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Oily skin

Definition

Oily skin is the result of the oil (sebaceous) glands in the skin producing large amounts of oil.

Alternative Names

Skin - oily

Information

Your genes and hormones play a key role in whether or not you have oily skin. Diet probably has little, if anything, to do with whether or not you have oily skin.

The most important thing you can do for oily skin is to keep your skin clean using warm water and soap, or a soapless cleanser. Clean your face with astringent pads if frequent face washing causes irritation. Use only water-based or oil-free cosmetics if you have oily skin.

Your health care provider may also recommend or prescribe creams to absorb or limit the production of oil on the skin.

Oily skin may lead to acne.

References

Draelos ZD. Oily skin. In: Draelos ZD, Dover JS, Alam M, eds. Cosmeceuticals: Procedures in Cosmetic Dermatology. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 22.

Habif TP. Acne, rosacea, and related disorders. In: Habif TP, ed. Clinical Dermatology. 6th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 7.


Review Date: 12/10/2016
Reviewed By: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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