Today I’m sharing two of my top oil-based skincare products from local beauty brand, Lulu & Marula and showing you how easy it is to incorporate oils into your regime.
Lulu & Marula believe in using botanical oils to nourish and protect the skin while replenishing and preserving its natural protective barrier. It’s important to remember that a compromised skin barrier often leads to concerns like sensitivity and dryness and can even result in bacterial infections. Lulu & Marula’s core skincare ethos lies in treating skin concerns at the source, rather than simply addressing the concerns of a deeper problem.
As our skin ages, the production of its own natural lipids (or oils) slows down, making it important to look for gentle formulations that nourish and balance the skin’s protective barrier. Using skin care with high quality natural oils help feed the skin’s lipid layer, keeping it resilient and functioning at an optimum. Even OILY skin will benefit from oils – as long as the formulation is a lightweight and anti-microbial and works to decongest, balance & repair problematic skin in a gentle way.
I chatted with Jesslynn Shepherd, the founder of Lulu & Marula about how oil-based skincare works and how to best incorporate it into your current skin care regime.
I’ve heard oil is a big molecule the skin can’t absorb – is this true?
Not entirely. There are differences in molecule size between various ingredients, which affects the extent of how they are absorbed by the skin. For example, you DON’T want a barrier cream to absorb, because you need it to sit on the surface of the skin and lock in moisture. On the other hand, you WANT a serum (containing active ingredients), to penetrate into the deeper layers of the skin where it will be effective.
Oils have different lipid structures, and some absorb better into the skin than others depending on this structure. The oils that mimic the skin’s barrier more closely will have a higher absorbency.
How do oil based products like an oil or balm cleanser benefit oily skin?
Oily cleansers do not strip away the skin’s natural protection barrier, leaving it dry and exposed to unwanted pathogens which cause further breakouts. Instead they bind with oily residue on the surface of skin like SPF, moisturiser and sebum and cleanse away the superficial “dirt” leaving the skin balanced, soft and supple. By balancing and maintaining the correct amount of oil in this protective oily layer the skin isn’t sent into overdrive to produce more and more oil, leading to an overall less oily complexion over time. An oily skin often lacks oil in the skin causing it to overcompensate.
Can you give us your 5 top tips for incorporating oil-based products into one’s current skincare routine?
Add a couple drops of your preferred L&M treatment oil to your current moisturiser as a booster and a nice introduction of the oils to the skin.
Use an oil-based cleanser in the evenings as your first cleanse of the day. This is the most important as you’ll be removing your “day face”. Eventually you can use your oil-based cleanser both morning and night.
Ease into it, don’t throw out your entire skincare cabinet and buy new products. As you finish a product, replace it with the oil-based alternative so as to not freak your skin out and to introduce slowly. Oil based and natural products are often a lot more concentrated than their emulsion counterparts.
Add oil onto the parts of your face where you feel you need it most – i.e. if your cheeks are especially dry, target that area with a lovely rich oil like our Nourishing Treatment Oil. If you get breakouts along your jawline, target those with a congestion-busting oil like our Purifying Treatment Oil.
Lips are always a great place to start as the skin there is very different to the rest of your face. The skin on your lips lack oil glands, so adding a hydrating oil will help to moisturise and protect lips.
Lulu & Marula Balancing Cleansing Balm R340 for a 100ml Jar – BUY
I’m going to come right out and state that this is my FAVOURITE cleaning balm (and I’ve tried most). Actually, in addition to this one that was just sent to me, I have another almost finished jar in my bathroom. What I love about it is that it’s brilliantly effective at removing even the most long wearing foundation, lipstick (LOL, remember wearing lipstick?) and waterproof mascara. I take a small amount, massage it into my face – sometimes I even do a mini facial massage – then jump into the shower, emulsify the formula with a little water, rub & wash off. Every trace of makeup is removed and while my skin feels clean, it doesn’t feel tight or dry, rather well nourished.
Also, when I say a little bit of this balm goes a looooooooooooooooong way, I mean it. A jar should really last 6 month or more, and that’s if you’re wearing makeup every day.
Unlike traditional cleansers that can be unnecessarily harsh and foamy (thanks to the addition of foaming agents like SLS which strip & dry the skin out), this solid balm formula melts into the skin turning into a milky consistency when rinsed off.
Ingredient wise there’s Marula Oil, rich in Vitamin C to actively boost activity & brighten the skin. Sweet Almond Oil is a natural cleanser that works to loosen dirt and decongest pores while also moisturising the skin. Sweet Almond Oil has also shown to reduce puffiness and dark under eye circles. The last ingredient is Bentonite Clay that’s excellent for absorbing excess sebum from the pores. When mixed with water, it becomes charged and pulls toxins out the skin, making for a really deep cleanse. It also helps reduce inflammation. I mean, could you ask for more from a cleanser?
Lulu & Marula Nourishing Treatment Oil R400 for a 50ml bottle – BUY
The Nourishing Treatment Oil is a gloriously rich and potent anti-aging face oil that deeply hydrates, nourishes, repairs and protects the skin, giving it a gorgeous youthful glow.
The formula contains the following oils:
Sea Buckthorn Oil, which is a superfood for the skin – think of it as a powerhouse of antioxidants & omega fatty acids that environmental stressors. It helps repair damaged, inflamed skin.
Rosehip Oil that is basically natures form of Retinol, being a natural source of Vitamin A. Rosehip oil is also packed with Omega 3,6 and 9 that boosts cell regeneration, quenches dry and sun damaged skin and improves the skin’s overall appearance.
Pomegranate Seed Oil is a luxurious & nutritious treat for the skin that contains incredible regenerative properties. It is anti-inflammatory, thus calms any irritation or redness in the skin.
Red Raspberry Seed Oil is another superfood oil high in Vitamin E and carotenoids that mop up free radicals (those nasty, invisible & unstable molecules in the air that change DNA causing premature ageing & even disease) and fight the signs of ageing. This oil also promotes collagen production by prompting cell repair, giving the skin an overall plumping effect.
Abyssinian Oil is super unique & lightweight and leaves the skin silky smooth. It contains a high percentage of unsaturated fatty acids, which provide excellent emollient & skin conditioning properties.
Olive Squalane is derived from olives and mimics the natural squalene found in our skin that gradually decreases with age. It penetrates deep into the layers of the skin, bringing active ingredients with it, enabling all other ingredients to work harder.
In a nutshell, the Nourishing Treatment Oil is rich in essential vitamins and omegas that brighten and replenish the skin’s natural barrier.
To use, massage 4 to 8 drops onto cleansed skin morning and evening. Use underneath your sunscreen and make-up for an even, hydrated finish. Use this oil in place of, or in addition to your regular serum & moisturiser.