Oil Cleansing – Your Questions Answered!!

on March 25 | in Natural Remedies | by | with 42 Comments

Oil Cleansing: Your Questions Answered!
 Note From Mommypotamus: Today’s post comes from Jennifer Nervo of 20 Something Allergies And Counting . . . Down. Her wildly popular guest post on oil cleansing has sparked quite a few questions, which she has graciously agreed to stop by and answer today. Thank you, Jennifer!

So, you’ve read through . . .

The Oil Cleansing Method: A How-To Guide for Clear, Radiant Skin and still have questions or you’ve been valiantly trying it for a number of weeks and look like a science experiment.

Ruh roh.

As you can see by the number of comments, the original post has become a beacon for those looking for more info on OCM.

Let me start out by saying that I am not trained as an aesthetician, nor am I an oil cleansing expert. Most of the information I share was either learned through trial and error or internet research.

My training is actually in nutritional therapy, but the Mommypotamus has graciously extended an invitation for me to come visit again to try and help answer some of your questions.

Shall we get started?

What is an astringent oil?

Astringent oils are drying to the skin. They are good for combination and oily skin and can be beneficial in small amounts for dry skin. They will often shrink the appearance of pores and loose skin by temporarily constricting the epidermis.

Note: Your skin is not automatically oily if you have acne. It may be temporarily overproducing oil as a result of your diet and skin care routine and will likely change over time and with the seasons.

Examples: Hazelnut, castor, borage, grapeseed

What is a conditioning oil?

Conditioning oils are nourishing to the skin and provide moisture and beneficial nutrients. They are good for all skin types and especially good for dry, aging, and dull skin.

Examples: Almond, avocado, hemp seed, olive oil

How often should I oil cleanse?

General recommendation is once a day to 3-4 times a week depending on skin type. I try to do it once a day but increased to 3 times daily when I had a cold a few months ago. The massage and steam were†amazing for my sinus congestion.

oil cleansing faq

Troubleshooting

What if I have acne and dry skin?

Use an oil mixture that falls somewhere between normal and dry skin and adjust as necessary. Wait 3-4 days between new formulas to give your skin time to adjust to the changes and†to avoid damaging your skin with too much tinkering.

Acne should be addressed separately from dry skin. See recommendations in the next question.

What if my skin continues to break out? I have been using OCM for 2-4 weeks and my face is still not clear?

It ís probably going to take 2-4 weeks for your skin to detoxify and find its balance.

During that time -

  • Do not cleanse your face more than twice a day.
  • Do not change oil formulas more than once every 3-4 days, unless you are having an adverse reaction like rash or allergy, to allow your skin to adjust to the oil mixture.
  • Change your pillowcase every night for the first week and keep your hair off your face at night to see if it helps.
  • Don’t touch your face throughout the day†with dirty hands.
  • Consider using antibacterial essential oils like lavender or tea tree to help control bacterial imbalances
  • Consider using†toners like witch hazel or apple cider vinegar up to 3 times a day to kill bacteria and remove dirt and pollutants; use toner†5-10 minutes before OCM†instead of after to avoid removing the protective oils

The oil cleansing method will not address acne on its own. Unless your skin is reacting exclusively to your personal care products, it must be addressed by diet. Read Mommypotamus’ fantastic post on acne to help get you started.

What are these little white bumps all over my face?

I have been stumped by a few readers that have claimed that using OCM has caused their skin to break out with little hard white bumps.

After much research, my best guess is that these are often milia – little nodules of protein, likely skin cells, that are trapped under the skin -.†With my background in nutritional therapy, this tells me that there are nutrient imbalances and dysfunction within the body that need to be addressed.

I have read scary information that it is caused by malformed oil glands and needs to be physically removed by a doctor or yourself by poking a sterilized needle into the middle of the bump and squeezing it out.†I urge you not to do either unless the nutritional changes and following methods do not improve your condition.

They won’t peel your face off or anything life-threatening, but your skin will things these stab and squeeze sessions are pretty traumatic.

Things to try:

Change your oil cleansing oils. You may be reacting to one that is too harsh or is the wrong oil for your skin. It may be a pain, but it’s really worth the switch if you’re causing more damage to your kisser.

All-natural at home microdermabrasion one word – love

Clay mask – start with a pure clay like green clay or bentonite, mix into a paste with filtered water, spread a thin layer over skin and let dry 15-20 minutes. Rinse thoroughly and follow up with an all-natural moisturizing oil or balm.

Still Stumped?

There is a wealth of data, anecdotes, and experiences from others who have successfully and not so successfully journeyed along the path to Crunchyville with the oil cleansing method.

If you are looking for more information than is covered in the original post/video/comments or in this post, I would suggest consulting Ye Old Keeper of Knowledge, the almighty Google for more information.

If you are truly flummoxed after doing your due diligence with self research, feel free to leave a comment here and we’ll try to help you out as quickly as we can.


About The Author

Jennifer Nervo is a real food and nutritional therapy blogger, homeschooling mama, and research fanatic.

On a typical day, you can find her brewing up potions, lotions, and concoctions while learning to practice sustainability with her 4 year old daughter and very tolerant husband. She loves the ancient practices that comes with traditional foods and medicines but is also very fond of her modern conveniences.

Jennifer blogs over at 20 something allergies and counting down about a range of topics mainly focused on healing food allergies and other chronic illnesses, eating an allergen- and grain-free diet, and teaching about rotation diets for optimal healing.

Want more organic beauty tips and recipes?

diy-beauty-ebook-cover-231x300

Check out my’ latest e-book: DIY Organic Beauty Recipes

In this 180 page guide, you’ll learn how ridiculously easy it is to make your own shampoo, conditioner, lotion, tooth whitener, body balm, soap, baby products and more.

Click here to read more and download a preview.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only ever endorse products that are in alignment with Mommypotamus' ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers.
 

related posts

42 Responses to Oil Cleansing – Your Questions Answered!!

  1. Sarah P. says:

    Does anyone else struggle to get the oil smell out of your washcloths? I’ve washed mine multiple times and have even boiled them, but they still smell of nearly rancid oil. Any suggestions?

    • Rene says:

      You could try washing them in hot water and ad some vinegar or ammonia to get the smell out . Mine did that at first so now after I wash my face, I always put some soap, from my handsoap dispenser, on it and wash it out in the sink. Then I put it in the laundry.

  2. Katie says:

    If you have Milia problems this is what I do to get rid of them. I use a natural face scrub with shells. I have also made a sugar scrub with olive oil in it. I scrub scrub scrub with it, rinse off with warm water. Then take a cotton ball and squirt witch hazel on it and rub over the area’s with Milia. After about a month it will be gone. My sister in law is a Esthetician and she taught me this trick. The best part is that I don’t get any scars from this. Good luck ladies!

  3. Sussana says:

    Hi. I started OCM after reading the original post, back in December. After a couple of weeks, my oil production was controlled (and I had super oily skin), but I broke out so much that I continued to read about this method to find out what I was doing wrong. I learned that, since I have acne prone skin, I shouldn’t use Olive Oil because it makes some people break out more. So now I clean with Castor Oil and Avocado oil 2:1 ratio, and pimples started to disappear. I also use an apple cider vinegar toner, specially after wearing makeup, and straight cider vinegar over any new pimple. In the morning I wash my face with raw honey, I use Tamanu and Jokoba oil as an moisturizer, and only use OCM at night. Since my face is no longer oily, I just bloat it during the day, and sometimes apply Arrowroot powder if I’m going out. I use a french green clay powder + green tea mask once a week, and stay away from coconut and olive oil (on my face) because it can clog your pores. Hope this helps someone, I think you just have to keep experimenting to see what works for you. I’m in love with OCM!!! No more oily, shinny face for me!!!

  4. kimberly says:

    I’ve had horrible skin since my teens, until five years ago when I started using the OCM. SUCH a difference. I actually get compliments on my skin now!!!

  5. Lindsey says:

    I have a lotion recipe I use made with mostly almond oil and some coconut oil. What types of oils are these? Astringent?

    Is it okay to use just olive oil for dry skin? That and almond oil are all I have on hand right now.

  6. I love all of the suggest stories and helpful suggestions! Keep them coming everyone!!

  7. danielle says:

    thanks so much for sharing this! im 25 and desperate to get rid of my acne…can’t stand how it makes me look like a teenager and i hate covering it up with makeup because it feels like im suffocating my skin and making it worse!! Anyways…everything i find for borage seed oil on google sells in a capsule… or is steam distilled…is there a brand you recommend?

  8. Mali Korsten says:

    Great article – thanks! My skin seems to respond best to pure olive oil. I especially love oil cleansing for taking off make-up. So much more effective than commercial products, and doesn’t burn my eyes!

  9. I have been using a 50/50 mixture of olive/castor oil and have loved it! I do have a question about how to cleanse my skin on days I am not oil cleansing? Should I use a particular type of cleanser?

  10. Sad says:

    Hi! I’m at work surfing around your blog from my new iphone 4! Just wanted to say I love reading your blog and look forward to all your posts! Keep up the superb work!

  11. Aya D says:

    Not sure if this will really work but hey, it’s worth a try! I love your blog post! Keep it up!

  12. Shannon says:

    What are your thoughts on flouride and chlorine exposure from the hot water/steam? I started using filtered water heated on the stovetop, but it’s not working as well because it’s either way too hot or not hot enough. The faucet is so much more convenient, but the thought of my open pores exposed to the junk in the tap makes me a bit hesitant. Any thoughts or suggestions? Thanks!

  13. Monica says:

    Please, can somebody help me!? For a year i used prescribed medication from my dermatologist for acne and it worked really great. Then i stoped because i wanted to get rid of all chemical that i had been puting into my body and start experimenting with homemade natural products like the OCM (i’m using olive oil). It’s been 3 months since i stoped and a month ago started to appear a redness around my nose. It’s not getting worse but it’s not getting better either. I don’t know what this is, it never happened before and i don’t know what to do. Any suggestions? Thank you.

    • Mali Korsten says:

      I got a red rash around my nose when I did the GAPS diet, which I think was just a detox reaction. Perhaps your redness is also due to detox from the chemicals? Obviously, it’s hard to say without seeing it, but that could be something to consider.

      • Monica says:

        Hi Mali thanks for answering. That’s what i thought, that’s probably due to detox from the chemicals. Did your rash went away for its own or did you use something to treat?

    • I would look into the relationship into the area of redness with Traditional Chinese Medicine and reflexology. It may point to an organ or body system that needs support and healing. It’s amazing how interconnected our body systems are.

  14. SJF says:

    I just turned 40 last month and since I didn’t any skin care gifts I decided I had to take matters into my own hands. I found a plethora of info about the OCM online and decided to try it. I ordered “100% Organic” Apricot Kernel Oil and Argan Oil (different brands), some Tea Tree Oil, and bought CVS brand Castor Oil because that was all I could find. I have always had combination skin and in the last couple of years that has meant dry to normal skin with my first wrinkles appearing on either side of my mouth and my forehead and some fine lines around my eyes (which surprised me since I’ve been wearing concealer since 6th grade and have *lived* in my prescription sunglasses since my 20′s – it’s almost 10am and I’m wearing them! It’s a migraine thing….) and blackheads on my chin, around my nostrils and a couple of strays elsewhere on my face. I very occasionally get a pimple. I have some age spots (and have almost completely faded them with 2 bottles of Clinique’s Even Better Dark Spot Corrector that I ran out of at least 8 months ago – I really lucked out with that product!).

    The first week it seemed like a miracle! My skin glowed, my blackheads shrunk to half their size and many disappeared and I was raving about it. Now in the 3r week I suddenly have the worst acne breakout since I was a teenager! :O There is a large patch on on the left side of my forehead (and I sleep mostly on my right side, so that’s… weird) a patch on the right side of my jawline, my chin is a mess and in general my whole face has gone (how do you spell kla-bloo-ee?). I still have not let any soap touch my face, but last night I went over my whole face with witch hazel before OCM, in which I upped the castor oil. Tea tree oil really stings and I had only been using a tiny bit just on my blackheads, but don’t get a good vibe from it. I’m going into NYC tomorrow afternoon with my 7 year old for the first time in ages and I’m much more self conscious there than at home, so this is really bad timing. I was feeling pretty good that most people think I’m about a decade younger than I am, but I didn’t mean to turn the clock back to the nightmare-land of 15! I was also really hoping that this method might save my daughter from zit hell when she reaches puberty (without putting her on medication that requires birth control pills as well because of the high risk of birth defects… I can’t remember the name of it, but I’m glad now that I never took it when it first came out! I wasn’t, however, happy then…). Any thoughts? I really want this to work! Thanks for the posts – this looks like a great blog! :) (God, does anyone want to read this post? Bless you if you do!)

    • I’m sorry for the late reply when you’re in such straits! You are either likely reacting from the oils, detoxing from the chemicals you are using, or it goes deeper. I’m inclined to think that it is digestion and liver related, especially with age spots at such a young age.

      I hope the post has helped a bit with what to do with breakouts. My advice would be to look into a gut healing protocol like the GAPS Diet for you and your daughter, so she can hopefully avoid the acne issues altogether. We will be starting another round of it, and it will be taking over my blog (www.20somethingallergies.com) for the next little while as I approach it from both a holistic practitioner and guinea pig standpoint.

      • SJF says:

        Thank you for replying! I should have been more clear when I mentioned “age spots” – they are/were sun damage from years of worshipping the sun (although I never used baby oil like some people I knew and only used tanning beds rarely, usually to get ready for a vacation in the sun or in the middle of the winter when I was really depressed from Seasonal Affected Disorder). I’ve stopped tanning altogether for the last 4 years and as I wrote I’ve been able to fade the 3 half-dime (or smaller) sized ones on my face with the Clinique product.

        The acne breakout has calmed down since I’ve taken a break from OCM. I’m pretty sure it was a reaction to the combination of oils I was using. I haven’t given up on the idea, but I’m going to try a different recipe. There are a few Etsy sellers that have pre-mixed formulas – I think I’m going to try Crunchy Betty’s and hopefully get a better result. Wish me luck! Thanks again!

        • I definitely understand about the sun damage. I am prone to it also. Thank goodness for the healing power of foods to change those odds!

          I hope you have good luck with the pre-made formulas and they’re wonderfully successful for you! I will also be developing some in my store (www.lumukuke.com) over the next few months, so come bakc and let me know how it works out for you!

  15. Fiorella says:

    have you heard of using evening primrose oil for OCM instead of borage? both have GLA but evening primrose is more affordable (looking for astringent oil for acne prone skin) Thanks!

  16. [...] Are you game to try the oil cleansing method? It may just rock your world too. If you have questions, here’s a troubleshooting post that may help. [...]

  17. Rachel says:

    I’m searching all over, but I can’t seem to find the page with recommendations for where to buy the oils. Brand suggestions would be great or online stores that have good options. For example, I was searching for borage oil and all I can find is gel caps or borage oil that is combined with olive oil and a few other ingredients. I’m assuming that the formulas you suggest are pure oils. Thanks for your help!

  18. [...] old routine of cleanse, tone, moisturize and was wondering why my face seemed dry.  Then I read this post more carefully and realized I was removing the beneficial oils and negating the benefits of oil [...]

  19. Danie says:

    hello Jennifer!I am very happy to find your website here and hoping that you will help me solve this big issue I had.I came trough the OCM and thought it would be the perfect way to have a shiny beautiful skin on my face.So I used Olive oil and put it on my face.However the nightmare occured the following day when I saw little pimples appearing all over my forehead,and between my ears and nose.By the way, I have combination skin(Oil on my T zone+zone between ears & nose; dry on my cheeks).I could not beleive what just happened.I have tried all the natural remedies such as turmeric,cinnamon,lemon,nothing happened,it actually made it worse.I also tried acne lotion(Neo medrol).But they cannot dry out.They just remain the same.They look like small bumps under my skin.PLEASE HELP ME

  20. Natalie says:

    This is a bit random but I was wondering if you’ve heard of OCM helping to decrease Melasma? I got Melasma while pregnant and it still hasn’t gone away. I’ve tried apple cider vinegar and lemon juice but it’s still there. I’m thinking of trying this method!

  21. Skels says:

    Question! I’ve been using the OCM for about 2 weeks now. I started out with just hemp seed oil (for cleansing and moisturizing). My skin started to become very dry. Did some research and found that olive oil was good for moisturizing so I mixed that 1:1 with hemp seed and moisturized with olive oil. No breakouts so far but my skin is still dry. :( any suggestions are appreciated! Thanks!

  22. Erin says:

    Hi. I just now found this!
    I started the OCM about a month ago (1 part castor oil, 1 part grapeseed, and 1 part jojoba). I am 17 and have acne prone-combination skin. Before started the OCM, I had pretty clear skin and was using Burts Bees products. The first week of ocm was amazing, my skin had never looked better! But then my face started breaking out- now it looks worse than it ever has! I do not want to give up on it, because I hate the idea of using chemicals on my face. I eat pretty healthy- whole foods diet and I’m gluten free. My sister uses apricot oil instead of grapeseed and her face looks amazing! I recently switched to that in hopes of my face clearing up. Any advice on what to do? Should I give up? Was really hoping to have great skin before prom in April!! Any advice would be greatly appreciated!!!

  23. Kacie says:

    I haven’t read all the comments on either post so forgive me if this question has already been asked. You didn’t mention coconut oil at all but I’ve seen it mentioned in other posts about this. Currently that’s all I have access to and am just using coconut oil with nothing else. My skin is dry and sensitive with rosacea and prone to cystic acne breakouts around my period. Within the last few months I’ve developed this bright red skin on my nose and bright red bumps on my nose and cheeks. Nothing has helped them! So far the OCM hasn’t made a difference but I’ve only been doing it a week.

  24. Ellen says:

    Am I the only one who can’t read the titles for the gobbledygoog?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

« »