Summer heat, humidity and sun present an annual makeup quandary that can either leave us melting into an oily, streaky mess or going uncomfortably bare. Neither option is particularly alluring, and neither embodies that glowing je ne sais quoi that we’re going for.
After one of my best girlfriends told me of her new oil face wash routine, I was intrigued, and more than a little bit skeptical. I’ve had oily skin my whole life… How could washing my face with oil help?? But as I watched my friend’s skin get clearer and clearer, my curiosity got the best of me. I picked up some jojoba oil from Trader Joe’s and did the deed! Low and behold, my face was significantly less oily throughout the day, and within a few weeks, my perpetually clogged pores were clearer, and my skin was the softest and most glowing it’s ever been. I’ve been using this method for a couple of months now, and I have to say, I’m never going back! Best of all, this is so much less expensive than buying fancy face washes, and so much more effective and natural! Here’s how it’s done:
Step One: Choose (and blend) your oils
The official prescription calls for a combination of castor oil and another balancing oil in the following proportions:
- For Oily Skin: A blend of 30% Castor Oil to 70% Sunflower Seed Oil/Olive Oil.
- For Balanced Skin: A blend of 20% Castor Oil to 80% Sunflower Seed Oil/Olive Oil.
- For Dry Skin: A blend of 10% Castor Oil to 90% Sunflower Seed Oil/Olive Oil.
I’ve also had great results with pure organic jojoba oil, which is super easy to find and doesn’t require mixing. You may want to add a drop or two of yummy essential oils to add a scent and some added healthy skin benefits! Try essential oils of lavender, rosemary, tea tree, or eucalyptus.
Step Two: Cleanse and steam
For maximim benefits, use this method at night. There’s no need to cleanse your skin the morning after, you can just rinse with warm water. This allows your skin to balance itself and prevents over-drying and overproduction of sebum! You’ll need a washcloth, your oil, and some super hot running water.
- Start by massaging the oil into your dry face, giving extra attention to areas where you have makeup or clogged pores. Take your time while massaging the oil into your skin. Let this be a calming moment in your day. Breathe deeply and enjoy the sensation.
- When you’ve massaged your face for a minute or two, soak your washcloth in steaming hot water, wring it out, and apply it to cover your face. Keep it on until it cools, and gently wipe the oil from your face. Rinse the washcloth in hot water and repeat. The hot washcloth opens your pores, and allows the oil to bind with it and remove impurities from your skin! Don’t be afraid of the oil… The washcloth cleans it off your skin, leaving just enough moisture to keep you glowing and hydrated.
- Pat your face dry.
Step Three (Optional): Moisturize
If your skin feels at all tight after your oil wash, you can use a couple drops of your oil (or one of the oils below) to moisturize your skin. If you don’t wash your face in the morning, your skin’s oil production should normalize within a few days of using this method. But I still like to use a really great face oil as a moisturizer after I shower. My absolute favorite is Osmia Organics Facial Calibration Serum (check out my interview with the owner of Osmia, Sarah Villafranco). For some other great face oils that clear pores and cure breakouts, check out this post on Well+Good NYC.