Seem counterintuitive? According to Marie Hayag, M.D., Board Certified Dermatologist and Founder of 5th Avenue Aesthetics, it actually makes perfect sense. "Certain oils can help regulate your skin's oil production, get rid of excess oil on your face, and minimize the appearance of pores," she explains. "In fact, overly stripping oily skin to try to get rid of excess oil can actually cause your skin to produce even more sebum to compensate, creating a vicious cycle."
Hayag's favorite face oils for acne-prone skin include jojoba, grapeseed, and rosehip. Jojoba is almost bio-identical to your skin's own natural sebum and is an anti-inflammatory, while rosehip has antioxidants and anti-acne vitamin A, and grapeseed has antimicrobial properties. Rosehip and grapeseed are also rich in linoleic acid, an essential omega-6 fatty acid that acts as a building block for ceramides, an important moisturizing element that fortifies our skin's barrier.
That said, not all oils are good news for the blemish-prone among us, says Hayag. Those on the no-fly list include the ubiquitous coconut oil and avocado oil—they are both known to clog pores, which is the absolute last thing anyone who deals with acne wants to happen.
As for application, Hayag says to apply your face oil as the last step in your nighttime routine—during the day it should go as the last step before sunscreen—and to gently press (don't rub!) one to three drops into your skin. "Rubbing your skin vigorously can cause an inflammatory response and aggravate certain conditions like cystic acne," explains Hayag.