Here’s a quick totally non-scientific skin type analysis.

  • Does your face outshine the BP oil spill in 2010?
  • Have you, more than once, seriously contemplated harnessing the oil on your face for financial gains?
  • Do you single handedly support the oil blotter industry?

If you answered “yes” to all three, then congratulations! You have just been made an honorary member of the hyper oily skin club. By my classification, someone with hyper oily skin experiences shine all over his face as soon as within an hour of cleansing. This should not be confused with combination skin – dry/normal at the cheeks with an oily T-zone (forehead, nose and chin).

Given that more men are paying attention to their face, skincare products now cater to different skin types. The more popular ones belong to the oil control category. This is especially since sebaceous glands in men’s skin tend to go into overdrive. Due to the climate, men like us who live in the tropics experience this much more than our counterparts from the temperate countries. Unfair, you say? Not really. We get lesser wrinkles due to our overactive facial oil factories.

If you’re ready to soak up the spill and degrease your life, give these following tips a try.

1. Raid your girlfriend’s bathroom

Yes, you read me right. However, just so we’re clear, I said bathroom. Not dressing room. Wearing your girlfriend’s clothes is not going to reduce your facial shine any more than praying very hard about it every night. When she’s not looking, stealthily check if she has the following products: Dr FeelGood or Pore-fessional. Both from Benefit, these two pack a punch when it comes to mattifying your mug. How do I know? Well, let’s say I tried them before. All in the name of science, mind you.


Dr Feel Good from Benefit


Look beyond appearances when it comes to this one. While the cover picture makes this look like something your grandma will use (so does the smell actually – imagine mint with alcohol), it is definitely tough on face grease. Dab a little of this clear balm all over your face after you clean it in the morning and you should be able to get through the day with just two or three blots.


Pore-fessional from Benefit


You say make-up, I say product. To-ma-to. To-may-to. Doesn’t matter. What matters is this balm – ok, concealer – works. Having hyper oily skin means the size of your pores makes kumquats cry and hide in shame. Dab a little on and not only does it make your pores look less visible, it controls oil too. Feeling aggressive? Dab this on AFTER using Dr FeelGood.

2. Take some Vitamin C

By that, I mean using products with Vitamin C. Vitamin C is an antioxidant and one of its best attributes for oily skin is the ability to encourage exfoliation and cleansing. These are two beneficial functions for hyper oily skin as they discourage the overproduction of sebum from causing your skin to break out.

3. What’s up, doc?

Isotretinoin is a medication prescribed by doctors to combat cystic acne. Despite side effects such as causing birth defects and high costs, many desperate to clear up their aggressive acne use this as a last resort. The most common and famous brand is Roaccutane which has undergone much controversy in the US though I shall not bore you with the details here. Generic versions are now available at a lower cost. However, they are only available by prescription from doctors. This is sometimes prescribed by dermatologists at a low dosage to control hyperactive sebaceous glands. Do note that the drug knows not the difference between the skin on your face and the rest of your body so you may experience dry skin all over. Check with your doctor for more details.

4. Get zapped

Commonly referred to as laser peels, this is a form of skin resurfacing using focused laser light energy. The top layers of the skin are removed in this process. Some types of lasers also penetrate into the deeper layers of the skin for additional benefits or a more aggressive skin resurfacing treatment, such as Mixto or Fraxel. Other than making the skin smoother, tighter and firmer, it also evens out the texture, colour and tone. Depending on your threshold for pain, this could cause some discomfort. The sensation is akin to snapping tiny rubber bands on your skin. Forget lotions and potions that claim to shrink your pores. Of all that I have tried, this is the one that I would put my money on. Do it even just once and watch your pores get downsized faster than the European economy.