The idea behind this method is that commercial cleansers strip our skin of its natural oils which causes our skin to over-produce oils in response. This natural oil-based cleanser should leave the skin’s oils mostly intact and just remove the dirt and makeup from your face.
The recipe is very simple and allows for customization based on skin types; the main ingredient is castor oil, from the castor bean (technically a seed) and an oil of your choice (sunflower seed oil, olive oil, etc). The recipe calls to use more or less of the castor oil depending on your skin type:
Some suggestions in creating your blend of deep cleansing oil:
Oily Skin: Try a blend of 30% Castor Oil to 70% Sunflower Seed Oil.
Balanced Skin: Try a blend of 20% Castor Oil to 80% Sunflower Seed Oil.
Dry Skin: Try a blend of 10% Castor Oil to 90% Sunflower Seed Oil.
(We also added a couple drops of tea tree oil to ours!)
You’ll want to put the mixture into some kind of small container (think of the travel bottles from Target or Dollarama). Smaller is better because you’ll want to make it in small batches so you can completely wash out the container somewhat regularly to avoid contamination.
- You'll need a soft washcloth, your oil blend, and hot water.
- Pour a generous puddle of oil into the palm of your hand, roughly the size of a quarter. Rub your hands together to warm the oil and smooth over your face. The oil will remove makeup, dirt, and other impurities, so there is no need to use a makeup remover or to wash your face prior to use!
- Massage the oil into your face using slow, firm motions across the skin, massaging the oil deeply into your pores. Take your time and focus on your problem areas. You want the oil to work into your pores so that blackheads and the like can be dissolved and steamed away.
- Sit down, breathe deeply, and take your time. Release some of the stress that your body is harboring. Give the oil enough time to work on dissolving the impurities in your pores.
- Once you're satisfied that your pores are saturated and you're feeling calm, pick up your washcloth and soak it in clean, steamy water. We want the water to be warm enough to open your pores and remove the oil. Cool water will not open your pores, nor will it remove the oil efficiently. We're not scalding our skin, we're steaming to coax our pores to release the oil carrying the impurities. We're essentially steaming our skin as an esthetician would, but without the luxury of a steam machine.
- Hold the washcloth to cover your face. Allow it to stay until it cools. You will feel your pores releasing the impurities. Wipe the oil gently away and rinse the washcloth well in hot, running water. Hold the washcloth to your face again, allowing it to cool. Wipe gently, rinse well, and repeat two or three more times. Avoid any temptation to scrub, as you'll find it's completely unnecessary and your skin will be soft, smooth, and free of flakes without the additional manual exfoliation and irritation that will result. Impurities, dead skin cells, and bacteria will be gently swept away.
- Have no fear of the oil, as the steamy washcloth will remove it. The Castor Oil, though it is an oil, will help with the removal of the other oils, as well. It is our main cleansing oil and is easily removed with warm water.
- If your skin feels tight, take a tiny drop of your oil blend, rub it between your clean, damp palms and pat it onto your damp skin. Gently massage any oil residue into your skin so there is no film of oil left sitting on the surface. Your skin should now glow!
- You'll want to experiment with how frequently you use this product; although probably less than daily. You'll know if you're deep cleansing too frequently if your skin feels dry. While it’s common to feel like you’ve opened the floodgates on your skin’s oil the first few days, this should typically subside as your skin settles. Your skin will even out, blemishes should fade and any redness should clear up.
Christine raves about this recipe so last time she was visiting, she made me a batch to try. I used it for about two weeks consistently, with no other face washing or cleaning products (just moisturizer). Even though I liked the results of the clean and fresh feeling that the wash provided, I hated using it because it made me feel oily and gross until I had (what felt like) scraped off all the skin that the product touched!
I felt like it was very difficult to completely get the oil off my face (we later found out this could have been due to the fact that we used oil olive oil in my wash, and could have tried something else). However, once I did get it all off it left my face smooth and clean. I would recommend experimenting with different variations of this recipe to see if one might work better for your skin than the others.
I absolutely love this recipe. As an adult, I have tried practically everything to clear my skin, but I also value avoiding commercial products as much as possible. This homemade, natural recipe is easy to make and works wonders. My only problem is in remembering to use it daily, but when I do, there’s a noticeable improvement in my skin within a couple days. I’m not sure if I’ve noticed a difference in the redness of my skin, but there’s definitely a reduction in the frequency and severity of breakouts!
I don’t think I could really expect more from a cleanser. I’ve tried nearly every brand out there, and yet this natural recipe is the one that has worked for me. I lucked out in that the first variation I tried of this recipe is one that worked for my skin, but I’m curious to try other variations as well!