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Olive Oil for Skin: Benefits and Everything to know

by Rashi Bahel Mehra |

Remember, Jennifer Lopez took the skincare industry by storm when she revealed her secret of timeless beauty is Olive Oil. Since then major skincare brands started using it as one of the essential ingredients.

But, one of the questions that often comes to mind is, “Is olive oil really a miracle anti-ageing oil?”  Well it actually depends upon multiple factors. Before concluding anything, let’s first understand what makes it beneficial for the skin.

Benefits of Olive Oil for Skin

Olive oil is extracted from the ripened olive fruit, rich in oleic acid, monounsaturated fats, and vitamins E and K. These compounds work together to fight ageing factors such as free radicals produced by metabolic processes. Let’s dig deeper to understand how it impacts skin!

Antioxidant Properties :

It has antioxidant properties that protect the skin’s surface from oxidative damage caused by free radicals. Free Radical Theory of Skin says ageing can be delayed with the regular use of antioxidants. In other words, the antioxidant properties slow down premature ageing.

Antibacterial Effects :

Olive oil is rich in polyphenols that inhibit the growth of pathogenic bacteria. This prevents acne and bacterial infection. Moreover, this also makes it the perfect ingredient for cleansers and gels.

Vitamin E :

It is rich in Tocopherol, a type of Vitamin E that is only good for the skin. This single compound neutralizes free radicals, moisturizes and improves texture. This act as a humectant and emollient.

Moisturizing Properties:

It is rich in Vitamin E and Squalene which not only hydrates but also helps to retain skin moisture & boosts collagen production.

Benefits of Olive Oil for Skin

How to Add Olive Oil to Skincare Routine?

As a moisturizer

Applying virgin olive oil gives 10x hydration than any other commercial moisturizer. You can either directly apply it or add a few drops of it in your daily moisturizer. Both methods give the same benefits.

Although olive oil is beneficial for all types of skin, people with oily and acne-prone skin should avoid its direct application.

As a cleanser

Olive oil can break down any type of water-resistant makeup or eye makeup. Simply apply a few drops of it using cotton to eradicate any type of makeup. Hence, it can be a replacement for expensive makeup remover.

Additionally, according to the Korean Oil Cleansing Method ( OCM) technique, a definite proportion of olive oil and castor oil is used to remove excess sebum, clean clogged pores and remove dead skin .

As an exfoliator

Mixing olive oil with honey and sugar is the perfect DIY scrub to get clear and hydrated skin. There are hundreds of Olive oil-based DIY scrubs that vary in ingredients and proportions.

For example,  just adding sugar and olive oil is the best lip exfoliator that removes dead cells without damaging lips.

As an makeup remover

Instead of using regular makeup removers, use olive oil. It can break down any type of water-resistant molecule which can do wonders for your skin.

As oil for cuticles

Massaging nails & cuticles with olive oil will amp up the nail growth. Moreover, this helps to get rid of ripped bits and heal the cuticles.

As a face mask

Mix honey and olive oil in equal amounts and apply a homemade DIY face mask on the face. Leave it for 30 minutes before rinsing off with lukewarm water. This is a simple hydrating and refreshing face mask for glowing skin.

Risks of using Olive Oil

Besides all the antioxidants and moisturizing properties, it’s suggested to use olive oil with precaution. These are the possible side effects :

May cause redness and irritation

Even dermatologists do not recommend the direct application of olive oil. Specifically, be aware of using it directly on your face. It may cause irritation, redness and inflammation for people with oily and acne-prone skin.

Olive Oil is Comedogenic

Comedogenic refers to the substances that disrupt the sebum outflow of skin and lead to the formation of comedones aka whiteheads. But in certain cases, there is a possibility that it may impact negatively.

Can be heavy and greasy

Generally, Olive Oil is heavy for any kind of skin type. It may work best for extremely dry and flaky skin but for oily skin, it may result in breakouts.

Precautions while using Olive Oil     

Remember to take necessary precautions while using oil -

  • Use high-quality oil.
  • Always wipe off the excess oil
  • Avoid using oil on babies
  • Used the correct quantity of oil while preparing DIY
  • Store oil in a closed container


Olive Oil offers multiple benefits, it has antibacterial, anti-ageing and antioxidant properties. It acts as a cleanser, a moisturizer for dehydrated skin, and as an exfoliator.

However, certain researchers and dermatologists don't recommend it’s usage.  It may cause redness, itching, acne and inflammation.  It is primarily beneficial for dry skin, but for sensitive, oily and acne-prone skin it may cause problems.


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