When the dry weather hits, we all reach for the richest moisturizer we own; but have you considered what may be the best oil for dry skin instead? Oils have, in the past, developed a bad rep for clogging pores and rendering skin oilier than usual. However, we are here to bust those myths for you and to show you how oils are beneficial to your dry skin.
Firstly, oil is recommended to be applied to damp skin, fresh out of the shower. Smooth over a thin layer and work it into your skin. Ideally, let the excess sit on your skin and soak in. Most vegetable-based oils imitate the naturally occurring lipids found in skin, which goes a long way to regulate and repair the skin’s moisture barrier. Additionally, because the topical oils are so similar to the naturally occurring ones in the skin, the skin recognizes it as its own and doesn’t try to overcompensate by producing more oil. The result is well moisturized and hydrated looking skin.
Secondly, if you have acne-prone skin, did you know that using oils is beneficial for the flare-ups? This is because the oil works to counter-balance the natural sebum produced by your skin – in other words, your skin doesn’t have to make more oil because you are topically taking care of business!
Finally, oils tend to be purer and have few additives. So, if you’re looking at an oil blend, chances are, it is safe for face and body! And, as a bonus, they’re typically all cruelty-free!
With that, let’s peruse some of our tops picks for the best oils for dry skin.
The 7 Best Oil for Dry Skin Reviews
1. Organic Cold-Pressed Argan Oil
This product is certified organic, cruelty-free and vegan! Not only it is among the best oils to moisturize your skin, but it is also revitalizing your hair and nails! The argan tree is only found in southwestern Morocco and from the argan nuts, the oil is hand extracted by women in rural villages, which makes this luxurious oil is a very precious commodity. Also known as ‘liquid gold’ argan oil is imbued with the benefits of Omega-6 fatty acids, linoleic acid and antioxidants. The omega-6 fatty acid is known for its anti-aging properties whereas linoleic acid helps strengthen the skin’s permeable barrier to keep moisture in and irritants out. Plus, it helps control oil production and reduce acne flare-ups. On the body, it works to smooth out your skin texture, reducing the appearance of scars, sun spots, and stretch marks. We love this product for its earthy, nutty scent, its many skin benefits and that the purchase of argan oil gives economic stability to the women of southwestern Morocco.
2. COCO & Co. Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is the tropical answer to all your beauty solutions! This product is pure, virgin coconut oil and is beauty grade. Cruelty-free, vegan and free of all parabens and sulfates, this coconut oil is best oil for extremely dry skin. Coconut oil is ideal to combat dry, calloused patches of skin while hydrating the lower layers. It is loaded with anti-inflammatory properties and can be used to soothe itchy, irritated and inflamed skin. When looking for a good quality coconut oil, you want to select one that does not leave a greasy residue on your skin; greasy residue and a foul smell is a sign that your oil has turned rancid. We recommend that you prep your skin with a face wash for dry skin and applying your serums before finishing off with coconut oil; warm the product through by rubbing it between your fingers and then massage it onto your face and body, as lightly or as liberally as you desire. Pro tip: You can even work some into your hair as a hydrating mask 20 minutes before you shower!
3. Tropical Holistic Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Olive oil is a household product that you have probably had in your pantry for as long as you can remember. But did you know it is also a coveted beauty product? It is extremely rich in oleic acids, which is a godsend for anyone with dry and/or aging skin. Applied to damp skin, it sinks into the skin, replenishing the skin moisture content, boosting elasticity and making the skin look plump, even and youthful. We suggest that after you wash your face, prep the skin, especially the under-eye area, with a dot of olive oil and let it sink in for ten to fifteen minutes. Then, go through your usual beauty regiment and don’t forget to try these concealer for dry skin on your olive oil prepped skin. Bonus: you can even use olive oil to break down your makeup, especially any product that is waterproof. Simply soak a cotton pad with the oil and sweep it over the eyes and lips and watch the residue melt away into nothingness. This product is even safe for babies!
4. NOW Solutions Sweet Almond Oil
The oil extracted from almonds is one of the most beneficial oils out there in the beauty-sphere! Sweet almond oil is a hypoallergenic product that is recommended for dry and sensitive skin. Loaded with the benefits of Vitamin E, fatty acids, and amino acids, amongst other beneficial micronutrients, sweet almond oil is perfect for dry, irritated skin. As a facial oil, we recommended dotting it on in its pure form. As a body oil, feel free to add in a few drops of your favorite essential oil before massaging it onto your arms and legs. We recommend lavender essential oil. The vitamin E in the oil boosts collagen production, making your skin look smoother, brighter, and more youthful while the fatty acids work to soften hard, calloused skin. Pro tip: mix one-part brown sugar to two parts sweet almond oil to create a gentle body scrub that you can use in the shower over damp skin. The oil will skin into the skin while the sugar will slough off dead skin and dirt, leaving behind fresh, moisturized, happy skin.
5. NOW Solutions Organic Jojoba Oil
The jojoba shrub is native to the Sonoran Desert of Southwestern United States. The oil is essentially a liquid was that is extracted from the mature kernels and has wonderful properties, making it one of the most sought-after cosmetic oils in the world of beauty. This oil is organic, cruelty-free, and free of parabens or fragrances. Jojoba oil is a hydrating oil recommended for people with dry, flakey, and acne-prone skin. We suggest that straight out of a hot shower, you apply a few dots to your face and work them in while your skin is still primed for oil. In the shower, one’s skin will have absorbed a lot of water; jojoba oil creates a moisturizing barrier in the skin’s permeable layer, thereby keeping water in and irritants out. The beauty of jojoba oil is that it mimics the skin’s natural oil so greatly, that it can trick your skin into thinking that the skin has enough oil. You can even work some into frizzy hair to keep it smooth and shiny and to lock down the baby flyaway hair too!
6. NOW Solutions Avocado Oil
Now, typically, avocado oil would be used in cooking, but did you know that it is also loaded with micronutrients that are important for skin health? Suffering from eczema or psoriasis? Let the healing benefits of Vitamin A, D, and E skin in and work its magic on inflamed, dry and flakey skin. It even works to boost scalp health! Work some warmed avocado oil into your scalp 20 minutes before washing your hair. The fatty acids help reduce inflammation which causes dandruff and scalp itch. As avocado oil is among the best oils for dry skin, we love using it in dry months, especially over rougher areas like elbows, legs, and heels. A little goes a long way and it works best, straight out of the shower. We recommend that you prep your skin by using a soap for dry skin first and then smoothing the oil over the areas that need a little extra love.
7. Aura Cacia Grapeseed Skin Care Oil
As the name suggests, grapeseed oil is made for the seeds found in grapes, crushed and extracted. It is a popular oil as it is often used as a carrier oil for other essential oils. However, just by itself, it is among the most moisturizing oils for any skin type. It contains the properties of vitamin C, E, antioxidant properties, anti-aging properties, and linoleic acids, to name a few. Grapeseed oil is recommended for facial use as it can curtail excess sebum production. It sinks into your skin, boosting the skin’s natural elasticity, as the vitamin C works its brightening magic. After washing your face and patting it dry, with clean hands, smooth about three to four drops of the oil onto your face, paying extra heed to the under-eye area and the neck. We prefer to do this at night so that our skin can absorb all its benefits as we sleep. Pro tip: mix in some castor oil and apply it to your scalp and eyebrows, to stimulate hair growth.
While it may feel as though the curse of dry skin will never lift, we can confirm that it is manageable with a little TLC. Nature has provided some of the best solutions to combat this dryness in a way that one feels it was never a problem, to begin with! That said, consistency is key! So, let’s address some frequently asked questions when it comes to employing oils for dry skin:
Which oil is the best for very dry skin?
We love jojoba oil and coconut oil for very dry skin. The trick is to use it when your pores are open and the skin is primed to absorb all that you are putting onto it. Feel free to mix in a few drops of tea tree essential oil into these oils to help alleviate any inflammation or redness caused by the dryness.
Related: Check our article about best tea tree oil shampoos!
What is the best oil for dry hands?
The answer is whatever suits your skin the best! There is no wrong answer here. We like to use oils that contain a sweet smell to them, as we touch our faces often and the gentle reminder of a sweet scent gives us a moment to breathe and relax before continuing with our tasks. Sweet almond or coconut oil are great. Apply them to your body and work the rest into your hands.
Which oil is best for dry skin in winter?
In winters, one wants to be under as many layers as possible, and the thought of removing those layers to remoisturize is just awful! For this, we love avocado oil or olive oil, as they are high in emollients and lock moisture into your skin for an extended period of time. Apply them in the morning and you should be comfortable throughout the day, into the late evening.
Please remember to always perform a test patch before using a new product on your skin and to speak to your doctor beforehand. Natural oils are typically safe but for those with nut allergies, a consult with a physician is recommended.
Interested in dry skin products? Check also:
- Body washes for dry skin
- Setting powder for dry skin
- BB cream for dry skin
- Powder foundation for dry skin
- Toner for dry skin
- Primer for dry skin
Joan S. Wilson is a lifelong makeup and skincare enthusiast. She used to work as a makeup artist for 5 years. Joan is always curious and wants to learn more when it comes to makeup and skincare. She tries her best to make other people’s skin health better. This is why Joan is so passionate about writing articles on beauty topics. She always looks for products that are high-quality, dermatologist-tested, and does that it says on the label. In every article, she shares her knowledge to make your life healthier and happier!