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What’s an Oil Serum and Why Do I Need One?

It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the number of options available as part of the modern skin-care routine. There are cleansers, micellar water, serums and boosters, toners and mists, night creams and night masks — the list goes on and on. When it comes to your skin’s health, consistency is key, so the best skin-care routine is actually the one you’re able to stick with best. This is where multi-tasking products like oil serums come in. 

The Difference between Serums and Oils

First, let’s talk about how serums work. Think of serums as the heavy hitters of your skin-care routine. That is because they tend to house powerful active ingredients, basically like supplements for your skin. Popular serum ingredients you may have heard of (or already use) include hyaluronic acid for intense hydration, vitamin C for brightening and niacinamide for pore-size reduction. When delivered in a potent form, these ingredients can provide transformative results, though with power comes other side effects (read: irritation).  

Serums, because they often target specific skin concerns, are applied to skin after cleansing and toning, if you use a toner. Some serums combine actives into one multi-tasking formula, but more seasoned skin care aficionados may prefer to create their own cocktail by layering and mixing compatible serums.

Oils, on the other hand, are a nourishing moisturizer. Most oils fall into the skin-care category of emollients and sometimes occlusives. Emollients are lipids that work by smoothing the skin and providing moisture for a supple, dewy feeling. Occlusive ingredients do the job of sealing in moisture and hydration by creating a protective layer on the top of the skin. Oils that are particularly rich in oleic acids, which are commonly plant-derived oils, are both occlusive and emollient. Oils that come from natural sources can also be rich in vitamins, amino acids and antioxidants that nourish and protect skin.

Why Hybrid Products Work

Both serums and oils are important parts of a well-rounded skin-care routine, so why not combine them? To help keep skin balanced and prevent sensitivity, it’s best to pair every powerful active ingredient with one that’s soothing or nourishing to balance it out. Our Rejuvenating Face Oil, an oil serum, is the perfect example of that. It combines these two steps of your routine by pairing rejuvenating naturals like vitamin E and botanical extracts with nourishing oils. Just like a serum, it sinks into skin without feeling greasy and is full of skin-loving natural ingredients. The best hybrid product for you is one that simplifies your routine without compromising on results.

Contrary to popular belief, all skin types can benefit from oils. Skin that’s dry, flaky or sensitive will love having a protective layer of moisture and nourishing benefits. Oils not only smooth any dry patches on the surface of the skin, but oils with anti-inflammatory benefits from ingredients like hemp seed oil can also help soothe irritation. Those with oily skin, on the other hand, can look to lightweight oils as a way to manage their skin’s natural sebum production. Oftentimes, when skin is stripped by harsh ingredients or even just dehydrated, it will compensate by producing even more sebum in an effort to rebalance. Topical oils that mimic your skin’s natural oils help maintain moisture levels, signaling to your skin that everything is a-okay, which can prevent oil glands from going into overdrive.

I’m Sold! So How Do I Use It?

So now that we know why oil serums are amazing, let’s get into the best way to use them in your routine. Because they take the place of several different steps, look for a formula like our Rejuvenating Face Oil that is packed with a medley of skin-loving ingredients. 

The hero of this oil-serum hybrid, hemp seed oil, is rich in vitamins and fatty acids that maintain skin health by preventing inflammation, which over time can damage the skin and increase signs of aging, too. Hemp seed oil is also incredibly nourishing, can soothe red or irritated skin, and strengthens skin to prevent future flare-ups. Two other ingredients, squalane and jojoba, actually mimic the skin’s natural moisturizing factors (i.e., sebum), meaning they provide essential moisture without feeling heavy or clogging pores. This oil also features chamomile, a flower that’s been used in everything from teas to topical treatments for centuries due to its calming properties. We also included amaranth seed extract, which is rich in both peptides and amino acids, two sources of protein that are essential to keeping your skin strong and healthy. By combining all these ingredients, the oil serum hybrid helps to strengthen skin, can reduce inflammation and provides long-lasting moisture.

You can use an oil serum as part of both your daytime and nighttime routines. After cleansing, dispense 2 or 3 drops into your palms and warm it up between your hands by rubbing them together. Then, gently pat it into your skin, all over your face and on your neck as well. If your skin tends to get dry, try layering a natural moisturizer on top to help seal everything in and prevent moisture loss. Because our face oil is so moisturizing, it creates a smooth and dewy canvas for makeup. You can also keep your oil serum on hand and apply a few drops throughout the day to replenish moisture as needed, or to even refresh your makeup look. If you are using any other targeted treatments, apply them before your oil serum. And of course, during the daytime, don’t forget to top everything off with an SPF!

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