Using an oil-based cleanser for oily skin

If you have oily skin you may cringe at the idea of using oil on your skin, but using oil may just benefit you.

Using an oil-based cleanser on your oily skin will be beneficial because the oil cleanser will dissolve the excess sebum on your skin. Oil-based cleansers work off the principle that like dissolves like. The oil-based cleanser will attach to the oil on your skin and be washed off as you rinse your skin.

This might sound like a counter-intuitive thing to do. Using an oil-based cleanser on your oily skin?

Wouldn’t an oil-based cleanser used on oily skin just make your oily skin more oily? But in fact, that isn’t what would happen.

Oily skin will benefit immensely from using an oil-based cleanser.

There are many great nutrients and minerals found in oils that oily skin will benefit from. The benefits of oils include healing, moisturising, regulating sebum production and soothing.

Oils have existed and have been used in skincare routines for hundreds of years. Now oils are coming back in a big way.

After you use an oil cleanser on your skin you will notice that your skin feels much more supple and soft.  The oil cleanse can also act as a moisturiser.

Using an oil-based cleanser for oily skin

What is an oil-based cleaner?

When you think of a cleanser you might think of something that lathers and foams up on your face, something like a face wash or a traditional cleanser.

An oil cleanser can sometimes foam up too, depending on its formula but this isn’t generally the case.

Oil cleansers work off of the fact that “like dissolves like”. They cleanse the face by dissolving the excess sebum, dirt, debris and external irritants on the skin.

Oil cleansers emulsify and turn into a milky substance when water is added to them as you rinse. (not the milk you keep in the fridge, those are good to use on the face as well though).

As you use the product the sebum will bind to the oil and when you add water the oil turns into a milk that will wash away the impurities.

This is how the excess sebum, dirt, debris and external pollutants are lifted from your face.

Traditional face washes will generally lather up and dry out the skin. The oil-based cleaners will no dry out your skin or irritate it.

Rather, the oil cleanser will keep your skin hydrated and supple.

Certain facial oil formulations and natural oils will contain nutrients that will boost the skin as well. This is a well-loved facial cleansing oil

Do I need an oil cleanser if I don’t wear makeup?

Many people decide to use some sort of oil to melt off their makeup. This works very well.

This has been made popular by Korean beauty, it’s known as the “double cleanse’. If you don’t wear makeup and you’re thinking of using an oil cleanser I recommend that you still do so.

The oil will be good to clear the other impurities from your face. It will also make sure that your skin stays hydrated.

Can oily skinned people use cleansing oil?

Yes. Oily skinned people can and should use an oil-based cleanser because it will keep the natural lipid layer of the skin (the moisture barrier) intact.

The oil-based cleanser won’t dry the skin out as harsh detergent cleansers will.

Some people wash their face many times a day in an effort to remove the excess sebum, this results in over washing of the face. This has a variety of negative effects. You should avoid over-washing your face.

Ironically, the effect that over-washing has on your skin is more oil production.

If you over wash your face you’ll begin to notice that your face gets very dry. In an effort to hydrate and moisturise your face the skin will produce more sebum (skin oil). Unfortunately, the skin will overproduce the sebum and this will result in excess oil on the skin

If this happens, you will wind up looking like an oily. shiny mess. You can also get breakouts from this.

When you use a cleansing oil the lipid barrier stays intact and your skin does not feel the need to produce more sebum because it is hydrated.

oil-based cleanser for oily skin

Should you use oil-free moisturizers?

Oil-free moisturiser formulations don’t contain comedogenic oils which can clog your pores. These comedogenic oils include coconut oil.

If the skin does not recognise oil as being sebum it will produce sebum. This sebum will combine with the oil in the moisturiser and cause pimples. That is why you need to use an oil-free moisturiser.

Oil-free moisturisers also mattify the skin.

That being said, some oils will be good for the face and will moisturise it well. An example of a good is jojoba oil.

This oil is the closest oil that we have to the natural sebum on the face. When you apply the oil on your face the skin recognises this oil as sebum.

In turn, your skin will not produce sebum because the skin is already hydrated. This oil-free moisturizer is well-loved and widely used.

How do I stop my face from being so oily?

Oily skin is a skin type, not a skin condition.

This means your skin will pretty much be oily forever. The amount of oil that your skin produces will decrease with age but you will still have oily skin.

There are a couple of disadvantages to having oily skin but it’s not all bad, there are things you can do to make the best of it.

An advantage of having oily skin is that you will get wrinkles much later in life because your skin does not get dry and wrinkly.

Something to think about:

Not all oils are made equal, because you have oily skin certain oils will clog your pores.

Pore-clogging oils are called comedogenic oils. These oils include coconut oil.

Make sure you check what the ingredients in your oil-based cleaners are before you use it.

If you would like some ideas on natural oils that you can cleanse your skin with you can use olive oil, jojoba oil and castor oil.

The benefit of olive oil is that it’s full of antioxidants and vitamins. The benefit of castor oil is that it’s an astringent like oil.

Jojoba oil is the best for oily skin as it mimics the skins natural sebum.

When picking your oils you need to make sure that you are using oils that are free from fragrance, synthetic colourants and high quality.

If you can use oils that are virgin, cold-pressed and unrefined.

Is cleansing oil the same as face wash?

No, cleansing oil is not the same thing as face wash.

They are designed to do the same job of removing dirt, debris and external pollutants from your face but they do this in different ways.

Using a cleaning oil is a newer way of cleansing your face, using a face wash is more of a traditional way of cleansing your face,

Traditional cleansing products, such as face washes, use sulphates and surfactants to break down the dirt, debris, excess oil and any other environmental pollutants on the skin.

The surfactants aren’t made equal, different surfactants have different levels of strength and effectiveness.

When they get into contact with oil, debris or external pollutants they break all this down so it can easily be rinsed off a the end of the shower.

Oil cleansing entails using oils to degrease and remove the excess oil on your skin.

This may seem counterintuitive but it’s actually a very effective way to cleanse our face.

The oil cleansing method works off the idea that “like dissolves like” oil dissolves oil. An oil-based cleanser is made to break down makeup, excess dirt, debris and excess oil on the skin.

What oils are good for oily skin?

Rosehip oil: This oil has a low comedogenic rating. The comedogenic rating is one of the first things you should take note of when looking for an oil for your oily skin.

A low comedogenic rating will ensure that the oil won’t break you out. this oil has high levels of vitamins, fatty acids, antioxidants and minerals.

All these nutrients will sink into the skin penetrating past the skin surface to give you beautiful healthy and glowing skin. This is an effective rosehip oil.

Argan oil: This oil has been used the Moroccans to treat the hair and skin for many years and for good reason.

Argan oil is moisturising, can treat acne as well as other skin conditions and protects the skin from sun damage.

The oil is rich in vitamins and minerals and it has powerful antioxidant properties. The oil is non-comedogenic making it perfect for people with oily skin. This is an effective argan oil.

Grapeseed oil: Not only is this oil a great source of vitamin E and fatty acids, both of which will nourish and moisturise the skin, but it also helps to calm any inflammation on the skin.

It is particularly great to use on oily skin because it helps to balance and regulate the sebum production on the skin.

This oil has a low comedogenic rating so you can use it on your skin with no worries of breakouts. This is an effective grapeseed oil.

Evening promise: This oil isn’t really talked about a lot in the beauty community but it is a great oil to use if you have oily skin.

This oil can be used to help clear up acne as well as improve the appearance of eczema.

The oil moisturises your skin without resulting in more acne or oily skin. this oil has a low comedogenic rating. This is an effective evening primrose oil.

Hemp seed oil: This oil contains the likes of vitamin D, E as well as magnesium, iron, zinc, sulphur and calcium. 

The oil deposits these ingredients deep to the skin and this boosts the skin’s health.

The essential fatty acids are not only moisturising but help keep your sebum production balanced as well. As a bonus, the oil reduces dryness on the skin, This is an effective oil.

Does cleansing oil cause breakouts?

No cleaning oils do not cause breakouts, they do the opposite actually.

Cleansing oils actually help minimise the breakouts you have on your skin by controlling the sebum production on the skin.

Oil cleansing works off the idea that “like dissolves like”, the oil cleanser will break down the excess sebum on your skin minimising the production of pimples and breakouts.

That being said, your oil cleanser can cause breakouts for a couple of reasons and not of the fault of the oil cleanser.

If you haven’t checked the ingredients on the packaging then you may find that some ingredients may cause skin irritation, clogged pores and acne inflammation.

These ingredients include Isopropyl myristate and Isopropyl Palmitate, Isopropyl Palmitate is also highly comedogenic.

oil-based cleanser for oily skin

Which oil is best for cleansing the face?

The best oil for cleansing the face is the DHC Deep Cleansing Oil.

This oil is well-loved and well used all over the world and for good reason. 

The oil removes your make up quickly and easily, it does this without stripping your skin and drying it out, it cleanses while moisturising the skin.

This oil is made up of a combination of oils including rosehip oil, golden palm oil and green tea oil. These will nourish your skin, unclog your pores and improve the texture of your skin.

This oil has been around, like around around, it has been around for three decades. It’s old but still works very well.

How do you cleanse your face with oil?

  1. Star of with dry skin, unlike face washes and face cleansers oil cleansers and cleaning oils, need to be applied on dry skin. This will allow the oil to attract any dirt, debris and external irritants on your skin
  2. Apply the oil on your fingers and massage it into your skin. Make sure to massage in gentle circular motions to get the most out of the oil
  3. If you’re wearing makeup massage the eye area last, this will prevent the eye make up from spreading all over your face.
  4. Once you’re done you can rinse the product off warm water. The cleansing oil will emulsify turning milky and washing off your face very easily.
  5. If there is still oil on your face after the rinse or if your face feels slick after the rinse then you can rinse again to remove the excess

Tip: If you aren’t using a cleansing oil specially formulated to be a cleansing oil but rather an everyday oil like jojoba oil etc then you need to cleanse your face for a second time using a regular cleanser to get the excess oil off of your face

Tip: If you’re using a cleansing balm in place of oil you can cleanse your face just as you would with a cleansing oil, you’ll just have to rub the balm in between your fingers to melt the balm then  massage it into your skin to melt it more.

When should I use cleansing oil?

You should use cleaning oil at night time.

During the day our face produces sebum, your face will produce more sebum if it’s naturally oily. Sebum attracts dirt, bacteria, debris and all types of other external pollutants in the air.

When you’re sleeping your skin rejuvenates itself by getting rid of the old dead skin cells and replacing them with fresher new cells.

You want to create an optimum environment for that to happen.

To get this optimum environment you need to clean your face thoroughly by using a cleansing oil at night to remove the dirt off your face but keep it moisturised as well.

In the morning, your face may be sweaty from the night before but it won’t be dirty so your skin won’t need a deep cleanse as it needs at night.

Can I use baby oil as cleansing oil?

No baby oil is not a cleansing oil. Baby oil is basically perfumed mineral oil and mineral oil is not good to cleanse your skin.

Mineral oil is an occlusive ingredient, this means it will create a barrier between your skin and the outside. This is good if you want to seal in moisture into the skin but it’s not for cleansing.

This oil can even cause clogged pores, if you don’t remove all the baby oil from your skin after your first cleanse you may develop breakouts.

When you try to remove baby oil it may force you to reach for stronger face washes which will dry out your skin.

Do cleansing balms clog pores?

No cleansing balms do not clog the pores, it does quite the opposite actually. When you use a cleansing balm you massage the product into your skin, this warms the balm so it becomes softer like an oil.

The balm actually helps to minimize the chances of you getting breakouts and clogged pores because it removes dirt, makeup and excess sebum without drying out your face, which ironically can result in an overproduction of sebum.

As a bonus, cleansing balms will work on your face regardless of your skin type. This cleansing balm is well-loved and widely used.

I hope you enjoyed this article looking at using an oil-based cleanser for oily skin. If you enjoyed the article please share it.

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