Oil Cleansing Method (OCM) reviews

Oil Cleansing Method (OCM)
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Oil Cleansing Method (OCM)


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Oil Cleansing Method (OCM)

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Oil Cleansing Method (OCM)

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Be aware of what you're getting into...
Reviewed on November 23, 2015

Oh, how I wish the OCM had worked for me. I was completely committed for over 2 months. I'm 30 y/o and have combination oily/dry skin. I tend to only breakout on my chin (leads me to believe it's hormonal). Before starting this new method, I had just switched to using from using Proactiv to an organic blend of black african soap w/ a tiny amount of salicylic acid. Then, I'd use Clinique moisturizer. I wanted to try to wean myself off of these acne products, thinking, hey, now I'm 30, I probably don't need these chemicals, I'm probably just reliant on them. I did that for 3 months and would have maybe 1 small zit a week, sometimes maybe a cystic pimple, treatable with on the spot Proactiv lotion. So, I was pretty please that my skin was doing decently without needing daily acne treatment. I wanted to take it a step further and eliminate the need for the lotion (has some harmful chemicals in it and just thought it would be simpler, less products). Here's how it went:

Week 1: Coconut oil 2Xday, no steaming...beautiful skin

Week 2: Coconut oil 2Xday, not steaming...horrible huge cystic zits...3-6 at a time. I understand the whole purging thing, but this was insane. Then I read coconut oil bad for acneic skin so I then I switched to jojoba.

Week 3-4: Jojoba Oil 2Xday...getting better

Week 4-5: Jojoba Oil 2Xday ...horrible huge cystic zits, again only on my chin, tried adding the steaming method

Week 5-6: Jojoba Oil, Castor Oil, Tea Tree Oil and Tamanu oil blend, with steaming method 2X day...mostly tons of zits again, sometimes I'd have a couple days of freedom, and I'd think my skin was finally adjusting.

Week 6-7: continued Jojoba Oil, Castor Oil, Tea Tree Oil and Tamanu oil blend...realized that I now I 25 (yes 25) new ugly acne scars on my face. I started spot treating them with Proactiv again as it was just out of control.

Week 7-8: Did OCM only 1Xday, back to African black soap in the morning. Still breaking out.

Week 9: I quit. It was destroying my chin. This scarring is going to take months (years?) to heal (I have fair skin and it heals slowly). I'm now trying baking soda as my face wash, using a jojoba oil blend as a moisturizer for everywhere but my chin, proactiv on my chin, and my old Clinique moisturizer (just bought a Derm-e moisturizer today with NO oil...again, this Clinque moisturizer has some questionable chemicals in it.) Been 5 days and totally zit-free.

So there's my (probably way too) detailed account. I have gone totally DIY/organic with all my cleaning and body products my last few months, so believe me, it hurt to give up on the OCM. But you know what...these chemicals, that I've been using my whole life, never did even a fraction of the damage that the OCM did. I'm going to just hope this new organic moisturizer doesn't cause break-outs and call it a day. I really tried my best here with troubleshooting. Would I recommend the OCM? Well, it works for some people, and I'm not sure I even regret it as it could have been great, but maybe I should have quit sooner. Maybe it just sucks for people with hormonal acne on their chin and jawline? Fair skin? Everyone's different.

not just any oil people...use the right oils for your skin
Reviewed on November 17, 2015

I see that it's a hit and miss with this OCM thing. I included the list of oils you should avoid below. Hope it helps! I tried it about a year ago and it worked and then I stopped(stupid me) because I came back with bad acne. now I am going to start again. I think depending on the oils you use. It may not work for everyone because everyone's skin is different. but at least it gives you a better guidelines to which oils you should be using instead of splashing your face with just anything. I will NEVER use coconut oil on my skin, i have tried it without researching it, it's horrible for oily skin(at least my skin) so I did so much more research and I came across this article that talks about the different oils and their properties. so basically oily/acne prone skin people need to stop using Oils high in Oleic Acid(see list below) and start using oils high in Linoleic Acid(see list below). Our oily skin is so unbalanced, that is why we break out, we produce more Oleic acid than Linoleic acid. so we need to find a balance.

If you are curious, I have used Hemp seed oil a year ago(which did not break me out) and now i am trying the Evening Primrose oil. I stay away from oils that have more Oleic acid thank Linoleic acid. I have heard great reviews on Pumpkin seed oil but I haven't tried it. I hope this helps...GOOD LUCK!!!

Oils high OLEIC ACID: Avocado Oil, Aprikot Kernel Oil, Hazelnut Oil, Shea Nut OIl, Macadamia Oil, Sea Buckthorn Oil, Olive Oil, Sweet Almond Oil, Palm Fruit Oil

Somewhat balanced oils high in OLEIC ACID: Jojoba Oil, Coconut Oil, Flaxseed Oil, Tamanu Oil, Argan Oil

Oils high in LINOLEIC ACID(best for oily skin): Safflower oil, Black Cumin Seed Oil, Hemp Seed oil, Evening Primrose oil, Pumpkin seed oil, rosehip seed oil, grape seed oil, soybean oil, wheat germ oil(comedogenic oil so be careful)

somewhat balanced oils high in LINOLEIC ACID: Castor oil, kukui nut oil, pomegranate oil, sesame oil

Too good to be true - yes even for you.
Reviewed on September 7, 2015

So when I started OCM, I sort of blindly walked into it after watching about three youtube videos from people with already perfect faces and articles raving the "like dissolves like" ability and whatever. I purchased some organic, unrefined, unfiltered, etc. coconut oil while I was on a trip to trader joe's, and when I got home proceeded to slather it on my face dry and steam it off with a warm wash cloth.

Let me tell you, my skin looked and felt amazing afterwards; my blemishes had already retreated a bit and my discoloration was significantly lessened, and my skin felt baby soft. I thought it was great that this one step method, along with an apple cider vinegar toner, was all I needed to keep my face clear, and after my acne had completely disappeared about three days later, I was sure I discovered the secret to curing my seemingly immortal skin condition.

Then I came across this review page for OCM on acne.org. The reviews were of course largely negative, and I was so shocked that anybody could possibly have had a bad experience with this god sent elixir of a cleanser! I was soooo not buying that I could ever react that way, but as I kept reading (I ended up reading every review), I started to notice that a majority of the positive reviews were from people like me, who had just started using OCM and reaping the magnificent short-term benefits, while everyone in the negative reviews had stuck around long enough to see just how bad this wrecks your skin.

I was effectively scared away from OCM after about the 40th negative review, and with phrases like "cystic acne" and "the worst breakout of my life" thrown in the mix, I felt so betrayed by my $8 jar of coconut oil and stopped using it immediately.

And of course, my skin did not only return to its dismal condition prior to OCM, but it now featured the all-too-talked-about "closed comedones" typical of OCM after-effects studded across my jaw. And then what proceeded really was the worst breakout of my life. I haven't really had too terrible of acne prior to this, so I'm not saying that I had horrible cystic acne covering my entire face, but I did breakout in about 10 painful pustules on each cheek, accompanied with tonsss of redness surrounding it (this was about 2 weeks after stopping OCM).

As I type this, I'm struggling through the brunt of this OCM-induced breakout, and really wish that I never tried the darn thing in the first place. I know some people have definitely had success with this, and apparently there's some sort of "purge period" that people go through (? sounds made up to me), but it just isn't worth sticking around for some sort of positive outcome when the getting there is so painful and horrible; plus, people see my face every day, and high school people suck.

All in all, this isn't worth the risk. Go see your derm, don't trust something you read about online just because a few testimonials and some logical-enough presentation of "facts" makes it out to be great. If you don't understand the science behind it, don't use it unless a doctor tells you to.

by gertyman on 09/15/2015 23:51
Coconut oil clogs pores. Do not use on acne-prone skin.
Reviewed on August 10, 2015

I'm 20 years old and never had skin problems until I got off the pill with the age of 17. I started to break out quite badly. I used some conventional skin treatments and anti-acne-cremes. After about two years my skin got a lot better and I only had some spots. So I wanted to get rid of those spots - I always had two to ten pimples on my face.

I decided to stay away from harsh remedies, so I searched for natural treatments and came across the oil cleaning method. At first - aside from some really big spots - it went well, but after about five days I started to get small closed comedones on my whole face. Every part of my face was suddenly bumpy. The spots weren't inflamed and I thought it was only the process of the so called "purging". Due to the fact that I always read to just stick to it and wait until the purging-phase is over, I did so. After one month my skin was a total mess. Some of the small bumps got inflamed and I even got some cystic acne, which I never had before. I had to go back to taking antibiotics.

I would never ever suggest to trying out this treatment! STAY AWAY FROM OIL!!! Especially if you have oily skin as I do. And yes there are people, who have oily skin and no, it's not only dehydrated skin, which needs more moisture to get less oily...

FYI: I did a lot of research about the oil cleansing method! I nearly read every posting/feed/forum about this topic. I also tried different oils (all with a rating of 0-1 on the scale). I never used the same washcloth twice.

Reviewed on June 10, 2015

Tried this method after reading the "Highly Recommended" post on acne.org (http://www.acne.org/messageboard/topic/141871-the-oil-cleansing-method-highly-recommended/). I only read about 2 pages that were filled with positive reviews, but I should have looked further into it. A little background: I had almost completely clear skin prior to using this method, but I use around 5 products per day including Tazorac, Aczone, Sulfur Wash, Birth Control, and Clindamycin (sp?)... so I thought "Wow, this would really lessen my routine and since I'm basically clear, it shouldn't be too bad..." After about 3-4 days, I noticed my pores looked clogged and bigger around my cheeks and forehead AND I have whiteheads and small pimples on cheeks/jawline (haven't had to deal with this since my teens [now 22 y.o.]). I now know that this method just clogs your pores and yes, initially, I had high hopes and it made my skin feel awesome/moisturized/ what have you... I am glad I stopped after 4 days, since I am super afraid I will get cystic acne (never had it before). Wish I never tried it, not for everyone, it may work for you, but if you are acne prone/oily skin, I really don't think this would be beneficial. If you have somewhat clear skin now, don't try this... seriously it took me so long to get clear and now I wish I had stayed with my routine. As someone else said: "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

P.S. For anyone thinking I was doing it wrong- just stop, I did everything as instructed- used all natural ingredients, organic, clean towels, the ratio, etc. etc. You don't need to tell me that I wasn't doing it right.

Worked awesomely - at first!!!
Reviewed on May 9, 2015

Wow, so my journey with the OCM started on such a ridiculous high -I was on cloud 9 just imagining all the smug confidence I would have prancing about with my amazing new clear skin!! :/

I started it accidentally on holiday - I was previously doing Dan's regimen and had been doing for about 3 years - lapsing a bit for the past year or so after going on Dianette so not having to be too strict with it, but now off birth control and the sun was breaking me out but drying me out - I'd brought almond oil for my hair so used that a couple of nights to slap on then massage the dry flakes off with a muslin cloth (at this point I'd never even heard of cleansing your skin using oils!) Looked up benefits of oil on skin when I got home and discovered OCM - that's it i was looking into every night and bought pretty much everything going! - Castor oil, EVOO, rose hips oil, avocado oil (which again worked incredibly at first - my skin was clear, vibrant, my pores were so small and I used it as a base to my makeup - God's honest I had the skin of a pre-pubescent angel!!)

Anyway doesn't the bubble always burst??! I wasn't as unfortunate as some people who woke up with a painful pizza face :( ...rather I started breaking out gradually and also had lots of dry patches which I couldn't understand despite buying the castor oil none of the mixes I used were actually drying...? Anyway after persevering with it for a lot longer than I should've done - mainly because i was clinging on to this 'your skin may get better before it gets worse' business when really in the back of my mind I couldn't envisage that happening.....eventually I reluctantly stopped completely - even using a tiny bit as a makeup base which I really enjoyed, back to Dan's regimen and going to add in the glycolic acid as suggested, already my skin's a lot better after the damage OCM did - I guess we're all just searching for the one magic treatment that's simple, cheap and natural (and of course other-worldly in its ability to cure you of acne!)

by Tai27 on 07/15/2015 19:55
Castor oil is drying, Rose hip oil I think is better left on because it's really good and Avocado is maybe too fatty (speaking from personal experience because I rarely broke out on grapeseed or jojoba oil but with avocado I've gained acne on my neck which i didn't have before.. it is nourishing but maybe too strong.. I think it's better if you use a normal cleanser first and then the avocado but then that'd defeat the purpose of OCM maybe.. Every oil has different properties and levels of comodegenicity but I understand why you want to stop after having a bad run with avocado oil myself.. yes you get a youthful glow but I got break outs I didn't have before although I was stressed.. Now I really want Microdermabrasion, extractions and some peels..
Not bad
Reviewed on April 30, 2015

I have been using OCM now for three weeks, every night and not using anything else on my face except a little sudocrem on some cystic acne that won't budge. While I can't say for sure that my acne is much better, the redness and soreness I was experiencing before has almost completely stopped. I mixed 8tsp of Olive oil and 3tsp of castor, with 5 drops of peppermint and 5 of tea tree oil. My boyfriend thinks it has made a big difference but I seem to have lots of little black heads, which I didn't notice before. Although that could be because I was preoccupied with the cystic acne, which was really inflamed and very painful.

Personally I think it definitely will be different for everyone, and for me, my skin couldn't get much worse so I was willing to give anything a try! The ingredients are relatively cheap and must be better than slapping a handful of chemicals on your skin, right?

I wouldn't recommend this to everyone, but it's stopped my acne from being so painful, even if it hasn't eradicated it completely. My skin is much softer and feels less grainy and in need of a massive exfoliation, and I feel better for using something natural and not chemically harsh. Obviously, you have to be prepared for negative effects too.

by Tai27 on 07/15/2015 19:59
I read in Paulas Choice that Peppermint is an irritant.. I wouldn't leave any residue of olive oil on my skin but you've got tea tree oil and castor in there so it must be okay. Jojoba is a safe one to apply and leave on because it's pH mimics our natural pH level.
Never again.
Reviewed on March 24, 2015

I've been seeing a particular user commenting on the lower rated reviews here and encouraging people to continue with the OCM method even if it's not working, or giving 'helpful suggestions'. If it's not working for you, STOP. YOU are the one who has to deal with the nasty effects of the OCM, not some random user bleating about how great it is. Fact of the matter is, like every product on the planet, this method won't work for everything. If it does, great. If it doesn't, don't psyche yourself out thinking it will suddenly and magically work.

That being said, I did this one time. I went to the Oil Cleansing website and followed their instructions. I forgot what I put in my mixture specifically. Let's just say it didn't work very well and I wasn't interested in trying again. Not to mention I also tried using coconut oil as a moisturizer because of all the rave reviews random people online gave it. I used organic, cold-pressed, unrefined virgin coconut oil as an evening moisturizer, and hell hath no fury, seriously. I had the worst breakout of a life time. I used it for several months before calling cold turkey on it. Never again. I even tried hemp oil for a bit, but that just didn't agree with me. Oils just don't work with my skin.

And I'm not a huge advocate of Paula's Choice, but she does discuss oil cleansing on her website.

Myth: The combination of oils and hot steam used by the oil-cleansing method will “deep-clean” skin in a way that no other product can.

Hot steam is irritating in every way possible. Irritation stimulates oil production directly in the pore and makes pimples look even redder. Using hot steam on a regular basis also can cause small blood vessels in your skin to rupture, over time creating a network of surfaced red capillaries.

So, keep that it mind guys. Be gentle to your skin.

I would also like to add that oils cannot purge your skin. The 'purging' phase is a hideous, ugly myth that people love to perpetuate on the internet. True purging is caused by peels, scrubs, AHAs, BHAs or retinoids. If the oil is breaking you out, that's because it is clogging your pores and your skin is more likely irritated if anything.

by nonono1234 on 06/10/2015 16:16
Great post, everyone should really read this one ^... and I agree with the complaint about the person that is commenting on most of the lower rated posts- it's annoying and you're (person commenting on lower rated posts) only advising people to make their skin worse. Just because it worked for you, definitely does not mean it will work for others (this is like one of the core principles of any medication/beauty regimen).
by Tai27 on 07/15/2015 20:06
I won't try to convince you to use the OCM but for future reference every oil has different properties and levels of comodegenicty.. Coconut is one of by far the worst to put or leave on your face.. UNLESS it's fractionated.. but that's if you can be bothered finding 'fractionated' coconut oil.. Otherwise it doesn't matter whether it's cold pressed/virgin or organic etc.. Jojoba and grapeseed on the other hand are much better to use and you can apply and leave them on the skin as well.. When I oil cleanse I apply to hot facecloth straight away rather than steam it.. Otherwise I love steam when I do a facial.. I hate hearing that its bad for you.. I always feel much better after a steam.. but ofc we should listen to the experts.
Made my skin worse for MONTHS..go use Paula's Choice
Reviewed on February 20, 2015

Okay, so my story might be similar to those who constantly searched and googled the internet on "how to clear up acne". First I tried Proactiv+...noticed nothing after the 60day window so I returned it for a refund. I had hopes for the OCM method and it was the worst decision for me: CLOSED COMEDONES EVERYWHERE once I used the OCM for about a month. I thought this was because of the "purge" stage, but I didn't know that meant that these comedones would actually work their way above my skin, making clumps of red comedones all over my cheeks.

oils I used:

Castor oil

Jojoba oil

grape seed oil

I started with a 50:50:10 ratio with the above and adjusted based on the feel on my skin. I added more jojoba if needs since it made the castor oil easier to smooth around on my face. I combined the above oils in a bottle. I used a nickel sized amount and put it all over my face and then used hot water to soak my washcloth and put over my face for a few minutes, wiped, wa-lah. I then used bragg's ACV with water and sprayed as a toner.

I did this for maybe 2 months until I was mortified enough. OCM all depends on your skin type "oh it's natural....oil dissolves oil...no harm there" no. This did not work for me, at all. It's February now and my hyper pigmentation marks are just starting to fade. The whole process was started in JUNE. that means it has taken me 8 months to get my skin back to what it was.

if you want to help your acne do yourself a favor and check out Paula's Choice products. THEY ARE AMAZING. I used her sample size ($9) 2% BHA liquid on the damage OCM did to my cheeks.

The only thing that worked for me! (but ive made alterations to the traditional OCM)
Reviewed on February 8, 2015

I have had severe acne since i was 13 and it got worse in my 20s. My move to europe for my graduate studies and my skin just took a turn for the worst! My acne scars started looking darker and my skin was insanely dry. I tried everything from prescription drugs, retinoid creams the whole deal. Then i tried using the Aleppo soap, and my skin just was not doing well at all! i am 25 and you would think acne is a thing of the past. but it was making me miserable, and i usually dont fret too much about my appearance. I took up regular exercise, stopped eating anything other that what i cooked and stopped diary as well. Nothing helped. So one day i came about the Oil cleansing method, and i decided to give it a try as well. i mean why not?! The only problem was i didnt have castor oil or any other oil except a good quality bottle of extra virgin olive oil. So i just started lightly massaging some olive oil every night and i would steam my face and wipe my face with a soft cloth. And i did that for a week and i realised my skin was looking so much better. most importantly my skin was soft! no dry, painful patches. its been about 2 months since ive been doing this. And i have go to say, this is the best my skin has looked in a while. i dont have any new pimples. Sure the acne spots are there, but it is definitely better than what it was 2 months ago. Its lighter and looks like its slowly disappearing. And i just use olive oil every night. My skin just feels so good. Definitely recommend this to everyone. This is literally the best thing i have done for my skin. i stopped using all the expensive creams and masks and the only thing i use now is a good bottle of extra virgin olive oil. I would totally recommend it!