Oil Cleansers

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Maria Teresa Moneo |

It seems like almost every skin care brand offers an oil cleanser, and you're curious about how they work and if you should use one. Oil cleansers, especially those formulated to be rinsed off easily, can be a wonderful choice for your skincare routine, whether you use them on their own or as part of a double cleanse.

What is an oil cleanser?

Oil cleansers are another option for removing makeup, dirt that accumulates on the skin throughout the day, and excess sebum. What makes them different is how they work compared to traditional water-soluble cleansers with different textures: cream, gel or foam.

Traditional cleansers primarily clean with surfactants, which are ingredients that interact with sebum, makeup or dirt on the skin and allow them to rinse away with water. Well-formulated cleansers deposit hydrating ingredients into the skin, making it feel soft instead of tight or dry.

How do oils clean the skin?

Oils not only moisturize and nourish the skin, but they also function as solvents (which are a group of ingredients that can dissolve similar substances). Oils are a special type of solvent as they are lipophilic, meaning they are naturally attracted to other oils, such as the sebum our skin produces and the ingredients used in oil-like makeup. This is what allows an oil cleanser to quickly dissolve makeup and excess sebum, while soothing, softening and hydrating the skin at the same time.

Surfactants and other types of ingredients recognized as emulsifiers come into play, since they allow the oils and what they have dissolved to combine and rinse easily with water.

Benefits of an oil cleanser

The main benefits of oil cleansers are:

  • They provide quick and easy removal of all types of makeup and sun protection factors.
  • They leave the skin soft and smooth.
  • They are compatible with any other cleaner you choose to double clean.

The best oil cleansers are rich in ingredients like glycerides , which are multifunctional, removing dirt from the skin, while replenishing what the skin needs, hydration and softness.

What skin type is an oil cleanser best for?

All skin types can use an oil cleanser formulated so that it can be rinsed off with water without leaving any residue on the skin. Whether or not you should use an oil cleanser comes down to two things: personal preference and how much long-wear makeup you use.

A good oil cleanser can eliminate the need to use a separate eye makeup remover, so you can get the cleaning job done more quickly.

We recommend some oil cleansers

Pro Balance Pure Cleansing Oil by Dr. Ceuracle: Gentle cleansing oil on the skin, but perfect for removing waterproof makeup. It is formulated with sunflower seed oil that gently and effectively removes all traces of makeup and impurities, leaving skin clean and fresh.

Make-Up Cleansing Oil by Segle Clinical: Gentle makeup-removing cleanser that gently cleanses and removes makeup from the skin of the face and eyes, effectively removing all traces of makeup, sunscreen, pollution, sweat, etc. It is formulated with squalane, pure sweet almond, avocado, soy and calendula extract oils.

Oil Based Cleanser from Transparent Lab: Cleanse and remove makeup from your face with Oil Based Cleanser, the gentle cleansing oil that will improve your daily facial routine, for clean, soft, silky and hydrated skin.

Vitamin E-Raser Cleansing Oil by Meisani: Lightweight oil-based cleanser that helps gently remove makeup, dirt, sebum and impurities that accumulate on the skin. This oil is made from a blend of botanical rice bran, baobab and olive oils, which together make up more than 79% of the composition

Ginseng Cleansing Oil from Beauty of Joseon: Makeup removing oil that cleanses the skin, removing impurities, makeup and cosmetic residue. It is based on 50% soybean oil, which has a softening and regenerating effect. The addition of ginseng extract has antioxidant and firming properties