The World’s Best Stay-Gorgeous Secrets
Hydrate (and wash!) with oil
In the States, where products are often marketed as "oil-free," some women think of oil as a negative thing. But women in Asia, South America, and the Middle East often use plant-based essential oils in place of moisturizers. "In India, anointing the skin with the right type of oil is a nourishing way to keep your complexion young," says Pratima Raichur, an Ayurvedic physician, chemist, and botanist. For example, smoothing on geranium oilfound in Clarins Lotus Face Treatment Oil ($49; clarins.com)can help to reduce the appearance of fine lines.
In Asia, many women also use oils like DHC Deep Cleansing Oil ($25; dhccare.com) in lieu of face wash. Some Mediterranean women rely on straight olive oil to cleanse at the end of the day. And the trend extends to Middle Eastern women, too: "In Iran, my mother used to cleanse her skin every night with rose water mixed with pomegranate oil," recalls Margo Marrone, a marketing manager for Organic Pharmacy.
There's a good reason oils keep skin fresh. "Soaps and foaming cleansers with sulfates can alter the natural pH of the skin, which eventually will cause dryness and create lines and wrinkles," Raichur explains. "But oils can remove dirt and makeup without stripping the skin."