A few years ago, if you told me to treat my skin with the oil cleansing method I would have laughed in your face!
Oils?! On my skin?! No. Way.
I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who would react like that! However, I’m now a changed woman and a total advocate for the use of oils in skincare. In fact. It’s pretty much all I use on my skin!
When we were teens we grew up with the idea that oil was the cause of our bad skin and doctors would throw anything from anti-bacterial face washes and benzoyl peroxide creams to gut-wrecking antibiotics and contraceptive pills at us in an attempt to dry our faces up and cure our acne. However, for most of us, this method didn’t work. In fact – it made our skin a hell of a lot worse! Commercial products and prescription pills that are designed to “reduce oiliness” and “cure acne” work by stripping your skin of all it’s natural oils – the same oils that protect our skin and keep it balanced!
When these natural oils are removed, our skin begins to overcompensate by producing more and more oil. This is the same thing that happens when you wash your hair too often. Your hair gets greasier and greasier, and pretty soon, you can’t go a single day without washing it. Starting to sound all too familiar? Don’t worry, we’ve all been there!
Oil cleansing method for acne prone skin
When it comes to acne our own natural oils can sometimes be the cause of those pesky breakouts. When we produce too much sticky sebum, dirt, grime and dead skin cells can get trapped in our pores and cause inflammation – a.k.a acne. This is not an excuse to strip away all the sebum! Acne is generally the symptom of an internal problem with digestion or hormones, usually a bit of both which cause an overproduction of sebum which can lead to acne so my advice is always look at your diet if you’re suffering from persistent acne. But you can help your skin from the outside too. you just need to remember to work with your sebum levels, not against it!
The trick? Add organic, cold-pressed oils to your skincare routine everyday and you’ll be replacing the sticky, acne-causing sebum with clean, healthy oils which will nourish and protect your skin. These cold-pressed oils, when used properly during the cleansing method, will also push out dirt and grime from deep down in the pores where water and soap can’t reach making it excellent for dissolving blackheads and clearing congested skin.
What oil to use?
If you google Oil Cleansing Method into Google then you won’t be short of blog posts and advice on which oils to use for cleansing. After a quick scout around the world wide web it appears that Coconut or Olive oil blended with Castor oil are the most popular choices. Now, if you’re reading this then I’m assuming you’re looking for ideas and inspiration to clear your acne or improve your skin, in which case, I don’t think any of these oils are suitable for you to use if your starting out on the OCM! Coconut and Olive oil can cause problems for acne prone skin and led to congestion while Castor oil can be too drying and irritating for acne-sensitive skin types. The reason coconut oil works for some people and not others is because it contains a fatty acid called caprylic triglyceride, which can be a major acne trigger for certain people. Luckily, this fatty acid is unique to coconut and palm oils so check your labels and avoid these where possible. As with everything, some people may find coconut oil is amazing on their skin, and others not so much. The only way you can know for sure is to try it yourself. I personally can tolerate coconut in small amounts and if it’s washed off, but too much causes breakouts so I avoid it in all my make-up products, moisturisers and anything that sit on my skin for prolonged periods of time.
My favourite oil to use for the Oil Cleansing Method is Hemp Seed oil. It has a comedogenic rating of 0 which means it is non pore clogging and is safe to use on acne prone skin. I’ve been using Hemp Seed oil for nearly a year now and despite trying other carrier oils, I’ve always gone back to Hemp Seed! However, you’re not all going to have the exact same skin type as me – so you may find other base oils work better for you! Other base oils which are great for acne-prone skin and have a low comedogenic rating are Jojoba, Grapeseed, Rosehip and Evening Primrose oil – so you may want to give these a try but these oils tend to be more expensive and to be honest, I prefer these special oils and use them as a facial oil and stick to affordable, effective Hemp Seed oil for cleansing!
- Dispense a dollop of organic cold-pressed oil to the palm of your hands and slowly rub it all over your dry face for 1-2 minutes. Give your face a lovely massage and work the oil into your skin. (There’s no need to remove your make-up prior to this, see below about double cleansing) Check out this post for some tips for giving yourself a facial massage
- After your face is drenched in oil, soak a face cloth in hot water, wring out the excess water and place it over your face for 30 seconds or so, allowing the steam to help the oil sink deeper into the pores.
- After 30 seconds, gently wipe away the oil from your face using the cloth. Soak the cloth in hot water again and wipe again until you’ve removed all the oil. The cloth will also gently exfoliate the skin without the need for harsh scrubs.
If you give the Oil Cleansing Method a go I’m positive you will start to see results in a couple of week. Don’t be put off if you have a small breakout during the first few days though! Depending on your skin type, some people go through a detox phase where the skin purges lots of gunk. This is good! You know that old saying? Better out that in!
Double oil cleansing for acne prone skin
I like to double cleanse in the evenings to ensure that all the day’s grime and make-up is completely removed from my skin. This ensures my skin is clean and fresh and ready for some quality repair time while I sleep! Did you know research has actually shown that skin cell regeneration almost doubles at night, peaking between the hours of 11pm and 4am? They don’t call it beauty sleep for nothing! Double oil cleansing simply means doing the process twice. Once to remove make-up and surface grime from the skin and the second time to work as a deep pore cleanser.
Have you tried the Oil Cleansing Method before? What was your experience with it and what cleansing oil did you find worked best for you and your skin type? If oil cleansing isn’t your thing, then you can checkout my top cleansers for acne here.
Peace, Love & Clear Skin