Our 12 favorite nourishing oils — for face, hair and body
Rubbing oil on your face? Sounds like an invitation for disaster. But these natural, oil-based products have taught us that we have a misconception about the substance; we think we need to get rid of it, when in reality, the more you remove, the harder your skin works to replace it, thereby creating even more oiliness. (It’s an underminer like that.)
“Like cures like, so a little bit of a healthy, plant-based oil on the skin helps the skin stay balanced,” Dr. Hauschka Skin Care CEO Mirran Raphaely told TODAY.com. “The right amount signals to oil glands that they can stop producing. It may sound counter-intuitive, but once you try this method, you'll never go back."
We hunted down the best nourishing oils on the market — for all areas of the body — and recommended our top picks:
For dull, lifeless skin
Tarte Pure Maracuja Oil, $46, QVC.com
This multi-purpose oil stems from the Amazon, where it is reportedly referred to as the “miracle” oil. Powerful yet lightweight, it’s quickly absorbed into the skin, providing it with hydrating Vitamin C for bright, radiant skin. (Editor’s note: I’m newly addicted to this product.)
Bonus: The sexy, eggplant-purple glass bottle — something you’d expect to spot on Marlene Dietrich’s nightstand — comes complete with a handy eye-dropper so that you can fully control every last single drop.
For sensitive skin
John Masters Organics Pomegranate Facial Oil, $30, JohnMasters.com
No less than 12 organic plant and essential oils went into this John Masters potion, which is lauded for its capability to tame sensitive skin (including those with rosacea). The soothing oil, which boasts a substantial rosemary scent, contains several anti-inflammatory ingredients that make it a perfect option for those concerned about their fragile face.
DHC Deep Cleansing Oil, $22, DHCcare.com
Cleansing with oil? Sounds bananas, but it works. Probably the most popular oil-based cleanser, this tough guy takes on cakey makeup and impurities with a vengeance. Made of olive oil, DHC removes dirt and dissolves eyeliner and mascara faster than most foaming soap options, and leaves your face hydrated and toned, with no greasy residue.
For oily, combination skin
The Body Shop Tea Tree Oil, $9, Thebodyshop.com
Referred to as a “medicine cabinet must”, this teensy bottle goes a long way in clearing blemishes. Just one drop can take on the nastiest of acne (whiteheads, the stubborn hard red ones etc…), without drying out your skin. The best part? The strong, minty smell, which is as relaxing as it is addictive.
Dr. Hauschka Normalizing Day Oil, $42.95, drhauschka.com
If you suffer from oily, blemished skin, Dr. Hauschka's plant oil-based blend reduces excess oil production and tightens pores while antioxidants take on unruly redness. One small bottle lasts roughly 5-6 months, and the subtle floral smell will have you swapping this for your chemical-based acne products.
For sun protection
Josie Maran Argan Daily Moisturizer SPF 40+, $32, JosieMaranCosmetics.com
Josie Maran’s argan oil-infused products have a cult following, and it’s no wonder: Argan Oil repairs and reverses skin damage, without irritating the skin. “I use it on my face, neck, décolletage morning and night and yes, I’ll admit it, on my C-section scar,” said TODAY.com supervising producer Susan Houriet. “It has streamlined my beauty routine, my skin looks and feels great and I love that it is organic so to me, the price is worth it.”
Now you can get the acclaimed product with SPF 40+, in order to physically block harmful UVA and UVB rays this summer. It’s fast-absorbing and lightweight, making it the ideal beach accessory.
For the hair
Moroccanoil treatment, $18, moroccanoil.com or your local salon
A hair favorite of women across the board, Moroccanoil fever has hit all-time high, with stars such as Carrie Underwood and Katy Perry using the nourishing product for shiny, healthy-looking hair for industry events and award shows. The argan oil-infused formula, complete with omega-3 oils and vitamins, strengthens and conditions while providing a frizz-free, silky look that’s reminiscent of a salon-worthy treatment. It even helps speed up drying time (an invaluable feature for busy ladies). If you suffer from lifeless locks, you won’t regret this handy restorer.
Got thin, delicate hair? Then opt for Moroccanoil Light ($16), which better tends to fine-textured manes.
For moisturizing the body
Archipelago Pomegranate Dry Oil Spray, $23, Amazon.com
This silky dry oil, with notes of pomegranate, cranberry, chamomile and jojoba, is perfect for the upcoming months: the sweet scent smells like spring in a bottle. Better yet, it’s packed with antioxidants and enzyme boosters to keep you looking as fresh as the season.
Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse Multi-Usage Dry Oil Golden Shimmer, $41, Birchbox.com
Count on Nuxe for the ultimate in luxury products. Their sleek, golden shimmer dry oil bottle sprays a luminous, glittering oil which upgrades your skin to red carpet-worthy. If you’re looking to glow this summer, look no further. And hey, it helps that it smells amazing, thanks to six essentials oils, including St. Johns Wort, sweet almond, hazelnut and macadamia.
The Organic Pharmacy Rose & Jasmine Body Oil, $57.95, Theorganicpharmacy.com
The directions on the bottle suggest you apply this sensual oil immediately after showering, and we suggest you listen to them. Boasting a sophisticated scent, this light and fragrant oil is packed with rose hip, essential fatty acids and Vitamin A to boost your skin’s texture and restore elasticity. Let’s just say it smells very, very rich — as in, it belongs in a Four Seasons spa.
Kai Body Glow, $34, Barneys.com
Kai products smell like the beauty of Hawaii: fresh, floral and carefree. No wonder they were one of Oprah’s favorite things in 2007. The brand’s lustrous and moisturizing body mist sure does leave skin supple and soft, but it’s No. 1 claim to fame is its addictive fragrance, with notes of cucumber, chamomile flower and aloe. It feels refreshingly tropical, without being overwhelming. Also, men seem to love it (note: not a scientific survey, just a NYC subway observation.)
Tammy Fender Bulgarian Lavender Oil, $65, Amazon.com
With clients such as Ivanka Trump, Alicia Silverstone, and Mara Rooney, Tammy Fender has become the new name in high-end holistic skincare. Like its clientele, the Bulgarian Lavender Oil features a celebrity price tag, but one bottle will definitely last you awhile, as it just takes one to two pumps to get the job done — it’s that fragrant, but in a most relaxing, soothing way.