Beauty oils started increasing in popularity within the last couple years, but mostly among those in the beauty industry or fanatics. It seems that in the last year however, they have just exploded in popularity. Pesky waterproof makeup giving you trouble when it is time to remove? Oil can fix that. Facial cleansing that doesn’t strip your skin–squeaky clean isn’t actually a good thing, people–and leave it dry? Oil. Moisturizing without caking some awkward, likely scented goop on your face and waiting forever for it to sink in? Yeah – oils.
The problem is that many of us have been conditioned for years–hell, decades–with the understanding that oil = bad. Oil = shiny, and oil = blemishes. As it turns out, we’re in the wrong – as with many things, we should not assume that all oils are going to give us trouble simply because some do. We need to clear the cache here and start anew, because beauty oils are not going to ruin your day. Many people with oily skin (or even just combination/oily T-zone) seek oil-free everything. Cleansers, moisturizers, treatments, foundations – all for the fear that additional oil would exacerbate the problem. Not so – in fact, removing too much oil or forcing your skin to be too dry is going to cause your skin to overcompensate and produce more of what you’re fighting against. Using an oil (provided you choose the right one, please do not slap canola on your face and call it a day) can calm your skin down and make it scale back its oil production. Using an oil on waterproof makeup is a gentle and quick way to remove it. Sephora has been pushing them for a while and it really makes you wonder why they didn’t gain popularity sooner.
Price is a major factors. The highly touted are not available everywhere – not even Ulta has a considerable selection. Full-sized bottles do not come cheap – I’m talking about $30 and up for what is often only a 1.7oz bottle. I don’t know about you, but that is an extremely hard pill to swallow.When I first started paying attention, I was constantly hearing Josie Maran this, Josie Maran that – but at $48 for a 1.7 oz bottle of her 100% Pure Argan Oil… As far as I was concerned, people had lost their minds – not because oil + face = noooo, but for the price? Madness.
In the drugstore, you’ll find a ton of argan-containing products: Garnier Fructis’ Anti-Humidity Smoothing Milk ($4), a product that they have had for at least eight years now boasts that it has argan oil in it (albeit halfway down the ingredients, after some ‘cones and such). Nair, who sells hair removal products, offers depilatory creams that allege to have Argan as a component. Organix has a whole line of it. L’Oreal has a, “Precious Oil Treatment.” Haircolors have it. Suave has one. The problem with the drugstore, “styling oils,” and serums are that they are not versatile – they are typically only intended for use on the hair. They often have additives that would not make them suitable for use in anything other than hair.
Curiously, the drugstore brands haven’t tried to get into any other beauty oils on the market – passionfruit oil (Tarte’s Maracuja is the prestige option), camellia oil (prestige: Boscia’s Tsubaki Oil), etc. There are offerings in the drugstore (not beauty brands) that have oils, but the internet cautions against them – they may have been too processed, they may have additives, etc. I contend that may be true in some cases, I can’t help but be skeptical – just because, for example, you like craft beer doesn’t mean all other beer is fake. I can’t help but think that some of the negativity is a conscious attempt to prevent other players from gaining recognition. Garden of Wisdom, for example, is well-respected – surely they aren’t peddling sketchy wares. This Elma&Sana oil has good ratings on Amazon and is carried in Walgreens – they can’t all be bad.
I definitely have more to say on the matter in future posts. If you were on the fence about trying an oil due to the reasons that have been beat into our heads for ages, don’t be afraid to try something – but don’t expect it will be a miraculous cure-all, either. If you have a Sephora nearby, I strongly suggest asking one of the friendly employees for a sample of something you want to try–that is, if you want to try one of their beauty oil offerings. If you have thoughts on the matter, please leave them – this is a subject I’m keen to discuss!