Beauty School – Oily Skin

Knowledge is power.  Behold….a new blog series called: Beauty School.  Since this is a beauty (and sometimes lifestyle) blog, I’ve decided to start doing more informative beauty-related blog posts for my readers.  Let me add that I do not have a Masters Degree in everything beauty-related, I don’t know everything there is to know about everything.  But I like to do a lot of research and ask experts what their opinions are with regards to a certain subject.  In the first few posts of this new series we’ll be discussing various skin types i.e. how to know, once and for all, what skin type you have.  The reason why I am starting with skin types is because it kind of ties in with the Garnier campaign.  No use in spending money on beauty products that will do absolutely nothing for your skin.

I have already done an in-depth review of the Garnier Miracle Skin Perfector BB cream for combo-oily skin, to check it out click here.  I will be doing a review on the Garnier Miracle Skin Perfector BB cream for normal (or dry) skin in a couple of weeks and by that time I would have covered the 5 basic skin types in this series.  So by beginning of January you will know what types of products you should be using for your skin type (whether it’s the Garnier BB creams or any other beauty products).  I am by no means saying everyone who has normal skin MUST use the original Garnier BB cream and everyone who has oily skin MUST use the Garnier BB cream suited for combo skin.  I just thought it would be nice if I could help you guys choose the best solutions for your skin type.

To start off, there are 5 basic skin types: Oily, Normal, Combination, Sensitive and Dry. Your skin type is determined by how much (or how little) oil your skin produces.  Genes, stress levels, diet, hormonal fluctuations, medication and even your current skincare regimen all determine how much oil your skin produces.

The Test

Here’s a quick test you can do to determine which skin type you have:  Cleanse your face at night but don’t apply any skin care products after cleansing the skin (no toners, serums, moisturisers, eye creams) and make sure you sleep without air-conditioning on.  When you wake up in the morning, pat your face with a tissue, the result will tell you which skin type you have.  If you have oily skin, the tissue will have facial oil on it corresponding to where your forehead, nose and cheeks touched it.

Oily skin is usually shiny and results in enlarged pores, blackheads and acne due to the overproduction of the sebaceous (oil-producing) glands.  The good thing about oily skin is it ages better than other skin types because the oils keep the skin plump allowing fewer wrinkles to form.  Many young women have combination or oily skin but as they age, they may find their skin becomes more dry.

Causes Of Oily Skin

Oily skin is caused by overactive sebaceous (oil) glands.  Heat and humidity will increase sebum production, which is why oily girls suffer more in the hot Summer months.

How To Take Care Of Oily Skin

♥  Wash with a cleanser formulated for oily skin.  Lots of skin care specialists recommend cleansing your skin at night and only rinsing off with warm water in the morning so you don’t over-cleanse the skin, over-cleansing can cause it to go into oil overproduction.

♥  Exfoliating the skin is good but too much exfoliation will stimulate the glands to produce more oil.  So exfoliate your skin once or twice a week with a gentle scrub.

♥  Toners…so many mixed opinions on whether a toner is necessary for oily skin.  Toners that are best for oily skin are those that contain ingredients that help repair the skin’s surface, reduce enlarged pores, and contain ingredients that assist pores to handle excess oil more efficiently (think Salicylic Acid).  Toners that contain skin irritants like Alcohol, Witch Hazel or Menthol can worsen blemishes & in some cases even stimulate oil production.

♥  Most experts recommend using a moisturiser (even if you have oily skin).  Lotions tend to be more lightweight than moisturisers so opt for a lotion.  If you decide to go with a moisturiser, find one that’s oil-free.  And watch where you apply your lotion / moisturiser – you don’t have to moisturise your nose as it contains enough oil glands as is.

♥  Use a light face oil at night, now I know some of you guys are sitting there thinking: “Girl, you must be crazy!  Adding oil onto an already oily skin!?”  Here’s why:  Adding a light oil to your night time skin care routine will convince your face that it doesn’t need to produce so much oil, because it’s getting oil externally.  I’ve tried this and it works!

♥  If you are using a light face oil at night, a night cream isn’t necessary.  Alternatively, a light night cream (or lotion) suitable for oily skin will be a good investment.

♥  The debate on whether an eye cream is essential (whether you have normal, oily, dry, combo or sensitive skin) is still ongoing.  I, personally, believe that using an eye cream is important and will keep using one until the day I have to ‘walk towards the light’.

♥  Apply a facial mask once a week – look for one that contains clay or Salicylic Acid (both temporarily decrease oil production in the skin).

Makeup For Oily Skin

♥  Firstly, prime EVERYTHING.  Use a foundation primer made specifically for oily or acne-prone skin (usually one that says ‘mattifying’ or ‘shine-control’).  Anything with the word ‘glow’ or ‘luminous’ in the name is usually no-go for oily girls, so: Stop, drop and back away!  If you plan on wearing eye makeup, use an eyelid primer as well because oily lids will result in your eyeshadows creasing.

♥  Always choose oil-free foundations and BB creams.  A great trick I learned from Wayne Goss:  After you have applied your foundation, take a tissue and separate the layers so that you are left with only one single thin sheet.  Then press it onto your face (don’t rub), this will absorb the excess oils that the foundation contains but will leave the pigment on your skin.

♥  Always set your foundation with a powder and keep away from powders that contain shimmer.  It makes no sense going to all that trouble trying to mattify your skin and then adding shimmer to it.  BUT you can always add a subtle glow to the tops of the cheeks with a powder highlighter.

♥  Opt for powder blushes, eyeshadows and bronzers rather than cream / liquid products.  As mentioned above, you can use a powder highlighter to add a subtle glow but only apply it to the very tops of the cheeks and don’t apply anywhere near your enlarged pores (adding shimmer will only make them appear even bigger).

♥  Finish your makeup with a finishing spray.  There are quite a few out there, but try to look for one suited for oily skin i.e. MAC Fix+ (there is also the Urban Decay De-Slick finishing spray but you’ll have to order it from overseas).  These sprays really do make a difference in the staying power of your makeup, and the shine factor will be turned down as the day wears on.   They are also great if your face looks a bit too matte after applying the face powder, as they get rid of the flour-on-my-face-look.

♥  Carry blotting papers with you wherever you go.  These will soak up the oils without messing up your makeup (pat, don’t rub).

Ok, so based on the tissue test I mentioned earlier (and even if during the day your skin gets quite shiny and oily), you should now know whether you have oily skin.  Hopefully this blog post has also helped you choose the correct products for your skin.  In addition to this ‘Oily Skin’ blog post, I will also do another blog post this week that will contain an DIY facial mask recipe suitable for oily skin.  I might just call it MIY for ‘Mix It Yourself’ or ‘Make It Yourself’ – haha!  I’m such a clever clog…

P.S. I’ll be doing a blog post on the Garnier campaign and how you can enter for it tomorrow, so keep a lookout for that!



  1. 3 December 2013 / 08:52

    Thanx for the heads up. will look out for all the advices.


    • Luzanne
      3 December 2013 / 15:34

      Great! So glad you found this post to be helpful! 🙂

  2. Chicara
    3 December 2013 / 09:48

    Very informative post! Nice idea. 🙂

    • Luzanne
      3 December 2013 / 15:34

      Thanks, Chicara! 😀

  3. Tjoppie
    3 December 2013 / 14:01

    Wow, you really did a lot of research! Very informative post as always! I’m so proud of you always striving to do more!

    • Luzanne
      3 December 2013 / 15:36

      Thank you so much for your kind words, Mom! 🙂

  4. 3 December 2013 / 17:28

    I have terribly oily skin. I don’t even wear mascara anymore, because my eyelashes deem anything that says “smudge-proof” as a challenge!

    “Smudge-proof? I will show you! bwhahahahaha!”

    Looking forward to the MIY facial mask for oily skin! 🙂

    Cocktails & Memories

    • Luzanne
      3 December 2013 / 18:42

      LOL! Wow…really!? That oily, hey?

      I can’t imagine not wearing mascara… Have you tried the Maybelline The Rocket mascara? Apparently it’s a pain in the butt to remove, so it might work for you?

  5. Lauren Henderson
    3 December 2013 / 18:36

    You literally always have THEEEEE best ideas for blog posts, Luzanne! Im always amazed by what you come up with.

    I would totes attend your beauty school 😉

    • Luzanne
      3 December 2013 / 18:42

      Thank you so so much for your sweet words, Lauren… You just made my day! xxx

  6. 3 December 2013 / 20:25

    Amazing series, Luzanne!! I really enjoyed reading this, as I have oily skin.

    Now, I have recently heard, like you mentioned to use an oil at night. Which do you recommend?? I would love to try one out. I have to admit I am a bit hesitant, but if you say it works…I’m sold!! Hehe!! I’ve heard the Josie Maran is great, but I believe it’s a bit on the pricier side.

    I still haven’t found a holy grail eye cream! I’m currently using one from Clinique, what do you use? Perhaps a post on eye creams? I was looking into doing an eye cream post for my “all about” series, but I have a lot of research do to.

    Thank you so much for sharing what you have learned with us, it’s greatly appreciated!!


    • Luzanne
      3 December 2013 / 22:01

      Hey, Lily! You are SOOO sweet and kind! Your comments always encourage me. 🙂

      I have 2 oils that I love – the Balm Balm Little Miracle Rosehip Serum (not really a serum, but a face oil) and the Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse – Multi Usage Dry Oil (this can be used for body, hair or face). I know it sounds a bit scary to be putting such a multi-purpose oil on your face but it really is AMAZING (and super light)! I’ve tried using the The Body Shop Beautifying Oil (also a multi-purpose one) for my face but it’s way too heavy on the skin. And I recently started using the Balm Balm Frankincense Light Facial Oil and I am enjoying it too (also a very light oil, perfect for the skin).

      I’ve also heard great things about the Clarins Facial Oils (it’s next on my list of facial oils to try), there’s one specific for oily skin called the Lotus Face Treatment Oil. Do you guys have access to Clarins in the US?

      The Nuxe one looks like this:

      The Balm Balm Frankincense one looks like this:

      The Balm Balm Miracle Rosehip Serum one looks like this:

      The Clarins Lotus Face Treatment Oil looks like this:

      I wish Josie Maran products were sold in SA, I would love to try one of her products (especially since Jaclyn raves about it!).

      I’m currently using the Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye Serum and the Estée Lauder Resilience Lift Eye Cream (I alternate between the two). I was using the Clinique All About Eyes eye cream for a while but noticed my eyes got really sensitive and red whenever I used it, so I stopped. I’m really enjoying the Resilience Lift one… 🙂

      Will definitely do a post on eye creams, thanks for the suggestion.

      Again, thank you so much for your wonderful words Lily. xxx

  7. 3 December 2013 / 21:17

    Definitely have oily skin, been using Smashbox blemish control primer and it is seriously amazing. The best primer for oily skin whether you have blemishes or not.

    • Luzanne
      3 December 2013 / 22:05

      Sounds like a great primer – I have combo skin but it sounds like it would work for me too. I have the original Smashbox Photo Finish primer and the one with Dermaxyl (purchased it when I had very dry skin a couple of months ago). I was actually contemplating trying out the ‘Light’ one but now I think I might give the ‘Blemish Control’ one a go!

      Thanks for commenting, Abby! 🙂

  8. 4 December 2013 / 13:48

    Please can I come to you for some blogging motivation???
    Your blog posts are always so great!
    Thank you! I have a combination skin! But leaning towards oily. Especially on my T section!

    • Luzanne
      10 December 2013 / 22:03

      Haha! You are so kind, Johlet! 🙂

      You can come for blogging motivation anytime, we’ll make a party out of it! xxx

  9. 9 December 2013 / 19:58

    Absolutely love this post and love the idea. I am so looking forward to future posts.

    Thanks for all the very useful info!

    • Luzanne
      10 December 2013 / 21:58

      Pleasure and thank you for commenting, Michelle! 🙂

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