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Making The Switch To Oil Cleansers

As we become more conscious of what we put into and onto our bodies, stepping away from Shoppers and towards the health food store is a natural progression.

We all have that one friend who has been touting the benefit of natural cleansers for years, but if you don't want to take their word for it, why not listen to any one of the countless beauty bloggers and columnists who've done the dirty work and tried oil cleansers for you?

Here's what you should know about oil cleansing, and why this “crunchy” trend is here to stay.

What It Is
Oil cleansing works under the premise that “like dissolves like” - cleansing oil (those that are filled with antioxidants, vitamins, and anti-inflammatory properties) will dissolve the oil that has hardened with impurities and gets lodged in your pores, in essence, cleansing the skin and eventually balancing out your face's natural oil production. The effect is skin that is more nourished and moisturized than what you may see from using traditional soap or detergent-based facial cleansers.

The beauty of natural oil cleansers is that there is an oil suitable to work on any skin type.

How To Do It
There are two ways to cleanse with oil, both are simple:

Wet Face
Place a hot, damp wash cloth on your face for 20 seconds. The steam will open up your pores, making it easier for the cleansing oil to do its job. Remove the washcloth and massage your oil into the skin, using circular motions. Let the oil sit for 30 seconds and use a hot wash cloth to gently wipe away excess oil.

Dry Face
With this method, there is no need to wet the face before hand. It's also an excellent method of gently removing makeup, so there is no need to remove it before hand.

In the shower or at the sink, pour about a quarter sized amount of oil blend into your hand and, using gentle, circular motions, massage it into the skin of your face for at least a minute, or until you're sure you have saturated the skin. For a deep clean, leave the oil on for up to 10 minutes.

Wet a clean, wash cloth with hot water (as hot as you can stand). Open it and place it over your face to create steam to remove the oils and impurities in the skin. Leave the cloth on for about a minute, or until it cools. Repeat as needed with the other side of the washcloth and then use the corners of the washcloth to gently remove any remaining oil.
You should still notice a thin layer of oil on the skin, but this is okay. It will act as a moisturizer and seal in moisture.

What Oil To Use
For every skin type, there is an oil to match. You can do more in-depth research into an oil that's right for your skin type, but to start, try these:

  • Normal to Dry skin: Argan or Shea Oil
  • Oily Skin: Tea tree or Peppermint oil mixed with a small amount of carrier oil, like caster or olive oil. It's completely fine to use food-grade oils as carriers, just look for “cold-pressed” on the label.

What To Expect
Though you'll likely notice certain results immediately, it is normal for it to take a week or longer for your skin to adjust to the new cleansing routine, in fact you may even notice more oily skin or breakouts during this time as the impurities are flushed from your pores. It may be uncomfortable and even unattractive, but resist the urge to use harsh soaps or facial cleaners during this time, as it will extend the time it takes for your skin to adjust.

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