How to choose and use facial oils and balms.
Minimise your beauty routine with concentrated natural skincare.
Choosing the right products.
Vegetable and plant oils and balms have exploded in popularity in recent years and there are even new terms to describe formulas that are entirely oil based, like ‘waterless’ skincare.
Normal and youthful skin.
For normal skin, adding a few drops or a tiny scoop of almost any pure organic oil or balm straight onto damp skin, after a shower may well be the only thing needed to make skin feel fresh and hydrated.
Entirely normal skin with a strong skin barrier, is rare but you can choose from a full range of oils from Sea Buckthorn Rose Hip, Olive Oil and Shea Butter, as well as blends with everything from simple Coconut Oil to Concentrated premium oils rich in EFAS, like White Poppy Rose Hip and Thistle Oil.. All will feel very hydrating, and higher Oleic oils can be great for wound and scar healing and hydration. Higher Linoleic Oils provide the fatty acids skin needs to flourish.
Oily and Acne Skin
May well be better suited to high Linoleic Oils that have been formulated into natural creams or balms with lower comedogenic ratings. A cream is easy for skin to absorpt, which is something that oily skin struggles with, and this skin type really needs the extra vitamins and fatty acids that are found in high linoleic plant oils.
Love Absolute Immortal Flower Cream is an example of a natural cream made from high Linoleic oils.
If you want to use pure oils, you can look for blends with Argon, Safflower, HL Sunflower, or some of the English Oils like Camelina and Corn Cromwell, which can also be found in Love Absolute’s Radiance Oil serum (replaces EFAS) and Amoral Vital Daily Facial Oil (Daily Nourishment) which are both high in EFA’S and very low in Oleic Acid.
Acne Skin use
You only need to use a very tiny amount of the oil or cream after cleansing. Just add a few drops where skin is dry, and see how well your skin absorbs this. Blot away any remaining oil or cream with a clean dry flannel or tissue. Acne skin especially needs nourishment with fatty acids as oily skin is usually low in EFAS as well.
Dry and Mature Skin
For dry skin that can experience break-outs and irritation, an oil like Olive is not recommended to be used on its own, as high levels of Oleic Acid can also cause disruption to the skin barrier in those with permeable skin.
Oleic lipids feed Malassezia, which are some seventeen different species of fungi that live on the face as part of the skin microbiome. Proliferation of these species can lead to seborrheic dermatitis, and these are involved with subsequent bacterial proliferation and breakouts. This may be where the term fungal acne arises.
Eg: Dry, sensitive, acne, combination, redness, psoriasis, those with HIV, acne, rosacea, those with Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy, alcoholism, depression, eating disorders as well as those recovering from a stroke or heart attack. Lastly anyone with hormonal imbalances or simply experiencing stress, and food allergies.
All of these groups will benefit from oil blends high in Linoleic Oils, which also include Gamma Linoleic Acid and Stearidonic Acid (EFA’s)
When stressed the skin seems to be low in linoleic acids, and replacing these topically helps improve the microbiome, and does not have any negative impact or cause any issues.
In a way this is similar to eating the right fatty acids omegas 3:6:9 to improve health. The right blends of fatty acids topically will help heal and repair the skin barrier, reducing redness whilst calming outbreaks ensuring the acid mantle is functioning properly.
Which Oils are High Linoleic Oils?
Some of the simplest and best high Linoleic Oils are Safflower, Argon, White Poppy Seed, Sacha Inche and High Linoleic Sunflower.
Another part of the puzzle.
Constituents in oils are also very important. Going back to Olive Oil or Shea Butter, both are incredibly constituent rich with numerous amazing phenols and antioxidants.,
Choosing antioxidant rich blends offers greater improvement to skin over time than single oils. So it’s possible that a little Shea Butter blended with High Linoleic Safflower would offer greater benefits than taking a black & white approach and excluding a whole host of ingredients, using only Safflower.
Examples of Constituent Rich Oils.
Raspberry Elderberry Black Black Currant Sea Buck-Thorn Rose-Hip Olive Shea Coconut Almond Jojoba Macadamia.
So it’s all in the blend, you can use an oil high in Oleic if it’s well blended with a greater amount of a high Linoleic Oil. Bear in mind nearly all plant oils contain some small amounts of Oleic Acid. A blend should include amazingly plant properties from at least ten percent of a high value constituent rich oil, with its base as a more easily tolerated oil. It is possible to find all of these qualities in one oil such as Elderberry Blackcurrant Raspberry Seed Oil and Argon.
Sensitive and permeable skin Comedogenic ratings.
These do still apply. The oils higher in comedogenic ratings may not really block pores, but they do cause irritation and outbreaks when used singularly. Some of these oils can be used if they have other valuable attributes, and when blended with less pore congesting oils, reducing the overall rating. This works at increasing the variety of healing elements and decreasing your chance of reactions.