Oats are a popular breakfast choice all across the world. And why wouldn’t they be - the health benefits of consuming this particular species of cereal grain are plenty! But did you know that besides working as a healthy breakfast staple, there are amazing oatmeal benefits for skin too?
Oatmeal has been used for centuries as a tried and tested home remedy for calming itchy, dry and irritated skin. People suffering from irritated skin were advised to take oatmeal baths to alleviate their discomfort. Now its efficacy and other oatmeal benefits for skin have been proven in a variety of clinical studies.
However, don’t rush towards your kitchen cupboard just yet! The oatmeal you use in skincare is quite different from the one you eat, as it is processed differently. Let’s take a look at the oatmeal used in skincare, as well as the 10 best oatmeal benefits for your skin.
Oats for skin: What are they?
Skin specialists typically recommend the use of colloidal oatmeal for the skin. This type of oatmeal is in the form of finely ground powder. Oatmeal is commonly available in the market, and it is made out of oats, a type of cereal grain popular for its seed. It is made by either grinding, rolling or steel cutting the oat grains.
The reason why colloidal oatmeal is such a popular ingredient in skincare products is due to its finely milled texture. To make colloidal oatmeal, oats grains are finely ground. They are then boiled down at a certain temperature to produce an extract. This extract is loaded with nutrients, antioxidants, minerals and lipids,. All of these go a long way in moisturising, soothing and protecting your skin.
Another main difference between colloidal oatmeal and your typical breakfast oatmeal is that the former is processed with whole bran, which is full of skin-calming actives. These include moisturising beta-glucans, avenanthramides ( a potent antioxidant) and oil replenishing lipids. Without the bran containing these rich active compounds, oatmeal is no good for your skin.
Colloidal oatmeal absorbs more easily into the skin. Moreover, its skin protective and soothing qualities are further enhanced when it is activated with oil or water. This makes it a vital beauty and skincare staple.
Is oatmeal good for skin?
Oatmeal is extremely beneficial for the skin and is remarkably efficacious in treating a variety of skin conditions. Due to its anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties, as well as its intensely moisturising and itch relieving qualities, it is especially recommended for sensitive, eczema-prone skin.
At Poko, we fully recognise the remarkable oatmeal benefits for skin and have incorporated this wonderful ingredient in some of our popular products. Let’s now take a look at oatmeal benefits for skin in detail below.
1. Moisturises skin
Oatmeal is rich in proteins, lipids and vitamins such as vitamin E, which is an amazing antioxidant. All these have rich emollient properties that help deeply moisturise your skin, giving it a healthy, youthful glow. Oatmeal acts as a natural moisturiser, and the beta-glucan it contains penetrates deep into the skin, providing much-needed hydration. It also forms a protective barrier, a layer on your skin that retains moisture by trapping water.
The abundance of beta-glucan content makes it the perfect moisturising agent for glowing skin. No wonder oatmeal is such a popular ingredient in so many moisturisers and serums.
2. Dry and itchy skin reliever
Oatmeal contains potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. These work to alleviate itching associated with irritated, dry skin. Lack of moisture in the upper layers of skin typically causes dry skin. As discussed above, oatmeal for dry skin has powerful emollient properties that make it a great moisturiser.
A recent 2018 study found that colloidal oatmeal cream can alleviate symptoms of dry skin and atopic dermatitis such as dryness, itching and scaling, in children. The researchers observed that oatmeal helps to repair and preserve the skin barrier.
Oat milk too, works wonders for the skin. Just steep some oatmeal into hot water and it turns into rich, creamy oat milk. There are plenty of oat milk skin benefits, as it is a powerful humectant, helping skin retain moisture and tackling all uncomfortable symptoms of dry skin.
So, if you suffer from dry and itchy skin, frequent 15-minute colloidal oatmeal baths can help. You can also use oatmeal containing lotions and moisturisers to give you that soft, supple, and radiant skin.
3. Helps alleviate acne
Acne is a common condition, mostly caused by a build-up of excess oils on the skin. The oil tends to clog up the pores, increasing inflammation and incidence of pimples and painful nodules. The good news is that oatmeal soaks up the excess oil on your face, thereby helping tackle acne effectively. Moreover, oatmeal naturally absorbs the excess oil without over-drying the skin.
Oatmeal is rich in zinc, which is observed in medical research to lessen inflammation and get rid of can-causing bacteria, possibly reducing acne lesions too.
You can easily incorporate oatmeal for skin acne in your daily routine by making a DIY oatmeal scrub. This can help polish your skin gently and remove dead skin cells, reducing the occurrence of future spots and softening skin.
4. Protects skin
Did you know that oatmeal contains flavonoids? If you’re unfamiliar with them, let us explain. Flavonoids are compounds that protect your body from external environmental pollutants, chemicals, and irritants, helping it function more efficiently. They are also known to absorb harmful UVA rays.
Oatmeal is also rich in lubricating fats, which aid in UV protection and help maintain the skin’s natural barrier. However, oatmeal is not enough to protect your skin from the sun on its own and is no substitute for sunscreen.
Besides acting as an effective UVA screen, studies have also shown oatmeal to protect the skin from a common irritant- Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS).
5. Benefits several skin concerns
One of the many oatmeal benefits for skin is that it is well tolerated by all skin types. It has low allergenic potential and is soothing and non-irritating, making it ideal for dry, sensitive, oily and combination skin. Not only that, oatmeal proves amazingly efficacious for alleviating symptoms of skin concerns like eczema and psoriasis.
If you suffer from eczema, you will know the discomforts of itchy and inflamed skin. Eczema prone skin is unable to retain the moisture it needs, causing these uncomfortable symptoms. Oatmeal helps deeply moisturise the skin and its potent anti-inflammatory properties help reduce persistent itchiness. This is the very reason it is highly recommended for eczema-prone skin in both adults and babies.
In a recent study in Iran, 26 patients who received chronic hand eczema treatment with 1% colloidal oatmeal cream had significantly longer-lasting relief symptoms compared to the control group.
The use of oatmeal containing skin products is equally effective for people suffering from psoriasis. Common symptoms of this condition include scaly skin patches, itching and dryness.
Another recent study including 60 females suffering from psoriasis and sensitive skin observed remarkable effects of oatmeal. The participants reported considerable improvements in their symptoms after applying 1% colloidal oatmeal lotion for four weeks. Reduced itchiness and lesser peeling skin were reported.
6. Works as a natural cleanser
When you hear that oatmeal works as an amazing natural cleanser, you may be tempted to get rid of your store-bought one! Oats are rich in compounds called saponins that act as natural, gentle cleansers.
Saponins are full of antioxidants that soothe your skin. Not only that, but they also remove all traces of dirt and oil from your face, leaving your pores squeaky clean. The saponins are non-irritating and don’t strip your skin of its natural oils. Your skin is left hydrated and glowing and washed off all impurities.
Another one of oat milk silk benefits is that it makes a great natural cleanser and toner, alleviating skin concerns ranging from fungal infections to atopic dermatitis. You can apply the milk on your face with a cotton ball after cleansing to get the best results. Alternatively, you can use colloidal oatmeal for mild scrubbing on your face and body to get healthy, glowing skin.
7. Improves your complexion
Don’t we all strive to get a clear, bright complexion? Well, using oatmeal regularly on your skin can help you achieve that!
Oatmeal helps improve skin imperfections, such as skin discolouration, age spots and acne scars. This is all due to its potent antioxidant properties, thanks to the presence of protective phenols such as caffeic and ferulic acids. These protect your skin from harmful environmental irritants and UV damage.
There are also anecdotal claims that oatmeal can help whiten skin. However, there are no medical studies yet that can prove this claim. Still, oatmeal may reduce the appearance of red, blotchy skin by reducing skin irritation.
8. Gently and effectively exfoliates the skin
Exfoliating your skin two to three times a week is the key to maintaining healthy, glowing skin. Oatmeal’s gritty texture makes it an effective scrub, even for sensitive skin types that may be irritated by other exfoliators. Oatmeal helps slough off dead skin cells as well as oil and dirt build-up to reveal glowing, smoother skin. Many people use it as a great natural cleansing and moisturising agent for maintaining healthy, bright skin.
9. Boosts collagen production
Did you that the secret behind plump youthful skin is an abundance of collagen, a protein produced by your body? As you grow older, the collagen production decreases, leading to sagging skin and signs of ageing like fine lines and wrinkles. Regularly using oatmeal in your skincare routine help stimulate it, thereby enhancing collagen production naturally. The end result is supply, firm glowing skin.
10. Helps treat nappy rashes
Nappy rashes are common in infants, caused by wearing wet nappies for long durations. This skin irritation can be a source of great discomfort for your baby. The soothing, skin-calming properties of oatmeal can help alleviate irritation and treat nappy rashes.
Moreover, oatmeal also effectively treats skin irritation and itchiness resulting from chickenpox and poison ivy. Taking regular oatmeal baths can help alleviate symptoms quickly.
Best oatmeal products for skin
Given all the amazing oatmeal benefits for skin, we are huge fans of this natural wonder ingredient and have added it to two of our most popular products. Take a look at them below:
Regenerating Collagen Moisturiser
The Regenerating Collagen Moisturiser is a rich, antioxidant collagen cream that has oatmeal as one of its main ingredients. It helps target skin dullness and dryness, with oatmeal’s potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties effectively fighting the effects of UV damage and uneven skin tone. It also works to lessen signs of ageing like fine lines and wrinkles.
Ultra Hydrating Moisturiser
Poko's Ultra Hydrating Moisturiser helps deeply hydrate your skin. Formulated with oatmeal as well other beneficial natural ingredients like CBD and botanical oils, it hydrates and protects skin from harmful environmental elements. Locking in essential moisture, this moisturiser helps treat fine lines and wrinkles. It does a great job of maintaining a balanced skin microbiome without clogging pores.
Final thoughts: oats for skin
There are several oatmeal benefits for skin. It helps cleanse, exfoliate, moisturise and protect your skin. It can also alleviate symptoms of skin conditions like acne, eczema, and psoriasis. Not only that, but it also helps enhance skin complexion and improve collagen production.
There are a variety of ways you can include it in your skincare routine. You can use oatmeal as an everyday gentle cleanser, in your bath or as a hydrating moisturiser.
Colloidal oatmeal is readily available in health stores. Alternatively, you can buy products containing oatmeal from renowned brands like Poko and get healthy, glowing skin.