If you have spent hundreds or even thousands of dollars trying out facial products only to still have problem skin, you may kick yourself after reading this. The truth is, most commercial facial cleansers are extremely over-priced, they don’t work, or they contain agents that are not beneficial to the skin. Skin is the body’s largest organ. Skin provides a barrier to protect muscle, tissue, and internal organs. However, most people view skin as the body’s most important feature. Healthy skin is reminiscent of skin that is clean, clear, and glowing. This is why people go through extremes to maintain beautiful, healthy skin. Nonetheless, although it is the total opposite of common knowledge, oils are the key to the clear and beautiful skin.
HOW IT WORKS
Oil has often been correlated to acne. However, contrary to common misconception, oil does not cause acne. Bacteria and dirt is the root of most acne. This is especially true for cystic acne. Cystic acne is the most painful and difficult acne to remedy. Large puss filled cysts are the most telling signs of cystic acne. Moreover, the puss filled cysts are a sign of an underlying infection in the skin. Oil cleansing is beneficial for cystic acne in the sense that it draws out impurities, bacteria and toxins resulting in cyst reduction.
The scientific principle in the oil cleansing method is simple: Oil dissolves oil. Oil is a non-polar substance; therefore using another non-polar substance that has similar components cancels out pre-existing oil. The pre-existing oil on the skin is removed and replaced with healthy oils. It may seem a bit strange, but oil cleansing is not only natural but the oils used are beneficial for the skin. Unlike commercial facial cleansers that fail to add moisture, oil cleansing maintains a healthy balance of moisture and nutrients without overloading the skin. Water based commercial facial cleansers that contain no oil strip the skin, leaving a dry and tight feeling. In short, those with either oily or dry skin should not fear oil cleansing as the proper mixture ensures beneficial results.
Although oil cleansing is a pliable general skin cleansing mechanism and acne remedy, slathering on any oil to the skin is counterproductive. There are specific oils to use to ensure that the skin cleansing method is more helpful than harmful.
All skin is not created equal. Just like other parts of the body, skin varies from person to person. One person may have oily skin while another may have dry or combination skin. Regardless of your skin type or texture, different oils affect the skin in different ways hence the need to use the appropriate oil for a specific type of skin.
Just like skin, oil cleansing is not a once size fits all concept. The same oil will not produce the same results for every skin type. Using the oil best suited for your skin type is essential. The most frequent used oils in oil cleansing include castor oil, jojoba oil, olive oil, grape seed oil, tea tree oil, emu oil and sunflower seed oil. Castor oil is a base oil and is the foundation for all oil cleansing methods and ratios. Castor oil removes toxins and impurities from the skin. Oil cleansing is not effective without castor oil. Since castor oil is extremely powerful and concentrated, you must use another carrier oil like olive oil, jojoba oil, emu oil, or grape seed oil. Carrier oils are important because while castor oil is removing impurities and toxins, carrier oils are responsible for infusing beneficial agents back into the skin.
Olive oil is best suited for dry skin due to its moisturizing properties. Grape seed oil is similar to olive oil for its moisturizing benefits, but grape seed oil is extremely lightweight and doubles as a natural astringent. Emu oil increases blood flow and absorption while tea tree oil, an essential oil, has antiseptic properties. Sunflower seed oil and jojoba oil are moisturizing and balancing oils and are ideal for almost any skin type, however, oily skin benefits from these oils. Only you can determine which oil is best suited for your skin. Finding the right oil for your skin type takes trial and error.
Oil ratio is somewhat of a tricky subject as there is not a one size fits all approach when combining oils. Finding the perfect ratio takes a bit of preliminary trial and error, but it is best to start with tried ratios before experimenting with your own ratios. For dry skin, oil ratios start with 10% castor oil mixed with 90% carrier oil like olive oil, sunflower seed oil, or grape seed oil. For oily skin, a combination of 30% castor oil is mixed with 70% of virtually any carrier oil. Normal and combination skin should use a combination of 20% castor oil and 80% of any carrier oil. These are the most typical oil ratios for dry, oily, combination, and normal skin. These ratios may or may not work for you, therefore, try them out and tailor the ratios to suit your skin’s needs.
Mixing the oils together is as simple as taking a clean bottle and mixing your oil ratios together. Be sure to not shake the bottle, but gently invert the bottle until the oils are thoroughly mixed. Do not shake the bottle to mix. Shaking the bottle adds oxygen bubbles into your oil mixture.
HOW TO APPLY
Now that you have your ratio perfected and oil mixture, you are ready to apply the oil to your skin. There is no need to cleanse the skin before applying the oil as the oil will do all the cleansing for you. Take a liberal amount of your oil mixture and apply it to dry skin. You can use your fingers or a clean cotton ball to apply the oil. Use circular motions, applying the oil to the skin for a period no less than two to three minutes. Next, take a hot, damp towel and apply it to your face until the towel cools down. The steam from the hot towel opens the pores to release trapped dirt and oil. After the towel has cooled, place the towel in a basin of hot water. Remove excess water so that the towel is damp. Take the hot damp towel and wipe the face clean of any remaining oil. Since the pores are open from using heat and steam, you now need to close the pores. To close the pores, take cool water or a cool damp towel and gently pat the face. You can now apply any skin products or continue with your skin regimen.
WORDS OF CAUTION
Although the oil cleansing method cleanses the skin, you must remove all the oil from the skin after performing the method. Leaving the oil on the skin increases the risk of acquiring clogged pores, black heads, and white heads.
If you live in a hot or tropical climate you may want to completely cut out or reduce your oil cleansing frequency. Due to the changes in weather, especially when transitioning from the cooler months to humid temperatures, the skin is more susceptible to clogged pores and blackheads. Monitor your skin and see if you notice any changes through the seasons. Monitoring your skin is the best way to adjust your routine.
The oil cleansing method is subjective. Some people may like it while others may not. If you experience any irritation during or after performing the oil cleansing method, stop using the oil cleansing method or cut down on frequent usage. If you have any questions or concerns, consult with a dermatologist before using the oil cleansing method.