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SHEI Magazine is a University of Michigan student-run fashion, art, and pop culture publication. Everything from the photography, writing, modeling, editing, and publicity of our bi-yearly print publications and monthly digital mini is created by students who attend the University of Michigan. Founded in 1999, SHEI Magazine continues to produce issues of professional quality, as well as provide real-world experience to students interested in journalism, publishing, and the fashion industries.

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An Oil Account: Your Guide to Keeping a Fresh Face this Winter

Lauren Guldan

They say that fighting fire with fire is never the way to go, but in all fairness, there are some aspects of life in which that saying just does not apply. Sometimes, the best way to eliminate sore muscles after a workout is to workout again. And sometimes, the best way to combat oily skin is with more oil. As crazy as it may sound, a lot of the most common skin problems can be resolved by using various kinds of natural oils.

When faced with dilemmas like oily T-zones or red skin, there are many methods you can turn to as an alternative to the more common products that line the shelves of convenience stores. While there are certain benefits to using the more chemically-driven lotions and cleansers found at Walgreens and similar stores, if you’re looking for something a little different, taking the natural approach offers many more benefits than most people realize.  In fact, many natural oils can be applied in order to balance out the oil content of our skin. When skin has balanced levels of oil, the epidermis produces less oil than it would normally for combating issues like dry skin or high levels of bacteria.  This, in turn, leads to a clearer, more even complexion.

Here is a list of some of the most common skin problems and the oils that are incredible alternatives for treating them:

A good oil to consider for treating acne is tea tree oil, which is considered to be just as effective in healing acne as harsher benzoyl peroxide treatments. The reason this oil is so good for acne treatment is that the chemicals in tea tree oil combat many different bacteria and fungi.  Acne, which is caused by a buildup of dirt and/or increased exposure to bacteria, is less likely to occur in the presence of the anti-bacterial properties of tea tree oil. However, this oil should never be taken orally, and should not be used in accordance with any acne treatment containing benzoyl peroxide.

Desert Essence Tea Tree Oil

To combat dry skin, which can lead to increased chances of developing acne due to tiny cracks that develop in the epidermis (which are more vulnerable to bacteria), try a hydrating oil such as coconut oil. The fatty acids found in oils like this are known for their ability to reduce inflammation, and the hydrating nature of the oil keeps your skin from getting too dry. Coconut oil, which many people refer to as the all-in-one solution for skincare problems, is known for being both moisturizing and highly nourishing. Its anti-aging properties can be largely attributed to the way it removes dead skin cells from the outer layer of the face. Pure unrefined virgin coconut oil is the best way to go.

Coconut Oil

As a makeup remover, try jojoba oil.  This oil, which is said to be one of the oils that best mimics the consistency of our skin, is great for a variety of skin treatments. A few drops of jojoba oil on a cotton ball can be used to remove most makeups, including foundations, powders, and mascaras. Also, applying jojoba oil directly to your skin after a shower is a great way to lock in moisture, keeping skin soft and smooth especially during the driest stretches of the winter months.

Organic Desert Essence Jojoba Oil

If you notice that your skin tends to take on a redder hue, particularly in the cold, avocado oil is a great way to balance skin tone and keep your skin looking and feeling smooth. Mashed up avocado is a fairly common element in facial masks and the oil is equally as healing. Its substantial amount of vitamin E has been known to help calm irritation and/or redness.

Avocado Oil

A great all-purpose oil that is recommended by many skincare experts is rosehip seed oil. Even Victoria’s Secret Angel Miranda Kerr, whose dewy skin is the envy of many, has talked openly about her use of rosehip seed oil as part of her skin routine. While rosehip seed oil is known for promoting a youthful complexion, it is great to apply at night so you can wake up with even-toned, glowy skin. Even better, rosehip seed oil is considered “dry,” which means it leaves little to no residue after application. That means no oily mess on your pillowcase if you apply it right before heading to bed!

Life-flo Rosehip Seed Oil

And if all that isn’t sufficient, enough can’t be said for the importance of diet, exercise, and getting enough rest. Beauty sleep is something you can't ignore, and pulling too many all-nighters means really putting your skin through the wringer.  Eat a healthy diet, cleanse your skin regularly, and with the help of some of these oils, your complexion will be the best it has ever been.