Do you find your skin appears glossy throughout the day with patches of oily acne? If your skin falls into the category of oily skin type, it will feel slippery or sweaty as you go through your day, especially after a sports game or workout. Because many men’s skin produces more sebum than women’s skin does, it is even more frequent a problem for guys even after puberty. Not only that, but because additional oil production occurs during sleep, you’ll find your pillowcase absorbing oil and being stained and you’ll wake up with slick skin. another issue with oily skin for men is that it often comes with large, visible pores and blackheads that pop up and make you want to pick at them.
To combat this, you’ve probably tried washing your face more often or wiping your face when it becomes oily and itchy with whatever you have on hand, be it your sleeve or a tissue. Or maybe you’ve ventured into acne creams or products that promise to strip your skin of oils and make it feel dry after using them. But if you find that your oily skin is still a problem or you have some unwanted side effects from these products, there are a few hidden secrets and new ideas to try that really work and could make a difference in your life. We’ve compiled 5 surprising secrets to how to win in the battle against your oily skin.
1. Cleansing Oils
Oils clog pores, which is what causes acne and blackheads. If looking shiny all the time is your main concern, you may have been told to avoid any product that says “oil” in the name and have been instead using only water-based cleansers. Surprisingly, the right oil based cleansers can actually latch onto those bad oils on your skin and assist you in washing them away. Using an oil based cleanser that is gentle on the skin can also help your skin feel softer and soothe it so it stops overproducing oils. Then follow that oil-based cleanser up with a water-based cleanser thoroughly strips away unwanted oils from your face.
2. Use, But Don’t Overuse Drying Products
Using drying products like benzoyl peroxide spot treatments and salicylic acid products can help to dry out skin and significantly help reduce acne, so if you currently aren’t using those, trying using them in small amounts can really help treat acne and dry out your skin and mattify it.
However, if you have been using these products and slowly adding more and more as your oil and acne worsens or stays the same, it can actually backfire because your skin is trying to overcompensate.
Sebum itself doesn’t cause acne, so oily skin on its own is not the culprit for acne. It’s actually the dirt and bacteria that is trapped by oil in the pores and hair follicles that creates unwanted skin blemishes and unseemly impurities.
Men’s skin is different to women’s in that it contains thicker hair and larger follicles that grow hair faster, meaning the skin itself is also thicker and different in texture. Frequent shaving that men partake in actually helps to reduce oil and its aftereffects by scraping away dead skin cells and removing the hair that oil can be trapped in.
Especially if you regularly shave your face, scrubbing skin with towels or continuously using harsher exfoliating products can exacerbate the oiliness and skin irritation because your skin is desperately trying to sooth itself. Exfoliating products can still be used regularly to clean the pores and get rid of trapped skin flakiness, but it is important to choose gentle ones and avoid harsh scrubbing motions while using them.
Finding things you can do at home that don’t injure your wallet and are simple to do in the privacy of your home are the best kind of tricks. One unusual trick that is worth a try is to experiment with temperature on your skin. Super hot, long showers are irresistible, but they enlarge the pores and cause skin irritation and redness as your skin is subjected to a direct stream of hot water. Instead, try turning the temperature to lukewarm while you wash your face in the shower or wash your face separately in the sink with cool water.
Ice is most often used for reducing puffiness that occurs on the undereye area in the morning because it is so effective in helping with swelling. For men with super enlarged pores or redness, gently rubbing ice directly for a few minutes once every few days on the face (keep it moving and not stagnant) can reduce the inflammation. It helps shrink the pores that are contributing to the overproduction of oil.
4. Use Moisturizer
You’ve seen people that are so addicted to their hand creams that they seem to be pulling it out of nowhere (or you assume, their pocket) every thirty seconds and offering you some. Are those people addicted to hand creams for a reason? As moisturizer is over-applied to dry skin, the skin stops retaining and producing moisture because it reacts to the fact that it is receiving a lot. In the same fashion, skipping out entirely on moisturizer and subjecting your skin to heaters can make your skin react by overproducing oil. If you’ve ever tried using a moisturizer and found yourself overly shiny for a few days, it is because that cycle of overproduction can’t be reversed that fast. It takes time to undo and return to normal oil production.
Using a mild moisturizer like BOLDNINE’S ‘Energy On Your Face’ that is good for everyday care and says it works for all skin types is great to slowly introduce back into your skin. If you want to avoid looking shiny in public in the beginning, try applying it at home or at night before you sleep when no one sees you and dabbing the excess oils with a clean tissue or oil blotting paper right before you go out.
Moisturizer is also recommended to use if you are using acne products that are drying your skin out in the areas you use them most. Even oily skin types can get dry and flaky from these products and need some good moisture to balance it out. Finding the right balance between too saturated and oily products and overly dehydrating products is the key to having radiant and matte skin.
5. Reduce Humidity
Sometimes skin appears shiny and oilier especially during the summer because of humidity in the air and constant sweating. Get a dehumidifier for your house if your house is particularly humid or you live in a humid climate. Sweat and trapped oils and bacteria in pores can manifest as oiliness and shininess on skin, so reducing the amount of sweat and humidity that is building up on your skin can reduce the glossy finish and slick texture.
Though oily skin type can be very tricky to navigate and may take some time to become the master of, it is certainly possible to improve skin health, reduce the shininess, and mimic normal skin type texture. Looking healthy and feeling clean are great ways to improve your confidence and are certainly worth pursuing. Sometimes the solution is actually a very simple routine and simply finding the right one for your unique skin is the real time-consumer. Overall, finding the right balance between adding and reducing oil and moisture on your skin is the key to getting matte skin and overall health of your skin.
Katerina Tsatsomeros, PR manager