Precious tips for oily skin


Another post for the series “precious tips from people who really know the matter” – after having Maria Cecília Prado talking about curly hair, I invited my dear Athena, DDB’s assistant, to talk about oily skin. Athe belongs to the team of those who suffer with excessive oiliness, and still she always has impeccable makeup (and skin!), so I thought it would be incredible to share her secrets with you, as for makeup as for care.


“I’ve been working with Vic for more than a year and I am still super fan of her work and the blog, so when she asked me to write this post I was like “OMG!”. But moving on. I believe that the skin care for oily skin is a bit more boring compared to the one for dry skin. You need to clean it well, pay a lot of attention when buying every and any product, always have blot powder around etc. And the warm weather we’ve had in Brazil during the last few weeks requires double care! Oily skin without care = pimples and blackheads.


The first step is cleaning. There are several specific cleaning products for this type of skin, some stronger other not so much, what makes a total difference depending on how oily your skin is – if it is not so problematic and you use a stronger product it will dry out and flake off, and if the problem is bigger and you use a weaker product, it won’t do anything.

I’ve tried several ( La Roche Posay’s facial cleaning gel; Vichy’s deep cleanser; Darrow’s liquid cleanser for acne skin), but my favourites at the moment are the Foaming facial cleanser from Exsicata and the Blue Herbal gel cleanser from Kiehl’s. The first one I use in the morning, it is a foam similar to hair mousse, very soft and with a pleasant smell. The other one I use at night, it’s stronger and it also has a more outstanding smell. It is worth to remember that this cleaning process cannot be done more than three times a day. If you clean your face every time you feel it oily, the problem will only get worst.

Another very important thing is to do a good exfoliation once a week. That helps to remove the dead skin cells and the excess of oil that sometimes the cleaning product cannot handle on its own. When I found the Revitalising Exfoliating Facial Powder from Granado it was love at first sight, it is great and it cleans super well – I remember Vic wrote a post about an exfoliating powder and it got me super curious to try something similar. The exfoliating gel from Nivea and the daily scrub from Neutrogena give a veeeery soft cleanse, nothing too dramatic, you can even use it more than once a week. On the other hand, the Facial mask exfoliating from Exsicata falls in an intermediate category, great hydrating cleanse, I like it a lot also. Now, if you want one of thooooose, I recommend exfoliating gloves (you can find them in any drugstore). Just put the cleaning product you want in them and go get them – it is like a cheap replacement for the Clarisonic!

After this, comes hydration. Yes! Oily skin also needs to be hydrated. You don’t believe that? Do a simple test: wash you face with your favourite treatment cleanser and don’t apply anything after, check how long the feeling of clean and fresh skin lasts. Now, wash your face with the same product and, after, use a moisturiser indicated for oily skin – it is crucial that it really is indicated for oily skin. Noticed the difference? That happens because the lack of hydration increases even more the oil production, and that’s not what we want…

I used the Tri-Active anti-imperfection hydrating moisturiser from Vichy for around 2 years, I totally liked it, but I thought the skin kind of got sick of it after so long so I switched to the TriAcnéal from Avène, that is great also. I made a mistake and bought the Lifactiv Retinol HA from Vichy in a trip, but it is greaaat for those days when the skin is more fragile due to too much sun, cold, makeup remover, or after the exfoliation with the glove. Ah! Another great aspect of it is that it is anti wrinkles/dark spots, and I had a few expression lines on the forehead that were gone after using it… #hintforyou! But it cannot be used around the eyes. The Lysalpha Cicapeel from SVR it’s not exactly a moisturiser, I starting using it to remove some pimple scars I had on the chin, but nowadays I end up using it all over the face 3 times a week to clean any other spot that might come up. I remind you that the Liftactiv from Vichy and the one from SVR can only be user at night, and the other have no sunscreen, so if you are gonna use them during the day, you need to apply also a sunscreen.

A tip for the moments of panic (read pimples): the Acne cover Nexcare from 3M it’s a patch that absorbs all the pus and oil and dries any pimple. It’s like magic: clean the area well, put on the patch and wait. The ideal is to put it on at night before going to sleep, but depending on the level of desperation you can put it on during the day even. I never run out of it!

The most annoying part of having oily skin is to find a sunscreen that holds steady all day long without leaving your face all sticky. I confess that until today I’ve never found one that left me 100% satisfied, but I’ve found two that are like, ALMOST perfect – I think that in this matter there aren’t miracles. The Capital Soleil from Vichy is the one I use now, available with SPF 30 and 50. I am veeery pale and use the 30, even for the beach, and my face doesn’t burn. The Promat from Vichy only has SPF 15 , good for the ones that have darker skin and only stays in places away from the sun. I heard that the High protection SPF 30 from Avène is great, but I didn’t have the chance to try it yet.


The most anticipated moment! This is a long subject and if I write about all the good products we’ll stay here until tomorrow morning reading… So I will only approach my favourite combo.

Lesson number 1: primer. ALWAYS! You can get out of the house without clothes, but NEVER without primer (exaggeration on the side, you got the idea haha) My all time favourite is the Porefessional from Benefit, but since it is a bit expensive, I don’t use it daily, so I leave it for occasions that ask for a super long lasting skin and use more often the Skin Base Visage from MAC that is also very good. Another great one is the Anti-shine Mattifier from Vichy, released recently. And I’m gonna reveal a secret to you: when I have important events during the day, even if in open spaces, I don’t apply sunscreen! The ones with oily skin know that sunscreen is something that does not cooperate a lot for the maintenance of the matte effect, so I skip that step. But it is only once in a while! =)

For concealer I have an only son, the Pro Longwear from MAC. It is liquid, but it dries super fast and if you relax when spreading it… you loose! You need to remove it and start from scratch. I like to apply it with that traditional flattened brush, I think the effect is better than when applied with the fingers. When there is a smaller are or when I need a more detailed correction, I use a mini version of that brush.

I avoid the liquid foundations a bit, I leave them more for special occasions – I am lucky to have a skin that doesn’t require a lot of correction. On a daily basis I use the Mineralize Foundation Loose from MAC, a loose powder foundation, my passion. I apply it with the Bionic Flat Top Buffer from Coastal Scents, it gives a velvety and very natural effect, I like it a lot. Now, among the liquid foundations, my favourite are the Time Wise Matte from Mary Kay and the Double Wear from Estée Lauder. Both hold well the oiliness and the shine, but I always give them a hand with a mattifying powder, I use Blot from MAC with a full powder brush – in my purse I carry a mini kabuki to touch up. A magical trick is to use those blotting papers that remove the oiliness without removing the makeup, Contém 1g sells a great one. Ah, Vic wrote a post with the best foundations for oily skin based on the readers’ suggestions, worth peeking in here.

Another important thing (you realize that everything for me is important, right?) is the time to remove the makeup. Some people don’t like the biphasic makeup removers since they are always oilier, but I think that the ones with oily skin DO have to clean the skin after using any product to remove the makeup, that’s like the number 1 rule for clean skin. I’ve used biphasic removers, but nowadays I’ve been using Nivea’s cleansing wipes and Granado’s facial makeup remover (a cream and with a great cost/benefit ratio), after that Nivea’s astringent toner and for the eyes I use Johnson’s shampoo really, the yellow one for babies, so that I don’t need to rub forever. All these options are cheap and easy to find.

That’s i, girls! I hope you enjoyed the tips – and who has more suggestions, please leave them in the comments! It’s always goo to share new discoveries”

Thank you Athe!!

Extra from Vic: I’ve heard a lot of friends in Brazil and in London talking about the wonders that the foundation Immaculate, from Hourglass, does for oily skin. It’s worth to include it in the list of products to test also

{Translated by Ana de Almeida}


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