By Genevieve LeFranc
Beauty Oils In the Summer? You Bet!
Now that we’re in the thick of the humid, muggy summer months, each of us is searching for a way to beat the heat when it comes to our beauty routines. Strong perfumes have been replaced with light body mists and layers of heavy foundation with a light dusting of powder or bronzer. But…what about our moisturizing routines? The idea of slathering your body with a thick, heavy-duty body butter or cream lotion seems almost suffocating in summer. I am a religious user of cocoa butter formulas during the winter for their rich moisturizing properties and luxe smell, but in the dog days of summer, the same lotion leaves me feeling sticky and weighed down, sweating it all off in a matter of minutes.
Enter oil beauty products. If you’re feeling skeptical, you’re not alone. I, too, found the idea of oil counterintuitive, but once familiar with the non-breakout-causing, skin illuminating benefits that various oil products offer, I’m a believer. Oils work differently, actually helping your own skin balance its natural oil production as well as hydrating face, body, and hair. And it’s universal. Oils aren’t just for those with dry skin or fried, split ends—they’re great for treating acne-prone skin.
The surprises continue: not all oils are created equal. Dry skin needs a product that will hydrate all day, while those with oilier skin types should look for a product that has a lightweight consistency. The best thing about oil is the fact that you can tailor it to your skin’s individual needs. Once you know which product is best for you, expect it to go to work right away. Trust me, the first time I used almond oil after a shower I felt like a piece of bacon, slipping and sliding all over the bathroom floor. But don’t feel tempted to wipe it all off; it absorbs on its own quickly and the subtle almond scent is lovely. Whether you’re a straight-up health food store kinda gal; find what you need in the beauty aisle; or simply scour your kitchen cabinets for what you need, read on to break down which oil-based products are right for you.
If your skin is combination, like most, try Whole Foods Virgin Coconut Oil. Originally used as a cooking staple, coconut oil is also an incredible facial moisturizer, body lotion, and hair repair agent (just apply a small amount to dry, split ends). Pick some up at your local health food store, it’s that simple!
For dry skin, oil is often a lifesaver. Try Dr. Haushka Rose Body Oil. This girly smelling oil, with its lightweight consistency, sinks right into skin while calming irritation and offering a sexy subtle sheen on your limbs that just screams St. Tropez.
If you’re like me and your complexion and/or T-zone is on the oily side, it seems counterintuitive to use an oil cleanser. Come on, washing away oil… with oil? However, Shu Uemura Fresh Pore Clarifying Gentle Cleansing Oil is a Japanese beauty classic that actually targets oily skin. The cleanser works by removing pore-clogging dirt and helping to regulate your own skin’s natural oils. You’ll see clearer skin plus a calming of those horrendous midday oil slicks.
Oils and hair go hand in hand and provide a wealth of beauty benefits that will make you a believer. Moroccon Argan oil in its purest form is a lifesaver for not only your locks, but for scars, nails, skin, face, wrinkles, and fine lines. This oil is a superior source of antioxidants, vitamin E, and moisture as it nourishes and protects skin and hair from the environment. This organic ingredient prevents dehydration, inflammation, hyperpigmentation, and sebum production. It is your answer to naturally healthy, youthful, radiant, clear skin and hair.
My sister got me in on the Argan oil secret, and she swears by it for reversing hair damage. If your hair is feeling fried (too much sun, chlorine or, let’s be honest, too much heat/color damage), try one of the many products with Argan oil. But be on the lookout for frauds! Drug store Argan oil is most likely diluted, so seek out the real deal at health food stores. The pure stuff will last forever, so it’s worth the price! My sister says she doesn’t need more than four drops for her medium/long hair, but keep the oil away from bangs or roots to avoid that elvis look. Argan oil in its pure form penetrates the hair shaft to seal split ends and deliver intense moisture to each layer of the hair strand. All hair types will instantly look and feel healthier, silkier, and shinier.
If you find your hair has plenty of oil on its own without any help from products, again, suspend logic and opt for an oil-based shampoo. Heritage Store Olive Oil Shampoo gently removes dirt and debris but, unlike most shampoos out there, this products leaves the scalp’s natural oils instead of stripping them away with harsh sulfates. Other shampoos make your scalp so squeaky clean that it forces oil glands into overdrive, causing increased oil production. Have I blown your minds yet about oil?