I discovered oil cleansing by accident many years ago. It was the 1990’s and I was using sesame and almond oil as a moisturizer. My friends thought this was crazy and told me that my skin would break out. I did it anyway. I argued that the skin produces sebum to moisturize and protect itself and oils naturally mimic the structure of sebum. I also knew that drier skin breaks down faster and was prone to fine lines, so nutrient-rich plant oils fit into my skincare practice perfectly.
Over the years I noticed that tap water dries the skin and I stopped cleansing my face with high-foaming cleansers. I would cleanse my face with a damp, wrung out, warm washcloth only. This approach felt fresh and really worked for my sensitive skin.
One day when I was applying my sesame & vitamin e oil moisturizer on my face, I remember slathering a bit too much on, so I wiped it all off with a cloth. To my surprise, I immediately noticed how soft and clean my skin felt. I didn’t use a wet washcloth, I used a dry one, and it was just the oil. My skin felt clean and I wasn’t using water at all.
Like attracts like. Oil applied to the skin has the ability to attach to unwanted, imbalanced sebum and draw dirt and impurities with it.
Keep in mind there is no singular, right way to cleanse the skin. Cleansing differs for each person and varies by season. Oil Cleansing or Dry Oil Cleansing works for everyone differently.
Without the water on the washcloth, the cleansing oil attaches to the imbalanced oil in the pores, gathers dirt, impurities, and makeup on the surface of the skin. The oil pulls the imbalanced oil with the dirt and debris off the skin effortlessly, leaving clean, moisturized skin without disturbing the skin’s natural oil balance. Of course, a wet washcloth always feels refreshing, and that's wonderful if you prefer. Less water contact and water rinsing will always retain more hydration in the skin. Retaining hydration in the skin offsets skin decline.
Pores don’t open and close, there are no muscles, they are just small openings in the skin. Steaming your face beforehand can help loosen imbalanced sebum and clogged pores, but not because the pore is “opening.” It’s balanced oil that will draw out the unwanted oil and dirt, regardless of steaming or the use of a hot washcloth.
The right oil for your skin won’t need any help effectively pulling the imbalanced dirt and oil from the skin. If you are steaming to loosen clogged pores, after steaming, pat the face dry then oil cleanse on a dry face.
Here's my Dry Oil Cleansing Method:
- Massage Herbal Infusion Oil onto skin well - this loosens skin surface tension and the friction helps dissolve imbalance oil.
- Next, use a dry washcloth and gently wipe all around the face and neck for effective removal and cleanse. Perform a second cleanse if you removed makeup.