A 6-Step PM Skincare Routine For Oily Skin

Do you experience excess oil, shiny skin, blackheads, and breakouts? Then you probably have oily skin. Oily skin has overactive glands, which means they produce more oil than you need. Sometimes this is genetic and sometimes it can be caused by using the wrong skincare products – if you strip your skin of too much moisture, it compensates by overproducing excess oil. Your skin may appear shiny, with enlarged pores, and will be more prone to breakouts and blackheads.   

Already checked out our morning routine for oily skin? Read on for our top tips and product recommendations for building an evening skincare routine for oily skin. 

Makeup Remover

If you’re prone to excess oil, then cleansing your skin is one of the most important steps in your routine. While makeup removal isn’t strictly a cleansing step, my removing the majority of your makeup (you want to aim for 90%), you’ll better prep your skin for cleansing and your cleansers can get on with the job in hand – giving your skin a thorough deep cleanse.  

The Best Makeup Removers for Oily Skin

First Cleanse

Our first cleansing step should be with an oil-based cleanser such as a cleansing oil or balm. This might seem counterproductive if you have oily skin, but think back to your high school chemistry class… Oil attracts oil, right? The cleanser will latch onto and lift away any oil-based substances such as sebum and makeup. Spend time massaging it into skin, then remove with a warm, damp face cloth. 

The Best Cleansing Balms for Oily Skin

Double Cleanse

For your second cleanse, you’ll need a water-based cleanser (like a gel or foam) to help rinse away any excess oil as well as water-based particles like dirt and pollution. This step gives your skin a really deep cleanse, so look for ingredients like charcoal and salicylic acid which remove excess oil from deeper within the pores. Massage in, focusing on oily areas, then rinse with a fresh face cloth. 

The Best Cleansing Gels for Oily Skin

Retinol Serum

Retinol might be best known for targeting anti-aging concerns like wrinkles and hyperpigmentation, but it’s also super effective for oily skin. It stimulates collagen production which tightens pores so they’re less likely to create and emit oil, and it speeds up cell turnover to prevent pores from clogging and forming breakouts. Apply to dry skin then allow the serum to fully absorb before moving onto the next step. 

The Best Retinol Serums For Oily Skin


It’s still important to moisturise oily skin, since oiliness can often be triggered by skin lacking moisture – skin tries to overcompensate by producing excess oil to self-moisturise. As with your day cream, look for a gel-textured, oil-free formula which won’t feel thick and heavy, and will moisturise your skin with hydrating ingredients like hyaluronic acid and glycerin. 

The Best Night Creams For Oily Skin


Once or twice a week, you may want to do a face mask to help keep on top of conbgestion and breakouts. Again, ingredients like salicylic acid, clay, and charcoal will help to draw buildup from pores, absorb excess oil, and reduce inflammation. Apply after cleansing then (once removed) skip your retinol step and follow up with your moisturiser. 

The Best Face Masks For Oily Skin