Chances are you spent your teenage years fighting a losing battle against oil—using a range of products every day in an attempt to dry up the excess grease. But now you’re older, wiser—and probably much less oily. In fact, your oil reserves may actually need a little outside infusion. “Our skin secretes sebum—an oil-like substance that’s packed with lipids that moisturize the skin and give it a youthful glow,” explains Myrna Beardshear, director of spa, health and fitness for Red Mountain Resort & Spa in St. George, Utah. “But as we age, sebum production declines. Applying oils topically can help supplement and mimic your skin’s own natural oils.”
And contrary to popular belief, applying oil to your skin will not result in a déjà vu of those greasy teenage years. “People often fear that oils are too heavy and will clog the skin,” says Beardshear. “But the correct type of oil can be very nourishing and actually help heal your skin.” Here, the best oil discoveries for your face, body and hair.
FACE FORWARD Oils made for the face tend to be lighter and absorb quickly into your skin so that you don’t end up looking greasy, says Beardshear. For even better penetration and moisturizing effects, use your face oil as a nighttime treatment, when it has eight hours to sink in and leave skin looking plumper, more hydrated and refreshed by morning. Certain essential oils—such as lavender and rose—can be healing (they’re especially good for calming redness, blemishes and sun damage), but mix them with a carrier oil instead of applying directly to your skin.
Erbe Lavender Oil (Oleum lavandula) helps fade scars and sunspots on sensitive or combination skin. It also soothes bug bites, sunburns and rashes. $55; erbeskincare.com
Pangea Organics Himalayan Geranium & Pomegranate Balancing Oil is rich in antioxidants and vitamins to help fight signs of aging. $50; pangeaorganics.com
Arganica Natures Age- Defying Skin Food helps heal acne, regulates oil production and hydrates. Massage extra drops into your hands to moisturize brittle nails. $65; arganicaoil.com
glotherapeutics gloNourishing Oil moisturizes dry skin with glycerin and gives your face an antioxidant boost with free-radical fighters pomegranate and red tea. $40; gloskincare.com
Decléor Aromessence White Brightening Concentrate uses wheat germ, lemon and rose oils to fade dark spots and brighten a dull complexion. $81; decleordirect.com