Let’s get this out of the way: Technically, all oils have a liquid consistency. The term “dry oil” refers to the rate at which oil absorbs into the skin, not the texture of the oil itself. So feel free to swap the word “dry” for “lightweight” or “fast-absorbing.”
While heavier “wet” oils take their sweet time penetrating the skin (making them great for those facing dryness or hoping to moisturize overnight), dry oils sink into the dermis super quickly and leave zero greasy residue behind. I typically prefer the latter, since they aptly moisturize my skin without leaving me slick. If you’re one to shy away from body oils in fear of feeling slimy, I suggest you give the dry variety a try–you’ll have just the right amount of shine.
Although, there is no exact classification for what’s considered a “dry oil.” It’s really more of a general consensus among beauty experts who can assess whether or not an oil will absorb quickly. Some of the most notable are avocado, borage, rosehip seed, squalane, evening primrose, sesame, grapeseed, safflower, camelina, and sunflower. Many products opt for a cocktail of both wet and dry oils for maximum benefits–but if it includes a higher concentration of dry oils and absorbs quickly, we’ll classify the entire formula as “dry.”