Super shiny skin got you down? Wondering if you should try blotting paper to soak up the excess oil in your T-zone? In this article, we’ll talk about the pros and cons of blotting paper, so you can decide for yourself if it’s worth adding to your skincare arsenal.
What Does Blotting Paper Do?
First of all, why do people use blotting paper? What does blotting paper do?
Basically, blotting paper soaks up excess oil on your skin, without messing up your makeup.
Blotting papers might be a good choice for you if you’ve ever found yourself wondering:
Why is my skin so oily?
Some of us have naturally oily skin, though, and that’s perfectly ok! For those of us who get a little too glowy for comfort as the day goes on, blotting papers can be a real godsend.
At this point, you might find yourself wondering what materials blotting papers are made of.
Blotting papers are super-absorbent thin sheets of paper, and they can be made from many different materials. The blotting papers you find in the drugstore are typically made from rice paper, wood pulp, and perhaps even cotton.
How to Use Blotting Paper?
Thankfully, blotting paper is pretty easy to use:
Grab a sheet of it, pat it on the area of skin that’s a little too shiny for your taste, and voila! Matte skin, instantly. Almost like magic.
But if you’re a savvy skincare consumer (and we know you are!)…you’re probably wondering if there are drawbacks to using blotting paper.
Drawbacks to Using Blotting Papers
So the big question:
Is oil blotting paper bad?
As much as we love the idea of being able to soak up that excess oil for a fresher midday look, it’s worth noting that there can be some drawbacks to using blotting paper.
Depending on the material the blotting paper is created from, you might end up removing too much oil from your skin. And because we do need some oil to remain on our skin to keep our skin barrier healthy and intact, removing all of it can signal to your epidermis to start producing more.
Not exactly the effect we’re going for.
It’s worth pointing out, too, that the blotting paper commonly found at drugstores can sometimes have an astringent effect, which can irritate your skin. This can also lead to your skin producing more oil as a response to inflammation.
That being said, there are lots of options for blotting papers which should be safe enough and gentle for your skin. We’ll take a look at that below.
What Should I Look For in a Blotting Paper?
Have you ever asked yourself: Should I use blotting paper?
If so, and your answer to that question is yes, we’d recommend looking for brands that include the following:
Ingredients That Attack Oil
The blotting papers you grew up using were basically nothing more than thin, absorbent paper. Luckily, blotting papers have evolved to include ingredients like willow bark, charcoal, and abaca tree fiber - ingredients that can help gently rmove oil from the skin. Dermatologist often prefer blotting papers made with rice, cotton, willow bark, and flaxseed. These may be good options for you if you have very oily or acne-prone skin.
In addition to soaking up excess oil, blotting papers that have been coated in powder can create an instant mattifying effect - your complexion (and makeup!) will thank you.
Blotting Paper Alternatives
If you find yourself in a pinch without your blotting papers, don’t fret! While we would recommend purchasing a blotting paper that contains oil-fighting ingredients and paper coated with mattifying powder, these alternatives below are good substitutes if you find yourself with an oil-slick situation and no blotting papers in sight.
- Coffee paper filters
- Toilet seat covers
- Toilet paper
- Tissue paper
- Hemp paper
If you’ve made it this far, you may be wondering if there’s a better solution to your excess oil situation than soaking it up with thin papers. Blotting papers are good in a pinch and require less work up-front, but it may be worth trying to find the root cause of your oily skin issues.
First of all, you might just have naturally oily skin. And there’s nothing wrong with that! In fact, those of you with oily skin may have a leg up on your dry skin counterparts when it comes to your anti-aging routine.
But sometimes, our skin can overproduce oil as a result of an out-of-whack skincare routine. For example, you may be using cleansers that are for you skin, which can strip them of oil and lead to a damaged and weakened skin barrier. This can cause inflammation, increased oil production, and acne.