In recent years, facial oils like Argan and Prickly Pear Seed Oil have taken the beauty world by storm, and it’s great see so many people incorporate them into their regimes.
One of the common questions is should you be using an oil or a cream and what’s the difference.
The Difference between oil and cream
Oils don’t contain water. Creams on the other hand are a mixture of oil and water. Both may contain similar active ingredients, but oils are far more concentrated than creams.
Creams have three major disadvantages
- Because they contain water they MUST have preservatives added. This is a fact and there is no way round it. Preservatives are poisons (they hae to be or they wouldn’t work) and a major cause of contact dermatitis. More and more people are deciding they don’t want to put preservatives on their skin
- 80-90% of any cream is water, this has to be shipped and stored. (and paid for by you). In a World in water crisis this isn’t sustainable. Far better to hydrate your skin from the inside out.
- Many creams contain petroleum products which are used as occlusives to prevent the water evaporating from your skin. Again many people don’t want to use petroleum products on their skin.
Both oils and creams are essential in hydrating your skin. Moisturisation is arguably the most important part of a skincare routine. Moisturised, hydrated skin helps protect it from irritation and enables you to shed dead skin cells effectively.
How does Skincare Oil Work
Facial Oils repair and protect your skin barrier locking moisture into your skin. Healthy skin and a healthy diet are the best and most sustainable way to keep your skin in perfect condition
How does Skincare Cream Work
Creams are designed to repair and protect your skin barrier and to add water topically from the outside.
They generally contain an oil, an emulsifier (which helps the oil mix with water), a preservative and a LOT of water (as much as 80% in most creams)
A cream tries to drive moisture into your skin from above and there are two problems with this approach.
Skin is designed to be waterproof, that’s why we don’t well out like a balloon when we take a bath or go out in the rain.
The emulsifier in creams causes the essential oils already in your skin to mix with the water and “wash out” meaning your skin feels dry and you keep adding more cream which makes the problem worse.
I want to use Cream and Oil together – what order should I them
As you’ve probably gathered we’re not big fans of skincare creams but it you do decide to use both it’s important you use them in the right order.
Oils like Prickly Pear Seed Oil repair and protect the skins natural barrier, enabling it to hold moisture in your skin (which also increases its’ “waterproofness”)
Creams also try and do this but primarily they are designed to force water into the skin from the outside.
So because oils are able to penetrate moisturizers, but not the other way around oil should always be applied after your cream.