The Inkey List is an affordable skincare brand that aims to keep ingredients simple so that you can create a skincare routine that is suited to your skin’s needs without needing a degree in cosmetology.
Their packaging is simple and each product gives detailed information about when you should use it in your routine to avoid any confusion.
This is the skincare routine that The Inkey List recommends for those with oily skin.
Salicylic Acid Cleanser
What it does:
Salicylic acid is a brilliant ingredient for oily and combination skin. It helps to control oil, reduce blackheads and breakouts and makes your skin look clear and even.
The Inkey List salicylic acid cleanser is a lightly foaming cleanser that can be used in the morning and evening.
I have found it to be fairly gentle on the skin and has not caused me any irritation or stinging. It leaves my skin feeling good after using – not too oily and not too dry. As a cleanser, it is really easy to use, not getting too bubbly and rinsing away nicely.
What it does:
The routine is continued with hyaluronic acid – a brilliant ingredient for hydrating the skin in a non-greasy way.
HA should be used as the first step after cleansing, as it helps subsequent products to be absorbed into the skin. As well as this, it helps to hydrate and plump the skin.
This is a great hyaluronic acid product, it absorbs really quickly without being sticky.
What it does:
An absolute star for oily skin, I use niacinamide in my routine to help reduce oiliness, redness and blemishes. As soon as I see a spot coming, I pop on some niacinamide and it usually does the trick at making it disappear.
The Inkey List’s niacinamide contains 10% niacinamide and 1% hyaluronic acid that adds a hydrating element that helps to deliver the niacinamide more effectively. It can be used AM and PM.
This product has done a good job of keeping spots at bay. I would say other niacinamide products I have used are more effective at removing the marks left behind by spots, but this one is still good at reducing the oiliness I experience.
Caffeine Eye Cream
What it does:
The caffeine eye cream is a fairly lightweight cream that helps to reduce dark circles, fine lines and puffiness.
As the name suggests, it contains caffeine, which helps to reduce puffiness. It also includes Matrixyl 3000, which can help to reduce fine lines and make skin smoother in the eye area.
As far as eye creams go, this one has a nice texture, sinks in well and doesn’t cause me any irritation or milia around my eyes.
What is does:
This is the moisturising element of the routine. The lightweight multi-biotic helps to rebalance your skin’s pH level, as well as protect against pollution. Your skin’s pH level changes depending on the products you use, so the multi-biotic helps to rebalance the pH level, especially after you’ve used exfoliants.
This has benefits for all skin types, but for oily skin, balancing out the bacteria levels can help to reduce breakouts. Using this product can also help to brighten and even out the skin.
Personally, for me, this product is the one I would switch out of this routine. As a multi-biotic product it smells a bit funny – quite yeasty or like smelly feet – and I just don’t really want my face to smell like that!
If you’re after a rebalancing moisturiser then my number one recommendation would be Pixi’s pHenomenal Gel. It is what I use every time I’ve gone a bit OTT with the retinol. It also doesn’t smell bad at all and is a lightweight gel, perfect for oily and combination skin types.
C-50 Blemish Night Treatment
What it does:
This is a vitamin C and salicylic acid-based treatment that is used at night in place of a moisturiser. It is a lightweight gel consistency that is easy to apply and sits lightly on the face. The C-50 Blemish Night Treatment is meant to help stop spots from developing.
I have a love-hate relationship going on with this product. What it does to my skin seems incredible. Since using it I haven’t had any spots develop at all, it is completely clear, and also my milia have reduced massively. My skin is the smoothest it has been in a long time.
But, I find that after using this my skin feels really tight. It’s not moisturising enough for me and from reading other reviews it seems that some people with non-oily skin find this to be uncomfortable for their skin.
As a night treatment though, it has worked wonders for my skin, but I would only choose to use this once or twice a week to stop my skin from being too dehydrated.
SPF 30 Sunscreen
What it does:
Of course, no skincare routine would be complete without SPF! Even in the winter it is crucial to wear sun cream every day. The Inkey List has their own sunscreen, an SPF 30 with mineral UV filters.
This is definitely a product I would get from elsewhere. I don’t think your SPF ever needs to be from the same brand as the rest of your skincare, and it’s a product that is well worth investing a bit more into.
For me, it doesn’t blend in well, it just sits heavy on the face and pills if you try to rub it in more. It is way too heavy for someone with oily skin and I can just feel it on my face all day.
It is also slightly tinted to avoid white cast, but this means that there are a lot of skin types that this won’t suit as it is the wrong shade.
If you have oily skin, then you could also check out these products from Lush that are perfect for oily skin types:
Other The Inkey List Products for Oily Skin
These are some other products that The Inkey List recommends for people with oily or combination skin, but I have not yet tested these products.
- Glycolic Acid Toner
- Apple Cider Vinegar Acid Peel
- Rosehip Oil
- Beta Hydroxy Acid
My Thoughts on the Full Oily Skin Routine from The Inkey List
All in all, it’s a pretty solid routine – there are a few products I would swap out (multi-biotic and SPF), but the salicylic cleanser and the hyaluronic acid are brilliant. I will continue using the salicylic acid cleanser, hyaluronic acid, niacinamide and C-50 blemish treatment in my regular routine and would buy all of these again.
I would personally not recommend the multi-biotic or SPF as I think there are better versions of these products available for around the same price.
While my skin is a hell of a lot clearer having used these products, one thing I feel I am lacking with this routine is a bit of a glow. Since using these The Inkey List products exclusively for a couple of weeks, my skin is looking a bit dull. I would definitely introduce some vitamin C in the morning in place of niacinamide sometimes, or swap the salicylic acid for glycolic acid once or twice a week.
Have you tried The Inkey List before? Which are your favourite products?
If you want to discover more affordable skincare products, then you can check out my Ultimate Guide to The Ordinary, as The Ordinary is quite a similar brand to The Inkey List.