Natural Products For Oily Skin and Acne
Activated Bamboo Charcoal Soap
Help Me Choose:

Natural Products For Oily Skin and Acne

What is it?

Oily skin is the result of excessive secretions of sebum, an oily secretion of the sebaceous glands. Oily skin tends to attract more dirt and dust than dry skin and may be prone to black heads and acne.

Acne, a condition that affects the skin’s oil glands, begins with a clogged pore. As old skin cells die, they are normally sloughed off every month. If your skin is acne prone, instead of sloughing off, the dead cell clog pores, trapping oil and bacteria inside. As the bacteria grow they can cause inflammation of the skin, leading to pimples.

Soaps with Citrus Oils have been traditionally recommended for oily skin. They work by balancing skin oils, not by drying out your skin.

For a more extensive list of soaps for oily skin please read, Help Me Choose Soap.


Oily Skin

Oily skin usually appears shiny and is characterized by a thicker feeling texture and large pores.

People with oily skin struggle with keeping shine down during the day and often want feel to wash their face often.


Many people think that acne is simply pimples. But acne signs and symptoms vary depending on the severity of the condition:

  • Whiteheads: closed plugged pores or closed comedones
  • Blackheads: open plugged pores or open comedones (the oil turns dark when it is exposed to air)
  • Papules: small red, tender bumps
  • Pustules: these are what most people call pimples. They are papules with pus at their tips
  • Nodules: large, solid and hard, painful lumps beneath the surface of the skin
  • Cystic Lesions: similar to nodules but they are softer and pus-filled (both nodules & cystic lesions can leave scars)

Treating Oily Skin & Acne

Cleanse With Natural Soap

Cleanse With Natural Soap

If your skin is oily, do not use soap that will dry out your skin. Use natural soap, especially those with citrus essential oils like Cucumber Lime, that helps balance skin oils and leaves skin feeling soft and smooth. We also recommend our Neem & Tea Tree and  Seabuckthorn & Tea Tree Soaps. Tea tree helps heal infections and inflammation, and fights acne without causing dryness or other side effects of modern day acne treatments

Commercial soaps and body washes contain harsh detergents, fragrance oils and other synthetic chemicals that can dry and irritate skin. Always clean skin gently. Rough scrubbing will not decrease oil production and may even make the problem worse.



While many folks with oily or acne prone skin tend to shy away from moisturizing, it is actually a very important step. Even though our skin produces natural oil, it is not the same as hydration. A moisturizer helps increase the water content in the skin and prevent further moisture loss. When oily skin is dry, it can trigger even more oil production, thereby exacerbates the problem. But a moisturizer that slows the evaporation of moisture, actually causes sebum producing cells to shut down.

The main thing is to make sure that you’re using the right kind of moisturizer. Stay away from petroleum based products that contain mineral oils which clog your pores and cause breakouts.

The best face creams or oil are those made with plant-based oils. Oils like argan (left) can actually help decrease sebum production.

To get the most out of a moisturizer, make sure that skin is exfoliated and clean.

Choose Natural Moisturizers

Choose Natural Moisturizers

Pure, unrefined botanical oils are loaded with natural fatty acids that work with your skin to soften, soothe and hydrate. For example, we use Jojoba Oil in all of facial oils because it mimics our own natural sebum, restores pH balance to the skin and helps dissolve pore clogging sebum which helps reduce acne breakouts.



To encourage healthy skin turnover and growth, use gentle exfoliants. Exfoliating sloughs away dead skin cells, unclogs pores and removes the extra buildup that comes with oily skin. It is important to choose a gentle scrub that doesn’t dry out or aggravate the skin. We recommend a product like Citrus Woods Green Tea Soap, the finely ground organic Green Tea leaves act as a gentle exfoliant to give skin a healthy glow. 

Facial Steams

Facial Steams

If you are prone to mild acne. Although steaming alone will not clear comedones (pore blockages) the moisturizing heat will increase circulation, open pores and make your facial skin sweat. A facial steam before cleansing softens and helps release dead skin cells, dirt, bacteria and other impurities that can cause breakouts.

Bath Salts

Bath Salts

While there is no research about the effectiveness of salt water as remedy for acne, it may be helpful for those with body acne. Salt baths help balance oily skin, hep open and clean pores and may help decrease bacterial that cause acne.

Salt water will sting on any open area. Be sure the salt water is completely rinsed off.

Things to Avoid

Harsh Soap Cleansing Products

The detergents used in many commercial soaps and acne cleansing products contain harsh detergents. These harsh detergents strip natural oils which dry out the skin. When oily skin is dry, it can trigger even more oil production, which exacerbates the problem.

Alcohol Based or Skin Drying Products

Many believe that drying out their oily skin will help decrease acne. However, oily skin is actually made worse by skin-drying or alcohol-based products, and harsh soaps or body washes. The chemicals in these products strip natural oils and dry out the skin, which then encourages the oil glands to produce more oil (sebum). It then becomes a vicious cycle.

Comedogenic Ingredients

Comedogenic ingredients, such as mineral oil and other petroleum based ingredients, block pores and can lead to or exacerbate acne.

Popping Pimples

Do not try to pop pimples. Not only will it not help the acne heal, it may actually spread the breakout underneath the skin.

Harsh Laundry Detergents

Pillow cases, sheets, and towels touch your skin every day. Avoid using strong, scented detergents to help reduce irritation and sensitivity. You should also change towels and pillowcases often to help avoid the spread of acne bacteria.

Related Articles

Adzuki Beans

Adzuki Beans

Multipurpose, exfoliating organic AZUKI BEAN powder gently buffs away dull, dry, flaky skin. Used in Japanese skin care regimens for centuries, Adzuki beans contain a natural foaming agent called saponin that helps cleanse pores by absorbing excess oils, removing dirt and dead skin cells, drawing out impurities and promoting circulation.

The Nitty Gritty of Exfoliation

The Nitty Gritty of Exfoliation

It may surprise you, but I have never been obsessed with skin care products. My skin care regimen consisted of a shower with soap and water--and I was done! If you would have told me 10 years ago that I would soon be massaging myself with sugars, salts and pulverized beans, I would have politely disagreed. But my skin now thanks me each and every day!

Customer Tips for Natural Products For Oily Skin and Acne

Rhassoul & Yoghurt soap

The essential oil blend has a warm, spicy, sweet and uniquely fragrant aroma and adds its own skin nourishing properties

"The Rhassoul & Yoghurt soap is great for my pre-teen daughter’s oily skin."

-Kristina, Sweden

Neem & Tea Tree

Tea tree helps heal infections and skin disorders and fights acne without causing dryness or other side affects of modern day acne treatments

"...I cannot say enough good things about the Neem and Tea Tree bar. I love it as a complexion soap, it totally helps with clearing blackheads and cystic acne..."

-Brandye, Illinois

Sea Salt & Seaweed

The minerals in sea water, also found in mineral-rich sea salt, promote healthy skin

"... I have suffered with oily/cystic acne/pores type skin. After a few washes with this soap my pores alone have shrunken DRAMATICALLY!!..."

-Karen, Tennessee

Adzuki Bean Complexion

For my extremely dry yet acne prone skin I seem to have settled on the organic Adzuki bean soap which is like a miracle in a bar!!!

-Elisabeth, Vermont

Medical Disclaimer

The content and information on this website, provided by The Chagrin Valley Soap & Salve Company, is for educational purposes only and is in no way intended and should not be construed as medical advice to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or health condition. The information regarding folklore or health-related benefits of certain ingredients is for educational purposes only. The information provided is not intended to prescribe or be taken as medical advice.

The information provided is not meant to substitute the advice provided by your personal physician or other medical professionals. Do not use the information found on this website to self-diagnose any medical conditions or treat any health problems or diseases. If you have medical concerns regarding yourself or your family you should seek the advice of qualified, licensed health professionals. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This notice is required by the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act.

Read our Full Medical Disclaimer. 




People with severe allergies--please note: If you have severe anaphylactic-type reactions to ANY of the ingredients in ANY of our products, please do not buy our products. We have dedicated soap rooms and product rooms that are kept meticulously clean, but we cannot guarantee against possible cross-contamination of individual ingredients.

Chagrin Valley Soap & Craft is not responsible for any individual reaction to any particular ingredient. Each product description on our website includes a complete list of ingredients. People with sensitivities to any listed ingredient should not use the product. In case you are in doubt always try an allergy patch test and if at any time irritation occurs, discontinue use of the product.