What To Look For in a Face Wash For Oily Skin

March 25, 2022

What To Look For in a Face Wash For Oily Skin

No matter what skin type you have, your face wash should leave you feeling clean, refreshed, and prepped to face whatever lies ahead. Skincare is never going to look the same for two people. You need a face wash designed for your skin type.

When shopping for a facial cleanser, you’ll want to find one that removes just the right amount of oil. If you’re washing away too much oil, it can lead to dry skin and flaking, but as we all know, not cleaning your skin properly can cause breakouts, clogged pores, or just an overall gunky feeling. The best face wash for oily skin is the one that achieves the perfect balance between removing and replenishing. 

By supporting your oily skin with the right face wash and the proper cleansing techniques, you’ll quickly discover that your skin is manageable. If your skin keeps you from feeling your best, you need clean skincare solutions that were designed just for you; we have those. We all deserve to feel comfy in our skin; the right face wash can help you shine as bright as ever.

Why is our skin oily?

To find a solution, we have first to figure out why our skin behaves the way it does in the first place. 

Skin can be oily for multiple reasons; you might not be eating the right foods for your body, or there’s stress in your life that’s causing a hormonal imbalance. Oily skin could also simply be a result of your genetics and teenagehood. No matter your circumstance, the excessive oil on your skin comes from your sebaceous glands, and you’re not alone.

Sebum is one of the many oils that your body naturally produces, coming from the sebaceous glands located in your mid-dermis. For many reasons, sebum is good; it keeps you moisturized and allows for antioxidants to rise to the surface of your skin. On the other hand, sebum can be harmful in excess; causing breakouts and making you feel uncomfortable.

You can’t help that summer has you sweating your butt off every day or that your dad’s genes are the ones that naturally produce more sebum. No matter how much you alter your day to day, it can feel like excessively oily skin is impossible to avoid. 

With the right face wash and a bit of consistency, you can live with less heaviness and a more fresh feeling face no matter the season or those “good genes” your dad is always talking about.

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The Best Cleansers For Oily Skin

By being mindful of what ingredients are in the products we use, we can take back some serious control over how our bodies respond to what life throws at us. 

Your skin can have a massive response to anything you put in or on your body. If you’re feeling dry, try again. More breakouts than before — that’s not the one. When you feel fresh, free, and confident in your skin, you’ve found the perfect face wash for you.

Skincare can truly end up being a matter of trial and error until you find your all-star lineup of solutions, but there is a way to speed up the process. Defer some of the heavy research to your florence besties who have been there and done that.

Never fear, florence is here. We’ve created a face wash ingredient guide for our besties living with oily skin. Here are our bops and flops.

What To Look For in a Face Wash For Oily Skin infographic by florence by mills

Face Wash Ingredients for Oily Skin


Micelles: Micelles are invisible capsules that are the main ingredient used to create micellar cleansing gels. The capsules are filled with cleansing oils that melt makeup and dirt but feel as lightweight as water — perfect for grabbing dirt and yucky impurities that you want to wash away.

Vitamin E: Vitamin E is excellent for soothing skin and reinforcing its barrier. With some extra protection, your skin won’t have to hold its own against pollution and might have the space it needs to fight acne.

Oil-balancing Blends: The florence oil balancing blend used to make the Clean Magic Face Wash is perfect for oily skin. The wash is made with a mix of seaweed, ivy, lemon, and sage that controls excess oil so your pores can stay baggage-free.

Sustainable Exfoliators: Exfoliators work really well to remove the built-up grime caused by excess sebum, but many cleansers are made with harmful microbeads. You should use sustainable exfoliators like ivory palm seed powder instead. Microbeads are made of plastic particles that can impact marine life, your hormones, and ultimately your skin.


Alcohol-based products: Alcohol-based products can increase sebum production and damage your skin's protective barrier. Remember that there are various kinds of alcohol; some are good for your skin, like Cetearyl alcohol, while others aren’t, like denatured alcohol.

Paraffin: Paraffin is a derivative of petroleum. Yes, you read that correctly. Although it seems obvious that paraffin wouldn’t make for a good addition to any skincare products, it’s still widely used because it’s cheap to manufacture. If you see paraffin, throw that face wash right in the bin.

Coconut oil: Coconut oil is especially high in oleic acid, which tends to clog pores and cause breakouts. Other natural oils, like safflower and argan oil, don’t have the same effect and are more suitable for oily skin. You can refer to a comedogenic rating table to find out which oils are less likely to disturb already acne-prone skin.

Keeping an eye out for ingredients that help manage oily skin can be a game-changer. Having a face cleanser designed for your skin type means less of a drag and more of a brag. With the right face cleanser, you can rest assured that you’re giving your skin its best shot at flourishing.

Image of person adding florence by mills face wash to finger

Squeaky Clean Without the Shine

If you naturally have oily skin, you should note what days you’re feeling your best and on which ones you're feeling a little too shiny. 

Keeping track of what you eat, the weather, and most importantly, the ingredients in your current face wash can help you discover the key to making your skin feel squeaky clean. Washing your face with the right products can help you avoid clogged pores, breakouts, and that uncomfortable sticky feeling that’s been bugging you.

A proper face cleansing is only one step to a happy skincare routine, but it creates the foundation for every other step leading to ultimate skin success. When you find the skincare products that suit you best, you’ll have one less thing to worry about, and you can focus on just being you.

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