Oily skin is often oily and tends to develop troublesome blackheads and pimples, even in adults. Getting rid of this type of skin problem can be difficult and the fact is that many dry skin products contain ingredients that aggravate the problem. In this guide you will find answers to all your questions about why oily skin arises, how to best care for it and how to get rid of your troublesome acne.
What characterizes oily skin?
What characterizes oily skin?
The general explanation for why oily skin occurs is that the sebaceous glands are overactive and produce too much sebum. The result is a glossy complexion with large and visible pores and sometimes even acne and inflammation. However, not all people with oily skin suffer from troublesome acne, although high sebum production increases the risk of acne. It is important to distinguish between oily skin and oily problem skin as the causes may differ. You can read more about the fat problem below in this guide.
An oily complexion without acne and skin problems often only has an oily and shiny appearance. The reason is the excess production of sebum, which leaves a membrane of fat on the skin.
It is especially common for the skin to become glossy on the nose and forehead. If you pull your hand over your skin you can often feel the oily skin. If you have an overproduction of sebum even in the scalp, it can result in the hair becoming greasy and looking streaky.
Oily problems – causes and treatment
Bold skin can be caused by several things. Stress is a major cause that is believed to play a major role. When we are stressed, the production of several hormones in the body, including cortisol and male hormone, increases.
These hormones can affect how the sebaceous glands in the skin work and cause both acne (acne vulgaris) as well as blemishes and wheezes. It is also common that the hormonal changes that occur during the menstrual cycle lead to skin changes, but these are generally not of the same stubborn nature as, for example, acne.
Oily skin and acne are often associated with adolescence as as many as 90% of all adolescents ever get some form of acne. Today, acne and blemishes are relatively common even among adults, especially among women, and it can be extra problematic to get rid of these stubborn skin rashes in adulthood. However, knowing the cause of the problems can make it easier to treat and overcome acne.
What are the problem skin characteristics?
If you have problem skin, you most likely know about it, but there are different types of acne and blemishes, and to be able to treat the problems properly, it is important to know what type of skin condition you are suffering from. There are several degrees of acne and they usually break down depending on how severe the problems are.
Mild acne is the mildest form of acne and is characterized mainly by small white and/or black blackheads and bumps. This type is especially common in adolescents but can also affect adults. Mild acne is not inflammatory as the more severe types of acne are.
Moderate acne is a more inflammatory type of acne and is characterized by red bumps that can sometimes be hot-filled. Filled bumps are called pustules and are caused by the sebaceous gland being inflamed and forming pus. A pustule is recognized as a red goblet with a white core in the middle.
Severe acne is an inflammatory form of acne that is characterized by a large number of blackheads, pimples, and red and hot bumps. The skin is also inflamed and often has scars from previous pimples. These scars occur when the acne forms cysts that cause the skin to be damaged. During the healing process, some skin tissue will be missing, causing scarring. For this reason, you should never squeeze pimples, as squeezing increases the risk of cysts occurring.
You usually talk about four main causes of acne formation. The severity of the acne is determined depending on what caused the acne.
Seborrhea is the medical term for the overproduction of sebum. The sebaceous glands produce sebum that is used to lubricate the skin and hair. When sebum is produced in abundance, the skin becomes oily and looks oily. Sometimes the skin may be thicker in the glossy areas.
Hyperkeratosis means that the outermost layer of skin is thickened because the skin does not dispose of dead skin cells effectively. When dead skin cells remain on the skin surface, they can clog the sebaceous glands and thus interfere with the secretion of sebum. The combination of excessive sebum production and substandard removal of dead skin cells results in sebum and dead skin cells fusing inside the hair follicles and forming a plug. It is when this occurs that a blackhead is formed.
Depending on whether the blackhead is open or closed, it becomes black or white in color. The fact that a blackhead becomes black is not due to the accumulation of dirt, which many believe. Instead, it turns black because the blackhead has a large opening, which allows oxygen to react with pigment (melanin) in the blackhead and causes it to oxidize. This oxidation causes the blackhead to turn black in color. The white blackheads are closed, which prevents the oxygen from oxidizing the pigment. Therefore, these blackheads appear as white sebaceous nodules on the skin.
Bacteria are the third cause of acne. It is mainly the bacterium Propionibacterium acne that is associated with acne. This bacterium lives in our hair follicles and pores and uses sebum from the sebaceous glands as a source of energy. Normally, these bacteria do no harm, but when sebum production becomes too high (seborrhea), these bacteria can multiply very quickly and colonize the already clogged hair follicles. When this happens, pre-filled bumps, pimples, and cysts develop.
Inflammation is both a cause and a consequence of acne. Inflammation occurs when bacteria, sebum, and dead skin cells create a blockage in the hair follicle. Inflammation can cause the hair follicle to burst, which causes the contents, including fat, dead skin cells and bacteria, to leak into the surrounding tissue. This, in turn, leads to even more extensive inflammation of the skin.
There are many ideas and tips on how to best deal with problem skin. The most common is that strong and dehydrating products are recommended that will reduce the skin’s production of fat (sebum).
In fact, this is completely the wrong way to go. The skin will respond to the treatment by instead increasing the production of sebum, which in turn further increases the appearance of pimples and blackheads. In other words, it becomes a vicious circle where one does not go to the bottom of the problem.
The more you try to dry out the skin and get rid of the oily skin, the more active the skin will try to compensate for the lost fat. So what is it then that helps with fat problem skin? It may sound paradoxical, but the function of the sebum is to protect the skin from dehydration. In other words, one can say that a fatty complexion is actually a dry complexion. Instead of dehydrating products, the skin needs nourishment and moisture to be balanced and for sebum production to return to normal levels.
If you read the ingredient list on skincare products, you will most likely see a long line of chemical names that you can’t even guess what they mean. Many of the products sold in the grocery store contain only synthetic substances and water. They often also include a so-called fat base, which will help to lubricate the skin. In many products, this fat base is made up of so-called mineral oils, which is in fact a residual product of petroleum (crude oil).
Now that you have learned that oily skin needs moisturizing and more fat, it can be easy to believe that all fat is good fat. That is not the case.
Precise mineral oils settle on the skin like a surplus of sebum. However, the oils do not penetrate the skin at depth but lie just like a membrane on the surface. This film is very easy to wash and the result is that the skin is drier than moisturized.
The best part is to use vegetable-containing products – nutritious and natural oils that penetrate the depth and really moisturize the dry skin. Vegetable oils are used almost exclusively in organic skincare, so a strong tip might be to replace your usual products with organic alternatives, or why not use nature as a pantry and do your own skincare? Below you will find a quick guide on topics you should avoid and which topics you should replace them with.
Products for oily skin and problem skin
Above you could read about substances that in different ways have negative effects on the skin.
However, the question of what really helps with oily skin remains unanswered. Below you will find tips on pure natural products that you can use both in cooking and as skincare. You also get tips on high-quality skincare products with good content that help oily skin to balance.
Instead of feeding the skin with synthetic substances, you should switch to giving the skin moisture and fat from natural sources.
This is better for both the skin, the environment, and the wallet. Many people are afraid to use oil on the skin because they think it should make the skin look even greasy.
There is some truth to that because fatty oils settle like a membrane over the skin. Therefore, it is important to choose a dry oil, for example, jojoba oil or sesame oil. The oil can be used for both cleaning and moisturizing. Intensive cleaning of the skin with soap and water helps to dry out the skin, however paradoxical it may sound.
Filling with water from inside is very important, but water on the skin has a dehydrating effect, especially if the water is warm. Clean the face in the evening to remove dirt and any makeup. A couple of times a week it is good to do a peeling of the skin to remove dead skin cells that can otherwise clog the pores and aggravate the problems.
To really clean the skin at depth it can be good to do a steam bath at regular intervals. Boil water and then sit face down over the saucepan and allow the vapors to rise to your face. Be careful not to overheat the vapors. After ten minutes, you can scrub your face to remove dead skin cells and other impurities or apply a face mask
Using a face mask now and then can be very effective. Make your own by mixing avocado and mixing in a little spirulina or buy an organic face mask based on clay and algae.
Many people suffering from troublesome acne experience improvement with vitamin B5 supplementation (pantothenic acid). Vitamin B5 is needed for the fatty acid reaction to function normally. Lack of this vitamin can cause sebum production to increase and acne to occur. At present, there is no scientific evidence that vitamin B5 helps with acne, but many people experience a reduction in acne problems.