Can Acne Prone Skin Use Oils?

So can acne-prone skin use oils? Oils and acne-prone skin have a love-hate relationship. 

One moment experts list the benefits of using oils on our skin, and the next moment we’re told to avoid oils at all costs, especially if we’re dealing with breakouts. 

So what gives? 

The truth is, not all oils are created equal and because there are so many oils to choose from, it’s important to know which ones are best for your skin.

The right face oil can do wonders to brighten your skin, clear your acne, and keep you moisturized.  

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Is oil bad for acne-prone skin?

Putting oils on acne-prone skin might sound counterintuitive but it’s not. Oil may be just the thing you need to help clear up your acne and blemishes. 

Some oils have antioxidants, amino acids and vitamins which can help to hydrate, protect, heal and moisturize your skin. 

And no, not all oils will clog your pores and make your skin oilier. Oils can be fantastic, you just need to find the best oil for your particular skin type.

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Will face oil make me break out?

Oils aren’t bad for acne-prone skin, not by a long shot. 

As long as you’re using the right oils. 

The right face oil can help to balance your skin’s natural oil, reduce shininess, unclog your pores and even prevent breakouts! 

Can oils do this for your skin? Yes! 

But first, it’s important to understand the difference between comedogenic and non-comedogenic oils.

Understanding comedogenic and non-comedogenic 

If you have blemish-prone skin, understanding the comedogenic rating of oils will benefit your skin tremendously. 

So what does comedogenic mean? comedogenic means any ingredient that will cause acne.

If you’re prone to acne and breakouts then you want to stay far away from any ingredients or oils that fall into this category.

Non-comedogenic on the other hand means any ingredient that will not clog your pores. Acne and blemish-prone skin types should be using products with non-comedogenic ingredients and oils.

Comedogenic rating is how likely it is for an ingredient or oil to clog your pores. It starts at 0 and goes through 5. The higher the number the more likely it is that the oil will clog your pores. 

  • 0 – won’t clog pores at all
  • 1 – very low likelihood of clogging pores
  • 2 – moderately low likelihood
  • 3 – moderate likelihood
  • 4 – fairly high likelihood
  • 5 – high likelihood of clogging pores

Acne-prone skin should use oils with a 0-1 rating for the best results. Anything higher might clog pores and cause more breakouts. 

Which oils are good for acne-prone skin?

Can blemish prone skin use oils

Everyone’s skin is different, so oils will impact different skin in different ways. Don’t use oils because they’re popular; that could potentially do more harm than good. Instead, stick to products that your skin likes. 

The best oils to use for acne

Here are some of the best oils to use if you have acne-prone skin:

1. Safflower Oil

  • gentle and highly moisturizing 
  • absorbs easily 
  • doesn’t leave a greasy residue
  • good for breaking up blackheads, unclogging pores, and balancing sebum levels of the skin 
  • great carrier oil
  • comedogenic rating: 0

2. Rosehip seed oil

  • helps to moisturize, repair sun damage and reduce the appearance of scarring. 
  • acne-prone skin should use in a lower percentage (10%-20% in another carrier oil).
  • comedogenic rating:1

3. Sunflower Oil

  • gentle antioxidant 
  • light and easily absorbed
  • high Vitamin E content  
  • can help reverse and prevent sun damage, environmental damage, and premature aging
  • comedogenic rating: 0

4. Grape Seed Oil

  • antibacterial 
  • high linoleic acid content, (which can help treat existing acne infections)
  • comedogenic rating: 1

5. Jojoba Oil

  • lightweight
  • similar to the skin’s natural sebum (oil)
  • excellent carrier oil 
  • comedogenic rating: 2

6. Hazelnut oil

  • absorbs quickly
  • leaves no residue
  • antibacterial 
  • good for sensitive skin 
  • avoid if you have nut allergies
  • comedogenic rating: 1

7. Hemp oil

  • very high in omega 6 and omega 3 fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.
  • may help reduce the appearance of scars, reduce redness and promote healing
  • doesn’t clog pores 
  • can be used as a daily moisturizer
  • comedogenic rating: 0

8. Sunflower oil

  • safe for use on acne-prone skin
  • comedogenic rating: 0

Oils to stay away from

This is a shortlist of oils to avoid if you have acne-prone skin. However, if one of these oils works for you then continue using it. 

If you use one of these oils and have frequent breakouts, consider substituting with one of the oils above. Here are some of the oils to avoid:

  • Coconut Oil 
  • Carrot Seed Oil
  • Chia Seed Oil
  • Almond oil
  • Apricot kernel oil
  • Avocado oil
  • Coconut oil
  • Corn oil
  • Cottonseed oil
  • Flaxseed oil
  • Olive oil
  • Palm oil
  • Peach kernel oil
  • Peanut oil
  • Sesame oil
  • Soybean oil
  • Wheat germ oil

Final thoughts

Oils are moisturizing, and reparative and when included in your skincare routine they can help to nourish your skin and promote a fresh, healthy-looking complexion. 

That being said, it’s important to keep in mind that everyone’s skin is different and everyone has an oil that will work for them. 

This means that an oil that works for your friend may not work for you. Find what works for your skin type because no skin is the same and we all react differently to different ingredients. 

Skincare isn’t a one size fits all solution. Oils are only part of the puzzle!

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best oils for acne prone skin