Looking for the best oils for the face to use in your DIY skin care routine? Here are 12 best oils for the face, their skin care benefits. Plus learn how to make your own nourishing, customized facial oil.
Facial oils are popular today, but really they’ve been around for centuries. Nearly every culture utilized natural oils and butters to moisturize, nourish, and beautify the skin.
But with all the modern skin care products available, do facial oils still have a place in skin care? I’d say, absolutely yes!
What Are Facial Oils?
Facial oils are simply oils that you put on your face!
But not just any oil will do, my friend. Certain vegetable, fruit, and nut oils lend themselves to facial treatments because of their specific therapeutic properties.
You can certainly purchase a pre-made facial oil. But, these skin care products are SO easy to make yourself, so you may want to pick up a few of your favorite lipid oils and blend them into a handmade facial oil serum of your own. (I’ll show you how!)
What Are The Benefits of Using Oils for the Face?
Facial oils are an easy way to deliver a dose of nourishment to your skin in the form of vitamins and essential fatty acids. They’re also great emollients, leaving the skin soft, supple, and dewy.
If your skin is lacking in oil, and often feels tight and dry, facial oils act as a good substitute for your skin’s natural oils.
Regular use of facial oils have plenty of skin care benefits. They can:
- Stave off and improve signs of aging
- Improve the skin’s barrier function
- Maintain elasticity
- Soften and smooth the skin
- Improve moisture levels
Do Oils Moisturize The Skin?
Although it seems like oils would moisturize the skin, and many sources mistakenly claim they do, the surprising answer is no. Oils alone don’t add moisture or hydration (AKA water) to the skin.
Instead, they act as a nutritive serum that works with your moisturizer to seal in hydration. Facial oils also act as a protective barrier between your skin and the outside world (like cold winter weather and free radicals in air pollution).
So, these oils work in tandem with hydrating products to improve and enhance moisture levels in the skin.
How To Use Oils for the Face
Facial oils are super simple to use. But, there is a very specific way to use your facial oils to get the best results and the most skin care benefits.
Because facial oils are, well, oily, they will make an occlusive barrier across the the surface layers of the skin. This barrier helps seal in moisture, but it can also seal out other skin care products. So, facial oils should be among the last skin care product you apply to the skin.
You should always apply your leave-on skin care products in order from most watery to most oily.
Oil floats on water, right? So apply water-based products like toners, splashes, and gel-based serums first, to allow these to soak into the skin.
Next, apply moisturizer and any oil-based serums. Facial oils are then applied over the top to to help seal in the moisturizing products you’ve just applied and to give an extra dose of emollient ingredients.
SPF is the finishing touch for daytime. Let your facial oils absorb for at least 5 minutes, then apply sunscreen. Makeup, if you wear it, can be applied once the sunscreen has fully absorbed.
Will Oils Clog My Pores and Cause Breakouts?
Some oils certainly can clog the pores–these aren’t the best choices to use as facial oils. The most common comedogenic (AKA pore-clogging) oils are coconut, cocoa butter, and wheatgerm oil.
But there are many, many oils that won’t clog pores or cause breakouts, so they’re perfect for using on the face. Keep reading for a list of the most beneficial oils for the face.
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What Are The Best Oils for the Face?
There are many excellent facial oils, but here are some of my absolute favorites. They’re fast absorbing, so they won’t leave you feeling greasy and also deliver a special dose of goodness to your face.
And you don’t have to use just one! Blend them together for a custom facial oil. (I’ve a link to a fabulous and easy-to-make facial oil recipe below.)
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1. Black raspberry seed oil: Fast absorbing, this lovely oil helps support skin elasticity. It’s soothing and good for damaged or problem skin.
2. Blackberry seed oil: Rich in omega fatty acids and vitamin C, blackberry seed oil is a powerful antioxidant oil. Highly emollient, this oil feels luxurious. It reportedly helps fade blotchy skin.
3. Blueberry seed oil: Full of omega fatty acids 3, 6, and 9, blueberry seed oil is especially good for extra dry and dehydrated skin types.
4. Cranberry seed oil: Another oil that has a unique composition of omega 3, 6, and 9, cranberry seed oil is helpful for repairing damaged skin.
5. Evening primrose oil: This oil feels bit heavier on the skin than the above oils, so it’s absolutely perfect for dry skin types. Extremely high gamma linolenic acid (GLA), evening primrose oil softens and smooths the skin. It’s a brilliant anti-aging oil. The one downside–this oil is slightly comedongenic so if you are prone to blackheads and blocked pores, I would avoid it.
6. Grapeseed oil: A very light and fast absorbing oil. Grapeseed oil is high in vitamins A, D, and E. It’s extremely nourishing and improves the skin’s tone and texture.
7. Jojoba oil: A powerful emollient that’s perfect for stressed or irritated skin. Jojoba penetrates deeply and is very similar in composition to our skin’s natural oil.
8. Raspberry seed oil: Extremely light, nourishing, and deeply penetrating. Exceptionally helpful at retaining moisture. Red raspberry seed oil helps prevent UV skin damage.
9. Rice bran oil: A personal favorite of mine, this oil contains two forms of vitamin E, making it a powerful antioxidant. Skin looks radiant after application. Rice bran helps slow the formation of wrinkles and absorbs quickly. Love!
10. Rosehip seed oil: High in essential fatty acids, vitamins A and C. Rosehip seed oil is a great emollient, leaves your skin super soft, and is a great anti-ager.
11. Strawberry seed oil: Incredibly rich in vitamins A, B, C, E, omega fatty acids, and a plethora of skin-healthy minerals. Strawberry seed oil supports moisture levels and skin elasticity.
12. Walnut oil: Naturally high in vitamin C, which is a perfect for combating fine lines and wrinkles. It also absorbs quickly into the skin and, as an astringent oil, is a good choice for oily skin types.
Can I Make My Own Facial Oil?
Yes, you can! Facial oils, sometimes called facial serums, are among the simplest handmade facial products you can craft, making them absolutely perfect starter products for new DIY skin care makers.
Some tips for making your own custom oil blend for your face:
- Buy small amounts of oils. Just a little bit goes a long way (we’re talking drops here!) and many of these nourishing oils have a very short shelf life of just a few months. Buy only 1/2 to 2 ounces at a time, to ensure they’re used up before they spoil.
- Start with just 2 or 3 oils. There’s no need to buy up every oil available (although I’m always tempted!) Many of the oils have similar benefits, so it’s not necessary to have a gazillion oils in your blend. Start with just 2 to 3 oils that speak to you and offer the skin care benefits you’re looking for.
- Write down everything you do. Keep ample notes when you’re crafting your own blend. You think you’ll remember what you added and how much, but you probably won’t. Been there, done that, and there’s nothing worse than not being able to recreate that amazing facial oil you came up with.
Simple Customizable Facial Oil Recipe
So, are you ready to make your very own nourishing facial oil? Follow the recipe below using the oils of your choice. There is no right or wrong here, so experiment and have fun!
- 1 tsp oil of your choice #1
- 1 tsp oil of your choice #2
- 1 tsp oil of your choice #3*
*If you’re using just 2 oils, use 2 teaspoons of the first oil, and 1 teaspoon of the second.
- Small bottle, 1/2 oz size (with a dropper top is ideal)
- Measuring spoons
Measure out oils and pour into bottle. Affix the lid and gently shake until oils are well blended.
Massage 3 to 4 drops of facial oil over your face and neck. Apply over your moisturizer. Use twice daily.
BARB CLAYPOOL says
Thank you for this article. I have used facial serums for several years. My oil of choice is jojoba oil. I also put in some essential oils of lavender, geranium and frankincense. Sometimes I also put in a few drops of vitamin E oil. You didnt mention anything about essential oils. Do you use them?
I also make my own face soap and toner. What I learned from you is that I was missing the moisturizing step. I will incorporate that into my routine also.
Thanks again. I enjoy your posts.
Angela - Farm Girl Soap Co. says
Hi Barb! Jojoba oil is definitely a great one. I do sometimes put essential oils in my facial serums. Lavender, geranium, and frankincense are amazing and I love them as well. Carrot seed essential oil is another great anti-aging EO for the face, but in moderation because it kind of stinks lol. German blue chamomile is pricey but a fabulous antioxidant essential oil as well.
It sounds like you have a great handmade skin care routine! I’m happy I was able to give you a tip about moisturizing. If you’re looking for a handmade option I’ve got a really nice facial moisturizer recipe here: Rosehip Evening Primrose Facial Moisturizer
Thanks for your comment, my friend. Happy crafting!