Before I get into what products you should be using and how to use them, I’ll start by stating that clear skin begins on the INSIDE. We’ve all purchased the most expensive creams before, only to find out that they don’t work that much better than its drugstore counterparts. But I’m sure you’ve noticed the times when you changed your DIET, your WATER INTAKE, and cleansed your ORGANS is when you saw a drastic change! Your skin is an organ, and the health of your liver in particular is made known through the skin. Pimples, cysts, zits, blackheads, whiteheads…these all occur for several different reasons including hormone imbalances, bacteria, dead skin cells and the buildup of these factors.
The ties between our inner organ health and our skin are very close. Our faces do truly reflect what’s happening inside our bodies. I use a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) chart every single time I get a break out so that I can become aware of what’s going wrong inside, tune in to my daily habits that might be contributing to the issues, then holistically treat what’s going on.
I normally get breakouts/pimples between my eyebrows and right above the lips on the sides. According to traditional Chinese medicine, these areas correspond to the liver and intestines in particular. Normally these pimples pop up right after a night of drinking and at times when my diet is poor. Paying attention to your body can help to keep habits like these in check!
Oil Is Your Friend
The very profitable skin care industry has us believing that we have oily skin and need to rid it of oil entirely and replace it with unnatural and toxic, oil-free substitutions in order to avoid blemishes.There are plenty of reasons why we have so much trouble with mainstream skin care products, but two, in particular, lead the pack. Companies make all of these “acne washes” and “acne creams” and acne this, acne that. NONE of that will work. These products will make your skin feel nice for the time being, but ALWAYS contain ALCOHOL to keep the customer coming back!! Eventually, they all dry out your skin to keep you hooked!These products strip the oil out of our skin, leaving it irritated and struggling to repair itself by quickly replacing the stripped away oil. This leaves us in a cycle of feeling tight and dry followed by feeling greasy and oily. Each time we strip the oil away, our skin over-compensates for the lack of moisture by creating more oil. On top of the drying effects, these products are heavily-scented. Added fragrance is one of the top skin irritants, and strangely enough, even the so-called “unscented” products usually contain fragrance. See for yourself and check the labels.
A few things you can do to help clear your skin before even considering what products to use are:
1. STOP STRESSING! Stress affects every organ and will cause a systemic inflammation reaction in your body and will without a doubt show in your skin.
2. Stop using anything on your skin that isn’t natural. Cleansers, moisturizers, and makeup composed of toxic chemical ingredients are overwhelming to your delicate face. If you wear makeup, choose a mineral formula that has minimal ingredients. And don’t wear makeup every day, you need to let your skin breathe.
3. Drink water! Nothing will clean your body like water will! If you don’t drink enough, your skin will break out because all of the toxins literally resting in your body instead of being flushed out. Drink half of your body weight in ounces or more a day. I drink distilled water only, the purest water in the world.
4. DON’T BE AFRAID OF OIL!
Do you remember the principle we learned in high school chemistry that LIKE dissolves LIKE? The Oil Cleansing Method operates on the premise that oil dissolves oil. Your skin naturally lubricates itself with oil as this is the body’s natural protective mechanism. Do not be afraid of applying oil to your face. Oil, alone, will not produce blemishes. Your skin naturally produces oil because it needs it. It is there for the benefit of your skin, allowing it to function properly. Not only does your natural oil help lubricate, but it also heals, protects, and moisturizes your skin. Properly functioning skin is beautiful, clear, and glowing. Learning to work with your skin, not against it, will save you a tremendous amount of frustration, stress, and money.
I have a client who was initially skeptical about the idea of using oil to cleanse her skin due to her believing that she already had oily skin tell me what a difference she sees in her skin after using the oil cleansing method.
Use the Oil Cleansing Method in the evening, prior to bed. You won’t need to deep cleanse in the morning if you’re waking up with skin that was thoroughly cleansed the night before. Keep in mind though, that if you are sleeping with dirty or makeup caked skin, the Oil Cleansing Method, along with any other cleansing method, is not going to work to keep your skin clear and balanced. Be diligent about washing the day away before going to bed and ensure your pillowcases are always clean. In the morning, a quick wipe with a warm or cold washcloth or a rinse in the shower before applying toner and moisturizer will be more than enough. Over-cleansing your skin will serve only to irritate and cause excess oil production.
How to Do the Oil Cleansing Method
Start with saturating your washcloth with the hot water, wring it all out, then cover your face with the steamy hot cloth to open your pores. Keep it on until it cools down a bit.
Use a quarter-sized amount of your oil cleanser in the palm of your hand.
Emulsify in your hands to warm the oil and smooth it over your DRY face.
Begin massaging your cleansing oil into your face. This will remove sunscreen, makeup, dirt, and other impurities, so there is no need to use a makeup remover or wash your face before the massage.
Using slow, firm motions across the skin, massage the oil deeply into your pores. Take your time and focus on your problem areas. Work the oil into your pores so that blackheads and impurities can be dissolved and steamed away.
Stress is one of the major causes of hormone-induced breakouts, so claim this short time for yourself. Think of it as your nightly spa ritual.
As you’re massaging, let your mind drift off to something calming and breathe deeply. Take this time to relax and release some of the stress from the day. Breathe deeply and take your time. Give the oil enough time to work on dissolving the impurities in your pores and give yourself enough time to unwind.
Once you’re satisfied that you’ve dissolved the grime and you’re feeling calm, pick up your washcloth and saturate it in clean, steamy water. Again, you want the water to be hot enough to soften your pores and remove the oil. Cool water will not soften your pores, nor will it remove the oil efficiently. We’re not scalding our skin, we’re steaming to influence our pores into releasing the oil carrying the impurities.
Hold the washcloth to cover your face. Allow it to stay until it cools. You will feel your pores softening and releasing the impurities. Gently wipe the oil away and rinse the washcloth well in hot, running water. Hold the washcloth to your face again, allowing it to cool. Wipe gently, rinse thoroughly, and repeat two or three more times. Avoid any temptation to scrub, as you’ll find it’s completely unnecessary and your skin will be soft, smooth, and free of flakes without the additional manual exfoliation and irritation that will result. Impurities, dead skin cells, and bacteria will be gently wiped away.
Have no fear of the oil, as the steamy washcloth will remove it. The castor oil in this cleansing oil, though it is an oil, will help with the removal of the other oils. It is a supreme cleansing oil and, despite being thick, it is easily removed with warm water. If your skin feels tight, take a tiny drop of your oil cleanser or face oil, rub it between your clean hands and pat it onto your damp skin. Gently massage any oil residue into your skin, so there is no film of oil left sitting on the surface.
Important Notes to Remember
The oil cleansing method should be done regularly, but not too frequently. Once at night is enough. Don’t be surprised if you find you’ve unblocked an oil flow for the first few days. You may notice this in the form of whiteheads. Think of the oil cleansing method as a detox for the skin. Once you remove the old plugs from your pores, they will begin functioning properly again. Perfect skin won’t happen overnight, and while it should take a few massages to achieve your goal, you should notice a considerable difference in your skin after the first oil cleansing massage. Give your skin a few days to adjust and adapt to being clean and clear of blockages. Please understand that the new oil coming from your skin is actually a good sign and will balance out shortly. If you experience redness and irritation, that will subside.
If you’ve ever tried the Oil Cleansing Method, share your thoughts on what worked and didn’t for you.