Tips on how to look after oily skin complexion

Understanding oily skin complexion and looking after it

By Hana O.
Tips on how to look after oily skin complexion

Causes of oily skin complexion

I hate my oily skin. Not only does it make looking for makeup that won’t smear or shine after an hour, it makes me more conscious of the current state of my face. Do I need to use some blotting paper already? How about now? If you experience the same dilemma as I do, feel free to read on as we will tackle everything about oily skin today. 

What causes oily skin? It cannot just be genetics. I’m sure that we can definitely do something to address our skin making too much sebum. 

1. It's in the genes

Yes, unfortunately, this is on top of the list. Do your parents have oily skin? Then most likely, you will have this same issue as well. Having larger pores and sebaceous glands that produce excess oil is a hereditary trait. 

2. Introduction to Androgens

Second on the list are hormones. The hormones responsible for oil production are called “androgens”. Now you know its name, it gets personal. Androgens fluctuate frequently and we ladies have it extra bad because we go through numerous hormonal changes aside from puberty. Menstruation, pregnancy and menopause are factors that create more androgens, meaning more oily skin. Believe it or not, stress and illness also prompt more hormones. 

3. The Weather

Aside from genetics and hormones, which are the leading causes for oily skin, other factors such as our environment can lead to the secretion of sebum. If you are someone with oily skin, no matter the weather, you will have to take extra care of your complexion. When it is hot or humid, your body naturally secretes more oil. When it is cold, our skins can dry out, making our oil glands go into survival mode and produce more oil to compensate. 

4. Too much scrubbing

I’m sure we’ve all gone through periods of complete annoyance with our shiny faces that we felt the urge to just wash it all off. Doing so could actually be more detrimental than beneficial. Scrubbing and washing too much will take away our skin’s natural layer of moisture making it react the same way as mentioned above: in survival mode. 

5. Too much of the good stuff

As someone who is a French fry loving, milk ingesting sweet tooth, I admit I’ve got too much oil on my face. It turns out too much sugar, refined carbs and dairy results in our sebum production department going into a sugar rush.

6. Makeup

Makeup is an investment and a treat for our skin. It’s always important to use the proper products depending on your skin type as well as avoiding poor-quality cosmetics. You might have lightened the load on your wallet but that usually gets dumped on your skin instead.


Somehow, people with oily or combination skin types just don't get any day-offs from extra skin care and maintenance. There is some good news though, but I’ll save it for the last part to keep you in suspense. 

Treatments to consider for oily skin complexion

1. Skin care routine adjustment

This first treatment is probably the easiest and most effective in lessening oily skin. There is a skincare regimen specially designed for our skin type.

Cleanse, tone and moisturize twice a day. It might seem counterproductive to do so, especially since I just mentioned above that over washing causes more oil, but there’s some science to it and it can work when done right.

For your products, look for specific ingredients such as sulfur, salicylic acid, glycolic acid or tea tree oil. All of these dissolve excess oil. Then make sure to use a mild alcohol-free toner afterwards. Lastly, apply a light, oil-free moisturizer.


That should do the trick. 

When it comes to astringents for oil control, it must be used twice a week and exfoliate and apply facial masks only once a week. This is unlike popular skin care routines people tend to follow.

2. Shine control

When it comes to makeup, our foundations must have a mattifying or oil control effect. This applies for primers as well. If your T-zone (forehead and nose area) tends to get extra oily, you can apply extra powder to absorb the oil.

Oil control films have become my best friend. I always have one pack in every bag. It’s actually the only way I can quickly remove excess oil from my face without having to retouch my makeup. 

3. Consulting a dermatologist

If a change in skin care routines doesn't work and there is still excess sebum being produced by your face thus leading to an increase in acne, then it may be time to consult a dermatologist. They can prescribe the proper creams, toners etc. to properly address the problem.

Home remedies to get rid of oily skin complexion

Without going the route of commercial products and doctors and prescriptions, let’s take a look at some home remedies you can try to get rid of oily skin. Get ready to scavenge your pantry or go for a quick trip to the nearest supermarket.

1. Honey

In almost every beauty home regimens, honey is there. This is because honey is excellent is keeping the skin properly moisturized and removes bacteria at the same time.

Apply a thin layer of raw honey all over the face and leave on for 10 minutes. Rinse with warm water after.

2. Oatmeal

It’s not just a good breakfast meal, it’s also healthy for the skin. Oatmeal has great absorption power that can suck up excess oil, soothe the skin and exfoliate dead ones.


You can reproduce your favorite breakfast by mixing oatmeal with yogurt and honey and apply it on your skin.

To use, form a paste by combining 1/2 cup of ground oatmeal with warm water. Stir in honey and your other preferred ingredients. Massage on the face for 3 minutes then rinse with warm water and pat dry, or leave on the face for 10-15 minutes and then rinse with warm water and pat dry.

3. Aloe Vera

Many people use aloe vera to treat oily skin. A thin layer can be applied on the face before going to bed and left on overnight. Be sure to do a skin test before using, to ensure no allergic reactions.

4. Tomatoes

Remember the important ingredient that you have to look for when purchasing skin care products? Well tomatoes have them. The salicylic acid in tomatoes helps absorb excess oil and unclog pores. 


To make an exfoliating tomato mask, combine 1tsp of sugar with one tomato pulp. Apply to the skin in circular motions and leave on for 5 minutes. Rinse with warm water and pat dry. Pure tomato pulp or slices can also be used alone for this treatment.


An almond face scrub can help reduce problems with oily skin and also remove impurities. Finely grind some raw almonds to make 3tsp then add 2tbsp of raw honey. Apply on the face and gently scrub in circular motions. Afterwards rinse with warm water and pat dry.

Taking care of oily skin complexion in summer, autumn, spring and in winter


The extra daylight, vacations and beach outings is what makes summer so attractive. In order to fully enjoy the perks of summer, we need to ensure that our skin is properly prepped for it. People with oily skin tend to become greasy under heat so facial cleansers, water-based moisturizers are a must for this season.

In addition to cleansers and moisturizers, remember to not skimp on the sunscreen. Should proper washing be inaccessible during your summer travels, fear not because there is still an alternative called micellar water which cleanses, purifies and mattifies the skin without the use of water!


When it gets cold outside and we layer up our clothing to protect ourselves from the bitter weather, it does not automatically mean we have to do the same with our skin care routine. People make a misguided move to coat their skins with rich cleansers and moisturizers when it fact the opposite should be done.


During winter, we need to apply a series of lightweight products such as one water-soluble cleanser or toner or a serum. Going for richer options will only clog up pores causing our skin to feel even more greasy.

Spring and Autumn

These two weathers are usually not so far apart in characteristics wherein the weather is more windy and light, without harsh contrasts of heat or cold. Because of this, we can apply our normal skin care routines for oily skin during these two seasons.


As promised, I will now explain quickly why having oily skin isn’t all that bad. I hope this will help motivate everyone to continue being diligent in following the strict skin care ritual for oily skin.


Do you have oily skin? Then you will age way more slowly than others, you always have an extra layer of defense for your skin against pollutants, you are more resistant to sun damage and probably the best of all, you aren’t prone to wrinkles! I think these benefits are quite enough to convince me to properly wash, use the right products and never lose hope for my skin that is extra excited in creating sebum.

No matter the season, the budget and available ingredients, there will always be simple ways to effectively take care of our skin, oil and all.