AMtoPM facial oils josie maran kahina scentuals argan seabuckthorn marula oil

A newbie’s guide to…facial oils

AMtoPM facial oils josie maran kahina scentuals argan seabuckthorn marula oilOne of my favourite and essential skin care items is facial oil.

My skin is normally combination/oily. But it’s winter and I don’t have the funds to go on a tropical vacation, so my skin is super dry and dehydrated.

Enter facial oil.

about facial oils

Facial oils can be blended – e.g. Fragonard’s VRAI argan oil – or pure, i.e. 100 per cent almond oil or 100 per cent coconut oil.

Oils range in price from ridiculously cheap (compared to most skin care products) and exorbitantly expensive (compared to most skin care products). You can also buy them in many forms.

kahina josie maran scentuals argan oil
Argan oil

I use facial oil year round; argan oil is my oil of choice. In fact, I used argan oil last summer in my warm weather skin regime.

I first used argan oil over four years ago. My first one – Fragonard’s VRAI argan oil for hair and body – was amazing. It got me hooked! If it weren’t so hard to get, I’d be purchasing that thing time and again.

Current lineup: Kahina Giving Beauty, Josie Maran, Scentuals, Nature Republic (not shown). Reviews to come!

The good:

It’s a good lightweight, everyday oil.
It sinks easily into the skin and does a good job of moisturizing.
Good under makeup – no streaks or shine! Generally, it is unscented or lightly scented, but there are argan oils that have a strong, nutty smell.
Argan oil isn’t just good for skin. I’ve used it to nourish my cuticles, ends of my hair and as a scalp treatment.

The bad:

I find argan oil to vary widely depending on the brand. Not only price, but characteristics – such as scent and consistency – vary depending on the company.

Note: Argan oil can vary in price from really affordable to crazy expensive. Look to spend anywhere from $20CDN (Josie Maran in the size pictured) to $100+ for more luxe brands and bigger sizes. Cheaper ones can be found in natural health stores.

seabuckthorn facial oil

sea buckthorn oil

But there are times when my skin needs a more richer oil and a bit more moisture.

Enter sea buckthorn oil.

It’s a bit richer and better for dryer types or those with mature skin.

The good:

Super rich and moisturizing.
Affordable and accessible. This one was $20CDN and found at my local health store.

The bad: 

Its smell can be a bit strong for most people and this oil can stain.

AMtoPM marula facial oil
marula oil

Another oil that works better for mature skin types is Marula oil.

I’ve just started using this oil, so I can’t say much about it just yet. What I can say is that it hasn’t done anything harmful to my skin. Always a plus in my book!

I like that it’s a bit richer than argan oil, which I love, but it’s still pretty lightweight. I find it delivers just a touch more hydration so if you have really dry skin or more mature skin this is an excellent choice.

The good:

It doesn’t cause breakouts and has a pleasant scent – a hint of something citrusy and nutty. It’s quick to absorb into skin and doesn’t leave off any weird residue.

The bad:

Not as easy to find as some of the other oils. The only bottle I could find of Marula oil is the one I own (from Sephora, which retails for $70CDN).

So expensive.

Amazing packaging, though the lid has a tendency to pop open by itself.

AMtoPM coconut oilCoconut oil

Another good oil is coconut oil.

Although it’s not advertised as a facial oil, it can be used as one. The one pictured is perfect for cosmetic use.

The good:

Where do I start?! This oil is cheap and cost-effective. It can be bought anywhere from health stores to your neighbourhood grocery store. In any size, no less. I personally use the unrefined, cold-pressed and organic versions because I also use coconut oil with cooking. If you’re using it topically, I think you can get away with the refined versions.

It’s multipurpose: makeup remover, cleanser, body moisturizer and face moisturizer, among a myriad of other non-cosmetic uses.

As it’s a pure oil, I don’t have to worry about some of the concerns I normally have with skin care. There are no parabens, phthalates, additional colouring, fragrance or harmful chemicals.

It also smells like coconuts and doesn’t irritate my skin.

The bad:

It is big, bulky and not portable.
It also solidifies in temperatures under 25ºC.

Caution: this goes without saying, but just in case: don’t use if you hate coconuts or don’t like the scent of coconuts.

Some people find that coconut oil wreaks havok on their skin. I’m not one of them. Though most of the negative reviews tend to be regarding OCM, use sparingly and do a patch test if you think you might get a negative reaction.


With the exception of coconut oil, I like to put these bottles somewhere dark , or at the very least, not close to any sunlight. They are housed in brown and indigo bottles, but as these are 100 per cent essential oils, I don’t want them to break down quickly. Just an extra precaution!


Do you use facial oil? If so, which ones do you use and how do you use them?
Let us know in the comments below and via social media!

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22 thoughts on “A newbie’s guide to…facial oils

    1. The JM is in such a tiny tube, it’s so easy to tote around everywhere! Let me know if you do try coconut oil. I’d love to hear another perspective. Thanks for stopping by and commenting Sam!

  1. I use a facial oil by The Body Shop and it’s so hydrating, but I’m quite tempted to try coconut oil, I love that you can use it for so many different things! This was a lovely post to read 🙂 xx


    1. Thanks for stopping by and commenting Beth! Which facial oil do you currently use? Definitely try coconut oil when you run out! I find it to be amazing for many things!

    1. Right?! I’ve used at least five brands and they really vary. It’s strange, because they can only really come from Morroccan fields and surely the conditions aren’t too dissimilar. Perhaps it’s the manufacturing process! I will check her out after I deplete the stash – does she sell pure argan oil or a blend?

      1. Hey Jay! Are we talking that Ayurveda oil you tried? I know – I’m glad that we talk about two separate things but theres a bit of an overlap. Learning lots!

      2. Oh. In her case, I think it’s mostly hair, but can be used on the body. Not quite sure it can be used on the face; it might be too rich. Thanks for the recommendation though Jay!

  2. Love this post! I’ve tried josie maran, tarte maracuja, and using a boscia facial oil recently. But sometimes I hate getting my hands oily so I just switched to a cream. I just heard about sea buckthorn oil from this company that i’m working with! Had no idea other products contained this oil too haha. The lotions pretty good so far 🙂

    Raincouver Beauty

    1. Hi Angela! I haven’t tried the Maracuja oil but have heard great things!

      I was considering buying that Sephora sample kit of facial oils, but reconsidered as I have too many right now. Which brand are you using for sea buckthorn oil?

      As far as the oily hands go, I think that’s inevitable. I try to wipe it onto the backs of my hands or on my forearms. But yeah. Unless it’s a dry oil, oily hands are something that comes with the territory.

    1. Hi Brigette! Thanks for stopping by and commenting! I haven’t tried the Maracuja oil and have wanted to for a while. I keep hearing such good things about that. Definitely have wanted to try the ProGenius Oil as well. There are so many that keep popping up, it’s hard to catch up and try them all!

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