I've been oil cleansing for over two months now. I'm actually pretty proud of myself for sticking with it, since much of it requires me not being to lazy to; wash lots of hand towels, mix my own product, drive an hour to get said product that is located on a very busy street that I typically avoid at all costs, not skip nights that I stay up too late and have no energy (more nights than not), clean up messy oil spills, not cut short the process itself (i've been tempted to wash the oil off after with soap just so I can get to bed already). Despite my lazy tendencies I've managed to keep up with the same routine. I've even kept up with the charcoal masks every other week or so.
I have been using Jojoba oil as a moisturizer, and while I like it, it doesn't really seem to be enough for my skin. I have these small dry patches (which are of course oily at the same time). So I started looking for a recipe to make my own moisturizer. I found this blog Crunchy Betty. This girl sells stuff on Etsy that looks amazing, but is also very free with her recipes. In fact if you buy something from her, the recipe is included. I decided to try my own thing and used her directions as a guide. I went with a list of oils to look for (not knowing what would be available) and bought a few of the ones that looked the most promising to treat acne. I also picked up a few dropper bottles so I could finally make myself a larger batch of cleanser (yay no more constant mixing) and also have a batch of moisturizer (now I don't have a million bottles of oil surrounding my sink).
So the moisturizer. Here's what I came up with. I filled the bottle 2/3rds of the way with Jojoba oil (base oil). Filled it almost the rest of the way with an even(ish) amount of Neem oil and Tamanu oil (extra nourishing bonus oil). I finished it off with a few drops each of Peppermint oil and Rosemary oil (essential oil). Mixing it was...well...lets just say the people who package these oils must not have thought about the oil leaving the bottle and what sort of mess it would make. The Rosemary oil ended up being a little more than the few drops suggested, but not on purpose, and possibly a lot of that ended up all over my hands and table. Nevertheless, I got it all in one bottle and mixed it up and the result felt quite nice on my face. The smell though...Neem oil has a strong smell and is kind of like someone mashed up garlic and peanut butter. I like both of those smells, but not so much together. However maybe because I like them both its something I can tolerate. I can see how some people wouldn't be able too though, kind of like me and trying to use vinegar in things without feeling like throwing up the whole time.
I don't know how much better this moisturizer will be than just straight Jojoba, but it felt good going on, and still does now hours later, so at the very least it can't be worse. The cleanser is just a bigger batch of the same stuff I've been using. I'm a little worried about the glass bottles because I'm a giant klutz and once I have oil on my hands...they've already had a few close calls just making it from the kitchen to the bathroom.
The oil cleansing in general has been going well. I'm thinking about changing up my routine to every night and normal cleanser in the mornings, but I think I want to see how my face reacts to this new moisturizer first. I haven't seen any dramatic improvements in breakout quantity, but I do feel like they are a little more controlled now and maybe even aren't lasting quite as long. They are still overlapping though so its not like I have had any perfectly clear days or weeks. My skin health seems better. For example, even though I still feel a little oily sometimes its not as bad And my whole face seems to be doing the same things instead of the usual, dry over here, drowning in oil over there...with exception of my neck thats decided to go through puberty again since it skipped the fun when it was actually happening.
A couple of big things I've noticed though. I've had pretty much non stop cystic acne in four places on my face. Two on each side of my face on my cheek bones and then two under my chin on the sides (pretty much right where my hair starts to hide things) I can't even remember the time when I haven't had anything in those four places, but they are actually clearing up. The ones under my chin were pretty big (but well hidden thankfully unless I spent much time looking up) they're still sort of there, discoloration, and kind of looking inflamed, but the swollen feeling (like there's something huge just under the surface that will never actually come out) is mostly gone. The spots on my cheeks weren't as bad but have been there longer. They have actually completely cleared up once or twice. I think this is enough for me to say that oil cleansing is having a positive effect. It might not be a miracle cure, but I never really expected it to be. I said in the beginning if it only didn't get worse it would still be worth it. Well, if the worst places on my face are getting better (even if the rest only slightly better or the same) then I would say its a success. At least for now...