What are Facial Oils and How to Use Them
One of the most essential components of healthy facial skin is moisture. Proper hydration is key to retaining a healthy glow. The most basic function of a moisturizer is to hydrate and soften the skin by preventing water loss.
Also, gentle facial massage with a natural moisturizer helps improve circulation, protects delicate facial skin, and promotes hydration.
Whether you call them face oils, facial oils, or facial serums, a nourishing organic, unrefined oil can moisturize, soothe and help restore natural balance to facial skin.
What is a Face Oil?
While you may think that facial oils are a recent addition to skin care, they have have had a major role in beauty and health for a long time.
Over 2000 years ago, the Roman naturalist and philosopher Pliny the Elder wrote in his ancient text, Natural History, oil “effaces wrinkles on the skin, improves the complexion, and, in combination with honey, removes spots on the face.”
Natural face oils are an easy way to feed your skin.
- Unrefined plant-based oils are prized for their skin-nurturing properties.
- Our organic face oils contain natural plant oils that penetrate deeply bringing essential fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to your skin.
- We use nourishing oils such as Jojoba and botanical-infused Sunflower; healing oils like Argan, Seabuckthorn, and Tamanu; and potent seed oils such as Pomegranate, Rosehips (right), Sesame, and Pumpkin to help replenish the skin's own natural oil and promote a healthy complexion.
While there are essential oils that are great for facial skin, over the years we have received so many emails from customers who are sensitive to even the most gentle essential oils, we have chosen not to include them in our facial oils.
Why Use a Face Oil
Our skin naturally loses the ability to retain moisture as we age. Our facial skin tends to become thinner and lose its elasticity. Our skin also produces less oil, which means it dries out more easily. This can exaggerate the look of fine lines and wrinkles. Facial oils can help prevent water loss and keep skin plump.
Facial oils are great to use all year long but skincare needs may change from season to season.
Face oils can help soothe dry winter skin and add moisture to summer skin dehydrated by the Sun.
Our organic face oils are great for all skin types. Think of them as nourishment for beautiful skin.
Facial oils are not just for people with very dry skin!
While many people, especially those with oily or acne-prone skin tend to shy away from oil-based moisturizing, it can be a very important step in daily skin care. An organic facial oil helps to increase the moisture content in the skin and prevent further moisture loss.
If you have oily skin, nourishing organic oils can help mimic the natural skin sebum which in turn sends signals to oil-producing cells that say, "Hey my skin is moisturized so stop producing oil."
Using products created to "dry out" oily skin, in an attempt to get rid of oily shine, will actually trigger the oil glands to increase oil production, which only exacerbates the oily skin problem. A wholesome moisturizer helps balance skin oil production.
However, if your are struggling with acne or oily skin, nourishing oils like Argan and Jojoba, which have natural components similar to the skin’s natural secretions, can actually help balance skin oil production.
Some synthetic additives can actually clog pores causing acne and blackheads. Stripping the skin of its natural oils will cause the skin to overcompensate by producing even more oil.
If you have dry skin an organic facial oil made from unrefined botanical oils creates a protective but breathable barrier that slows moisture evaporation and thus helps lock in moisture.
A natural face oil is ideal for sensitive and irritated skin. Sometimes, adequate hydration alone can help calm inflammation and soothe red irritated skin.
It is especially important for those (like me!) with maturing skin to keep your face adequately moisturized to help with fine lines and wrinkles. As we age, the skin's natural oil production decreases, the skin dries out more easily and wrinkles appear deeper. A nourishing oil helps prevent water loss and plump the skin.
No matter why type of skin you have the main thing is to make sure that you are using the right kind of moisturizer.
The most nourishing face oils are those made with unrefined, certified organic plant-based oils. Unrefined oils are either cold-pressed or expeller-pressed.
They are minimally processed without chemicals under temperature-controlled conditions which ensures a nutrient-rich, high-quality natural oil. USDA Certified Organic means the botanical oils are free of synthetic additives, pesticides, and preservatives.
Stay away from petroleum-based products that contain mineral oils that clog your pores and cause breakouts.
The Best Way to Apply a Face Oil
Less is More
For those who have tried facial oils but do not like them, the incorrect application is often the problem.
If your skin feels oily hours after application, you should reconsider your technique.
Since facial oils are very concentrated, a little goes a very long way and less is usually better than more.
Is Your Face Ready?
The best way to apply facial moisturizers is on freshly cleaned, warm and damp (not wet) skin. Creams and oils work best with a little water moisture. Facial oils are better able to lock in moisture when the skin is more pliable after a warm wash and damp skin also ensures that the oils spread evenly and absorb effectively into your skin.
Note that your skin should not be wet, just a bit moist, or the skin will be unable to hold the oil.
How Much to Use
Again, facial oils are very concentrated. The recommended amount for your décolleté, neck, and face is about 4 to 6 drops. If doing your face only, you need about 2 to 3 drops of oil per treatment. If your skin is extra dry a couple more drops may be helpful. Just don’t overdo it. This might appear to be a very small amount but start out small, you can always add more.
Now that your skin is ready you need to choose an application method.
While many people have their own special technique for applying face oil, here are two favorites. Always be sure that your hands are clean.
Fingertip Method: Place the drops of facial oil in the palm of one hand. Then use a fingertip on your other hand to apply one dab on your neck, one on your décolleté, one on your forehead, and one on each of your cheeks. If you choose to do your face only, place one dab on each cheek and one on your forehead.
You should not be "rubbing" the oils into your skin. Using small circular strokes in an upward, outward motion massage gently with your oily fingertips until most of the oil has been absorbed. The gentle massage will also give your skin a nice circulation boost.
When applying moisturizer to your neck, massage in an upward stroking motion, until completely absorbed.
Palm Method: Place the drops of facial oil in the palm of one hand and then warm the oil by rubbing the palms of your hands together. Then gently press your palms onto your face, neck, and décolleté ensuring it is applied evenly. Then gently massage until it feels absorbed.
When To Use a Facial Oil
It is usually suggested that a facial oil be used in the morning in place of a moisturizer. If your skin is extra thirsty, apply the face oil and allow a few minutes for it to absorb. Then use your natural cream moisturizer as usual for extra hydration.
There is a debate as to whether you should apply moisturizers at night.
One school of thought is that you should not moisturize at night. While you sleep skin cells are hard at work naturally repairing, regenerating, balancing oil production, and flushing out impurities.
Applying moisturizers may prevent your skin from breathing, interfere with the skin’s natural regenerative activities, and may cause your skin to become dependent on moisturizers.
The other school of thought is that since cell repair and regeneration is higher at night, skin loses more moisture and needs the extra moisture. Also, since the skin’s ability to absorb ingredients peaks at night, your skin may be able to better absorb the nourishing, moisturizing ingredients.
If you choose to moisturize day and night, a light facial oil may be better than a heavy cream. Just remember that your skin needs time to breathe. Too much moisturizing with thick, heavy creams is not a good thing since it may send a message to your own sebaceous glands to slow down natural moisture production, resulting in chronic dry skin.
About Chagrin Valley Face Oils
Many face oils and serums on the market promise miraculous results with eye-catching ingredients and come with a steep price tag. Be sure to choose a facial moisturizer formulated with simple, organic ingredients that are easily absorbed and allow the skin to breathe.
It is very difficult to discuss facial oils in general since they are so different. So, I will talk about our oils.
A silky nectar for your skin! Our fragrance-free organic facial oils are an easy way to nourish even the most sensitive skin and keep it healthy and hydrated.
Which Facial Oil To Choose?
We make 4 different face oil formulations using unrefined oils that have not been bleached or deodorized. These oils retain their natural scent, color, and nutritional benefits.
Recommendations are based on our experience and customer feedback.
- Red, irritated or inflamed skin
- Itchy skin
- Mature skin
- Normal to oily skin
- Skin that needs help balancing oil production
- Skin that is sometimes shiny and sometimes needs moisture
- This is our lightest facial oil
- Dry skin
- Itchy skin
- Flaky skin
- Mature skin
- Normal to mature skin
- Skin that needs some TLC and moisture
- Irritated skin
- Dull skin
Ingredients We Use in Chagrin Valley Face Oils
Argan Oil (Argania spinosa)
Prized for its ability to improve the quality of skin, argan oil, rich in vitamin E, natural squalene, phytosterols and essential fatty acids, helps reduce wrinkles and fine lines. It contains natural anti-inflammatory agents that help calm inflamed skin and sebum regulating properties that help reduce the appearance of blemishes.
Evening Primrose Oil (Oenothera biennis)
A rich source of vitamin A and fatty acids, including gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), evening primrose promotes healthy skin by restoring moisture and helping to maintain skin elasticity. Soothing evening primrose has been used to help with conditions like eczema and is an excellent oil for dry, aging skin.
Jojoba Oil (Buxus sinensis)
The structure of jojoba oil closely resembles our own skin sebum and is considered nature's most effective natural moisturizer. It is so great for balancing oil production that it actually helps your skin find its own natural balance. It penetrates the skin easily, has anti-inflammatory actions, and can be used on oily and acne-prone skin. It is great for mature, aging skin and exceptional mildness for sensitive skin.
Pomegranate Seed Oil (Punica granatum)
A rich, nutritious oil that contains high levels of antioxidants. It helps fight free radicals and skin aging, helps heal, protect and moisturize dry, cracked, mature, and irritated skin revitalizes dull or mature skin, assists with wrinkles, improves skin elasticity, and soothes minor skin irritations. Pomegranate seed oil is very expensive. It takes over 200 pounds of fresh pomegranates to produce one pound of pomegranate seed oil!
Pumpkin Seed Oil (Cucurbita pepo)
A highly nourishing and emollient oil rich in vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant. Rich in essential fatty acids that regulate skin oil (sebum) production, it is great for both oily/acne-prone skin and dry damaged skin. It helps combat fine facial lines and may be helpful for inflamed skin.
Rosehips Oil (Rosa rubiginosa)
The retinoic acid found in Vitamin A-rich rosehip oil helps improve fine lines and wrinkles. It easily penetrates dry skin to restore needed moisture and help delay the effects of aging. It helps calm inflamed skin and has been known to diminish stretch marks and scars. Rosehips oil, rich in antioxidants, offers many benefits to facial skin due to its essential fatty acids, vitamin E, vitamin C, and B-carotene.
Sea Buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides)
Uniquely rich in Vitamin C, omega-3 oils, antioxidants (like vitamin E), B vitamins, and beta-carotene (which gives the berries their characteristic color) Sea buckthorn Oil is a powerful skin-repairing moisturizer treasured for its anti-inflammatory activity that helps promote wound healing and reduce scarring by encouraging tissue regeneration.
When used topically, sea buckthorn oil promotes the healing of eczema, rosacea, and burns, including radiation and sunburn. There are claims that sea buckthorn oil kills Demodex mites that often cause rosacea. Seabuckthorn oil is very expensive. Over 10 pounds of berries are needed to produce one pound of oil. It is so concentrated that it may temporarily stain the skin.
Sesame Seed Oil (Sesame indicum)
One of the best oils to moisturize and nourish skin, sesame seed oil contains loads of vitamin E along with vitamin B complex and vitamin A which helps nourish and rejuvenate skin. Sesame oil, used for massage and health treatments in Ayurvedic medicine, contains a potent antioxidant called sesamol that is beneficial for mature aging skin and helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
Tamanu Oil (Calophyllum inophyllum)
Non-greasy and readily absorbed into the skin, tamanu oil fades stretch marks, helps improve the appearance of scars, promotes new tissue formation, and encourages healthy skin growth to aid in healing skin conditions. Tamanu oil is a remarkable topical healing agent with skin healing, antineuralgic, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antibiotic, and antioxidant properties.
The oil has been well researched, and the evidence of its ability to heal damaged skin is quite impressive. Tamanu is a costly oil. It takes 20 pounds of Tamanu fruit, the amount that one tree produces annually, to yield just ONE pound of oil!
Sunflower Oil (Helianthus annuus)
One of the most moisturizing vegetable oils, sunflower, is easily absorbed and can be used on all skin types. It is rich in essential fatty acids and vitamin E making it especially helpful for dry or delicate skin. Its low comedogenic score means that it is less likely to block pores which could lead to blemishes. The sunflower oil we use in our facial oils is infused with a variety of different organic botanicals depending on the formula.
See our Facial Herbs page for information on botanicals for facial skin
As with all of Chagrin Valley products, our organic face oil contains no GMOs, petroleum-based ingredients, parabens, or of course preservatives. It is important to store your facial oil in a cool place out of direct sunlight. Since you only need a few drops of facial oil per application, a 1-ounce bottle will last a long time. The shelf life is approximately 4-6 months after opening.