So guess what? I have a little secret. A teeny weeny secret. Can I trust you to keep it safe and sound? Yes? Well come over here with your bad self. *Leans into your ear and whispers*
I dropped the soap.
Yep. I dropped it. I stopped using conventional facial soap to cleanse my face. That’s right. You heard me.
I. Stopped. Using. Soap.
You may be wondering how this is possible. You may also be wondering what I mean by “conventional soap” and how that is different from soap in general. Well, sweetie, grab a chair. Because we are about to dive in and wash our faces together. Scrub-a-dub-dub.
You Can Get “Squeaky Clean” Skin Without Conventional Soaps
What do you think people in the olden days were using before everything became commercialized? I’ll wait. 🧐 Still stumped? I’ll get into that answer later. But first, we need to discuss ingredients and how they affect your skin health. Carry on.
Conventional soaps likely have some form of this ingredient:
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate/Sodium Laureth Sulfate
A shorthand version of this long overly-scientific term is “SLS” which is easier to pronounce AND prevents tongue twisters. Hooray!
So we know the name…but what is it? Well, SLS in this context is definitely not a Mercedes-Benz, but it is very common in beauty products. For starters, it is a cleansing agent. There is a lot of controversy about sulfates, which you can learn more about here, but they aren’t necessary a horrible thing. They’re not the monster living under your bed. But, for your skin and your face soaps, if it is high in your ingredient list, you may want to reconsider using it on a daily basis.
Why? Well, in my experience, the conventional face washes don’t leave my skin feeling that nice. If anything, after doing some research I learned that some face soaps can be really drying to the skin because it disrupts the pH levels on your skin. That’s actually why most skincare experts recommend using toner because it is supposed to balance out your skin. Either way, I was tired of my basic cleanser I used from the drugstore, and decided to try a different route.
Hair Grease. Yep. Even the grease after you fry up something for dinner, that’s good too.
Sike! (Do people still say that?) JUST KIDDING. Please don’t put no hair grease or chicken/fish grease on your face. Do better. But what does that have in common with what is my real facial cleansing alternative?
Oils… and lots of it.
Oil cleansing. Oh, my glorious method to cleaning up this face of mine. It’s really a bomb way to get your skin really clean, but still maintain that bounce and softness to your skin. Let’s get into how oil cleansing has replaced my soap habit.
Oil cleansing is basically washing your face with oil and using a damp, steamy (warm not hot!) wash cloth to wipe it off. Its pretty simple in the definition but there is more to it. Not all oils are the same, which is why I love this method so much because you can mix and match. If you’ve had any experience with oils, you know that there are some that works for others and some that is a nightmare for them.
I personally like using castor oil + a carrier oil. A carrier oil is basically a base oil used to dilute a heavier oil and/or essential oils before placing it on the skin. My carrier oil of choice is whatever I have on hand, so I alternate between Olive Oil, Almond Oil and Avocado Oil. My mixing ratio is 1:1 so I’m basically putting one part castor oil and one part carrier oil in a small bottle before I begin the oil cleansing. For example, if I had an 8 ounce bottle container, I’d put 4 ounces of castor oil and 4 ounces of carrier oil. Simple, right? Now let’s get into why I love castor oil and how this CANNOT be replaced in this method.
The star is castor oil for me because 1) it deeply penetrates the skin which removes impurities and acts as a cleansing agent, yet leaving it hydrated and 2) keeps my eyebrows and eyelashes from being bald. Now who doesn’t love that?
So we know the benefits, but lets get into how to do the oil cleansing method. Shall I do the honors? Take some notes.
How to Oil Cleanse Your Face
Open your pores. Splash your face with warm water. We want to open those pores up for the deep cleansing we’re about to do. Apply the oil. Pour about a quarter size amount of oil on your hand and rub that onto your skin in upwards circular motions. Think of this as a Swedish massage to your face. You want to work this in your face evenly and gently. Let it sit. Allow this to sink into your pores for a couple minutes. This is the time I would grab a wash cloth (specifically used for my face) and soak it in hot water, wring it out, and prep it for the next step. Which is… Wipe yourself down. Place the washcloth on your whole face and press it in. Feel the warmth and the steam penetrate the top layer of your skin. Doesn’t it feel lovely? Wipe off the oil. Rinse your washcloth and repeat the previous step. Look at that face. Your skin is clean. It has a radiance to it. Touch it. Feel how soft that is? That’s all you, boo.
Congratulations, you have successfully washed your face.
Now it doesn’t end there. Let me give you my realistic routine of when I do the oil cleansing method. I do this method whenever I wear a full face of makeup (or any makeup really, I don’t like clogged pores). That would mean this is a nighttime cleansing routine for me. In the morning, I wash my face using a different type of cleansing technique which you can find in an older post.
Oil Cleansing has really changed my skin and saved my wallet as well. This serves as a makeup remover, anti-aging product, and an eyebrow and eyelash serum. Bonus: it also has a host of other benefits that are usually in other skincare products I would’ve had to buy separately if I was still using conventional soaps. Bloop! More money for me or whatever. 🤑
I know that there is a major misconception that in order to get super-duper clean skin, we need something with a heavy lather that has all the bubbles leaving our skin dry to touch. If that works for you and doesn’t trigger acne (or make your acne even worse) then by all means, flourish on with your bad self! But for me, this method has really given me a much more satisfactory result in how clear my skin is, fading dark spots, has increased my overall radiance, and leaves my skin softer to the touch. Give it a try for a week, and see the difference in your complexion.
Sending Oily Regards,
P.S. — Love this content? Please share with a friend. Let’s keep the movement going!