When it comes to the skin, the philosophy “less is more” is true. The less you do to your face, the more you give it a chance to do most of the work for you. A personal must-do in my skincare is incorporating healthy oils. Organic and simple products often do the trick, and I love that there’s more than one oil to choose from.
What I’m about to say will probably change how you see and use oils from here on out. The reason why some oils work for certain skin types and not for others usually has to do with the chemical composition of each oil. In essence, I mean that each oil will have a different ratio of linoleic and oleic acid in it.
Who knew oils would vary so much, right? Well maybe there’s always been a difference, but not such a huge one at least. Next time you come across an article that says why a certain oil works, keep in mind that it might not work for you.
It’s important to say that other external factors do play a role in how oils work for you such as your skin type and cleanliness of the face. So, it doesn’t solely rest on the chemical composition.
What is oleic acid?
Oleic acid is also known as omega-9. It’s yellow in color and is a monounsaturated fatty acid. Such fatty acids are found in most foods we eat, in oils and in animals and humans. Foods such as avocado, canola and olive oil are rich sources of it.
Most baked goods, and skincare products usually contain oleic acid. The reason why this oil is used in food is because it’s not only natural but also keeps food fresher without refrigeration. Examples of baked goods include pies, bread and cakes.
Benefits of oleic acid
- Is a natural fatty acid found in animals and vegetables. This means that it’s not processed and has great health benefits intact.
- Eating foods rich in oleic acid promotes healthy hair and skin starting from the inside
- Reduces blood pressure by regulating adrenoreceptors. It also increases good cholesterol in the body.
- Helps you burn fat by increasing fat burning. This is done by the body using the healthy fats as fuel rather than storing it.
- Is a natural moisturizer for the skin. It keeps it hydrated, supple and youthful.
- Boosts the immune system by promoting white blood cell production which helps fight off invaders in the body.
- Is an anti-inflammatory. This is great since it can fight dirt and bacteria on the skin while preventing acne.
What is linoleic acid?
Linoleic acid also called omega-6 is a polyunsaturated fatty acid. This fatty acid is important for the body because it needs it to function properly. A lack of this results in health complications as well as a deficiency.
The great news is that it’s not very difficult to get your hands on this fatty acid through your diet. Most foods are rich in omega-6, examples include:
- Palm oil
- Flaxseed oil
- Pumpkin seeds
Having it in your diet ensures the proper functioning of the eicosanoids which regulates inflammation. Linoleic acid also plays a huge role in the normal growth and development of an individual.
Benefits of linoleic acid
- Moisturizes and heals the skin, while a deficiency results in sticky sebum that goes to clog the pores and cause acne.
- Oils high in linoleic acid result in less breakouts. An example is tamanu oil. Oily skin often need oils to balance itself out.
- Can be used for oil cleansing in order to heal the skin. Using the right oil(s) for your skin type can really help dissolve impurities.
- Linoleic acid is less thick than oleic acid which makes it lightweight. It also means it’ll penetrate into the skin easily.
- It’s more beneficial to take linoleic acid rather than oleic.
It’s important to ensure that the ratio of linoleic aid to oleic acid is balanced. This tells you the oils to avoid if you have acne and also what would work with your skin type. Let’s take a look at them:
High in oleic acid
- Avocado oil
- Macadamia oil
- Olive oil
- Sweet almond oil
- Hazelnut oil
- Apricot kernel oil
- Shea nut oil
Balanced in oleic acid
- Jojoba oil
- Flaxseed oil
- Tamanu oil
- Argan oil
- Coconut oil
High in linoleic acid
- Safflower oil
- Hemp seed oil
- Evening primrose oil
- Pumpkin seed oil
- Rose heep oil
- Grapeseed oil
Balanced in linoleic acid
- Castor oil
- Pomergrenate oil
- Sesame seed oil
With these ratio’s, you’re able to know based on your skin type what oil would best work for you. It can also help you get rid of big pimples much faster. Consider it a guide to choosing your oils.
What oils work best for your skin? I personally love jojoba and argan oil because they really help in moisturizing my skin and keeping it supple.