived from these seeds are rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, and are especially effective in the fight against acne. Applying these oils on the skin actually helps to minimize your own oil production.
Try: Wild Products Jojoba Oil, $43
Blends are great if you're looking for an addition to your everyday beauty routine. They can add an extra boost of nourishment to give your skin a wonderful glow and improve elasticity to keep wrinkles at bay.
Try: Page Ashbury Perfecting Serum, $25
Comments will be approved before showing up.