An Update On My Homemade Face Wash

posted by Andrea | 10/25/2013

homemade face wash update

It’s been over 2.5 years since I first posted about my homemade face wash — and it’s been almost 3 full years since Dave and I started using this homemade face wash.

I would be lying if I said I wasn’t a bit skeptical that this face wash (it’s actually an oil cleanse) would actually work — and it was even harder to convince Dave to give it a try. However, over 3 years later, I can say with 100% certainty that this is the BEST thing I’ve ever done for my skin! Yes, Dave would agree too.

It is amazing!

Who would have thought that you could cleanse your face with OIL — and not have a yucky, greasy face or breakouts all over the place.

For those of you who want to click over and read all about my oil cleansing method of washing my face, you can do so here — but make sure you come back, because I have a lot more to say about it!

For starters, I tried to get a good close-up picture of my face — but between Dave’s lack of photography skills and my inability to take a non-blurry “self photo” it was a royal failure. The best photo I managed to snap was this one — Nora was obviously still waking up in the morning and I didn’t have any makeup on (not even mascara).

so sleepy

However, then I remembered that the photos I had taken for my website (about 6 months ago) were also without any make up — besides mascara. These pictures were taken with MUCH better lighting and a MUCH better camera so you can get a better look at my skin.

Not too bad :)

head shot

I remember thinking “oh shoot, I forgot to put makeup on for these pictures” so I was a bit leery of how they would actually turn out. But I was pleasantly surprised with how nice my skin looked — and I promise, my friend didn’t photo-shop out any imperfections :)

My skin never used to look this soft or moisturized. I almost always had at least one very visible dry patch and at least a few breakouts — and I usually wore some type of concealer every day. But not anymore!

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Like I said earlier, it’s been over 3 years since Dave and I both started using this homemade oil cleansing method to wash our face. Before that, we washed our face twice a day with store-bought cleansers that were expensive (even when on sale) and dried up our skin — especially in the winter months. We didn’t know there were any other options until I started searching around the internet.

When I realized how inexpensive the 2 ingredients are (Castor Oil and Sunflower Oil) I immediately added them to my grocery list — along with a small plastic squeeze bottle from the travel size toiletry section — and whipped up my very first batch of homemade face wash.

oils

plastic-bottle

Making the Oil Cleansing Face Wash

Mix castor oil and sunflower oil in a small, flip-top plastic bottle according to your skin type (see below).

NORMAL SKIN: Mix one-part castor oil with one-part sunflower oil.

OILY SKIN: Mix two or three-parts castor oil with one-part sunflower oil.

DRY SKIN: Mix one-part castor oil with two or three-parts sunflower oil.

I don’t actually measure anything — just pour a little of each oil in our bottle. I usually just mix it half and half (like for normal skin) but in the summer, I’ll add a little more Castor oil to compensate for sweaty, oily skin… and in the winter, I’ll add more sunflower oil since our skin is often more dry.

There is really no way of messing this up — if you feel that the mixture is too oily for your skin type, simply add a lit more castor oil. If you feel like it’s too dry, add more sunflower oil.

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Using the Oil Cleansing Face Wash

You can read more specific usage instructions on my other post – but it basically involves just massaging a small amount of oil into your face once a day and then wiping off with a steamy hot wash cloth. So yeah, you feel like you’re getting a mini facial every day.

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I honestly can not say enough great things about this all natural, super simple to make, and quite frugal face wash… because as I mentioned above, my skin has never looked better.

I hardly need to wear any face cream (I used to have such dry skin that I had to apply cream multiple times a day)

I rarely ever wear makeup of any kind except mascara (if you do wear makeup, this will act as a makeup remover too!)

I never have dry skin patches anymore

I almost never, ever break out

And I love not needing to wash my face in the morning. I just put on mascara, brush my teeth, spend 3 minutes on my hair and I’m ready to go!

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How it works

Honestly, I’m not 100% sure because once I saw how great it made my skin look, I really didn’t care!

From the small amount of research I’ve done, I understand that the Castor Oil (here’s a link to different varieties on Amazon) mixed with the Sunflower oil work together to dissolve the oil that has hardened on your skin and is filled with impurities (which then get stuck in your pores). The steam from the washcloth will open your pores, allowing the yucky oil to be easily removed.

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So Why the Update?

For the past 2.5 years since I originally shared this oil cleansing method on my blog, I’ve gotten multiple emails EVERY SINGLE WEEK asking if I’m still using this method to cleanse my face, and if I really love it as much as I said I did.

I totally get why people are skeptical — I was too. After all, our entire lives we’re told to keep oil AWAY from our face — so why would we now want to put oil on our face?

However, I can assure you that Dave and I have been using this exact oil cleansing method every single day for the past 3 years and we have no intention of stopping… ever! In fact, we’ve converted many of our friends and family members to this cleansing method — and I know for a fact there are many of you who are also now using this method!

YAY!

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So that’s the update.

The oil cleansing method is amazing… we love it… and I’d definitely encourage you to give it a try if you’re not happy with your current face wash.

The end!

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55 comments

  1. Organize 365

    10/25/2013

    I am defiantly going to try this! Especially with the dry winter months ahead!

    What do you use to moisturize your body?

    :)
    Lisa

    [Reply]

  2. Heather

    10/25/2013

    I have been using the oil cleansing method for about 2 years. I love it also! I use olive oil instead of sunflower oil because that is what I already had. I also follow up with coconut oil as an extra moisturizer. As soon as our heat pump comes on in the fall, I immediately feel my skin dry out. The 2 methods combined are the only thing that keeps my face from hurting from being too dry.

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  3. Liesel

    10/25/2013

    Yes! I’ve been using this method for the past 2 years, and I LOVE IT. You mentioned all the benefits I have seen in your post. I will add that I use olive oil instead of sunflower oil, and sometimes I just use it straight (without caster oil) or sometimes coconut oil. I also use coconut oil to moisturize my body. I keep a tub of it in the bathroom and just scoop out a little and put it on my legs, feet, and hands after every shower. Helps a ton with my chronic dry feet problem.

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  4. Molly Ekkens

    10/25/2013

    I love the OCM! I converted when it seemed like nothing else worked and I was desperate! It’s a makeup remover, relaxing massage, face wash and moisturizer all in one! My pores have never looked better! An amazingly cheap alternative! I’m so glad I stumbled upon your post a while back, I’m happy you’ve reported that it still works great after 3 years!

    [Reply]

  5. rebandy

    10/25/2013

    I have been using this cleanser for some time . However the washcloth I use to remove it never seem to come clean in the wash and they also have rancid odor.

    [Reply]

    Jen Reply:

    Rebandy, try putting some vinegar in the wash with your towels and washcloths. You can either add it right to the water or put it in one of those Downey balls and toss it in. About a half a cup is good. I do this with every load instead of fabric softener, and it really gets the oils out of my washcloths and towels, plus it leaves them nice and soft.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Yes, we have this problem sometimes too. We actually just got some cheapy wash clothes and we throw them out after 6-9 months.

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    Nathalie Reply:

    try soaking the towels overnigt or 2 days in a plastic container filled with hot water and some spoonfulls of washing soda. It removes grease (and oil is nothing else than grease) wonderfully. Afterwards, wash it as you normally do.

    [Reply]

  6. Plateful of Publix

    10/25/2013

    Your skin looks great! I’ve heard about it but never took the plunge. Thank you Andrea for sharing the details and motivating me to try this!! Hope you have a great weekend!

    [Reply]

  7. Dizee

    10/25/2013

    I use coconut oil on my face & alot of people give me the ‘You-Wash-Your-Face-With-Oil” look. They don’t know what they are missing!

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    Five4five Reply:

    Me too!

    [Reply]

  8. AshleyB

    10/25/2013

    The oil cleansing method is wonderful! Like a little spa moment every day :) Crunchy Betty has a wonderful e-book detailing numerous oil combinations for different skin types, as well as moisturizing options. If you’re still skeptical, this is a great resource!

    [Reply]

  9. Thrifty Mom In Boise

    10/25/2013

    Time to give this a try. I never would have thought. Thanks Andrea.

    [Reply]

  10. Jennifer Casazza

    10/25/2013

    I was wondering if it has affected how your hands feel as well? I will be shopping for the ingredients today. My skin is so dry it’s flaky even after I mositurize. I took Actutane as a teenager and my cystic acne has recently returned. As a result my dermatologist will be putting me on Isotretinoin (Acutane) next month. It will cause my skin and lips to dry out severely so I am hoping this new cleanser will help. This is exactly what I was looking for. Thank you!!

    [Reply]

  11. Leslie

    10/25/2013

    I’ve heard of this cleansing method before and would love to try it! Does the OCM take your make up off, specifically your mascara? I’m hesitant to try, only because I think I would be tugging at the skin around my eyes to get my skin clean.

    [Reply]

    Jen Reply:

    Yes! It is GREAT for removing makeup. When I wipe off the oil, I just do it very gently, and several times.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Yes, it works fabulously as a makeup remover!

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  12. Summer

    10/25/2013

    I too have used this over two years. I was skeptical, but my face looks fantastic! So do all my teenage girls! It has cleared up acne and at 43, my skins looks better than it did in my 20′s! Clearer and definately healthier looking. I am amazed on how it feels and looks. When the girls are stressed, I do it for them. I have them lay down and massage it in, then do multiple hot face towels. You would be amazed how relaxing it is! Mini spa!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Awesome — glad you got your girls to use this too!

    [Reply]

  13. Debbie

    10/25/2013

    So glad you gave this update. I wondered about it from your post so long ago. I am hoping this will work for me and how it will be for a girl living in the hot south. lol Hoping it will clean my pores so I don’t have break outs from sweating all the time!

    [Reply]

  14. Chalyse Meiklejohn

    10/25/2013

    Do you put this over your eyelids as well? I ask because you said it removes makeup, so I was wondering if it’s safe to put on your eyes to remove eye makeup. I’m definitely going to try this!

    [Reply]

    Julie Reply:

    This is what I use to wash and remove my makeup, including eye makeup, every night. It removes the mascara with ease. I have never used anything else.

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    Andrea Reply:

    Yes, mascara is usually the ONLY makeup I wear on a daily basis so it’s the only makeup I need to remove. I rub this cleanser all over my face and eyes and it rubs off with ease — no scrubbing required.

    [Reply]

  15. Stel

    10/25/2013

    Feedback from RSA – I live in dry Gauteng, with some summer rain, but still semi-arid. Out skins are permanently dry.
    Last winter, I read your post about the facial wash and made up a small batch, with canola oil instead of sunflower, and a drop or two of geranium essential oil. I washed with it once or twice, but didn’t like it, BUT – I used it after my bath/shower, like an ordinary moisturizer, just a drop or three on the finger tips. I can’ tell you how much it help during the dry winter months!

    I love it and have since made up a batch with rose oil as well. My skin felt fantastic during winter, an still does.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    yay — thanks for sharing! So glad you found a method that works well for you and your skin :)

    [Reply]

  16. Irina

    10/25/2013

    I’m giving this a try this weekend. I gotta say I’m pretty sceptical, but I’m taking the leap of faith! My skin is a combination of an oily T-zone and dry cheeks (I use two different creams for these different zones daily), so I’m curious how it will work. I will try the “normal skin” version, and adjust accordingly.

    I am also getting a water softener and dechlorinator installed tomorrow – between the two, I’m expecting improvements to my skin!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Well, it’s not too expensive to make so there really isn’t much hurt for just trying!

    Keep in mind though, that this isn’t an overnight miracle product. I did not personally experience this, but I know people who said their skin actually got a little worse before getting better (mine looked better right away). I’d give it at least 2-3 weeks minimum before you totally decide if it works for you.

    Good luck — hope you love it as much as we do!

    [Reply]

  17. Amber

    10/25/2013

    Has anyone with acne prone skin tried this method?

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    I know several people with acne-prone skin who are successfully using this cleanser. Keep in mind however, that it could take a couple weeks (2-3) to really start seeing results. This definitely won’t be an overnight miracle worker :)
    I actually have really dry skin but I did have a good amounts of breakouts before using this oil cleansing method. Dave’s skin is a little more oily than mine and he was having some breakout issues too. Now, we both get occasional pimples, but NOTHING like before.

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    Amber Reply:

    Thank you for the reply Andrea. Your skin is beautiful! I am going to give it a try.

    p.s.
    It’s Castor not Caster. I’m an English teacher ;)

    [Reply]

    Emily Reply:

    My husband used to get bad break outs on his chin and under his bottom lip. After using this method for a few weeks it was completely clear and stayed that way. We’ve been using this method since Andrea posted it two years ago and love it!

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    Michelle Reply:

    My husband had horrible acne as a child … and took medication to clear it up as an adult (but still had breakouts). He uses this method now and swears by it!

    [Reply]

  18. Raquel

    10/25/2013

    I read the original post and see there is no need for a moisturizer but does anyone still use one? Mine contains SPF and I would like to maintain sun protection.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    It just depends on your skin. Often, in the winter, I’ll still put a little of my favorite moisturizer on for extra soft skin — but I usually don’t need to do this in the summer. Also, I know many people who just dap a little more of the oil mixture on their dry skin after washing with it too. Just try a few things until you find what works best for you!

    [Reply]

  19. JoDi

    10/25/2013

    I read about the OCM several years ago and never did try it, but my skin has been flaky lately and nothing seems to help so now is a good time to finally do it!

    [Reply]

  20. Carrie

    10/25/2013

    I used paper towels when using a cream on my face. I buy the paper towels that are 1/2 sheets and tear those in half so it is very inexpensive. I worry that a wash cloth that has an odor after washing also has germs left behind.

    [Reply]

  21. Allison

    10/25/2013

    Hi. I’ve read that coconut oil used over a period of time is actually drying to the skin. Has anyone noticed this? Or heard this? Thanks.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Hey Allison, I’ve actually never used coconut oil before so I won’t be able to help you out on this one. Sorry!

    [Reply]

    Debbie Reply:

    I mixed some up this weekend and love it! I used coconut oil because that’s what I had on hand. The store I bought the castor oil from did not have sunflower oil. I will try to get some next time I happen to see it.
    I can’t believe how great this method is and how wonderful my skin feels.

    [Reply]

  22. Debbie

    10/25/2013

    I’d like to try this, but are you suppose to use a new face towel the next time you wash or can you use the same one from the night before? Otherwise, you must go through a lot of towels.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    We use the same washcloth for a few days (3-5) and then put it in the wash.

    [Reply]

  23. Heather Ratliff

    10/25/2013

    I look forward to trying this. I have bangs and my forehead constantly has mild acne. While it doesn’t show to anyone but me, I’d feel so much better if it wasn’t there! Thanks for posting this.

    [Reply]

    Emily Reply:

    Hi Heather! I posted this on another comment above but wanted to share that my husband used to get bad break outs on his chin and under his bottom lip. After using this method for a few weeks (my face even got worse before it got better as it was so used to being stripped of it’s natural oils everyday and had to adjust) it was completely clear and stayed that way. We’ve been using this method since Andrea posted it two years ago and love it! :)

    [Reply]

  24. Susanne

    10/26/2013

    I also use oil to cleanse my face but I use coconut oil with a little bit of baking soda and a drop of lavender essential oil. Then I wipe with a hot wash cloth and follow-up with pure coconut oil. I have been using this for a couple of years now and I love it!

    [Reply]

  25. Lynn

    10/27/2013

    I went out immediately after work on Friday and got the ingredients and started that night. So far I am amazed my face isn’t oily from it. I’m very excited to see the long term results. Thanks Andrea!

    [Reply]

  26. Debbie

    10/28/2013

    I too went out the following day and bought the castor oil and mixed equal part with the olive oil. Then I read the other links Andrea posted (Crunchy Betty) and read I shouldn’t use it if I’m using something else on my face that has sulfates or sulfides as an ingredient. Otherwise, it would just confuse the heck out of my skin. The link said don’t switch up the OCM with a store bought cleanser that has that ingredient. It’s not a cleanser I use but a serum I put on after cleansing and it has this ingredient, so it scared me to even try it. Does anyone know anything more about this?

    [Reply]

  27. Mary

    10/28/2013

    Oil cleans oil. My grandmother used to use lard or shortening to clean grease out of clothes.

    [Reply]

  28. Bev

    11/01/2013

    Well this was a pretty convincing testimonial! I’m motivated now to give this a try, especially with the winter months coming up when my skin is usually very dry. I was able to find the castor oil easily at Meijer, but didn’t see the sunflower oil. (I’m here in Grand Rapids too). Where are you buying the sunflower oil?

    [Reply]

  29. Roxie

    11/05/2013

    I am day 2 into this. I have extremely oily skin and I always have. It’s kinda weird to be 50 and still have acne (although I’m told it will keep me younger looking! LOL) Anyway, after 2 days of using the oil cleansing method – I’m sold. I was very disappointed with how my face was looking and how my makeup was looking at the end of the day. So far, at the end of the day it looks like I just put it on! Bonus! Cautiously optimistic! Thanks Andrea!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    yay –thanks for sharing, and hopefully it keeps working well for you. If you start to have any issues, try altering the mixture a little bit — more castor oil or more sunflower oil — to see if that changes anything with your skin!

    [Reply]

  30. April

    11/20/2013

    I’ve been using this method with success for a while now but want to know if you have any tips on how to best clean your washcloths of the oil and makeup from the cleansing? After using them with the oils, they just don’t seem to get clean, even using hot water in the wash cycle and a heavy duty detergent. Any ideas?

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Hey April, glad the oil cleansing method is working well for you!

    You can try washing your rags with normal detergent but adding vinegar to the rinse cycle. Also, I will tell you that I get new wash clothes every year — just because they do get really oily :)

    [Reply]

  31. Traci

    02/11/2014

    I really love your haircut… I NEED to go see your hairdresser!

    [Reply]

  32. Erin

    05/12/2014

    Is this the same sunflower oil you can cook with?

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    yup, the exact same stuff!

    [Reply]