I have to say, I immediately tried her oil cleansing method after I read her post (except I cheated and used coconut oil until I can buy something better) and although I haven't seen results yet (I've been doing it about a week) I already feel better knowing I'm using natural ingredients on my face.
Read the wise words of Stephanie, and then check out her blog for some thorough entertainment.
I wish I could pinpoint when I started using more natural cleaning products. What I can tell you is that it started with this blog: Crunchy Betty.
(Crunchy (adj): Used to describe persons who have adjusted or altered their lifestyle for environmental reasons)
When it comes to diet, I TRY to eat organically and all that jazz, but I don’t live strictly by that. What I do live strictly by is how and with what I wash my face.
I had been using Proactiv for YEARS to wash my face, and it worked to an extent. I didn’t have any major breakouts—only the occasional blackhead that I could never stop myself from squeezing. I’m a little bit OCD about my face. Still, I’ve never had major problems with acne—which I know makes me rather fortunate in comparison to other people. While I can credit Proactiv for my smooth skin, there came a day when I couldn’t help but feel uneasy upon researching the ingredients.
Ok, yeah. Don’t you want to get rid of the oil?
Not necessarily. Oil moisturizes the skin, which actually prevents wrinkles in the long run. The more dry your skin, the more likely deep wrinkles will form—sometimes by the early age of 30! The oil acts as a protective layer against bacteria and all that crap that causes pimples. AND, by removing ALL the moisturizing oil from your face, you’re training your face to overcompensate during the day by producing extra amounts of oil. Ever wonder why your face is STILL so oily?
Read this excerpt from Maria Roche’s Skin Wellness blog: “The result is an extremely dehydrated skin. When the skin is feeling harmed in any way, it will try to protect itself by secreting more oil and by ‘thickening’ up. One of the consequences of excessive oil production are comedones and acne. Results? An extremely dehydrated, thickened skin that once off Proactiv will break out with that amount of oil production. Not to mention premature aging, because dry skin ages faster, way faster. So pay attention those with ‘adult’ acne.”
So, what? Am I supposed to just let my face be oily?
Absolutely not! Oil does clog your pores. But dry skin is a different sort of demon—one you want to avoid.
So I wash my face with oil.
Ever heard the term “like dissolves like”? Well, essentially, oil dissolves oil—while, at the same time, MOISTURIZING! The oil that accumulates on your face during the day has all kinds of gunk in it—bacteria, dry skin, dirt, really everything and anything. It isn’t the oil that clogs your pores—it’s all THAT crap. Gross. So, by washing your face with oil, you’re just replacing the old oil with new, nourishing oil and protecting your face from bacteria.
So, the kind of oil you use definitely matters. It must be organic, as should most things we buy. But who has the money for that, am I right? Still, when it comes to putting things on your face, make sure it’s organic. I get my oils from Mountain Rose Herbs, and so far, they haven’t disappointed me. Their prices are, for the most part, affordable. I typically spend $12 on a ½ oz. bottle of lavender oil—it lasts a long time!—and $18 on 16 oz. of grapeseed. Castor oil is much cheaper at $8 for 16 oz.
DON’T USE COCONUT OR OLIVE OIL. Honestly, I only say this because everyone in the “crunchy” community says it. I tried coconut oil for a little while on my face. Nothing terrible happened, but the internet screamed at me, and I’m sensitive, so…
Only rarely do you want to wash your face with just one carrier oil (i.e. almond oil, grapeseed, etc.)! Typically, you want to throw in some castor oil, too. Castor oil acts as a counter for your carrier oil, so that your face isn’t TOO moisturized. You’ll be putting oil on your face after all.
So, now that we have our oils, let me break the OCM down to you in three easy steps. It really depends on your skin type for the ratio (click here for specifics), but I’m going to stick to the general:
- Turn the hot water on and have a dry washcloth nearby. Pour about a teaspoon of your carrier oil into your hand and another teaspoon of castor oil. If you have essential oils, like lavender or lemongrass, add two to three drops. I recommend this for so many reasons, but the scent is what makes it!
- Even if you’re wearing makeup, lather your oil concoction all over your face, firmly massaging (but not too hard) for about two (ish) minutes. I usually cheat and do one minute. But the longer you do it, the better! Don’t forget your eyes if you’re wearing any eye makeup. The oil will take it right off. Say goodbye to that chemical, expensive make-up remover!
- Last, wet your washcloth. The water shouldn’t be scolding, but still hot. Set the soaking washcloth on your face, holding for about 15-30 seconds, and then slowly wipe—don’t scrub—off the oil until it’s all gone from your face. For me, I have to hold the washcloth against separate sections of my face (foreheads, chin and cheeks, eyes) and I typically do two 15 second “holds.” Once your skin doesn’t feel oily anymore, you’re done! Pat a towel against your face to dry.
In my next guest post, I’ll talk about natural toners and moisturizers!