Oil Cleansing Method

I’ve had horrible skin most of my life. I was the quintessential “pizza faced” teenager. I thought growing older would mean I wouldn’t have to buy zit cream anymore. But instead, I ended up just having to buy eye wrinkle cream with my zit cream. I’ve been to countless dermatologists, been put on a variety of medications, and have tried countless skin care products. I finally came to accept that I was never going to have nice skin.

Then one day in a conversation, a friend brought up the oil cleansing method. I’d never heard of cleaning your face with oil and the very idea of it sounded crazy to me. But I couldn’t deny that the woman explaining it to me had flawless skin. So I did some looking into it and discovered a ton of rave reviews all over the internet. Since I’d tried everything else, why not this?

For me, the results were nothing short of magical!

The idea here comes from a rule in chemistry that “like dissolves like”. So basically, the oil will dissolve the dirty oil in your pores and on your face but without stripping your skin of its natural moisture. Harsh cleansers can strip your skin of it’s sebum (the protective oils found naturally in your skin) and that can cause your skin to overcompensate, producing too much oil in an attempt to regain balance, and make a mess of things.

Here are the things you will need:

  • A small container to keep the mixed oil in (I use a 3oz travel bottle from Target)
  • Castor oil (cold-pressed, organic is supposed to be the best.) You can usually find this in drugstores in the same aisle as laxatives.
  • Extra virgin olive oil (there are a variety of acceptable oils you can use such as avocado, grape seed, or sunflower seed. But olive oil is very easy to find and seems to work for most people)
  • A wash cloth

You will start by mixing your oils. The nice thing about this method is how you can very easily adjust the mixture to suit your skin’s specific needs. This can also be the frustrating part as it’s often trial and error finding the right mix for you. The castor oil is very drying. Think of that as the “cleansing” part. So if you have dry skin you will want less caster oil and if you have oily skin then you’ll want a little more castor oil. I think for normal skin a good place to start out is filling your container 1/3 with castor oil and then topping it off with your olive oil. If you don’t feel clean after or your skin gets oily again quickly, try adding more castor oil. If your skin feels too tight or dry after, adjust with less castor oil and add more olive oil. I have extremely dry skin so I only fill my container about 1/10 of the way with the castor oil.

Squirt a generous amount of your mixed oil in your hand and rub all over your face. Give yourself a good facial massage, rubbing the oil deeply into all your pores. Don’t worry if you have make up on, this is the best makeup remover you’ll ever use. Once you feel you’ve really worked it in and gotten all the grime off, run your wash cloth in hot water. Then hold the hot, wet cloth against your face for a few moments. The heat will open your pores more and dissolve the oils. Next use the cloth to wipe off the oil, giving it an occasional rinse in the water again. I personally like to finish with a splash of cold water on my face to close the pores but that is not a necessary step.

Many women find that they don’t even need moisturizer after this. With my super dry skin, I do still need just a touch of light moisturizer. You will most likely feel a difference in your skin the very first time you try this. It will be softer than ever before! Some women do have an adjustment period the first week or two when their skin is getting used to this new method and balancing out after the craziness the old cleansers have caused.

I do this every night. It’s actually less time consuming than the morning and night rituals I used to do before with kits like Proactiv. In the morning, you do not need to wash again, but some women like a refreshing splash of water.

I’ll still never have perfect skin (too many years of acne scars) but I now have skin I never thought would be possible for me after decades of visiting dermatologists and way too much money spent on products that didn’t deliver. I wish I had taken a true “before” photo so I could really show the difference. But I had no idea this would be the one thing after a long line of failed products/methods that would transform my skin. So the best I have is a couple snap shots for comparison. I didn’t really keep photos that highlighted how bad my skin was so this before photo is an example of a good day for my skin before using the oil cleansing method.

I hope this works as well for you as it did for me. Please share your experiences with this method as well as any questions.

2 Responses to Oil Cleansing Method

  1. Wow - simple “recipe” - thanks for sharing!

  2. Thanks so much for sharing, your skin looks fantastic! I need to give this a try again.

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