Oil Cleansing: What It Is & Why You Should Try It

Let’s talk about your face (and mine), shall we? Hopefully, we’re all in agreement that face-washing is mandatory. If you aren’t washing your face every night, you need to start. NOW. I’ll wait…. We’re good? Okay. I’ll continue with more about oil cleansing.

Oil Cleansing: What It Is & Why You Should Try It

When most people think about washing their face, they automatically assume that they need a potion with lots of chemicals from the drug store or Sephora (Which I dearly love, and has tons of great products…including pre-mixed cleansing oils.) to get the job done well. But that’s simply not true. My tried-and-true face wash? Oil.

No, you’re not reading that wrong. I use oil to cleanse my face. Especially when I wear makeup.

Oil Cleansing: What It Is & Why You Should Try It

Grab Some Castor Oil (No, Really.)

I know you’re wondering why in the world would I put MORE oil onto my face…well…

You’ve heard that like attracts like, and oil cleansing works on the same principle. You want to get rid of the gunk, and oil will do that for you. You may be saying “well, my skin is oilynext post.” If this is you, hold on!

Oil cleansing can work regardless of whether you classify your skin as oily, dry, combination, normal. Your skin type is not nearly as important as the blend of oils that you choose. More on that in a minute. Seriously, y’all. My face has never felt as squeaky clean as when I use oil cleansing!

 Oil Cleansing: What It Is & Why You Should Try It - Step by step guide

How Does Oil Cleansing WORK?

Oil cleansing works on the theory that your face secretes oil, all day, every day. Even if you have dry, scaly skin, there is oil in there somewhere.

When you use chemicals (a.k.a. standard face washes and soaps), your skin overreacts and it’s natural oil production goes all out of whack.

Oil cleansing doesn’t strip your skin, but rather, removes the gunk and moisturizes at the same time. As an additional bonus, oil is an amazing makeup remover.

Oil Cleansing: What It Is & Why You Should Try It

What Oils Should I Use?

With oil cleansing, skin type is important, but not nearly as important as you might think. There is one base that everyone should try: Castor oil.

Castor oil has antibacterial properties, which helps it clear up break outs and prevent future face issues, and it can also be somewhat drying. For some skin types (especially those of you with really sensitive or dry skin like mine), you may want to add in additional oils to help combat this effect.

Some great additions to castor oil are:

You’ll notice that coconut oil didn’t make the list. There’s good reason for that. I break out when I put it on my face. That’s right. I look like a teenager. It sucks. This is because coconut oil can be comedogenic, meaning it can clog your pores. I suggest that you use this list of comedogenic ratings when choosing which oils you choose to cleanse your face.

So…How Do I Oil Cleanse My Face?

I’m so glad you asked! If you’re like me, this will take a bit of experimentation. I found that just castor oil was far too drying for me, and that the addition of a little bit of grapeseed and avocado really helped my skin be nice and smooth. You don’t need much oil. At all. Think less than a tablespoon.

Right now, I’m using about 2 teaspoons castor oil with 1/2 teaspoon avocado and 1/2 teaspoon grapeseed. I also add a few drops (3-4) of Frankincense or Melissa to help with clarifying and repairing my skin.

I’m at the point that I can pre-mix a larger batch, but for the first month or so, I just measured before I cleansed.

I recommend that you do this until you find the right combination of cleansing oils for your skin. I know some people do really well with pure castor oil, and others (like me) prefer a blend. You’ll need to experiment and see what works for you and your face (remember, we’re all different and that’s beautiful!). Oil Cleansing: What It Is & Why You Should Try It

Let’s Wash Our Faces!

Here’s what you’re gonna do:

  1. Turn your faucet on HOT.
  2. Grab a CLEAN washcloth.
  3. Check the temp of your water. You want it as hot as you can stand without burning yourself.
  4. Pull your hair back into a ponytail or bun, or slap a headband on. No one wants greasy hair.
  5. Prepare your oils. Measure out just what you’re going to use, or grab your pre-mix if you’re confident.
  6. Rinse your face with the hot running water. Just a few splashes.
  7. Apply your oil. Massage your face in gentle, upward strokes for 2-3 minutes. When you first start, set a timer.
  8. Allow the oil to sit on our face for about a minute more while you prepare to “rinse”.
  9. Wet your washcloth with the hot water.
  10. Press the washcloth to your face for about 15-20 seconds, and wipe the oil off.
  11. Repeat until all the oil has been removed from your face.

I do not recommend that you use the same washcloth twice. You may also want to start washing your towels and washcloths in vinegar and baking soda to help strip the oil.

You CAN use the Oil Cleansing Method every day. I only use this when I wear makeup, which is 2-3 times a week. The rest of the time I’m happy with just using plain old honey.

It won’t hurt to cleanse more than this, but you may want to increase the ration of moisturizing oils (like avocado) so that you don’t over dry your skin.

Know that you may hate it at first. I know I did. It felt WIERD and WRONG.

But now I look forward to it (I’m actually excited to go cleanse my face RIGHT NOW!). So give it a good month to help yourself get used to this weird new thing…your skin will thank you!

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