Are Oils Bad for Your Skin? This is What You Need to Know.

July 19, 2019


Does anyone else remember grabbing the oil-free cleanser + the oil-free lotion straight off the drugstore shelf in hopes that it would be the cure-all for our acne? Yah girl, me too.

These marketing messages from our teenage years clearly became our filter for seeking out topical skincare products – and most likely created a bit of fear in our high school minds that more oil meant more breakouts. These oil-free messages (and myths!) have stuck around for far too long.

While it might sound crazy (and you’ve probably already heard because I can’t stop talking about it!), I’ve done a complete 180 and now use OIL to cleanse my skin! I know, I know, it doesn’t seem to make sense at first, but really, it’s the key to glowing skin. Curious? You can check out this counterintuitive way of washing your face here

Why oils are the best thing you can put on your skin

So I’m going to keep this beauty trend moving right along and debunk the myth that oils are bad. They’ve been too good to me to let them go now. 

I’ve used oils for cleansing for a long time and now I’m all about applying oils for hydration and healing. Believe it or not, oils. are. not. bad. Well, okay, there are a couple of oils you don’t want to necessarily slather on your skin (or sauté your veggies in), but I’m diving into dispelling this old myth from our younger years to show you how oils are nature’s answer to truly transforming your skin – no matter your skin type.

Since we’ve been reminiscing on our teenage days, let’s take it back to high school science class: Anatomy 101. 

Our skin is one brilliant, beautiful and BIG organ. It’s actually our biggest. And has several layers and complexities and functions. Don’t worry, I’m keeping this science lesson very basic! Out of the 7 jobs the skin has to do, one of its specific functions proves that oils are actually a positive thing – and it’s called secretion.  

Let me break it down for you

Simply put, secretion means – drumroll please! – our skin naturally produces oil! It’s a necessary and healthy function of the skin to secrete oils. 

So why would we want to shop for products that promote oil-free this and oil-free that when oils are a part of our skin’s original design? Often, these oil-free cleansers, lotions and creams and loaded with chemicals that only strip the skin of its beneficial oil production, leaving its delicate barrier dull, dry, sensitive and over time, seriously compromised. And when the skin is deprived of oil, it can actually go into a state of shock and start to overcompensate by producing excess oil which can lead to inflammation, breakouts and buildup – the very conditions we’re trying to combat!

Okay, my oily, acne-prone friends, if you’re freaking out right now or still thinking skincare products sans oil are your friend, let me explain a bit further.

Since our skin is intended to create a steady output of oil production, when we apply specific, skin-loving oils, they’re easily recognized and received by the skin! (Think glowing, not greasy.) They’re readily absorbed and assimilated by the skin and body as the nutrients and superfoods they really are. And can even help to *balance* oil production. Yup, it’s true.

Ah, exhale. Science lesson done. Still tracking? Good! Because I’m about to spill the best oils to feed your skin based on your skin needs (even if you’re prone to breakouts and that midday shine). By the end of this post, you’ll be cleansing and hydrating with oils right along with me – I hope! 

Here are 4 oils you want to feed your skin asap.

Skin Type: Dry/Mature: Skin-Loving Oil: Pomegranate Seed Oil

I loveee snacking on these juicy seeds, and Pomegranate’s beauty benefits are just as nutritious for the skin. Pomegranate seed oil is potent in antioxidant properties and polyphenols (and one of the highest sources of Vitamin C!) which powerfully fight free radicals that damage and age the skin. Rich in fatty acids and anti-inflammatory benefits, it supports repairing and regenerating the skin at a cellular level to help improve collagen production and prevent premature signs of aging to keep skin youthful, healthy and hydrated. 

Skin Type: Sensitive: Skin-Loving Oil: Evening Primrose Oil

Evening Primrose’s nickname, “King’s Cure-All,” says it all. This powerful skin soother is the perfect oil to help calm redness, dryness and inflammation.  Its nutrient-dense profile (rich in omegas 6 and 9 and essential fatty acids) supports the healing process to restore the skin barrier and bring sensitive complexions back into balance. Suffering from skin conditions such as acne, eczema or psoriasis? Evening Primrose has a long-standing history of providing relief and nourishment for these sensitive skin needs.

Skin Type: Oily/Acne-prone: Skin-Loving Oil: Grapeseed Oil

Again, another delicious fruit turned skin-friendly oil (especially for my oily and acne-prone friends). Grapeseed Oil is easily absorbed by the skin and won’t contribute to congestion or clogged pores.  It contains some of the highest levels of Vitamin E to help repair past breakouts and calm current inflammation all without leaving behind any greasy residue. It lightly hydrates and protects skin from environmental stressors to leave skin feeling fresh, soft and “oil-free.” 

Skin Type: Scarring/Sun Damage: Skin-Loving Oil: Rosehip Seed Oil

Known as a skin superfood, Rosehip Seed Oil is a rich source of Vitamins A and C to regenerate the skin, smooth texture, and repair sun damage and oxidative stress.  Full of fatty acids to strengthen the delicate skin barrier and potent in antioxidants (including tocopherols and carotenoids), it helps to reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation and scarring – leaving the complexion clear, radiant and seriously glowing!

From cleansing impurities to correcting skin concerns to creating a seriously healthy complexion, oil-free is out and feeding your skin with pure, potent oils is 100% in. After all these years of false marketing claims, stripping skin with harsh cleansers and superficially hydrating with chemical-laden creams, it’s about time the oil-free myth is finally being debunked. 

My favorite oils? I’ve got you 

After our second miscarriage I was challenged by my doctor to really clean up my products – specifically anything that’s in contact with my skin. That’s when I converted to a Primally Pure girl. I lean on oils a ton and my skin has never looked for felt better!

Whenever I travel, I just pack my cleansing oil and use it for all the things from cleansing to removing my make up to moisturizing — I never know one product could make all the difference and I certainly would have never guessed it would be an oily product.

From the cleansing oil to the “everything” spray to their newest serums (the clarifying is my fave, by the way) this one brand has me covered for all the oil-y goodness and I can’t live without it. These are a few of my all-time favorite products and facial oils from Primally Pure and I. can’t. wait. for you to experience the positive difference they will make. You just might fall in love with your skin for the first time. 



Check out my 5 favorite Primally Pure products here!

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  1. Hi Jenna, an oil cleanser does definitely seem counter-intuitive, but I can imagine the moisture content must be next-level! I just started adding a wash cloth to my face cleansing regimen and now I’m curious to try out an oil cleanser.
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