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8 Causes of Oily Skin

Oily Skin

Oily skin is a common skin type characterized by an excess production of sebum, the skin's natural oil. This overproduction can lead to a shiny appearance, enlarged pores, and a greater propensity for acne breakouts. While often frustrating, understanding the underlying causes of oily skin is crucial for effective management and care. Factors such as genetics, hormonal fluctuations, diet, climate, skincare habits, stress, and enlarged pores all play significant roles in influencing sebum production. By recognizing and addressing these contributing factors, individuals can develop tailored skincare routines that help balance oil levels and maintain healthier skin.

Genetics - Oily Skin:

Genetics play a major role in determining your skin type. If your parents or other close relatives have oily skin, there's a good chance you will too. Genetic predisposition affects the size and activity of sebaceous glands, which are responsible for producing sebum.


Hormonal changes and imbalances are significant contributors to oily skin:

  • Puberty: During puberty, androgen levels rise, leading to an increase in sebum production.

  • Menstruation: Many women notice changes in their skin's oiliness throughout their menstrual cycle due to fluctuating hormone levels.

  • Pregnancy: Hormonal shifts during pregnancy can increase oil production.

  • Menopause: Hormonal changes during menopause can also affect sebum production.


Certain foods, particularly those high in sugar, dairy, and unhealthy fats, can influence hormone levels and lead to increased oil production.

  • Sugary Foods: High-glycemic diets, which include a lot of sugar and refined carbohydrates, can spike insulin levels and subsequently increase oil production.

  • Dairy Products: Some studies suggest that dairy may increase oil production, possibly due to the hormones present in milk.

  • Fatty Foods: Diets high in unhealthy fats can exacerbate oiliness and acne.


Hot and humid weather can cause the skin to produce more oil. Conversely, dry weather can lead to dehydration, prompting the skin to overcompensate by producing more oil.

  • Hot and Humid Weather: Increases sebum production as the body tries to cool itself.

  • Cold and Dry Weather: Can lead to dehydration, prompting the skin to produce more oil to compensate.

Skin Care Products:

Using skin care products that are too harsh or not suitable for your skin type can strip the skin of its natural oils, causing it to produce even more oil to compensate.

  • Harsh Cleansers: Stripping away too much oil can trigger an overproduction of sebum as the skin attempts to compensate for the loss.

  • Heavy Moisturizers: Using products that are too heavy for your skin type can clog pores and increase oiliness.


Stress can trigger the release of cortisol, a hormone that can increase oil production.

Cortisol: High-stress levels increase cortisol production, which can boost oil production and lead to breakouts.


When the skin’s natural oils are removed too often, the sebaceous glands may produce even more oil to compensate for the loss.

Enlarged pores:

Pores can stretch out due to various factors like age, weight fluctuations, and previous breakouts. When pores become enlarged, they often produce more oil, which can exacerbate the appearance of oily skin. While you cannot physically shrink the size of your pores, you can take steps to manage their appearance and control excess oil production.

Here's a concise takeaway:

  • Enlarged pores can result from factors like age, weight fluctuations, and previous breakouts.

  • Larger pores tend to produce more oil, contributing to oily skin.

  • While you can't physically shrink pores, you can manage their appearance and control excess oil production.

  • Blotting areas with enlarged pores throughout the day helps absorb excess oil and reduce shine, improving the appearance of the skin.

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Klinik De Era is your Premier Aesthetic Clinic located in Ipoh, Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Johor. Having been around for 10 years, we are the pioneers for treatments such as PRP, fillers, skin boosters, threads, lasers and many more.


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