The winter can be a harsh time for your skin. As soon as summer comes to an end, my skin begins to change as quickly as the leaves outside. By the time Winter arrives, my skin becomes very dry. Lotions, creams, and balms become constant companions for my hands and feet. My face however, has a different ally. When the cool dry breezes of winter come along, I abandon the light facial creams that sustain my summer skin. Facial Oil is the only thing that can keep my skin happy from December on.
At first glance, using an oil as a facial moisturizer seems counter intuitive. Most people react to this idea with the concern that it will cause your skin to become too greasy. While that could be true in some extreme cases, most people's skin actually reacts quite well to facial oils. After all, most creams and facial serums are oil based. Water and emulsifiers are added to give the product the cool feeling and pleasant texture that we are so familiar with. Unfortunately, the commercial versions of these products are almost always accompanied by chemical preservatives and other questionable ingredients. Facial oils can be made in small batches that can be used quickly, eliminating the need for a strong chemical preservative.
The key to a great skincare routine is making sure that it matches your unique needs. Creating a custom facial oil allows you to directly control the properties of your daily moisturizer. Since you'll be using ingredients that have not been diluted with water and additives, you'll be essentially (no pun intended) cutting out the middle man. You can be sure that the beneficial components of the oils you are using are reaching your skin at their full strength. You only need to apply about 3 to 6 drops of facial oil per application, but each drop will be packed with full strength natural ingredients.
When it comes to creating a blend for delicate facial skin all oils are not created equal. Even if your skin tends to be dry, your blend should be light, penetrating, and non-comedogenic. My favorite oil to use as a base for any facial blend is Rosehip Oil. With high levels of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, Rosehip oil is a champion in the world of natural skincare. It has been shown to help improve skin elasticity, regenerate skin cells, slow down premature aging, reduce the formation of wrinkles, and reduce scarring. While Rosehip Oil makes a wonderful base for most skin types it is especially suited to mature skin.
Evening Primrose Oil and Borage Oil are also great for facial blends. These oils are high in G.L.A. (or gamma-linolenic acid), an essential fatty acid that helps to balance the skins moisture and auto-immunity. This makes these oils especially beneficial to people who suffer from skin conditions such as psoriasis or eczema. G.L.A. is introduced during infancy through breastfeeding, but it is not otherwise produced by the human body. This particular fatty acid is rarely found in significant concentrations in plants, but Borage, and Evening Primrose are two of the highest sources of G.L.A. Their oils have been found to be very effective when used by people with severe skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema or chronically dry skin, but are not limited to use in only those situations. Most skin types can benefit from the use of Borage and Evening Primrose Oil.
Jojoba, a liquid wax which is commonly referred to as an oil, is another classic ingredient for use in facial blends. Jojoba's chemical composition is very close to sebum, a natural fluid produced by human skin. Sebum acts as the skin's natural protective barrier. It also aids in regulating moisture. Jojoba is a smart addition to any facial oil blend, but sensitive skin blends may be particularly helped by the use of Jojoba. It contains a significant amount of myristic acid, a fatty acid that is known to act as an anti-inflammatory.
Fruit and Berry Seed Oils are some of the highest sources of antioxidants found in natural skincare today. Blueberry Seed Oil is at the top of this list. It is one of the most potent sources of antioxidants found in the natural world! Antioxidants and essential fatty acids are known for their amazing anti-aging properties and can also act as a barrier against allergens, free radicals, and even sun damage. Fruit and Berry Seed Oils are mild in aroma, light in texture, and penetrate the skin easily. Each Fruit or Berry Seed Oil boasts its own unique benefits. If you plan on including them into your blend it is worth reading up on which is the right oil for you. For example, Red Raspberry Seed Oil possesses natural anti-inflammatory effects, while Blackberry Seed Oil contains an impressive amount of Vitamin C. Please visit FromNatureWithLove.com to view these oils along with their individual descriptions. You can also refer to my earlier article on the benefits of Fruit and Berry Seed Oils.
Choosing between these fantastic oils can seem almost impossible. Fortunately, you are better off blending two or more of these carrier oils to use as your base than just choosing one. For example, my facial oil at the moment is composed of one quarter of an ounce of Rosehip Oil, Evening Primrose Oil, Red Raspberry Seed Oil and Pomegranate Oil. I also add one drop of Sandalwood Essential Oil, one drop of Chamomile Essential Oil and one drop of Carrot Seed CO2 Extract. You must be careful to dilute your Essential Oils or CO2 Extracts very well in a facial oil blend, especially if you have sensitive skin. They can be beneficial additions to your oil when they are chosen wisely and used with care. Alternatively, essential oils can be extremely irritating or even damaging if not used properly. It is worth reading in detail about the benefits and warnings of any essential oil before adding it to your facial formula. Aromaweb offers detailed profiles of 90 different essential oils. You can also visit FromNatureWithLove.com to view our listing of essential oils along with their individual descriptions.