How To Control Oily Skin and Acne Without Accutane or Drugs.

Published: 08th March 2011
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Oily skin is a genetic skin condition that is caused by overactive sebaceous glands. Oily skin is very easy to diagnose - your skin usually gets shiny and greasy within 1-2 hours after washing it, and you are more prone to blackheads, whiteheads and acne breakouts.

Sometimes, oily skin is also caused by a skin condition called seborrehic eczeme where the sebaceous glands work overtime to make the skin super greasy on the face and scalp. But whatever the cause, oily skin is something that can be controlled.

A popular method of reducing or stopping the problem is by taking Accutane (also called Roaccutane in some countries) pills, a vitamin A ( scientifically known as isotretinoin) derivative usually prescribed by dermatologists for those with moderate to severe acne.

Isotretinoin's exact mechanism of action is unknown, although it is admittedly very effective to combat the overproduction of oil by the sebaceous glands. Accutane has many side effects. Some of the more serious side effects of Accutane are:

highly likely to cause birth defects if taken during pregnancy

stunted growth (in those who are still growing, namely teenagers.)

hairloss or alopecia

relapse of acne after stopping the Accutane course

extreme dryness of skin during the Accutane course.

Therefore it is very advisable to stop taking Roaccutane after finishing a course or after the acne problem has subsided significantly. To combat acne is to combat oily skin, and oily skin must be attacked from several different angles:


Drink plenty of water ( at least 8 glasses) , eat lots of fruits and vegetables and avoid junk food and grease like the plague. Vitamins A ( 5000 mg once a day), B2 ( 100 mg 3 times a day) and C ( 1000 mg 3 times a day) supplements are also recommended. The proper dosage varies from individual to individual so please consult your doctor or dermatologist if in doubt.

Daily Skincare Routine:

Clean with a gentle cleanser. and toner. Look for toners that does not contain alcohol or irritants like witch hazel. Every 3-4 days it is also a good idea to use a clay mask to absorb excess oil from the skin. And please do not forget to moisturize no matter how oily you think your skin is. If you do not moisturize after cleansing you skin, it will cause the sebaceous glands overproduce oil to compensate.

Daily Maintenance Routine:

A mattifying cream like Dr.Brandt's Pores No More Pore Minimizer is very good for giving you a matte complexion for 4-6 hours. Neutrogena and Smashbox also has some great mattifying creams.

Weekly Maintenance Routine:

▪ At home Peels

This is your trump card in fighting oily skin and breakouts. At home chemical peels are a god-sent for those with problematic skins. To fight acne and oiliness, use a BHA (salicylic acid) based peel which would cut through the oil thus unclogging your pores. It would also improve skin texture and cell renewal - all good things that will improve your skin condition. For those who are allergic to BHA peels, Lactic acid would also help with exfoliation, and it has the added benefit of killing acne causing bacteria. Some of you would find alternating between different types of peels beneficial.

▪ In Case of Breakouts:

Use products that are proven to disinfect and soothe the skin. A good acne fighting blemish cream would contain benzoyl peroxide for example Clinique Acne Solutions Emergency Gel Lotion or Clean & Clear Persa-Gel 10.

Other products that will keep the oiliness at bay:

Oil Absorbing Sheets like Clean & Clear's Oil Control Film

Oil Absorbing Loose Powder like T.Le Clerc ( the best ones are made of finely milled rice)

If you wear makeup, look for powder-based foundations, blushes and eyeshadows.

To know more about good skin care and and to see a selection of specific products that will benefit your skin type , please visit

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