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08 Sep

Can You Really Make Your Own Face Oil At Home?

Posted by Bikini Owner in diy face oils

Can You Really Make Your Own Face Oil At Home?

I've long been a DIY at-home beauty mixer.

I stopped buying body scrubs years ago, when I realized that Fresh's amazing Sugar Body Scrub was really just demerara sugar and oil. I do all my manicures and pedicures at home, since a steady hand and a blow dryer are really all you need to achieve salon-worthy digits. But cleansers, especially of the facial variety, are always something that I've ponied up actual dollars for, whether at the drugstore or the beauty counter. For some reason the science of getting my skin clean after a grimy city day seemed best left to professionals, even after switching to face oils a few years back (I've found my skin is clearer, softer, and smoother when I skip the suds).

When my editor asked me if I was game for trying to formulate a DIY face oil, I was intrigued: Oil is a pretty basic element—even plain old olive oil can swipe makeup and dirt off your skin in a pinch (it's pretty heavy, so I wouldn't exactly recommend it, but it does remove the stuff on the surface of your skin). Since I've been a bit caught up in the whole coconut oil beauty craze,  I thought I'd give it a shot. I already use extra virgin coconut oil as a moisturizer and hair conditioner — maybe, just maybe, it would work just as well as my fancy Laura Mercier oil cleanser in sweeping the day's bronzer and mascara off of my face?

Though much more lightweight than most formulated oil cleansers, coconut oil has all the properties that you want: It's emollient, antibacterial, loaded with antioxidants, and is a totally natural product. You can buy a whole lot of it for a lot less than a fancy brand oil cleanser. So it seemed like a good place to start. 

After decanting some of my Trader Joe's extra virgin coconut oil into a small, travel-size pump bottle to make application easier, I first tried it as a cleanser on a day when I'd only been wearing sunscreen and a bit of bronzer. I used a cotton pad, swirling it around my face and noting that it was definitely picking up the creamy bronzer, applied with a stick, that I'd used on my cheeks and eyelids. After a quick rinse with warm water, my face felt soft and clean, and I smelled pretty tropical. That evening, I took to the Internet, the oracle of all things DIY, to see what other people were using in at-home oil cleanser concotions. It turned out that there were many, many different recipes for making an oil cleanser at home — many formulated specifically to treat certain skin types, just like the stuff you buy in the store. After a bit of clicking and reading, I zeroed in on some formulas that used argan oil as a base.

Richer than coconut oil, but just as nutritive and nourishing, argan oil is another moisturizer I keep on hand, using it on my skin after showering and in my hair to add shine and deep condition. One source that I found online blended argan oil with specialty oils used for their curative properties: borage oil for taming redness, rosehip oil for anti-aging properties. In addition to the carrier and curing oils, essential oils were blended in to add fragrance and added organic power.

One of my favorite moisturizing oils is BeautyCounter's Lustro Face Oil,  which harnesses the powers of sea buckthorn, argan, rosehip and grapeseed oils, to leave skin super soft and pampered. I figured that since all those oils were so nice when left on my skin, they'd probably be just as beneficial when used as a cleanser. I had borage oil at home because I'd used it to treat my daughter's eczema, so I blended some with an argan oil base, also adding some chamomile essential oil because I find the scent to be calming, and I know it can have soothing effects on tired skin. Into an old dropper vial it all went, and that evening I used this much richer formula to wash my face, adding a few drops of water to turn the oil milky. I prefer to use oil on dry skin to really deep clean, and this home-spun version really made my tinted moisturizer, bronzer, blush, eye shadow and luminizer disappear with just a few sweeps of a damp cotton pad. The only thing it was unsucessful in budging was my eyebrow gel, which really needs a heavy-duty eye makeup remover to budge it.

Hm. I'd been spending lots and lots of money on cleansing oil when the ingredients to make it myself were all in my medicine cabinet? Who knew?

While I still have a large bottle of my trusty Laura Mercier oil cleanser on my bathroom shelf, I find myself reaching for my homemade one just as often, as I love the chamomile scent and adore the way the argan oil leaves my skin without a need for further moisturizing. If you're interested in giving it a shot yourself at home, here's the simple recipe I followed, via Mrs. Happy Homemaker.  If you're new to oil cleansing, you might find you have to play around with the base oil to find one that suits your skin perfectly, but I'd recommend trying grapeseed or argan oil first, as they're neutral enough to blend but have really nice soothing effects on skin even without the addition of additional oils. 

1st ingredient, Base oil (you fill up your container between 1/2 & 3/4 of the way with this)

argan oil (great for anti-aging – perfect for all skin types, including acne prone skin)

2nd Ingredient, Nourishing Oil (add second, filling up container to almost full with it) 

borage oil (really high in oleic acid, best for oily & acne prone skin)

3rd Ingredient, Essential Oil (top off your nearly full bottle with this, you don’t need much) 

chamomile (great for all skin types, very healing)

rose (absolutely incredible for aging skin, but expensive)

palmarosa (great for acne-prone skin and aging skin)

lemongrass (brightening and toning – best for normal, oily, or acne prone skin)

rosemary (best for oily acne-prone skin)

Read more at Mrs. Happy Homemaker.