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Difference Between Oily Skin And Hydrated Skin

Difference between oily skin and hydrated skin

Difference Between Oily Skin And Hydrated Skin


Having oily skin doesn’t mean that your skin is hydrated - skin can be oily and dehydrated at the same time. The right oily skincare routine isn’t only about balancing oil production it needs to address hydration too. 


Why Oily Skin Can Be Dehydrated


Unlike dry skin, which is a skin type, dehydration is a skin condition that can affect all skin types, even oily ones. 

Dehydration is characterised by a lack of water, not a lack of oil. 

This means signs of oil do not equate to signs of hydration! When the skin is dehydrated (lacking water) it overcompensates by producing more oil.

Dehydration occurs when the skin barrier, the protective uppermost layer of the skin known as the stratum corneum, lacks moisture. 

Several factors can cause skin to become thirsty and dehydrated. Changes in the weather, using the wrong skincare, lifestyle choice (excessive alcohol consumption/smoking are examples), diet, and other environmental factors.  

These all contribute to depleting the water content in your skin, leaving it parched and dehydrated on a cellular level.


Signs Oily Skin Is Dehydrated


If you have oily skin, some signs of dehydration include -

Dull skin and dark circles

Dehydration can cause skin to lose its radiance. You’ll notice your overall complexion becoming dull and lackluster when hydration levels are depleted.

Shadowy circles under your eyes may become more obvious too. 

Itchy and irritated skin

Without enough moisture in the outer layer of your skin, it can feel tight and itchy. Flaky patches are also common, even if there is excessive oil on the surface of the skin.

Increase breakouts and congestion

As pointed out earlier, dehydration can trigger the production of more oil - it’s the skin’s way to try and compensate for a lack of moisture. 

Excessive oil production increases the chance of blocked pores which can lead to everything from mild acne, like blackheads and pustules through to cystic acne

Fine lines and wrinkles

Signs of ageing become more obvious when skin is dehydrated. 

When skin is lacking moisture, it loses the ability to bounce back. While dehydration does cause deeper lines to become more obvious, it also results in the appearance network of fine lines that are directly related to dehydration. Their appearance diminishes once skin returns to a hydrated state. 


Ingredients To Solve Oily, Dehydrated Skin Issues


Luckily, dehydration isn’t permanent. With the right oily skincare treatment and in some cases, lifestyle changes, you can nurture your skin back to a healthy state. 

The best products for your oily skincare routine will be formulated with ingredients to keep skin hydrated.

Here are some ingredients on the hydration power list to look out for:

Hyaluronic acid: A natural humectant with superior hydration qualities. Acts like a magnet to attract moisture deep within the skin’s cells. Hyaluronic acid is revered for its ability to hold x1000 its own weight in water. 

Niacinamide: Effective at restoring the skin barrier to guard against moisture loss and dehydration.

Squalene: Non-irritating and ideal for acne-prone skin, squalene is an antioxidant with beneficial moisturising properties.

Ceramides: Increase water retention properties by strengthening the skin barrier. 

Other ingredients beneficial for an oily skincare routine are alpha hydroxy acids - to clear congestion - and Vitamin A,C, and E for a host of antioxidant benefits. 


The Best Oily Skincare Routine 



Your skin needs some of its natural oils to maintain a strong, healthy skin barrier. 

A well functioning barrier means the skin is better able to retain moisture and transepidermal water loss (moisture evaporating off the skin) is minimised. 

The ideal cleanser for an oily skincare routine is one that is gentle enough not to strip the skin of all oil while targeting congestion. 

We recommend: The Uncomplicated Cleanser plus Charcoal Ideal for all skin types prone to congestion, breakouts, and large pores, the active ingredient charcoal purifies and balances oils for a refined, clearer complexion.


Adding a serum targeting dehydration is an effective way to give thirsty oily skin a moisture boost. Serums have a smaller molecular structure than moisturisers. 

This means they can penetrate deeper into the skin to deliver a high concentration of active ingredients.

We recommend: Hyaluronic Hydrating Serum Perfect for all skin types and ages, this serum hydrates from the inside out, restores, repairs and reveals healthy skin and a hydrated glow. 

Hyaluronic Serum contains Vit B3 (niacinamide) which will help to balance skin and regulate oil flow which can act as a preventative for breakouts. It also accelerates healing and repair post-breakout.


If you have any oily skin type, you might be tempted to skip the moisturising step assuming your skin doesn’t need hydration - it’s already oily! 

This is a mistake as oil doesn’t signal hydration. Not moisturising means your skin won’t create the barrier that allows it to hold onto water, diminishing the hydration it really needs. 

Oily skin also needs a moisturising product to improve the condition skin through the combination of humectants and emollients ingredients found in moisturising creams and oils.

Yes, that’s right. Oily skin types can use face oils! Many oils do an excellent job to help regulate oil production and increase hydration. 

Not all oils are created equal though - some can aggravate sebum production. The best options for oily, breakout-prone skin are lightweight oils with a low comedogenic rating and those with calming, antibacterial properties. Jojoba, acai, rosehip, and almond oil are all effective options.

We recommend: Acai Skin Balancing Face Oil  Ideal for all skin types, especially oily skin with balance concerns, this nourishing oil can replace moisturiser to improve tone, calm, and hydrate while regulating oil flow. 

Peppermint Green Oil is an excellent choice for teenagers with oily skin. Highly moisturising with antiseptic and astringent properties to treat acne-prone skin, as well as anti-inflammatory properties targeting redness and inflammation.


Regular exfoliation should be part of every oily skincare regimen. Sloughing away dead skin cells and unblocking pores, exfoliation instantly improves skin tone and texture for brighter, fresher looking skin.

We recommend: Detoxifying Exfoliating Charcoal Serum. Containing a blend of lactic and glycolic acid, this powerful duo works together to slough away dead skin on the surface, reducing the appearance of blackheads and drawing out impurities.

Need help choosing the right products for your oily skincare routine? Book a free consultation with an esmi Skin Minerals Consultant. The team at esmi is always here to support you on your skin journey!


Difference between oily and dehydrated skin

Looking After Your Skin This Winter

Looking After Your Skin This Winter

Looking After Your Skin This Winter


Winter can be tough on your skin. Our winter skincare guide will help you banish signs of dryness, irritation, and dullness during the colder months.

Winter Skin Concerns

The main cause of skin issues during winter is a lack of moisture in the air.

This, coupled with time spent in heated indoor spaces, can cause your skin barrier (the outer layer of skin known as the stratum corneum) to become damaged.

Your skin barrier is made up of skin cells and the lipid matrix which is composed of fatty acids, ceramides, and cholesterols. Lipids act like ‘glue’ to hold the skin cells together.

When the skin barrier is strong and functioning properly, there are minimal ‘cracks’ in the surface. This means moisture is sealed into the skin while irritants and bacteria are kept out.

On the other hand, the surface of a weakened skin barrier is damaged and cracked.

This means moisture seeps out easily, skin is more vulnerable to bacteria and other irritants and signs of ageing are accelerated.

Seasonal changes and rapid temperature fluctuations (moving from warm indoor heating to the cold air outside, for example) have been shown to damage the skin barrier.


Dry skin

One of the most common skin conditions to come along with cold weather is dry skin. Even if your skin type isn’t naturally dry, chances are you’ll experience drier, flaky skin during winter.

If you have a dry skin type, you need to be extra vigilant with winter skincare as cold weather can exacerbate your skin issues.



If you don’t get your winter skin care routine right, skin can quickly lose its glow and become dull. It’s usually a result of dehydration - both on the inside and outside.

Loss of hydration in the dermis and the lower levels of the epidermis results in a decrease of skin thickness. This leads to skin looking dull and lacklustre.



You may notice your skin has become more sensitive seemingly overnight when cold weather hits. Signs of sensitivity include reactivity - one minute skin seems fine and the next it’s breaking out in a rash, red bumps, or flushing. Itchiness and dryness are also signs of sensitivity.


Your Winter Skincare Routine

Just like you swap your summer wardrobe for a winter one, you should be switching up your skincare during winter too.

There are two key goals for your winter skincare products - a) minimise moisture loss and b) increase hydration. 

Remember, a damaged skin barrier means moisture in the skin is lost at a quicker rate through the ‘cracks’ in the surface. Your winter skincare routine should include products and ingredients aimed at repairing cracks and strengthening the barrier to minimise moisture loss.

Ceramides, emollients, fatty acids, allantoin, and niacinamide (vitamin B3) are some of the best ingredients to help seal in moisture and repair the skin barrier.

You also need to boost the amount of hydration skin cells receive. You can increase hydration topically by using humectant ingredients in your winter skincare products. The hydrating superpower of humectants is their ability to draw moisture to the skin.



Our winter skin care tip for washing your face? Steer clear of traditional foaming cleansers.

The chemicals used to create the ‘lathering’ effect can be harsh and very drying for the skin barrier. Avoid cleansers containing sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and synthetic fragrances too - these chemicals can exacerbate dryness and sensitivity.

Mild cleansers are a must for winter.

Choose a gentler, plant-derived formulation that provides a deep cleanse without ingredients that make winter skin issues worse.

We recommend: The Uncomplicated Cleanser

Gently removes all traces of foundation and impurities with a double cleanse while calming and protecting skin with aloe vera and camilla leaf extract.



Add a serum to your winter skincare routine before moisturising for an extra dose of hydration.

One of the best ingredients to look for in a hydrating serum is hyaluronic acid. It draws water to the cells and can hold up to 1000x its weight in water.

Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) is also effective at restoring the skin barrier to guard against moisture loss and dehydration.

We recommend: Hyaluronic Hydrating Serum

The ultimate skin hydrator, this quick-absorbing serum fights dehydration for hydrated, plumper, and repaired skin.



The colder months call for a richer moisturising formulation than you might use in summer.

Facial oil makes an excellent moisturiser for dry skin in winter. Oils contain essential fatty acids and antioxidants which help seal in moisture to keep the skin hydrated.

Suggested winter skincare oils include rosehip oil, avocado oil, jojoba oil, and coconut oil.

Rosehip in particular is a wonderful skin repairer, brimming with tissue and cell regeneration fatty acids plus antioxidants to hydrate and heal damaged skin.

Squalene is also an excellent ingredient for dry skin. Non-irritating with antioxidant and moisturising properties, squalene is suitable for all skin types.

We recommend: 24K Gold Nourishing Oil

Non-greasy, it’s perfect for combination to dry skin as a moisturiser to address dryness, dehydration, ageing, fine lines, and wrinkles



The right exfoliator will refresh tired-looking winter skin.

The cold air outside combined with dry indoor heating means skin cells dehydrate and die quicker during this time of year. A gentle exfoliator will buff away dead cells to reveal fresher looking skin without drying it out.

We suggest using a mild chemical exfoliator containing alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) rather than a physical exfoliator to dissolve dead skin cells without damaging the skin barrier.

Lactic acid is the most gentle AHA and ideal for sensitive skin types.

We recommend: Detoxifying Exfoliating Charcoal Serum

Gently detox and purify congested skin for a clearer, smoother complexion.


Overnight Mask

Leaving on a rich, nourishing treatment overnight (skin is more permeable at night time) allows the ingredients in your winter skin care regime to soak in and maximise results.

We recommend: Ultra Nourishing Booster Mask

Ideal for dry skin types in need of nourishment to reduce fine lines, inflammation, uneven skin tone, and heal damaged skin.


If you need help with winter care for your face book a free consultation with an esmi Skin Minerals Consultant. The team at esmi is always here to support you on your skin journey!


Tips To Looking After Your Skin This Winter


Causes Of Acne

Cause of acne

Causes Of Acne


No matter the type of acne you have it all starts with the same problem - blocked pores where bacteria thrive. Let’s take a look at the causes of acne and how to prevent the pore blockages that trigger breakouts.


Causes Of Acne 


Our skin is full of pores. Pores are the tiny openings in the skin where hair follicles come out and oil (sebum) and sweat are excreted. 

Pores can become clogged with excess sebum, sweat, and other debris. When this happens, the pore becomes the ideal environment for skin bacteria, p. Acnes, to thrive. 

This bacteria takes over areas of your skin and triggers different types of acne - from blackheads through to cystic acne.  

While all acne is essentially triggered by this pore clogging process there are different reasons why the pore becomes blocked in the first place.


Your Skin Is Producing Too Much Oil


The overproduction of sebum is one of the main causes of acne. 

The role sebum plays is to help keep your skin moisturised but when your skin produces too much oil, pores easily become clogged. 

So, what makes your skin produce excess sebum?


Fluctuating hormones, such as estrogen, can trigger a process of increased sebum production, changes in skin cell activity, and inflammation.

Hormone fluctuations can be triggered by your menstrual cycle, pregnancy, menopause, and stress. These are some of the main adult acne causes.

Teenagers experience acne due to an increase in androgen hormones - like testosterone. 

These hormones play a key role in kick-starting puberty and send the production of sebum into overdrive, increasing the chance of clogged pores.

The term ‘hormonal acne’ simply means acne that is triggered due to hormonal changes. 

It’s not a specific ‘type’ of acne. The types of acne are blackheads, whiteheads, papules, pustules, nodules, and cysts - any of these can be caused by changes in hormones.

Read more about the different types of acne here. 


If you start making changes to your diet by cutting back on foods that cause acne, you may see an improvement in your breakouts.

What foods cause acne? We all react differently to certain foods so any dietary causes of acne can vary. There’s no hard and fast rule but there are some common types of food that have been shown to trigger breakouts in many people. 

Refined sugar

Eating excessive amounts of refined sugar can fuel the overproduction of sebum in your skin.

2010 study shows that eating sugar spikes insulin, which leads to an inflammatory response in the body and also produces androgens. Androgens are the hormones mostly responsible for sebum production.

High fat, fast food

Research has linked acne flare ups with a diet rich in calories, fat, and refined carbohydrates. 

Many processed foods high in fat - like burgers, fries, and pizza - are high-GI that raise blood sugar levels quickly and cause insulin levels to jump. Like refined sugar, part of this process triggers your skin to produce more oil which can cause pimples on the face. 

Using the wrong cleanser

You don’t want your cleanser to remove all traces of sebum. 

If a cleanser is too harsh for your skin (many cleansers aimed at teenage acne are extremely strong) you’re at risk of over cleansing. This strips your face of its natural oils and disrupts the skin’s pH balance.

Stripping the skin is one of the causes of acne as it triggers the skin to create more oil - resulting in more breakouts. 

Stick to cleansers that contain gentle active ingredients that deeply cleanse the skin while keeping the oil / moisture balance. More on those ingredients below!


Skincare Habits That Can Cause Acne


These poor skincare habits are also causes of acne because they allow your pores to become clogged or spread acne-causing bacteria. 

Not cleansing your skin twice daily

To keep your skin clear daily cleansing is a must. It’s important to incorporate ingredients into your routine that specifically assist in keeping pores clear. 

Some of the best ingredients in facial cleansers to target acne include:

Glycolic and lactic acids 

Glycolic and lactic acids exfoliate and deeply cleanse the pores but also maintain the oil-moisture balance of your skin, which is very important. 


Ideal for all skin types prone to congestion, breakouts, and large pores, charcoal is an active ingredient to purify and balance oil production for a refined, clearer complexion.

Green Tea Extract

Using a cleanser with green tea extract can help reduce sebum production.

Green tea is especially rich in a polyphenol called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which has been shown by research to improve acne and oily skin.

A double cleanse is essential at night, to remove all makeup, dirt, and bacteria that make breakouts worse. 

We recommend cleansing with The Uncomplicated Cleanser first to remove any surface debris. 

Follow with a second cleanse using  The Uncomplicated Cleanser plus Charcoal or, if your acne is severe and inflamed, with The Uncomplicated Cleanser plus Anti-Redness.

Using dirty makeup brushes and applicators 

Not regularly cleaning any tools you use to apply makeup is one of the often overlooked causes of acne. 

Dirty makeup brushes and applicators harbour all kinds of bacteria, oils, and dirt, which won’t do your skin any favours. We recommend cleaning your brushes with gentle soap, brush cleaner, or shampoo. 

It’s important not to fully submerge your brush and minimise water flowing into the base to avoid breakage. Clean weekly or fortnightly and replace it every 6 months.

For sponge applicators, wash with soap and hot water, squeezing until the water runs clear.

Discover esmi’s range of vegan makeup brushes

Using comedogenic skincare and makeup 

Scientifically, clogged pores are known as comedones. 

If an ingredient in skincare or makeup is classified as ‘comedogenic’ it means it’s likely to clog pores. 

This doesn’t mean comedogenic ingredients are bad for all skin types but if you have oily, breakout-prone skin it helps to avoid them.

Non-comedogenic ingredients allow skin to breathe, remain hydrated, and minimise the risk of breakouts. 

Your best bet for non-comedogenic cosmetics is mineral makeup. It reduces the risk of acne, blemishes, and skin irritation. 

As an added benefit, the zinc oxide in most mineral makeup has a calming effect on the skin and blends beautifully with the natural oils of your skin.

Discover esmi’s range of mineral makeup including vegan BB cream, vegan foundation, and vegan powder. 

Picking at your skin

What causes spots? Picking at the spots you already have! 

Popping pimples might be satisfying at the moment but you’re spreading more acne bacteria from the infected pore to surrounding pores. 

Picking and popping pimples also increases the likelihood of scarring and can delay your body’s natural healing process. The bottom line? Hands off.


What Type Of Acne Do I Have?

What Type Of Acne Do I Have?

What Type Of Acne Do I Have?


The different types of acne can be classified under two broad categories - non inflammatory acne and inflammatory acne. Use our guide to help you choose the right skincare and treatments to clear up the type of acne you’re dealing with.


Non-Inflammatory types of acne

These are the most common types of acne that can generally be treated with a great at-home skin routine designed to target acne. Occasionally naturopathic or over the counter treatments may be required too. 



A blackhead is a pore clogged with dead skin, sebum and dirt that has opened a little and been exposed to air. 

Its scientific name is an ‘open comedone’ but the term blackhead comes from the fact the exposure to air turns dirt, oil and dead skin trapped in the pore black.

Blackheads can show up on any skin type but are most common for oily and combination skin types.



The main difference between blackheads and whiteheads is that a whitehead hasn’t been exposed to the air. 

The pore is still blocked by the same type of build up - dead skin cells, oil, and sebum - but remains closed. Without exposure to air, it doesn’t turn black. The scientific name for a white head is a ‘closed comedone.’


How to treat blackheads and whiteheads

The key is to deal with blackheads and whiteheads before they become one of the more inflammatory types of acne. Here are a few of the ingredients you could include in your skincare routine to target the issue

  • Salicylic acid
  • Glycolic and lactic acids (gentler on the skin that salicylic acid which can be very drying)
  • Bentonite clay
  • Activated charcoal

You’ll also benefit from ingredients that deliver deep hydration to the skin, such as hyaluronic acid, and those that balance oil and heal the skin post breakout.


From the esmi Skin Minerals range we recommend:


Soft Skin Refining Charcoal Clay Booster Mask

Uncomplicated Cleanser Plus Charcoal

Detoxifying Exfoliating Charcoal Serum

Acai Skin Balancing Face Oil 

Hyaluronic Hydrating Serum 


We know it can be tempting to squeeze and dig at the pore to remove them but doing this without the proper tools will make things worse. Chances are you’ll spread the acne bacteria to other parts of your skin and also risk scarring.

If you have a serious case of blackheads or whiteheads, we suggest consulting an esthetician or dermatologist for professional extraction. 


Inflammatory types of acne (mild to moderate)

The two types of acne on the lower end of the inflammatory scale are the types of pimples known as papules and pustules.

An acne papule is an inflamed blemish that looks like a red bump on the skin that can be tender to touch. 

Pustules are pimples that contain pus. They appear as small white or yellow spots surrounded by a swollen reddish area which is often hard and painful to touch. 

Both acne papules and acne pustules can form as the result of leaving blackheads and whiteheads untreated. 

Large groups of either type of pimple may be classified as moderate or severe acne. For teens, it’s common to find papules and pustules on other areas of the body, particularly back acne. 

They can also be considered hormonal acne as it’s common to have them appear during  puberty, or at stages during the menstrual cycle. 


How to treat acne papules and pustules

As mentioned earlier, glycolic and lactic acids are effective ingredients to remove dead skin cells and other debris. Retinoids (Vitamin A) is also a good choice - it prevents pores from clogging stopping breakouts before they even begin developing. 

In addition, look for natural antibacterial ingredients in cleansers, oils, and serums that target inflammation and redness.


From the esmi Skin Minerals range we recommend:


The Uncomplicated Cleanser Plus Anti-Redness

Peppermint Green Oil (Ideal for teens)

Acai Hydrate & Nourish Duo (Ideal for teens)

Acai Skin Balancing Face Oil 

Anti-inflammation Mint Gel Booster Mask

Hyaluronic Hydrating Serum 


You could also consult a professional for homeopathic remedy options. A remedy is recommended based on your unique set of symptoms, including (but not limited to) acne symptoms. 


Inflammatory types of acne (severe)

Cysts and nodules are the most severe form of acne. 

Cystic acne is a highly inflammatory type of acne, rooted deep beneath the skin. It presents as red, pus filled bumps that are usually painful to touch and have a high chance of scarring. This type of acne is strongly linked to hormones - your genetics can also play a role here too. 

Nodules and cysts are similar in the sense that they both form deep within the skin but nodules aren’t pus filled and have no visible head. 

Serious types of acne usually require professional attention. Severe acne treatment can prescription medication, homeopathic therapy, and treatments like laser therapy or extraction - in addition to a targeted skincare routine. 

On the skincare front, look for products that not only target acne bacteria and inflammation but are also deeply nourishing for the skin. 

Many prescription medications and treatments for severe acne are strong and can leave the skin vulnerable.


From the esmi Skin Minerals range we recommend:


The Uncomplicated Cleanser Plus Anti-Redness

Anti-redness Minty Green Smoothie  (Ideal to use after laser, IPL or diathermy treatment)

Acai Hydrate & Nourish Duo (ideal for teens)

Acai Skin Balancing Face Oil 

Hyaluronic Hydrating Serum 


Need help choosing the right products to treat acne? Book a free consultation with an esmi Skin Minerals Consultant. The team at esmi are always here to support you on your skin journey!



Day Skincare vs Night-Time Skincare

Day vs Night Skincare Routines

Day Skincare vs Night-Time Skincare


Your skin needs different support during the day than while you’re sleeping. We take a look at what happens to your skin AM vs PM and the best day and night skincare routine  - including our favourite product recommendations.


Daytime skincare routine


What is happening to your skin during the day?

During the day your skin is in protection mode. 

It’s busy defending itself against free radical attacks caused by UV light, pollution, stress, smoking, poor diet, and other environmental factors. 

These free radical attacks can damage the elasticity and collagen in healthy skin, accelerating the signs of ageing. UV exposure during the day plays one of the biggest roles in premature ageing.

Skin is also protecting itself to all the bacteria it comes in contact with throughout the day. Every time you touch your face or press your phone to your cheek your skin is exposed to bacteria. This can trigger breakouts or spread existing acne. 

The weather is another potential stressor your skin comes into contact with during the day. A drop in temperature can lead to dryness and dehydration while a spike in humidity can trigger breakouts. 

It’s your skin barrier that does the work deflecting damage and protecting skin. The stronger the barrier, the better it is at both defending itself from potential damage and repairing itself from existing damage.

When your barrier is weakened, it’s more susceptible to free radical damage, exposure to bacteria and other stressors it comes into contact with. This damage leads to irritations, breakouts, accelerated ageing and dehydration.


Best daytime skincare routine


The goal of your daytime skincare routine is to help your skin protect itself against all the stressors it comes in contact with. 

You can do this by using daytime skincare products to support a healthy, strong skin barrier.


Choose a gentle, non-drying cleanser to maintain the delicate balance of oil and moisture on your skin. You don’t want to strip your skin entirely of oil - this will compromise your skin barrier and trigger an overproduction of oil. 

Starting with freshly cleansed skin in the morning will also help the products you apply afterwards to be better absorbed by the skin.

Explore esmi Skin Minerals range of gentle cleansers to target skin concerns including congestion, ageing, and dullness. 

Antioxidant-rich serum

Serums are highly concentrated nutrient-dense treatments. 

Boost your skin’s natural defence factors with the help of an antioxidant-rich serum to help neutralise potential damage caused by free radicals attacks while treating specific skin concerns. Vitamin C is an excellent antioxidant choice to apply during the day.

Read our guide to antioxidants to understand more about the crucial role antioxidants play in defending the skin against free radical damage. 

Moisturiser or facial oil

On the moisturising front, the difference in your day and night skincare routine is usually that the daytime product is lighter. Lightweight, non-greasy formulations - be it a moisturiser or face oil - are best during the day. 

We recommend: Acai Skin Balancing Facial Oil

SPF protection

No daytime skincare routine is complete without SPF protection. 

One of the biggest differences between your day and night skincare routine is the application of sunscreen - obviously not needed at night but a non-negotiable during the day! If your day time moisturiser doesn’t include broad-spectrum SPF protection, apply a separate product. 

We recommend: Skin Shield Natural Sunscreen SPF 30

Face Mist (Optional)

To keep skin refreshed and hydrated throughout the day, consider keeping a face mist handy when you’re on the go. A burst of hydration is the perfect pick-me-up for tired skin. 

We recommend: Refreshing And Hydrating Skin Snack Face Mist  


Night skincare routine


What is happening to your skin at night?

At night your skin switches from defence mode into repair mode - combating any damage done during daylight hours. It does the heavy lifting of regenerating itself while you sleep.

During healthy sleep cycles, the levels of both melatonin and human growth hormone (HGH) in your body naturally increase.

These two hormones are essential for skin rejuvenation. Melatonin initiates cellular regeneration while HGH stimulates the collagen and elastin necessary to support thicker, firmer skin. 

Transepidermal water loss (moisture evaporating from your skin) also increases at night. It's important to replenish the water loss with moisturiser or facial oil overnight. 


Best night skincare routine


The goal of your night routine is to support the skin’s natural rejuvenation process to boost results. The good news is that skin is also more receptive to products at night! 

Some of the best ingredients to apply at night include retinol, peptides, and glycolic acid.  Many spot and prescription products are also recommended for night time application. 


Your night time face wash routine should include a double cleanse to remove all traces of makeup, excess oil, and dirt. 

Don’t skip this step if you have breakout prone skin - it’s essential in a night skincare routine for acne. For acne-prone skin, we recommend using The Uncomplicated Cleanser for the first cleanse. 

Follow this with either the The Uncomplicated Cleanser plus Charcoal or, if you’re experiencing cystic acne or acne that is inflamed The Uncomplicated Cleanser With Anti-Redness

Moisturiser or facial oil

You need moisturiser for your day and night skincare routine but you can get away with a heavier formulation while you sleep. 

The best nighttime moisturiser and facial oils are rich in antioxidants, deeply hydrating and contain emollient ingredients to minimise trans epidermal water loss. Emollients contain lipids (fats) that help seal in moisture while softening and smoothing skin.  

We recommend: Rose Gold Rose Oil and Golden Anti-Ageing Serum.


Your night face care routine is the perfect time to maximise the benefits of a face mask targeting specific skin concerns - especially ageing, dehydration, and dullness. 

You could use a mask in your day and night skincare routine but skin has more time to absorb the active ingredients while you sleep. If applying an overnight nighttime mask, skip the facial oil and make it the final step in your routine. 

We recommend: Anti-ageing Repair Gel Booster Mask (ageing concerns), Hyaluronic Hydrating Booster Mask (hydration) or Ultra Nourishing Booster Mask (dry skin).

Eye treatment 

The skin around your eye area is delicate and prone to puffiness, dark circles, fine lines, wrinkles, and sagging.  Include a separate eye treatment in your nighttime skincare routine to target this area to wake up with a refreshed eye area.  

Apply the treatment hour or so before you go to bed to give the product time to absorb before placing your face on the pillow. 

Explore esmi Skin Minerals range of eye treatments to treat concerns including ageing, dehydration, and dullness. 

Have questions about the day and night skincare routine right for your skin type? Book a free consultation with an esmi Skin Minerals Consultant. The team at esmi are always here to support you on your skin journey.


What is causing your blackheads?

what is causing your blackheads

What is causing your blackheads?


Blackheads cause a lot of skin angst. Those tiny black bumps that blemish the face are common, stubborn and frustrating! We take a look at why they happen and the best skincare ingredients to treat them.


What are blackheads?


Before we share the best ways to treat blackheads on your skin, let's look at blackhead causes.

The scientific name for a blackhead is an ‘open comedone’. It’s essentially a pore clogged with a mix of dead skin, sebum (your skin’s oil)  and dirt that has opened a little and been exposed to air.

This makes the pore an ideal environment for acne causing bacteria (P. Acnes) to flourish. 

The air turns dirt, oil and dead skin trapped in the pore black; which is how a blackhead gets its name.  If you have an oily skin type with large pores, you’re more likely to have blackheads. 


What causes clogged pores?


To discover the root of blackhead causes, we need to take a look at why your pores become blocked up in the first place. Preventing blocked pores is the key to minimising or eliminating the appearance of blackheads. 

Your skincare routine 

Poor skincare habits like not cleansing your skin properly and sleeping with makeup on is a key culprit in blocking pores and causing blackheads. Thoroughly cleansing your skin on a daily basis is a must to keep pores free of the build up.

Even if you’re committed to your skincare routine, you could be using products with comedogenic ingredients. Essentially, comedogenic ingredients increase the chances of blackhead causing blocked pores.

Certainly not all comedogenic ingredients aren’t bad - many are extremely beneficial for skin in other ways - but the chances of your pores becoming clogged are higher. 

On the other hand, non-comedogenic describes products or ingredients likely to help us avoid skin pore blockages. 

Do your research into the different ingredients in your skincare products to discover how they rate on the comedogenic scale. 

It’s important to know that everyone will experience blackheads using comedogenic ingredients. Those with naturally dry skin, and small pores may not be affected at all by comedogenic ingredients.


Wearing makeup, especially heavy makeup, can increase the chances of blackhead causing debris to build up in your pores. 

Like skincare, makeup formulations can contain comedogenic ingredients that increase the chance of the pore becoming blocked. 

If you wear makeup, one of the best ways to prevent blackheads is to choose non-comedogenic mineral cosmetics

Mineral makeup is made up of tiny particles of naturally occurring minerals including iron oxide, zinc oxide, talc and titanium oxide. It’s free from ingredients that can cause blackheads like parabens, binders and fillers. 

Mineral makeup is ideal for combination or oily skin as it helps absorb excess oil and cover breakouts without actually making them worse. 

Excess oil production

Clogged pores and blackheads are very common around the nose and chin area. 

For some skin types, especially oily skin, there is an increased production of oil in these areas, which attracts more dirt and debris to the area - increasing the chances of the pore becoming clogged.

Slow cellular turnover

As we age the rate of cellular turnover slows down. Basically, the skin takes longer to produce new, fresh cells in the deeper layers of skin and push them to the surface. 

Slow cellular turnover can also trigger pores to become larger and increase the chance of blockage. Cellular turnover can also slow down due to certain lifestyle choices like spending too much time in the sun, poor diet, smoking and stress.


How to treat blackheads


Now you know what causes blackheads and how your pores become blocked, what’s the best way to get rid of blackheads?

Blackheads cause a lot more trouble for your skin if you squeeze them. Picking your pores to clear blockages is not a healthy long term solution for your skin!

Continually stressing your skin by squeezing the pores causes wear and tear and can even make them bigger - and more prone to becoming clogged - over time. There should be little to no pain when unclogging your pores. 

Chemical exfoliants 

Chemical exfoliants act in a different way to physical exfoliants - think face scrubs with particles that need you to manually scrub the skin. Instead, chemical exfoliant ingredients work to dissolve the excess oil and dead skin cells that block pores and cause blackheads. 

There are two types of chemical exfoliants: alpha-hydroxy acids (AHA) and beta-hydroxy acids (BHA). 

The two most popular AHAs in skincare are glycolic and lactic acids - lactic acid is the most gentle AHAs - and BHA refers to salicylic acid.

Don’t let the term ‘acid’ scare you. AHAs and BHA are naturally occurring acids derived fruits, milk, and sugarcane.

Some skin types may find salicylic acid can excessively irritate and dry the skin - glycolic and lactic acids can be a kinder choice for skin. 

Used daily, a cleanser with gentle exfoliating acids will prevent the blackheads before they form and help clear existing pores. Blackheads cause your skin to take on an uneven, bumpy look so gentle exfoliation will promote a smoother looking complexion too. 

We recommend: esmi Uncomplicated Cleanser With Anti-Redness

Bentonite clay

Bentonite soaks up extra oil from the skin, a little like a paper towel for sebum, and is known for its ability to draw out toxins, heavy metals, impurities, and chemicals from the skin too. 

This is why bentonite is beneficial for skin types prone to blackheads as it keeps the skin clean and as oil-free as possible. When it comes to beating blackheads, using products aimed at regulating oil flow is key. 

Bentonite can be quite drying, so you’ll want a product formulation containing bentonite clay to have a good balance of ingredients that help the skin retain moisture too. 

We recommend: esmi Soft Skin Refining Charcoal Clay Booster Mask

Activated charcoal  

Think of activated charcoal as a magnet to draw dirt out of pores; it’s great at adsorption. Adsorption (not absorption) occurs when molecules of one substance bind to the surface of another—in this case, activated charcoal. 

The build-up blackheads cause inside the pore is drawn out of the skin by the activated charcoal and washed away when you rinse.  

The types of products to get rid of blackheads containing activated charcoal ranges from soaps to serums and masks. 

We recommend: Detoxifying Exfoliating Charcoal Serum

Blackheads cause skin stress and frustration but we’re here to help! Book a free consultation with an esmi Skin Minerals Consultant. The team at esmi are always here to support you on your skin journey.