How To Use A Treatment Oil For Your Skin Type


Treatment oils can be incredibly effective for most skin types, but the ways in which the oil is applied to the skin will vary depending your skin type. In general, I recommend using oils in the evening, as this is when the skin is at rest (and the air is usually driest at night) so the oil can repair and protect your skin while you sleep. However, you’ll see that I have also included methods for using skin oil in an airplane or during the day when you are especially dry and need to lock in moisture.

Here are the right and wrong ways to use a treatment oil to achieve maximum results for your skin type.

FOR DRY SKIN:

The right way: In the evening after cleansing, toning with an alcohol-free toner (left damp on the skin for extra hydration) and using a serum, mix 3-5 drops directly in with your nighttime moisturizer and apply to both the face and neck. You can also use 3-5 drops applied directly over your moisturizer to provide a protective barrier to prevent dry air from pulling moisture out from the skin.

The wrong way: Used directly on the skin underneath moisturizer or it in its pure form in place of moisturizer. The reason why you shouldn’t use it directly on the skin is because your skin requires both oil AND water. All moisturizers are formulated with ingredients to deliver this dual benefit to the skin; however, skin oils only provide oil. Additionally, moisturizers contain other ingredients that are needed for the health of the skin (such as antioxidants, retinol or firming peptides). Skin oils may not have these same ingredients, so if you use moisturizer over oil, these beneficial ingredients will not be able to penetrate into the skin effectively because the oil will act as a barrier.

I classify skin into nine different skin types. See dry skin types #7, #8 and #9.

FOR NORMAL SKIN:

The right way: In the evening after cleansing, toning with an alcohol-free toner (left damp on the skin for extra hydration) and using a serum, mix 2-3 drops of treatment oil directly in with your nighttime moisturizer and apply to both the face and neck. You can also use 2-3 drops applied over moisturizer to provide a protective barrier to prevent dry air from pulling moisture out from the skin. Normal skin is less dry, so less of the oil is needed (compared to a dry skin type).

The wrong way: Used directly on the skin underneath moisturizer or it in its pure form in place of moisturizer. The reason why you shouldn’t use it directly on the skin is because your skin requires both oil AND water. All moisturizers are formulated with ingredients to deliver this dual benefit to the skin; however, skin oils only provide oil. Additionally, moisturizers contain other ingredients that are needed for the health of the skin (such as antioxidants, retinol or firming peptides). Skin oils may not have these same ingredients, so if you use moisturizer over oil, these beneficial ingredients will not be able to penetrate into the skin effectively because the oil will act as a barrier.

I classify skin into nine different skin types. See normal skin types #5 and #6.

FOR OILY, COMBINATION AND BLEMISH-PRONE SKIN:

The right way: In the evening after cleansing, toning with an alcohol-free toner (left damp on the skin for extra hydration) and using a serum followed with moisturizer, massage 1-3 drops onto the skin. Oily skin already has its own oil built in and the skin mainly requires water to keep it healthy and hydrated. When you use a moisturizer for oily skin, it’s generally lightweight and oil-free so you want these ingredients to absorb into the skin first to avoid any potential blocking or clogging of the pores. Then, you can add a protective layer of oil over your moisturizer to prevent water loss.

The wrong way: Mixed in with moisturizer/lotion or used directly on the skin in its pure form in place of moisturizer. Oily skin doesn’t require more oil; it requires water. In the case of blemishes, oil breeds bacteria and bacteria leads to breakouts. If you find that a skin oil is causing bumps or increased breakouts, then discontinue using it.

I classify skin into nine different skin types. See oily/combination and acne skin types #1, #2, #3 and #4.

FOR AIRPLANE TRAVEL:

The right way: 1-2 drops applied over moisturizer every hour of flight to provide a protective barrier to prevent moisture loss from the dry cabin air.

The wrong way: Applied only once pre-flight. The cabin air is extremely dry (see my airplane investigation post) and the skin needs continual application of a skin oil to keep it hydrated during and post-flight.

FOR DAYTIME USE:

The right way: Applied over daytime sunscreen and before makeup. In the morning after cleansing, toning with an alcohol-free toner (left damp on the skin for extra hydration) and using a vitamin C antioxidant serum followed by a moisturizer with sunscreen, massage a few drops onto the skin. Proceed with makeup (optional). By layering the treatment oil over your sunscreen moisturizer, you are adding a protective barrier to prevent moisture evaporation.

The wrong way: Mixed in with sunscreen moisturizer. A sunscreen moisturizer is an FDA-approved product and thoroughly tested to ensure that the SPF number listed on the bottle or jar is truly giving protection from damaging UV rays. If you alter its original formula by mixing in an oil, you cannot be confident that you’re getting adequate benefit to prevent wrinkles, brown spots and skin cancer. Remember that UV light given off from the sun is the #1 cause of premature wrinkles so you definitely don’t want to risk it. I recommend using Daily Protection SPF 30 since it’s nice and light for daytime use. Actress, Sofia Vergara is a huge fan of this moisturizer and uses it everyday under her makeup.

I absolutely love skin oils, but not all formulas are equal. Many skin care lines use just one oil in their treatment oils, but I prefer a blend of different oils, as each offers something unique to the skin. I recommend Pro Remedy Oil, which contains a blend of 12 of my very favorite skin-repairing oils. You’ll love this product and your skin will thank you! Think of a treatment oil as bodyguard for your skin’s surface—it keeps moisture in the skin where it needs to be—and always be sure to use it correctly so that you get the best results.

Read: 34 Tips To Get Your Best Skin Ever
Read: Five Tips To Get Rid Of Adult Breakouts
Read: The Cure For Red, Sensitive, Extremely Dry Skin

Which skin care products are best for you? See our nine skin types or take the Skin Type Quiz and get products recommended.

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