Thursday, April 26, 2012

I Heart Oils, You Should Too.

If I had a dime for every dumb beauty myth I’ve heard on a regular basis I would be a billionaire. Well not a billionaire, but I'd have a lot of money. But would it be worth it, having all of that fake money if it meant the myth of using oils in the beauty regimen were perpetuated? I don't think so and in the words of Damon Wayans' beloved character on In Living Color: "Homey don't play that."

Oils are where it’s at and they are some of the best and most balancing products on the market. I’m not talking about Pam or "miracle" hair treatments that rely on insane amounts of dimeticone and silicates. Real oil based products might not immediately get that Pantene commercial super-sheen or the immediate effect of a peel (which I am totes obsessed with, more on that later) but you will get long term balancing and healing benefits that will lead to great results over time. Some of my personal favorite straight-up oils are argan oil, olive oil, coconut oil and jojoba oil.

One of biggest misconceptions I’ve heard is the idea that oily skin requires an “oil-free” lifestyle or that it needs to be “dried out” somehow. First off, if you have oily skin- give yourself a high five. It’s one of the best natural youth preservation systems the magical mystery tour of the human body offers. I have encountered so many clients with oily dehydrated and freaked out skin because instead of becoming one with the natural state of their skin- they try to fight against and make it way worse. When oily skin is sucked dry it goes into a state of trauma- and while the surface might de-shined temporarily it will actually cause the sebaceous glands to start overproducing sebum (what we’d identify as “oil”) to compensate causing an uncomfortable, slick, tight and oily surface that you’ll have a helluva time correcting if you keep stripping your skin. I am personally an a-ok with being oily/combination- so I like to use organic extra-virgin olive oil as a treatment whenever my skin needs some TLC.

Some of my favorite oils are:

Extra-Virgin Olive Oil: great for dry spots, deep moisturizing of skin and scalp and personally, I like to use it on my face and my feet when either are in need of serious balancing. Sidebar- I just rub it on my feet and throw a pair os socks on- I have tile and curious dogs, so I would just end up falling, hitting my head and waking up to my dogs trying to eat my toes because they are just weirdos like that.

Argan Oil: The basis for all of the magical middle-east inspired treatments, but the beauty is in the oil itself. I like to use organic argan oil in my beauty regimen, I swish it lightly in my palms and use it to control frizz after I blow out my hair, and I also like to use it on my elbows to combat the dryness when my psoriasis gets the best of me. A little bit goes a long long way.

Coconut Oil: An old wives tale (a.k.a. here let me google that for you) claims that coconut oil is a miracle dandruff cure- I don’t have dandruff, but if anybody wants to test it out and get back to me- it would be greatly appreciated. What I can vouch for is that as a conditioner it helps to stimulate the scalp and my fried hair seems to LOVE it and it’s also way great as a moisturizer for the body.

Jojoba Oil: A natural non-comodegenic wax ester (gotcha! Just because it looks like an oil and feels like an oil, doesn’t mean it’s technically an oil). Absorbs into the skin quickly and doesn’t leave a residue and it’s one of the closest in composition to human sebum (oil), so it helps to quickly balance the skin.

Fish Oil/Omegas: This isn’t one to rub all over your face, but it is one to take as a supplement in your vitamin regimen. It keeps the heart healthy, and my friend Susan who is forty and looks twenty and swears by it. I've learned to trust her in all matters relating to the elusive fountain of youth.

Of course there are loads of other great oils and products that are infused with them. If I’m buying straight up oils, I like to go organic whenever possible. In Costa Mesa we’ve got an awesome place called Mother’s Market & Kitchen that has an amazing selection of all things hippie goodness- but I suspect any kind of hippie market will yield amazing finds as well and I also her that is good for such things. If you want to get all fancy and buy some pre-made products, I highly recommend the following.

(1) Ren Omega 3 Night Repair Serum ($60): Remember when I talked about the benefits of a fish oil regimen? Yeah, well this one IS topical and it’s got rose oil as well which is known for it’s soothing and toning properties.

(2) Emtage SILKtáge Rejuvenating Styling Serum ($39): A champagne supernova of, like, every good oil ever including argan, monoi, jojoba and coconut to name a few.

(3) NARS Monoï Body Glow II ($59): When you want to smell and look like you’ve just had a tropical vacation- hit this stuff. It utilizes both coconut extracts and Monoï de Tahiti oil and it looks, smells and feels all kinds of fancy.

(4) NUDE Nude Lips ($7): Enriched with vitamin E, Coconut Oil and Shea Butter. For under $10, just do it.

(5) Josie Maran Argan Cleansing Oil ($32): Consider your mind blown. This will free your skin of all the make-up and environmental gunk without stripping it.

So go forth and fear oil no more. You’re skin and hair will thank you for it.


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