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Oily Skin vs. Moisturizers

Aug 17, 2007
When you have oily skin, you find yourself constantly dealing with all the extra oil; washing it away, cleansing your skin to keep it fresh and clean, putting on products to help keep the oil down, and all sorts of other parts of your skin regimen.

But there is one lingering question that remains that people have yet to truly agree on. Should you use a moisturizer or should you avoid them?

Most people say that oily skin, because it is constantly producing such a large amount of oil, is already getting plenty of natural moisture. With all this natural moisture, there is no need for you to use a moisturizer.

On the other hand, there are a few out there who claim that even though your skin is creating all this excess oil, which is technically called sebum, it is really dry underneath.

Your skin cells are the only ones that will really know whether or not they are dry. However, it is important to keep in mind that people with dry skin use moisturizers to help trap moisture as well as help to rebuild the areas between skin cells that lose moisture.

It is much more difficult to actually give cells back their moisture, so what you are doing is pulling every trick possible to keep skin cells moist, soft, and smooth instead of flaking and dying quicker.

That being said, your extra oil is acting in much the same way. Even if your skin cells and the substance between them are dry, then your natural oil is helping to trap in moisture and give back to your skin. In which case, do you really need more moisture?

Especially if your face is prone to acne breakouts from particles getting clogged in pores or looking shiny.

It can be a little hard to say considering some moisturizers can do for your skin what sebum cannot. Ultimately, the choice is yours. No one (except perhaps your dermatologist, as he or she specializes in the ways of the skin) can tell you what is best for your skin, and even for you there might be some times of trial and error.

If you really do think you should use a moisturizer, then keep a few things in mind.

Water based moisturizers work the best with oily skin. This is because their main ingredient is water as opposed to a variety of oil. As we both know, you already have plenty of your own natural oil and do not need any more.

Oil based moisturizers work best for dry skin as they provide maximum amounts of necessary ingredients to help patch up dry skin by trapping plenty of moisture as well as helping fill in the gaps left by weakened substances between skin cells.

In your case an oil based moisturizer will only add to your oily problem, aiding in the clogging of pores and making your face go from shiny to super shiny; something you probably do not want in the least. A water based moisturizer is lighter and can help give your skin an extra boost while avoiding adding to your oily skin issue.

If you do decide to use a moisturizer, be sure to go easy on your skin when applying it. If you massage your face too much, it can stimulate your oil glands to make more sebum, and you already have plenty as it is.

Gently put the moisturizer on and avoid using too much; you want your skin to take in as much as it can, not for the moisturizer to sit on top of your face and attract even more dust and dirt.

Whichever decision you make, if you notice that using a moisturizer may be making your oily skin problem worse, stop using it immediately. Keeping skin healthy is important, but not when the product stops helping and starts to get in the way.
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