But unlike some popular spot-fighters, oils are also packed with vitamins, amino acids and anti-oxidants to heal, protect and hydrate sore, put-upon skin. And no, they won’t clog your pores and make you go even oilier. On the contrary, says Sian Jones, co-founder of Balance Me:
«Many people try and combat congested skin by using harsh, stripping products that remove all oils from the skin. This causes the skin to over-compensate for the reduction of oils by producing even more, which in turn worsens the congestion.»
But don’t run off and douse your face in olive oil; some oils are better for spot-prone skin than others. We asked top skincare and aromatherapy experts to pick their faves.
«Jojoba Oil is extremely light, and the nearest in molecular structure to our own natural sebum,» says cosmetic doctor and GP Rabia Malik.» Nikki Lewin, head trainer at AromaWorks, adds «it is the perfect carrier oil for oily skins, as it tricks the skin into stopping the overproduction of its own oils. Active essential oils cannot penetrate into the deeper layers of the skin so should always be contained in a carrier oil like jojoba.»
ALOE VERA ESSENTIAL OIL
Healing and calming, aloe vera oil reduces redness and inflammation and cools the skin,» says What Skin Needs skincare expert Sonja Dymalovski. «It’s packed with Vitamin C, E, B, allantoin, minerals, proteins, amino acids and beta-carotene, so it to actively repairs skin.»
GERANIUM ESSENTIAL OIL
«Geranium helps regulate sebum production so is great for oily, congested skin types,» says Sian. «It also tightens skin and promotes blood circulation, helping to heal acne scars – and it smells gorgeous,» says Sonja.
TEA TREE, EUCALYPTUS AND LAVENDER ESSENTIAL OIL
All have powerful anti-bacterial properties that will soothe and treat pimples. Dr Rabia recommends a drop of organic lavender in a base of jojoba oil to calm breakouts, while Sonja points out that tea tree «penetrates the blockage between your skin and glands, clearing clogged pores.
YLANG YLANG ESSENTIAL OIL
«This helps skin retain moisture while fighting acne,» says Sonja. It balances sebum production and calms blemishes, but also softens fine lines and improves skin elasticity. Perfect for those with combination skin or adult acne.»
MYRRH ESSENTIAL OIL
If you’re battling breakouts as well as signs of ageing, try this,» says Sonja. «Myrrh is intensely anti-inflammatory and healing and is used to treat blemishes as well as wrinkles and lack of firmness, along with sunburn and even eczema.»
PATCHOULI ESSENTIAL OIL
‘It’s anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and astringent,» says Nikki. So it will help tighten open pores, zap acne-causing bacteria, and calm inflamed, angry spots.