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Oily and Shiny? This Is What Your Skin Needs

Awesome strobing skills? Nope, that's just oil and sweat.
PHOTO: Arthur Belebeau

Does your skin still look and feel greasy despite the colder weather? We feel ya, CG. While having an oily complexion has its benefits (the extra sebum helps keep wrinkles at bay!), it’s still more ideal to have a balanced (and breakout-free) complexion. Here are the ingredients and keywords you should watch for when shopping for your skincare faves:

The Ingredient: Salicylic Acid

Slick-skinned gals will love this ingredient because it delves deep into your pores to suck the oil out and de-clog ’em. This means that you’ll be less prone to oil-induced breakouts since it helps purify your skin. And in case you didn’t know, salicylic acid also helps exfoliate the surface of your skin (buh-bye dark spots) and contains anti-bacterial properties that help banish existing acne. Win!

The Keyword: Foaming

If your skin is on the greasy side, you should stay away from creamy cleansers and reach for a foaming one instead. Not only will the lush lather help you feel fresh, but it’ll also help wash away the excess dirt and grime more effectively. Beauty warning: Limit your face washing to twice a day only! Otherwise, your skin will think it’s dry and end up producing more oil to compensate—so counterproductive!


The Ingredient: Kaolin Clay

This grease buster helps absorb excess oil and mattify your skin. You can usually find this ingredient in face masks, so it’s a great way to sneak in a little pampering (and take a cute “giving my skin TLC” selfie) during the week.

The Keyword: Oil-Free

Hate moisturizers that make your skin feel sticky and heavy? Then make sure you opt for a hydrator that’s oil-free. If it doesn’t say anything on the main label, read the fine print. If you see words like petrolatum, lanolin, and mineral oil, put that product back on the shelf! Though these ingredients help lock in moisture, they may not be the best ones for your skin type (look for dimethicone or humectants like glycerin and hyaluronic acid instead).

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The Ingredient: Witch Hazel

Prefer to use clean beauty products? Try using Witch Hazel toner! It’s a natural astringent that can help clear existing acne, blackheads, and remove excess oil without dehydrating your skin. Beauty extra: If you have combination-oily skin, just use this on your T-zone after washing your face at night.

The Keyword: Non-comedogenic

Full disclosure: When a product says it’s non-comedogenic, it doesn’t necessarily mean it won’t cause acne. What it does mean, however, is that it doesn’t contain ingredients that are known to cause whiteheads and blackheads. It’s still a useful term to look for, since products that indicate this on the label are usually designed for oily or acne-prone skin.

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