By Sheetal Kabra

Customer: “Sheetal, do you have a face cream or a gel for oily skin?”

Me – “Sorry no.”

Customer- “No?? Please make one. I am desperately looking for an all-natural cream or moisturizer for my oily skin.”

Me – “ You said you have an oily skin, so why do you need a moisturizer?”

Customer: “Because, dermatologists and all “beauty care” professionals say that it is required. We must wash and moisturizer our skins every day”

This is a very common conversation which I have with many of my customers. The view that both oily and dry skin require moisturization is not uncommon either. In fact, few months back, I had conducted a survey to understand people’s consumption pattern of personal care products. 37% of the participants had oily skin of which about 38% used face moisturizers.

This topic is one of the many “beauty beliefs” I completely disagree with. My disagreement stems both from experience and logic. I have an oily face and have suffered with severe acne for almost whole of my life. For most of my life I followed this “beauty belief” and in the last few years since the onset of my Earthy Sapo journey, I have un-followed this belief as well.

What is an oily skin? An oily skin is a skin type where the sebaceous glands produce excess sebum (oily, waxy substance that protects and hydrates the skin). Oily skin is typically greasy, shiny and most often, also prone to acne. When your skin is oily, it tends to get dirty soon as it attracts dust. This in turn can cause pores to get clogged and result in acne. Thus, an oily skin requires good cleansing of the skin, to remove dirt and excess oil. Once the excess oil is removed, the natural oils in the skin keep it well hydrated or moisturized. So when your skin is already moisturized or hydrated, what is the need for additional moisturization? Logical question right?

And what happens when you moisturize an already oily skin? When we moisturize an oily skin, we are simply aggravating the oiliness and clogging the pores.  This will in turn result in more blackheads, whiteheads and acne.

So what do you think is the genesis of this contrary “beauty belief” to moisturize an already oily skin? Its simple – usage of commercial soaps and face washes! As we all know, commercial soaps and face washes strip our skin of its natural oils to such an extent that even an oily skin feels dry and stretched (immediately after washing for some time). To overcome this condition, we apply moisturizers, which coupled with the sebum produced by the sebaceous glands clogs the pores and causes breakouts. However, if you are among those who are using a good natural soap for oily skin or a natural ayurvedic bath powder, your skin doesn’t feel dry or stretched. On the contrary, the skin feels clean and fresh after washing. Due to this, I havnt ever felt the need to apply a moisturizer. Acne breakouts on my face have also reduced tremendously and are limited to hormonal acne.

 Thus, in my opinion, oily skin requires only a good natural cleanser. The focus should be on keeping the skin clean and feeling fresh. Try it to believe it.

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