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My Hot-Cloth Oil Cleansing method combines the nourishing qualities of cleansing oils such as Shu Uemura’s Cleansing Oil – retailing at £30 for 150ml, and the benefits of using Hot Cloth Cleansers, only I dispense with these expensive brands and the parabens and additives in their products and use just one natural ingredient to help you achieve softer and healthier skin. Oh, and did I mention that it also effectively removes dissolves your makeup?

I’ve tried Superdrug’s Vitamin E Hot Cloth Cleanser to Liz Earle’s Cleanse and Polish, all the way through to Eve Lom’s Cleanser, and nearly everything inbetween. For those curious, Eve Lom’s Cleanser left my skin the softest in my tests, though I suspect this to be more from the mineral oil (listed first amongst the ingredients) than from the egyptian chamomile it claims. Likewise with the Shu Uemura Cleansing oil, a closer inspection at the ingredients showed a similar mineral oil content. Now I wish to make clear that I have nothing fundamentally against mineral oil – there is a lot of debate surrounding its use, however this is largely misinformed – the real danger lays in non-cosmetic grade minral oil being used in products. My gripe is with the fact that brands charge criminal amounts for it, while advertising the negligible content of its extracts and natural oils.

Cleanser 100ml cleansing beauty oil a/i - cleanser/makeup remover

However, the practice of Hot Cloth Cleansing, and the use of the Oils to cleanse, remain a winning formula. Like my previous post on my alternative to Dermologica’s Daily Microfoliant (which you can read about here), I have done the same with Shu Uemura’s cleansing oils and cut straight to the active ingredient touted, and discovered Camellia Oil. Used for centuries by Japanese Geisha’s to remove their heavy makeup and to keep their skin soft and supple, and by samurai’s to keep their swords from rust and corrosion(!), I have found pure camellia oil makes for a wonderful cleansing oil without any additivies, choc full of vitamins, oleic acids and rich in antioxidants -without the hefty price tag to boot. When you combine this with hot cloth cleansing, your skin is left soft, dewy and glowy without the need for further moisturising.

I have previously tried this regimen of hot cloth oil cleansing nightly for a week, and my skin has never been so clear and supple – for those dedicated enough to do this nightly, I applaud you, however I am not one amongst you. No cleansing regimen, no matter how clear it makes my skin takes priority over my sleep, which incidentally is the best skincare ‘regimen’ you can follow! I do however, use this cleanse at least once a week, or more after especially long, stuffy and polluted days in the city to clean my skin and help it breathe.

Hot Cloth Oil Cleansing Method with Camellia Oil

You will need:

  1. Pure Camellia Oil
  2. Muslin Cloth

Camellia oil is easily available online and and I get mine organic and cold pressed from Fushi at £10.50 for 100ml

I have found muslin cloths sold by beauty brands and companies to be unnecessarily expensive, and instead have found that BabiesRUs sell a pack of 10 Muslin Cloths for £14.99 at a pleasing face-towel size, rather than the flimsy squares you get. Alternatively, go down to your local fabric store and pick up a metre of muslin for a few pounds at most and make as many muslin squares as you desire.

The Method

  1. There is no need to do a prior cleanse, even if you have a face full of makeup. This oil dissolves full-on geisha war-paint. It can manage whatever you’ve got on your face. Pour a teaspoon amount of oil into your hands and massage all over your face and neck in an upwards motion for about 2 mintues.
  2. Let the oil sit on your skin to absorb while you fill the sink – you’re aiming for the water to be warmer than you’d normally use to cleanse – cool enough that you don’t burn yourself, but hot enough to dissolve the oil.
  3. Soak the cloth in the water, ring until damp but not dripping, and apply the cloth to your face. Hold for 10 seconds to let the steam melt the oil, and slowly begin to wipe off in upward motions. Repeat this step until you’ve wiped all the oil off your skin. You’ll know you’ve reached this point when your skin feels soft and moisturised but no longer greasy.
  4. Step back and admire your glowy, cleansed and soft skin.