Oily skin is the result of the overproduction of sebum from sebaceous glands. These glands are located under the skin’s surface. Sebum is an oily substance made of fats. Sebum isn’t all bad since it helps protect and moisturize your skin and keep your hair shiny and healthy. Too much sebum, however, may lead to oily skin, which can lead to clogged pores and acne. Genetics, hormone changes, or even stress may increase sebum production.
There’s no shortage of skin care treatments for oily skin and clogged pores out there, but most of them are full of sulfates, preservatives, alcohols, and other harsh ingredients. Not only do these formulas lack nourishment for the skin, they can be irritating, causing burning, redness, and itching, and can actually encourage skin to age faster than it normally would.
Herbal Treatments for Oily Skin
It may take a little trial and error to find which herbal approach works best for you, but once you notice the effects on your skin, you’ll realize its well worth the effort. Also, please make sure you are not allergic to any of the herbs mentioned below before using them on your face.
The essential oils within thyme contain large amounts of thymol, which is a strong antibacterial agent as well as a strong antiseptic and antioxidant.
To make a moisturizer using Thyme:
- Place 1 Tbsp of dried thyme in a small sterilized jar and cover it with oil.
- Let this steep for 2 weeks in a cool, dark place, shaking daily.
- Strain the thyme from the oil and apply to your skin nightly as a blemish-busting moisturizer.
Oils that are good for oily and acne-prone skin:
Note: Please do not put fresh herbs in your oil mixes. Fresh herbs contain water and water is a nice place for bacteria to grow. Thyme might contain antibacterial properties but if you contaminate your oils with water, you’ll end up with rancid oils soon enough.
This is often referred to as French Green Clay, this is because originally it was only sourced in France, today it can be sourced all over the world.
Green clay is a very popular clay to use in your homemade face masks and for good reason, it is extremely rich in the following minerals:
To make a french green clay mask:
- Add filtered water or rose water to about a teaspoon of clay until it forms a pudding-like consistency.
- Apply the clay mixture to your face and leave it on until it dries.
- Remove the clay with warm water and pat dry.
Clay masks removed with water are much gentler on your skin than peel-off masks.
Note: You need to watch the amount of green clay you are using, as too much of this potent ingredient can have an adverse effect on the skin and may be too astringent, possibly causing irritation. Hence, it is advisable to use this mask once a week or once in 15 days.
3Black Currant Oil
This herb comes from a woody perennial shrub native to northern Europe. The oil is made from the seeds, and has a reputation to help with oily skin, clogged pores, inflammation and redness. It contains a number of antioxidants, as well as vitamins C and E.
Mix a couple of drops of the oil with your daily moisturizer and use morning and night. You can also mix this with other oils like Jojoba or Argan and use it under a moisturizer at night.
Oatmeal helps calm inflamed skin and absorb excess oil. It also helps exfoliate dead skin. Oatmeal, when used in facial masks, is usually ground. It can be combined with yogurt, honey, or mashed fruit such as bananas, apples, or papaya.
To use oatmeal on your face:
- Combine 1/2 cup ground oats with hot water to form a paste.
- Stir in 1 tablespoon honey.
- Massage the oatmeal mixture into your face for about three minutes; rinse with warm water, and pat dry.
- Alternatively, apply the oatmeal mixture to your face and leave it on for 10–15 minutes; rinse with warm water, and pat dry.
Tomatoes contain salicylic acid, a common acne home remedy. The acids in tomatoes may help absorb excess skin oils and help unclog pores.
To make an exfoliating tomato mask:
- Combine 1 teaspoon sugar with the pulp of 1 tomato.
- Apply to the skin in a circular motion.
- Leave the mask on for 5 minutes.
- Rinse thoroughly with tepid water and pat dry.
You can also apply just tomato pulp or tomato slices to your skin.