Maybe you’re one of those people with a rigorous and multi-step skincare routine, or maybe your routine consists of using whatever bar of soap is in the shower and heading out the door. Regardless, there’s a pretty good chance you’re missing one cleansing step that could be a gamechanger for your skin: oil.
When most of us think of cleansing, oil is the farthest thing from our minds. We think of scrubbing to get as much dirt, grime, and oil out of our skin as possible. Unfortunately, that’s rarely the recipe for healthy skin; over-cleansed skin is actually a recipe for imbalance.
At best, it leads to skin that’s too dry to even absorb or benefit from any other serums or moisturizers you may be using, causing them to just sit on the surface. At worst, it can trigger your skin to overproduce sebum, leading to breakouts.
Oils, on the other hand, can be extremely effective in lifting oil from skin, while retaining moisture. This means much more balanced skin that’s less prone to rashes and breakouts.
If that sounds interesting to you, here are some great products to try! Not all oil-based cleansers are the same, and certain formulas are better suited for some skin types than others, but if you find the one that’s right for you, it can change your skincare routine for good!
Tatcha Pure One Step Camellia Oil Cleanser
All skin types
If you’re skeptical about adding oil-based cleansers into your routine, the Tatcha Camellia Oil Cleanser is for you. I can’t sing its praises enough after discovering it during a really terrible skin catastrophe of my own last year.
The formula starts as a very light oil, which you massage into dry skin. It turns milky when you add water and, when rinsed off, leaves behind completely clean skin and zero residue. But don’t be deceived by that… thanks to the Camellia oil, the formula contains a rich blend of omega 3, 6 and 9, as well as a cocktail of vitamins, which help even out skin texture, and are especially great for acne-prone, or uneven skin.
The only minor drawback is that it might take a little extra product, or a second go, in order to completely remove serious makeup, but as an everyday cleanser, this product is pure brilliance no matter what skin type you are.
Farmacy Green Clean
All skin types
If you do have a lot of makeup to remove, or need a little bit deeper of a cleanse, look no further than Farmacy Green Clean. No matter what skin type you have, you just cannot go wrong with this product! It’s one of the most effective, efficient formulas on the market right now.
Thanks to the fact that the two main oils in the formula are sunflower and ginger root, it’s hydrating, while also being anti-inflammatory and effective in eliminating bacteria. It also contains turmeric, which is great for calming down pores, and papaya enzymes, which help exfoliate.
All in all, used on dry skin, even with a face full of makeup, you just massage it in, and then rinse it off to take off every trace of makeup or grime (even stubborn mascara), leaving behind zero residue, and just clean, bright skin.
I particularly love Green Clean for its simplicity of use: no need to remove eye makeup separately, no need to cleanse after… just massage in, rinse, and you’re done. The only bad news is that you’ll never have a good excuse to sleep in your makeup again!
Clinique Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm
Combination or Dry Skin
If you feel like your skin is freaking out (or what is technically termed as “combination” skin) that’s breaking out and oily in certain places, but simultaneously feels parched or stripped, Clinique Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm is a fantastic option.
The balm is a wonder when it comes to removing every trace of makeup, but it also contains safflower oil: a skin powerhouse. It contains omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids, which are fantastic for fighting inflammation, locks in moisture, balances sebum, and, to top it all off, is completely non-comedogenic (read: doesn’t clog pores. at. all.)
The only down side to the formula is that, once rinsed off, it leaves behind a slight residue. Based on your preference or skin type, that just means you might follow the balm with a mild cleanser. Don’t worry- you’ll still get all the benefits you’re after!
Drunk Elephant Slaai Makeup-Melting Butter Cleanser
It would be hard to find a more action-packed cleansing balm! The Slaai cleanser pretty much has everything you can think of. It contains an entire proprietary blend of potent oils, including some of the obvious candidates like safflower, sunflower, and almond, but also fruit and seed oils. The product is also sold with a “Bamboo Booster” which can be mixed in for exfoliation.
In a nutshell, Slaai is insanely nourishing, and it’s also very very good at removing even the most stubborn of makeup.
But (and this is a BIG but), it’s for skin that really needs nourishing. It leaves behind quite a bit of product (though, again, it does get rid of makeup beautifully), which is great if you have dry skin, but definitely not a great pick if your skin is oily, or even normal, unless you’re going to think of the oils left behind as a weekly overnight mask.
If your skin needs the extra moisture, though, you really couldn’t do better than this.
Pure Coconut Oil
If you’re not looking to invest in anything new right now, you can do your skin a favor and use coconut oil as a pre-cleanse step to help protect its moisture barrier and integrity.
All you have to do is take a little coconut oil and massage it thoroughly onto dry skin. Then, go ahead and cleanse as usual.
The only thing to be careful of is that you’re using the purest coconut oil you can get your hands on, otherwise you run the risk of clogged pores or irritated skin… and nobody needs that!