Facial Oil: When everything old is new again.

Facial Oil

It all started with an addiction to glossy fashion magazines.

A few weeks ago on a trip to Sydney, having satisfied my addiction to buying my favourite fashion magazines, I settled in for an hour or so of caffeine fuelled browsing in the real world of a printed magazine. Hey, call me old fashioned but for me, this will always be a delightful way to take a bit of time out to relax. To suspend whatever else is going on the world and become immersed in a world, not of my own. I revel in the change of pace as an alternative to the somewhat frantic browsing brought about at the click of a mouse or touch of a screen. 


An interesting discovery.

Age Perfect Extraordinary Facial OilAnyway, stumbling away, I came upon a pull-out sample of a facial oil by L’Oreal. Interesting I thought, bemused, curious and quietly impressed. Knowing how good the right kind of oil applied topically to the skin can be, I was quite keen to try. Being only a tiny sachet, sadly it only lasted for about two applications. But, it did feel good despite having a bit too much fragrance for my taste. L’Oreal call their oil extraordinary!! It is now one of many, many oils on the market. It appears facial oils are the next-big-thing!! Who knew? Well, there’s one company that’s known for a very long time, the power of facial oils in restoring the health of the skin (more on this later).


It’s a funny relationship we have with OIL.

I cringe every time I see some new gadget to whisk away every trace of oil, or cleansers promising to clean your skin so deeply; nothing can survive. I guess this misguided aversion to oils started back in our teen years when acne made itself known. So there is no surprise a couple of decades later, we need facial oils to replenish our poor skin. Of course, regardless of how you treated your skin in your teen years, as we age, our natural oils and lipids become depleted, so it makes sense to put something back that closely resembles our natural protective barrier.  Enter products like L’Oreal’s Age Perfect Extraordinary Facial Oil, which as emerged and are targeted for older, drier skins. Help is finally at hand.


Everything old is new again.

So L’Oreal are appealing to an older audience with this product, in fact, L’Oreal are appealing to an older audience. Period. With the recently announced advertising collaboration with Dame Helen Mirren. This is not the first time L’Oreal have engaged us all with fabulous older women; there’s Julianne Moore at the ancient age of 53, and then there ‘s the ever youthful albeit cosmetically enhanced Jane Fonda at a mere 76. 
I know I may sound a little tongue in cheek about all this, but the truth is I applaud the rise of the older woman as ambassadors for brands. They give us all something to aspire to, just like my fashion magazine addiction, they provide us with an aspiration of what our older years can look like.  They allow us to believe that being in your 50’s 60’s and 70’s does not have to be a time of invisibility. So with my cynical attitude put to one side, I truly do love seeing these women gracing the pages of glossy magazines. 


An old world classic versus a new world modern.

Back to the L’Oreal Age Perfect Extraordinary Facial Oil (quite the lengthy title). Is it any good? Should you rush out and buy it? Well first, I’d like to introduce you to a facial oil that has been around for probably 50 years, if not more.
Many years ago, when I became a beauty therapist, much of what I learnt about the skin came from Ella Bache.  I thank them for the knowledge they gave me, and I will forever hold this product and the biochemist Madame Bache’ as a pioneer in skin care. It is not a cosmeceutical and not even trying to be one, but still an exceptional range of products.
They have Huile Intexa facial oil recommended for a weak, flaky and damaged skin. (which is just about everyone at some point) I love this oil; it is rich in Cod Liver Oil, Thyme, and Squalane (Olive oil), a simple yet very effective formula that soothes a weakened skin, lifts a tired skin and gives all skins a healthy boost. Not only can it be used as an oil to strengthen the protective barrier of the skin, but the combination of ingredients gives an anti-inflammatory effect. When using this uniquely blended oil, my skin always felt stronger, more robust and certainly more protected from the rigours of the environment.


And a beauty tip.

I love applying this facial oil, not just as part of a morning routine, or added to moisturisers, but throughout the day as a top up booster to the skin. And when going from work to play it can be applied straight over your tired makeup and before a makeup refresh.  This little tip works brilliantly to give the skin a glow of health. You could do this with any facial oil. It’s a great beauty tip, and I swear by it.


The product I’m kind of raving about is by Ella Bache’ and is called Huile Intex (Intex Oil) and retails in Australia for $69.00AU. To make a comparison to L’Oreal Age Perfect Extraordinary Facial Oil? Well, I’d say, sure the L’Oreal product has merit and at $24.00AU it is an affordable product.  However, with 8 Essential oils and the addition of fragrance, for some, there may be the risk of an allergic reaction or sensitivity and to be honest, eight essential oils doesn’t seem necessary or make it any better than a facial oil with perhaps one or two.
In fact, having so many essential oils leads me to believe, there would only be a sprinkling of each. So, one could say, it’s a bit of a marketing ploy, but still for the price it’s a nice enough product. If you’re going to buy it, just check the ingredient list first or get yourself a sample. 


But what about if you find yourself with adult acne? Can you use a facial oil?

Many women, unfortunately, find themselves with a bad case of adult acne when they reach their late 30’s and early 40’s. It hardly seems fair, and I have written about it in a previous article: A spot of bother in your forties.
Should you use oils if you are suffering from adult acne?  Well, depending on the facial oil, it would be far better to apply a soothing oil with anti-inflammatory properties than attempting to fix the problem doing what you did when you were a teenager. It didn’t work then; it’s not going to work now. Besides, adult acne is hormonal and inflamed and nothing like teenage acne. Nothing! So, as well as seeing someone about your hormonal disruptions treat your skin with love and yep, an oil like Intex Oil or something similar would be quite okay.


All things rarely being equal, what would I do?

For me, my money is on Ella Bache and their Huile Intex. A brilliant product, it does have a heavier texture, but don’t let that put you off, it just means you need the smallest amount, and it’s doing so much more for your skin than simply relieving dryness. 
There are now so many facial oils on the market, seriously hundreds, far too many to review here, but I’ve looked at two today based on price, ingredients and my experience. But I’d like to hear from you. Do you have a special oil in your beauty routine? Or is there an oil you are considering but not sure if it’s as good as the marketing suggests? Drop me a line here or leave a comment, I’d be happy to review the product for you. 


See you next time,

The Beauty Issue




P.S. I do not have any affiliation with either Ella Bache or L’Oreal Paris.