When I heard this term for the first time, I thought it was pretty odd. Intuitively I would think that the words oil and cleansing should not fit in the same sentence together.
Plain and simple, you wash your face with oil.
I didn’t understand the concept at first, but the more I looked into it the more it made sense to me. We’ve already established that I’m up game for trying weird things (hello raw garlic), so this wasn’t really that far out of my comfort zone. Here’s an excerpt from this website that succinctly explains what you need to know about the Oil Cleansing Method (OCM).
“The basic concept of this skin care and cleansing method is that the oil used to massage your skin will dissolve the oil that has hardened with impurities and found itself stuck in your pores. The steam will open your pores, allowing the oil to be easily removed. Should you need it, the smallest drop of the same oil formula patted over damp skin will provide the necessary lubrication to keep your skin from over-compensating in oil production.”
So oil dissolves oil. This makes sense to me. For a really good post that explains the ‘how-to’ of oil cleansing and what oils might be best for your skin type, head over to this blog. Below is a mini overview.
What do you need?
- Castor Oil
- a carrier oil (such as jojoba, sweet almond, grape seed, avocado, sunflower seed, etc. Personally I use Sweet Almond Oil)
- small bottle or dropper to put the oils in (I just sterilized an old oregano oil dropper)
- wash cloth
What’s the ratio?
- Oily skin: 2/3 castor oil to 1/3 carrier oil.
- Normal skin: equal parts castor oil and carrier oil.
- Dry skin: 1/3 castor oil and 2/3 carrier oil.
What do you do?
- Mix your oils ahead of time, and put into your dropper. Keep this under your sink in a cool dark place and you have your ‘face wash’ ready to go at any time.
- Put a small amount of your oil mixture into the palm of your hand and then massage into your face in circular motions. Have a goal of doing this for about two minutes.
- Next soak a wash cloth in hot water. Let the washcloth steam your face and slowly wipe off the oil, rinsing the washcloth under the water as many times as needed.
- Pat face dry. Your face will feel so soft and clean, and if you need a bit of extra moisture, feel free to dab a bit of the carrier oil back onto your face and just leave it! (I use sweet almond oil in my mixture but then use Jojoba oil as a moisturizer as it is easily absorbed by the skin).
1) Use beige or brown washcloths. The dirt and oils that come off your face is significant and your washcloths won’t stain as easily.
2) Use hexane-free, food grade, and 100% pure castor oil. There are good and bad types of castor oil out there. Be mindful about your source. Many varieties of castor oils are derived from castor seeds that have been very heavily and chemically processed, deodorized, and the oil itself may have been contaminated through the treatment.
3) As always, be mindful when trying something new. This method makes sense to me and has worked very well with my skin. I’ve been doing this for about 6 months with no complaints. However not all people will enjoy this method or find it beneficial. Keep an eye out for any unexpected reactions and by all means stop right away if for some reason you have issues with it.
4) Enjoy the benefits of never having to buy moisturizer or face wash again!