Your skin has strong tendencies toward oiliness, wetness, and coolness, much like the oceanic climate. Oceanic climates are typically found along the west coasts of the higher middle latitudes of continents (think the Pacific Northwest in the United States). Cities with oceanic climates; London, England; Dublin, Ireland; Glasgow, Scotland; Melbourne, Australia; Austin, Texas; and Amsterdam, Netherlands. These regions generally feature cool summers and cool, but not cold, winters, with a relatively small annual temperature range and few extremes. Oceanic climates are defined as having a monthly average temperature below 22 °C (72 °F) in the warmest months and above 0 °C (32 °F) in the coldest months. This climate typically lacks a dry season, and rainfall is relatively evenly dispersed throughout the year.
Similarly, your skin tends to be consistently cool (but not cold), oily, and moist throughout the year. Further, like the oceanic climate, which supports abundant forest vegetation and animal life with its consistent rain and moderate temperatures, you are more prone to skin growths, like clogged pores and blackheads, that are caused by excess oil and moisture.
Oceanic type skin has a strong tendency toward oiliness. This type of skin typically maintains a youthful appearance and tends to wrinkle more slowly. The pores are prone to clogging and may be aggravated by thicker creams. In addition, chronic sun exposure may lead to skin discoloration.
Products and Ingredients
Balancing products and ingredients
The Oceanic skin type has strong tendencies towards oiliness and breakouts. Overall, your skin care routine should emphasize making the skin less oily and keeping the pores clean and clear. Your skin care products should all be light and slightly drying to avoid your tendency towards clogged pores.
Grape seed oil - this light and soothing oil is ideal for your skin type, because it provides moisture and nourishing antioxidants and essential fatty acids along with moisture, while not clogging your pores. It can be used in small quantities as a moisturizer or mixed into your regular lotion, and can also be used to remove your makeup at the end of the day.
Astringent toners - toners containing drying ingredients such as witch hazel are beneficial to balancing your oily tendencies. These types of products can be used as the next step after cleansing to promote balance and an acidic pH similar to the pH of your natural skin barrier.
Moisturizer - Even though your skin tends to be oily, it is still important to use a light moisturizer to protect your skin’s barrier. Choose a moisturizer that is light and in the form of a lotion or gel. Always choose oil-free moisturizers to avoid clogged pores.
Salicylic acid - regular use of salicylic acid may be beneficial to your skin type to help reduce clogged pores and oiliness.
Benzoyl peroxide - over-the-counter cleansers containing benzoyl peroxide may be beneficial to your skin type during times of breakouts.
Aggravating products and ingredients
The Oceanic skin type tends to very oily, so oily and heavy products should be avoided entirely. In addition, heavy makeups such as oil-based foundations will very likely lead to clogged pores and pimples. Examples of products and ingredients that should be avoided in your skin type include:
Heavy products and ingredients - petrolatum and shea butter containing products, and heavy creams are examples of products that are too heavy and will increase the chance of developing clogged pores and pimples.
Bathing and Washing
Balancing bathing and washing habits
The Oceanic skin type is oily most of the time and very prone to clogged pores and breakouts, so regular cleansing is important to balance oiliness. Your skin will best benefit from twice daily cleansing with an effective cleanser in order to rid your skin of grime and makeup residues. You may benefit from a facial cleanser containing salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide if you have a tendency towards pimples.
Aggravating bathing and washing habits
Avoid over washing your face, since this can disrupt your skin barrier and lead to irritation and sensitivity. Although you tend to be oily, stripping your skin of too much oil can cause your skin to react with irritation.
Balancing foods and beverages
For the Oceanic skin type, you should aim to eat meals that are well balanced with warming, drying, and light foods. By consuming a diet rich in predominantly whole foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and legumes, you will help balance your skin type and achieve a clear complexion.
Warming and spicy foods: hot cereal (eg. oatmeal), cooked vegetables, garlic, radishes, chilies, raw onions, fenugreek, cayenne pepper, black pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg, paprika, and ginger.
Light foods: apples, raw vegetables, pears, salads, and pomegranates.
Aggravating foods and beverages
Oceanic skin types should avoid very oily and high sugar meals, as this can exacerbate moistness and oiliness of the skin. In addition, sour and salty foods are also best to be limited.
Heavy, oily, and sweet foods: milk (especially skim milk), refined grains such as white breads, fried foods, pastries, candy
Salty foods: soy sauce, tamari, seafood, added salts or high sodium food items
Sour foods: highly-fermented yogurt, tomatoes, vinegar, hard cheeses
Alcohol should be avoided
Activities and Exercise
Balancing activities and exercise
People with the Oceanic skin type should opt for methods of exercise that consist of medium to long sessions of cardiovascular activity with occasional workouts that are high intensity. Since you tend to be very oily, remember to wash off any makeup before exercise and wash your face afterward to prevent clogged pores. If you haven’t discovered the exercise that fits best with your lifestyle, see the following list of activity ideas that balancing for Oceanic skin types:
Yoga - especially Vinyasa or Power VInyasa
Long distance running and sprints
High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) - eg. boot camp style workouts, boxing, circuit training
Cycling, aerobics, dancing, and other invigorating activities
Aggravating activities and exercise
The Oceanic skin type does well with almost all activities, and exercise should be a consistent part of your daily routine. The key is to pay attention to your skin and wash your face and body before and after exercise to avoid clogged pores and breakouts. Activities that are done in the cold or involve high humidity with copious sweating would not pair well with this skin type. Several examples are:
Exercise routines should be discussed with a physician first to ensure that you are fit enough to engage in exercise.
The key to maintaining balance in this skin type is to stay warm and dry. Warm and dry climates, such as desert climates, can help bring the cool and wet tendencies in your skin into balance.
Cold and wet climates, such as the oceanic climate, can throw your skin off balance. Minimizing your exposure to such climates can help avoid increasing further oiliness and blackheads.
Ayurveda is a health system that is from India and is over 5000 years old. The basic concept in Ayurveda is that each person can either be in balance or have imbalances. Everyone has the potential to balance their body and their skin if they can pay attention to their imbalances and their skin’s natural tendencies. Imbalances are described by the Ayurvedic concepts of the doshas which describe three unique physiological building blocks for the body and skin. These doshas are known as vata, pitta, and kapha. Ayurveda is a practical approach to skin care. Learn more about how Ayurveda works and what makes up the doshas.
Imbalances in the doshas
This skin type is associated with an imbalance in the Kapha dosha. Kapha represents structure in the body as seen with collagen and oil production in the skin. Kapha is also made up of the elements earth and water, which represent structure and water in the skin, respectively. Excess water accounts for increased oiliness of the skin.
How are the doshas influenced?
The cool, heavy nature of Kapha is aggravated by anything that is cold, such as cool weather or cold foods as well as heavy foods and lack of physical activity. Warm weather, light, warming foods and exercise help balance Kapha.
What the skin says about the rest of your body
In Ayurveda, organ systems are thought to all be connected and can affect each other. If you feel tired all the time, lack motivation or feel depressed, you may have a Kapha imbalance. Obesity and diabetes are also signs of a Kapha imbalance. Xanthelasmas and acanthosis nigricans are also indicative of high levels of cholesterol and sugar in the body, which are due to Kapha excess.
Kapha excess can occur from foods that are cold, oily, sweet, or salty. Light, warm cooked foods are ideal for balancing Kapha. Learn more about Kapha balancing foods.
Take care of your skin, body, and mind from an Ayurvedic perspective
From an Ayurvedic perspective, imbalances in the doshas, or the physiologic mind-body constitution types, lead to different issues in both mental and physical well-being. The mind-body connection is well recognized in many different healing traditions and is now being recognized more in conventional medicine.
Oil massage with warm sesame oil is very soothing and can help balance Kapha. Kapha imbalance is associated with depression and lack of motivation. Physical activity can help these individuals stay active and prevent them from falling into patterns that don’t always serve them, such as not making a change in routine to help with their health.
Those with the Oceanic skin type have the classic “Type B” personality. They are also relaxed and very down-to-earth. Since they are so patient and kind to others, they are great team players. They also go above and beyond to make sure everyone else on the team is happy.
These individuals are very loyal and forgiving and have strong friendships and relationships. As peacemakers, they seek out what benefits the greater good, sometimes to the point of putting others before them.
When out of balance they can be resistant to change and can struggle with having a
lack of motivation. This can lead to extreme stubbornness, procrastination, and depression in certain cases. It is helpful for these individuals to be aware of how they may need to consciously make an effort to motivate themselves to keep from becoming too complacent in different areas of life.