Zero waste alternative: Using natural oils for healthy skin

Skin is the largest organ and absorbs everything, so why put anything on it you would not eat? Fancy skin care products are usually based on plant oils. I would gladly skip the fragrance, chemicals, plastic packaging and high prices and go straight to the good stuff.

Plant oils are anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory moisturisers full of vitamins and fatty acids that function as a natural sunscreen and well as smell great. I get them at local grocery store and buy unrefined, cold pressed and organic ones for the most benefits. Once a product has been heated or altered with chemicals, it is no longer pure. I have used a cheap grape seed oil and it did not work out well! You can buy oils in bio stores, but keep them in a fridge, since bio-oils go bad quickly. I keep a smaller amount in jars in the bathroom.

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Some oils are good for dry and some for oily skin. Maybe it sounds contradictory, but oily and acne-prone skin can benefit greatly from oils as they help to regulate oil production. You have to pick the right oil for your skin type, though, which might require some experimentation.

I have mixed skin on my face and like to use light oils, that are preferably high in unsaturated fatty acid (omega-6) to avoid breakouts. My favourite thus far has been hemp and argan oil, and hemp oil is much cheaper. I use coconut oil for my body because I like that it is somewhat solid at room temperature, but it is too heavy to use on my face.

I put some oil on my skin in the morning and the evening and massage it in well. It’s good to switch oils when I run out and try something new. Skin is a complex organ and cannot be satisfied with just one product.

If you are not using plant oils to moisturise your face yet, winter might be the best time to start. These are most popular oils for healthy skin care:

(Sweet) Almond oil:

for dry skin, with vitamins A, B and E, anti-ageing, for evened skin tone, fast absorbent, very moisturising, against soreness

Olive oil:

for dry skin, with vitamins A and E, antioxidant-rich, anti-ageing, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, exfoliating

Avocado oil:

for dry skin, with vitamins A, D and E, anti-oxidants and amino acids, fast absorbent, smoothing, good for sunburn

Apricot kernel oil:

for mature and sensitive skin, vitamins A and E, moisturises and nourishes skin, making it more elastic

Coconut oil:

for dry skin, lots of protein, vitamin E, fatty acids, antibacterial, makeup, strengthens and softens the skin, treats fungi infections. it is heavy and can clog pores, so I would not use it on my face (except to make up)

Grape seed oil:

for oily skin. omega-6 fatty acids, good against acne and skin irritation, light, clear, toning, tightening, easily absorbed,

Hemp oil: 

for oily skin, vitamins A and E, omega-6 fatty acids, good against acne, light, moisturising

Rosehip seed oil:

for oily and sensitive skin, vitamin C, omega -6 fatty acids, good against acne, anti-ageing, light, absorbs easily, makes skin soft

Jojoba oil:

for oily skin, regulates natural production of sebum, moisturises and conditions the skin for a very long period

Flax seed oil:

for mixed skin. omega-3-fatty acids, anti-oxidants, vitamin E, anti-inflammatory

Argan oil:

for mixed skin, vitamin E, carotenoids, omega-3 and -6 fatty acids,  better elasticity, anti-ageing, good for scar healing

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If you are feeling inspired there is always more food you can put on your face, like honey or yoghurt.

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