I'm talking about those lush, hydrating, moisture-retaining, polyunsaturated (sink-into-the-skin-easily) face oils that boost the moisture and protection and anti-ageing superpowers of the skin with speed and grace.
They have blown up like a NYE bunger in the last ten years, facial oils. Used to be just health food shop owners who knew about them, but now every rascal and his rabbit use them. And good for them/us, because facial oils are great.
- You can use a few drops on your skin after cleansing, as a serum.
- You can mix them with your face cream for an extra dose of nourishment.
- You can mix some in with your foundation or BB cream for added glow.
- You can use them to balance out dry/combination/oily skin.
- You can use them as a quick DIY facial.
Here are my picks.
THE ROSEHIP OIL
The affordable, all-in-one anti-ageing serum
Mum first put me onto rosehip oil. She'd buy stuff from the markets, with no label, and encouraged me to use it as a teenager. Also she loved jojoba oil, a wonderful carrier oil that you can mix with rosehip, or sweet almond etc to make your own face or hand or body oils. I have been adamant about rosehip oil ever since. Full of essential fatty acids and vitamins and antioxidants. Terrific.
There is something about it I didn't know until recently, and that is that it can go rotten. It can break down and is actually a very fragile ingredient. You've probably tried some rosehip oils and thought they smelled pretty off, well, this is not actually or necessarily far from the truth because:
A) As with any ingredient, there is a spectrum of quality with rosehip oil, and the lower end formulas use old, stale, rosehip
B) Rosehip oil can oxidise from exposure to sunlight and air. (Ditto hempseed and evening primrose oil.)
A good rosehip oil should be vibrant orange ('ssup, cartenoids) and not smell like musty cupboards. Keep your rosehip oil out of sunlight, in its original cardboard box, or away from the light in a cupboard.
Combining rosehip with a strong antioxidant (Vit C, E, green tea, etc) is CRUCIAL for this reason, as it protects it from becoming rancid before its time. Trilogy Rosehip Oil Antioxidant+ with is my pick for this reason, 'cause it has potent super antioxidants Lycopene from Tomato and Phytosterol from Acai to protect the rosehip oil, as well as your skin. Clever.
THE MIXED BAG FACE OIL
An injection of powerful, swiftly-dissolved hydration and subtle sheen
I know that word 'sheen' is striking fear into the hearts and elbows of our oily-skinned fruits, but for those of us who have dry skin (dehydrated needs more water; dry skin needs more oil - and yes, your skin can be oily but dehydrated, most of us suffer from dehydrated skin at some point, especially in winter and after flying, tequila-shotting), this is a g-damn gift from above.
I love the Bobbi Brown Extra Face Oil when I am flying a lot, or in air con, heated rooms, or just need a boost. A little goes a long way (almost to Mars) and the results are instant, enduring and astonishing. Even the senstive skinned and scared-of-break-outs can use it. Plus, it smells like some babe from 1979.
THE POWERFUL BOOSTER OIL
This took me a while to get my head around, but essentially (actually a very clever pun, when you consider some of the essential oils used in these product: Lavender, Bitter Orange, Geranium, Sandalwood, Rosewoo- No? Not clever? Okay, carry on) this is a super concentrated, super targeted oil blend that you use in a small, self-loving little ritual involving warm water and a face cloth to deeply cleanse and hydrate the skin all at once.
I first discovered this method via Sharon McGlinchey of the delicious organic skin care line, MV Skincare, (famous types like R. Huntington-Whitely, P. Delevigne and M. Gyllenhall love her gear) who taught it to me via her Energizing 9-oil Cleanser, which I actually use more as a treatment and skin-rebooster. SO good after a long flight or big night.
I cleanse skin, then massage the oil all over the face, then hold a warm face cloth or muslin over my face for 10 seconds, pushing it on and pushing the oil in. I then reheat the cloth under hot water, and repeat the compress 4-5 times, with no wiping the oil off. Afterwards, I apply some moisturiser and I'm done.
Well, they're my top picks, although I'm sure I'd forgotten thousands of others I love. Like Jurlique Skin Balancing Face Oil - great for balancing/gently drying combination skin, congested or oily skin, and Goe oil - great for adding to lquid foundation for glow or highlighting cheek bones.
Over to you lot now.