It seems counter-intuitive doesn’t it, especially for those new to understanding their skin and how skincare products work. But there’s a number of reasons why you should try washing your face with an oil cleanser rather than the more conventional product types.
Our Skin’s Natural Sebum
Producing sebum is our body’s natural way of moisturising and caring for our skin. Not only does it moisturise and hydrate our skin but it is integral to the health of our acid mantle, feeds the healthy micro-bacteria in our skin’s microbiome. (In case you didn’t know, we have trillions of micro-bacteria with over 300 different varieties living in our skin), is essential to the skin's wound-healing response and acts as a natural sun protector. Sebum is one of the best skincare products in existence and it comes out of our own pores. Pretty cool hey!
And this is exactly the reason why cleansing with oils, especially with a well made oil cleanser that has a good balance of fatty acids, can be an excellent investment into your skin health.
Surfactants in Cleansers Damage Your Skin's Ecosystem
Most cleansers are made with surfactants which are really effective at removing dirt and grease from our skin, a little too effective! They strip away our awesome natural sebum along with other beneficial components such as; proteins, amino acids and hyaluronic acid.
Surfactants in cleansers also carry on causing damage after we wash as not all of them rinse away. Some cling on to proteins causing them to denature (change shape) and swell, causing irritation. All this leads to unhappy and out of balance dry skin. Ironically, this process is what often creates oily skin. Our skin, like the rest of our body, is an incredibly sophisticated and intelligent machine, so it over produces sebum to take care of the damage we have done while cleansing.
A true old faithful, oil cleansing dates back to the Roman times.. After a hard day building baths and aqueducts the wealthy Roman would cover themselves with olive oil, which was removed by a slave using a strigil (blunt bladed knife) along with any dead skin and dirt. She or he would then go into a steam room to open up the pores, before finishing off with a dip in the pool. All sounds a bit decadent but this approach to cleaning our faces is quite simple and beneficial in the modern day.
Oil dissolves oil and it will pick up all the dirt and stuff you don’t want hanging around on your face. It will do this without damaging the microbiome or acid mantle. It helps to balance your natural sebum production and can condition and moisturise your skin at the same time. Everybody’s skin is different and some people's skin does not agree with natural oil products, this could be for a number of reasons including the other products they use on their skin. But if you still haven't tried oil cleansers or serums don’t be worried about them causing spots and outbreaks, many things can cause this and oil makes up a small part of these.
If you are wondering about how to best use an Oil Cleanser read our How To Oil Cleanse Post
Our Reunion Cleanser is made from a blend of five organic oils; Jojoba, Castor, Camellia, Olive and Apricot. And a gentle blend of essential oils where the star ingredient is Geranium Bourbon from the Isle of Réunion. It has many fans and receives excellent feedback, especially from people who suffer from outbreaks 🙂
Cleansing with oils also gives you the option to incorporate facial massage into your skincare routine. This is a nice way to relax in the evening before bed whilst helping to improve circulation and reducing any tension or inflammation.