Thursday, October 28, 2010

Why I washed my face with oil

I think I have officially crossed into a full-fledged "crunchy" person. And I am loving it.

I'm always looking for more frugal, chemical free ways to live. I'm not an alarmist who immediately threw out all of my old beauty products when I found out about the chemicals in them. I've been gradually switching out my products over the course of several months. I've switched my soap & shampoo and numerous other toiletries. I'll get into what specific products I've been using in another post, but my main product right now is Kirk's Castile Soap, a super cheap soap with no yucky ingredients. I use it for washing my hands, body, face and even for shaving. One time I was desperate and used it as a shampoo, which worked pretty well also. 

Although my skin has cleared up SO much, I feel like pregnancy has made it dull and dry. I haven't been able to find a reasonably priced, chemical-free facial moisturizer either.

I was browsing the archives of Simple Mom, one of the many blogs I frequent when I came across a post for the oil cleansing method. That's right. Cleaning your skin with oil. Before you swear off my blog, please read this post and my comments below on how it worked for me.

Instructions on how to do this are on the link I posted above. It's basically a combination of castor oil and olive oil. My skin has been so unbelievably dry (and I didn't have any castor oil at home) that I actually used pure olive oil. I'm such a believer in the oil cleansing method that I'm going to buy some castor oil as soon as I have a chance for a deeper clean (castor oil is supposed to draw out dirt and unclog pores).

I thought it would feel weird and greasy, but the more I rubbed it in, the more luxurious it felt. My skin was just drinking it up saying, "Please never dehydrate me again!" After a quick steam with a washcloth, I just used the same washcloth to wipe the oil off of my face. I did have to rinse off the washcloth a few times and gently re-wipe portions of my face, but in the end I didn't feel greasy AT ALL.

a chemical-free facial
softer, smoother, flake-free skin
inexpensive (I dipped two fingertips in olive oil, and that covered my entire face)
smelling like an Italian restaurant for a couple of minutes (this may be a minus for you, but it                      
made me really happy...and started a craving for Italian bread with herbs)

Minuses: none

I seriously cannot stop touching my face.


  1. Beautiful women since the first recording of history prized olive oil for the help it did to their skin. You are just carrying on a tradition in the line of thousands of years of beautiful women!

  2. N, I think you have always been a hippie at heart, but that is one of the many reasons why I love you! (Probably because I'm a hippie, too... with my organic granola, Chaco sandals, and re-useable grocery bags... lol)

  3. This is fascinating! The OCM totally makes sense, taking into account the chemistry principle "like dissolves like." (And smelling like an Italian restaurant is a HUGE plus.) What I'm not so sure about, though, is SimpleMom's related post on going shampoo free.

    What does Kirk's Castile Soap smell like?

  4. Haha just don't put it in your hair! When I was like 12, I read about using olive oil as a "deep conditioning treatment" beauty secret in some magazine, and my hair was SUPER greasy for like 2 weeks! Lesson learned!

  5. Andrew - Kirk's Castile smells like pretty much nothing to me, and I'm pregnant. If you want a castile soap with scent, Dr. Bronner's Castile is scented with different essential oils - I hear the peppermint is wonderful. I'm about to buy some in liquid form. Since it doesn't leave a residue, you can dilute it and use it to wash your body & hair as well as clean dishes and other surfaces. You could just throw your dishes in the bathtub with you. (joke).

    By the way...I did the oil cleanse yesterday afternoon, and this morning all I had to do was splash my face with cool water. No cleanser or anything. My skin feels so balanced.

  6. Oh, and Katie - avocado is a great "deep conditioner" that won't leave you really greasy. Just shampoo after :)