Best Ingredients for Oily Skin

by Rebecca Kim

Hi Beauties 🐰

This summer has been hot, which means that our oily-skin type Beauties may have been struggling with their skin a little more than others. For those who are eagerly nodding their heads in agreement right now, this blog is just for you!
Skincare is all about the different types of ingredients to look for, so I’ve put together a list of a few main ingredients that help with controlling excess oil and sebum production. Remember, the main objective is to balance out the oil levels - not to dry it out. So, with that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the top ingredients for oily skin!


Clay is an ingredient that has been used for centuries on both skin and hair. Most commonly found in wash-off mask or cleanser form, clay has the ability to deep cleanse and gently soak up excess oil. This, in turn, will also have the added benefit of helping to prevent acne that is caused by build-up and excess sebum and oil!

Clay masks, especially, are great for drawing out impurities and cleaning pores as they dry and tighten on the skin. After you’ve rinsed it all off, you’ll notice that your skin feels a lot smoother, your pores look tighter and the skin texture looks overall more refined with regular use.

For oily skin, I recommend using Clay masks around 2-3 times per week to control oil levels without drying out your skin.

The Innisfree Super Volcanic Pore Clay Mask 2X is an award-winning clay mask that features nutrient-rich Jeju Volcanic Clay. It also has exfoliating ingredients for a deeper cleanse and a brighter complexion!


Salicylic Acid is a BHA more commonly known to prevent acne, but if we backtrack a little, many people are dealing with acne that is actually caused by build-up of excess sebum and oil. As Salicylic Acid is an oil-soluble substance, it means that it is able to penetrate deeper through the lipid layers of the skin. It’s also a lipophilic, which means that it likes to combine with oils to draw them out.

Ultimately, what that means is that it can cut through all the oil and clean out the pores to prevent the problem at its source. Put these two factors together, and you’ve got a pretty solid ingredient for oily skin!

If you have sensitive skin and are worried about Salicylic Acid being too harsh on your skin, there are options such as Betaine Salicylate, which is a weaker yet gentler form of BHA.

Salicylic Acid works great in a cleanser, as you are able to massage and wash away all the impurities straight away. A steady bestseller is the COSRX Salicylic Acid Daily Gentle Cleanser. It’s lower concentration of Salicylic Acid makes it safe for daily use, while effectively clearing away build-up of impurities.


Over-moisturising can clog pores and under-moisturising will dehydrate the skin, both leading to more excess oil production. This is why it’s essential that you always finish up with a light yet hydrating moisturiser - especially if you’re also using potentially drying ingredients like Salicylic Acid or Clay.

Hyaluronic Acid is a star ingredient for instant hydration, so it’s definitely an ingredient to look out for! It’s also a humectant, which means that it draws moisture from its surroundings. An important thing to remember is to make sure to put Hyaluronic Acid on damp skin. Because it is a moisture magnet, it means that it can also draw moisture from your own skin if there isn’t enough in the air! This is why it's very important to make sure your skin already has some water or at least one layer of a moisture treatment, before you apply it.

The Isntree Hyaluronic Acid Gel Cream contains 5 different types of Hyaluronic Acid to plump and moisturise the deeper layers of the skin. Since it’s a gel formulation, it’s lightweight and non-greasy. This makes it a great moisturiser candidate for oily skin!


Niacinamide, AKA Vitamin B3, is a versatile and much-loved ingredient for its many skin benefits. It has brightening, anti-aging and anti-inflammatory effects - just to name a few. Well, here’s another one to add to the list! Niacinamide is also able to help control excess oil and sebum production in two main ways.

Firstly, it helps prevent dehydration by improving skin’s natural production of ceramides, as well as helping to boost the effects of other moisturising ingredients in your routine! Secondly, Niacinamide has been shown to normalise the pore lining, preventing oil-causing clogged and enlarged pores.

No wonder it’s being labelled as “the ingredient that treats almost all skin concerns”!

The Purito Centella Unscented Serum is a light, water-based serum that not only contains Niacinamide, but other ingredients that also strengthen the skin barrier, such as Ceramides, Madecassic Acid and Panthenol. Soothe the skin and target redness with 49% Centella Asiatica Extract as well!

While these ingredients help to reduce oiliness, remember that there are also many benefits to having an oilier skin type. Not having as much flaky skin, showing signs of aging slower and having more healthy and glowy-looking skin are just a few, so there’s no need to be too disheartened!

The most important thing to remember is that there are different skincare products specifically for different skin types. Make sure that you have a skincare routine that’s personalised and most suited to you!

Thanks for reading, Beauties! 💜


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