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DO YOU VERY SENSITIVE, REACTIVE SKIN OR SEVERE ACNE?
PROCEED WITH CAUTION!
If your skin is inflamed, blemished, irritated or highly sensitive great caution is advised when making any changes to your routine. Proceed slowly and with caution, armed with knowledge, sound advice and rational expectations!
Before starting with oil cleansing, especially if you have problematic skin issues, please take a deeper look into oil cleansing and skin function before making any changes to your routine! Oils can irritate your skin and potentially make problems worse! I know you don't want to hear that but please be careful in your search for solutions especially when they are trying to resolve issues.
Those with severe acne should proceed with extreme caution and stop oil cleansing if your problems get worse so you can make changes to your routine, oils or method of cleansing. Many factors can be involved including the type of oil, method of application, length of time to let the cleansing oils soak in and more. At the very least you should start with just ONE gentle, high linoleic oil and to be very gentle applying and removing them.
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THE ALCHEMY OF OIL CLEANSING - There is no book on The Oil Cleansing Method and there isn't a “one size fits all” approach. The steps I outlined below differ a little bit from most resources you will find in your search for information.
PLEASE RESIST USING VERY HOT WATER. Hot water is damaging to the facial skin and can make sensitive skin issues worse, which can lead to more skin problems and is especially risky if you have severe acne. Most OCM instructions recommend using a hot steaming washcloth pressed to your face to remove the cleansing oils, and to remove the oils right after they are applied and massaged into your skin for just a few minutes. Those with more severe acne, looking for a reduction in outbreaks make a habit of removing the oils this way. I suggest resisting the urge to use the steaming washcloth method.
REMOVING OILS WITH A DRY CLOTH: Removing the cleansing oils with a dry cloth before rinsing is part of this method.
EASY ON THE EXFOLIATING. Gently exfoliating is a vital step in any skincare routine. But care should be taken not to over do it. Those with very sensitive skin or severe acne will want to be very careful not to create more problems by over doing it. If you have strong, resilient skin you can safely exfoliate 4-5 times a week. Reduce how often you exfoliate if you develop any sensitivities.
CHECK THE pH OF YOUR WATER: HARD WATER ISSUES AND SKIN PH: Hard water has a slightly basic pH. This is not good for our skin and over time can take a toll. If you have skin issues or aging skin, you might want to take a deeper look into the problems associated with hard water. There are some simple adjustments you can make to your routine to help you skin retain a healthy pH, scroll down for details.
GOOD RESULTS WITHOUT USING CASTOR OIL: Most people consider Castor Oil a required oil for deep cleaning and can work well for some. Due to it's unique properties, Castor oil is extremely cleansing, but it can also lead to problems such as dry, irritated skin and a worsening of their skin problems. We can get great results with oil cleansing without the use of Castor oil, or with a minimal amount. It should never be used alone, in a blend it be less than 25%, which is still quite high - I suggest that Castor Oil be reduced to less than 10% of your blend or eliminated. If you have very sensitive, mature or aging skin, dry skin or get dry patches then I would suggest leaving the Castor oil out all together. I outline and describe my favorite cleansing oils HERE.
Who gets the best short and long term results?
If the skin an acid mantle are in good shape and you experience only minor skin issues every so often, like an occasional outbreak, clogged pores or comedones, or if you have aging skin or dry skin, then Oil Cleansing will become your new BFF! You will get the most benefit from many different oils, and my long soak method, as it provides the deepest conditioning. You will see some immediate results; an increase in suppleness and ability to absorb treatment oils will be noticed quickly, and in the long term your skin will become stronger and more resilient, and you may even notice a reduction in the development of new lines, wrinkles and sun damage.
~ STEP BY STEP INSTRUCTIONS ~
END OF THE DAY: REMOVING MAKEUP, SUNSCREEN, DIRT, GREASE & GRIME
Oils will only penetrate hair follicles and pores when APPLIED TO DRY SKIN.
If you do not get clogged pores or breakout, or if you have very sensitive skin then shorter soaks can give good results. If you do not have a lot of debris on your face, a long soak is not necessary for a good cleanse. Deep conditioning is a benefit of the long soak method so I suggest everyone will benefit from this approach.
REMOVE EYE MAKEUP WITH YOUR PREFER METHOD.
PREP YOUR FACIAL SKIN. (optional) Pressing a warm washcloth (not hot) to your face for a few moments will soften the skin and prepare it to receive the oils. Just make sure your face is completely dry before applying cleansing oils with dry fingers.
APPLY OILS TO DRY SKIN WITH DRY FINGER: Pour a generous amount, about a quarter size amount, of Cleansing Oil in the palm rub your hand. Then using your fingertip, dip them into the oil and apply.
TIP: If you are using one of my blends, place the mouth of the bottle on the edge of your palm and pour, spin the bottle a half turn to wipe the oil off the edge of bottle opening. This will keep the oil from running down the side of the bottle. I do not use a dropper to dispense my oils simply because to get enough oil into your palm you need about 2 full droppers of oil. I find the pour method easier and less messy.
Using your fingertips, massage the oils into your face just like you would if you were using any other cleanser, being careful to avoid your eyes. Pressing your fingertips into the skin as well as moving them over the skin surface will help force the oils into pores. If you have very sensitive skin be careful not to pull or irritate your skin.
TIME TO CHILL: If you do not have very sensitive skin and want deep conditioning and cleansing, allow the oils to soak in for 10-20 minutes. If you have very sensitive skin or other skin problems, I suggest that you work up to the long soak method to give your skin time to heal and to avoid irritations. For the first few weeks I suggest that you remove the oils after just a few minutes and choose just one oil to work with for the first few weeks. Hemp seed, grape seed and jojoba are good choices, there are others you can try as well.
COMBATTING HARD WATER!
HYDROSOL TONERS: To ensure you are maintaining a healthy pH of your skin, it is important to apply an alcohol free, slightly acidic toner after you cleanse with any method. 80-90% of homes in the USA have hard tap water, which can be at the root of skin problems and premature aging. Mild, gentle and alcohol free, PURE PLANT HYDROSOLS are the perfect choice for all skin types for this step. BENEFITS OF HYDROSOLS
RINSING WITH DISTILLED WATER: if you have any skin issues at all or aging skin, consider rinsing with distilled water any time your facial skin comes in contact with tap water. This will help remove residue left behind (hard water doesn't rinse very well) and help your skin to recover it's acid mantle and acidic pH more quickly. Pour some distilled water into a bowl and rinse repeatedly, soak a washcloth and gently wipe. Try it for a month and see if skin issues improve.
REMOVING OILS: DRY WIPE THEN RINSE. With a soft cotton cloth, cotton pad, or paper towel very gently wipe away the majority of the oils from the surface of you skin before using any water.
Then soak the cloth or towel in VERY WARM NOT HOT WATER and gently press and wipe your face, then rinse a few times and you are done.
TIP: Remember, you are not attempting to remove every last drop of cleansing oil. Rinsing and wiping gently is all that is required to achieve clean skin.
NEXT STEPS: You are now ready to proceed to the next steps - In the Complete Oil Cleansing Method, this would be exfoliating if appropriate, and/or followed with the application of a slightly acidic toner, followed up with the application of Facial Oils. READ ABOUT THE BEST WAY TO APPLY FACIAL OILS
EXFOLIATING: Gentle exfoliation is very important for a variety reasons. I prefer to use my EXFOLIATING WITH PERFECTION SCRUB, an oil and seed butter dead sea salt scrub, a few times a week. It can also be used as a leave on overnight treatment.
If you desire a foaming cleanser once or twice a week, please consider my FOAMING CLEANSING GRAINS these can be mixed with water (aloe juice, hydrosol water), cleansing oils, or a combination of both depending on your skin type.
FIRST THING IN THE MORNING: FRESHEN UP OR A CONDITIONING SOAK
FRESHEN UP: To freshen up in the morning, you don't need to leave the oils on for very long. Apply your oils with dry fingers to dry skin, massage, wipe and rinse. Apply your facial oils to damp skin, allow to soak in for about 20 minutes, then apply sunscreen/makeup.
DEEP CONDITIONING: For those with resilient skin and no major issue then morning is a nice time to do a long soak for deep conditioning, I make a habit of doing this. As I sip coffee and get my day started, I let my cleaning oils soak in for about 15-20 minutes before removing them and applying my facial oils.