Put simply, face oils are one of many skin care solutions out there. They're specially tailored to work with your natural oils to help keep your skin balanced.
"Our skin naturally makes oils and lipids, which help prevent water loss from our skin and keep it hydrated. Face oils are substances that help complement our natural oils," said Dr. Noelani González, director of cosmetic dermatology at Mount Sinai West in New York City.
Face oils can have many potential benefits, but their overall purpose is to serve as an extra level of protection for your skin.
"If you think of the skin as a brick wall, the skin cells are the bricks and the oils and lipids are the mortar, which holds the bricks together in place and prevents anything from seeping through. Face oils are considered a type of emollient, which means they help strengthen the outer layer of your skin — the stratum corneum — by softening and sealing it, preventing water loss," González said.
Face oils are often plant-based, according to Cleveland Clinic dermatologist Dr. Jennifer Lucas, and are typically derived from the various parts of plants — flowers, leaves, roots, etc. And since they can include a range of potent ingredients, the potential benefits are endless.
"While they're predominantly known for their hydrating properties, face oils can also aid your anti-aging routine and provide antibacterial and healing properties," Lucas said.
Where do they go in a skin care routine?
"A good rule of thumb when applying skin care products is to go from lightest to thickest. So apply your lightest products first, such as serums or oils, and move your way up to the thickest products, such as moisturizers and sunscreen,"
Naturally, everyone will have a different regimen depending on their skin type and the desired outcome of the oil, but one common application tip is to use a face oil to multitask with your existing skin care products.
"You can always add a few drops to your facial moisturizer or serum to achieve additive properties. Face oils can also be applied after serum to allow the treatment effects of the serum to be 'locked into' the skin," Lucas said.
Face oils can be applied either in the morning or evening, or can even be used as a spot treatment to tackle skin issues like dark spots and dryness.
Try our best seller SOS recovery concentrate