Skincare gets slick!
Forget creams, ultra-nourishing oils are the latest wonder products
Using oils in our beauty regime is commonly thought to do more harm than good. If spots or greasy hair are a concern, slathering on a rich, pore-clogging oil is the last thing you’d think of doing.
But oils are naturally brimming with vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids that can provide us with a multitude of cosmetic benefits. Even celebrities are oiling up — Hollywood actress Emma Stone recently credited her flawless skin to regular use of grape seed oil.
From smoothing wrinkles and preventing stretch marks to repairing damaged locks — the beauty industry is in the midst of a full-on oil rush.
On trend: Victoria Beckham used oils to get through their pregnancies with minimal stretch marks
‘A lot of people fear using oil will cause breakouts and make their skin greasy,’ says Loraine Murry, natural beauty consultant at Weleda.
‘But oils can be incredibly beneficial for all skin types — even those prone to spots. They can rebalance, moisturise, protect and brighten complexions, and improve texture and tone. Oils can do wonders for hair, especially to repair and condition dry locks or boost thinning tresses.’
Unlike creams, oils penetrate deep. Dr Lionel De Benetti, head of research and development at Clarins, says: ‘Because the body has its own oil-producing sebaceous glands, the skin recognises and responds, making it highly effective at rebalancing the skin and treating dehydration, dryness, lines and even excess oiliness.’
From left: Sanctuary Ultimate Facial Cleansing Oil, Weleda Almond Facial Oil, Shu Uemura Fresh Cleansing Oil
Different oils possess unique cosmetic properties. For hydration, try a nurturing nut or seed-based oil like Weleda Almond Soothing Facial Oil (£12.95, weleda.co.uk). Almond and plum kernel oils boost the skin’s barrier, and help it keep the moisture in.
Some cleansers leave skin feeling dry and tight. But as oil attracts oil, oil-based cleansers effectively dissolve grime without stealing essential moisture.
This makes oils good for greasy or breakout-prone skin. Products for oily complexions often contain harsh ingredients that can strip the skin of its natural oils. It might temporarily reduce oiliness but, in the long-term more sebum is produced as skin overcompensates.
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The Shu Uemura Fresh Cleansing Oil (£28, shuuemura.co.uk) is ideal for acne-prone complexions, as it gently purges pores of unwanted sebum while maintaining natural moisture.
Most skin types will benefit from the new Sanctuary Ultimate Facial Cleansing Oil (£12.99, boots.com). It’s packed with argan, avocado, jojoba and soya oils and hydrates skin while wiping away impurities.
If you’re concerned about ageing, oils extracted from roses are rich in vitamins A and E. The new By Terry Huile de Rose Firming Lift Oil (£69, spacenk.co.uk) is made with pure extracts of musk as well as black and white roses known for their anti- ageing and ultra-nourishing powers.
Face oils were also popular backstage at the spring/summer catwalks. At the Moschino show, make-up artist Tom Pecheaux massaged tired models’ faces with Mac Care Blends Essential Oil (£14, maccosmetics.co.uk). The calming chamomile and stimulating grapefruit oil helped relieve puffiness and boost hydration.
From left: Sil Derm Prevention Oil, Moroccan Oil Treatment, L’Oreal Professional Mythic Oil
Clarins has re-launched and re-packaged the Body Treatment Oil-Anti Eau (£36, clarins.co.uk) this month. Filled with essential oils of geranium, broom, majoram and lemon, it eliminates toxins from the body and reduces unwanted water retention.
Jessica Alba and Victoria Beckham used oils to get through their pregnancies with minimal stretch marks. The Sil Derm Prevention Oil (£9.99, sildermgroup.com) contains lavender and grape seed oil, plus collagen stimulating plant extract gotu kola, and tissue damage-preventing vitamin E — both proven to reduce formation of stretch marks in pregnancy.
And don’t be put off applying oil to hair, either. ‘Today’s hair oils penetrate deep to mend split ends, counteract dryness and tame frizz — without weighing it down,’ says hairdresser Richard Ward.
Dull, damaged tresses can be transformed with Moroccan Oil Treatment (£12.85, 0800 310 1133) containing argan oil, which is rich in fatty acids. And even fine hair can benefit from the L’Oreal Professional Mythic Oil (£14.95, lorealprofessional.co.uk), which has become a staple for top stylists. The lightweight spritz is infused with avocado and grape seed oil, and protects hair from heat styling, boosts shine and controls frizz.
A slick new trend? Maybe. But the beauty benefits of these oils have been widely used for thousands of years.