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The best facial oils for all skin types: dry, sensitive, and oily

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All skin types can benefit from the facial oils. You don’t have to be a smart shopper to get the best facial oils for your skin.

Although water is the most popular benefit of facial oils (and it’s often touted as being the best), to think they are just a moisturiser is to undervalue them. Abigail James, an aesthetician, explains that each oil has different skin benefits. It is important to choose the right facial oil for your skin type and needs.

How do facial oils work? Aesthetic surgeon Dr Munir Somji says that facial oils can be classified as emollients or occlusives. The emollient smoothes the stratum corneum (the outermost layer of your skin), while the occlusive creates a protective barrier on the epidermis to lock moisture in and strengthen the skin’s barrier.

They add moisture to the skin, and keep it hydrated. Skin is less likely to dry out, crack, or become uncomfortable by having this extra layer of moisture.

Here are the best facial oils for every skin type

1. No7 Youthful Replenishing Oil for Face
Best oil for dry skin

This is one of the most affordable facial oils available. It is a great product for nourishing dry skin. Emma North, a beauty writer, tried it out, along with her mother. Both were impressed. It leaves no residue and tackiness on the skin. It can be used as a layer underneath your regular moisturiser in cold conditions or when your skin needs extra care. It’s a pleasant sensory experience that is enjoyable to use. However, if you are sensitive to scents, it may be too strong.

2. Sunday Riley U.F.O Ultra Clarifying Face Oil
Best oil for spot prone skin

Although the jury is still out about whether oil can be used to treat spot-prone skin, we know that proper formulation is crucial. This oil is a dual-purpose product that combines oils such as milk thistle, black cumin, and pomegranate seeds with the exfoliator powerhouse salicylic acid. The main purpose of this oil is to hydrate the skin but also banish blackheads and prevent future breakouts. It feels more like a serum than a ‘wet’ oil. Jess Beech, Deputy Beauty Editor, says that it worked well on my hormonal spots, particularly my chin. However, it left my skin feeling a bit dry. To avoid drying the skin, we recommend that you use it slowly and only sparingly.

3. Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil
Best for combination skin

Drunk Elephant’s award-winning facial oil is a perfect example of a clean beauty brand. The oil only contains one ingredient, 100% virgin, unrefined marula oils. This oil is cold-pressed and rich in antioxidants, omegas, and other skin nutrients. These oils help to soothe and smoothen inflamed and aged skin as well as protect against environmental stressors like air pollution. Although it is a bit pricey, it has a Cult Beauty rating of 4.37 stars. It is a popular oil that has been praised by many. One reviewer said, “I have tried many oils, from low-end to high-end brands and I still love this oil.” “I have sensitive skin due to combination of dry and oily skin. It absorbs quickly, leaves no oily residue and my skin looks fresh and hydrated the next morning.”

4. Votary Super Seed Oil for Facials
Best oil for sensitive skin

This oil is perfect for those who want an oil that feels like a relaxing afternoon in a spa. It smells amazing and the sleek green bottle will be a welcome addition to your bathroom cabinets. Paula Moore, Fashion Director, put it to the test. “My already sensitive and dry skin was left feeling rough from the combination of chemotherapy, central heating, and cold weather. Two drops per day (less than half the recommended 4-5) made my skin soft and glowing.” The entire Votary range can be used during chemotherapy to give you additional peace of mind in stressful times.

5. Trilogy Hemphip Balancing oil
Oil for oily skin

This facial oil is for you if you like the idea of it but have greasy, congested skin. Fiona McKim, Senior Beauty Editor, was one of these sceptics but was surprised. It is very oily, but it has a pleasant citrusy scent that’s less spa-like. It sinks in quickly, which is a major advantage over most oils. It leaves skin feeling soft and dewy without making it feel or look greasy. It is great for layering under make-up. You’ll see salicylic acid in the ingredients list. This clever addition helps to combat cloggy pores. However, it can dry out the skin a bit so I recommend that you use this treatment 2-3 times per week for all skin types.

6. Clarins Blue Orchid Oil
Best oil for dehydrated skin

Hydrate thirsty skin with this oil. This oil is perfect for those times when your moisturizer isn’t doing the trick. It is richly fragranced with plant extracts and essential oils. This oil gives you a sense of well-being. Jayne Marsden (Lifestyle Director), who has had a history of skin irritations and allergies, found the oil soothing and calming. She also noticed that dry patches were softened. It felt rich, and it was comforting on my skin. As directed on the leaflet, I applied the oil using press-and-release motions. My skin felt full and hydrated.

7. Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate
The best oil for fine lines

You can protect your skin by using sunscreen, drinking lots of water, and getting 8 hours of sleep each night. Anna Bailey, Goodto Editor, says that she is an early bird and struggles to get six and a quarter hours sleep. “I was looking for something that would help me feel rested,” she says. “After using this product for a few days my skin looked brighter and more nourished. The soft lavender scent also helped me unwind before bed. One downside: You might have to share the unisex bottle with your man friend.”

8. Pai Skincare Rosehip Bioregenerate Face Oil
Best oil for dull skin

This is the perfect remedy for skin that is feeling a little drained. Pai’s product uses the power of rosehip oils to restore your skin’s youthful glow. Healthy skin is happy skin. Continued use will result in a decrease in dryness, flakiness, fine lines, and flakiness as well as a better texture and tone. Jess Beech, Deputy Beauty Editor, says that the subtle tint and slinky texture instantly made my skin glow. Pai products are specially formulated to soothe sensitive skin. “My previously dull complexion suddenly looked radiant,” says Jess Beech.

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