I love this stuff! I use it as a moisturizer. I have VERY dry skin, with dry patches on my cheeks. I used to use DHC Olive oil, but refused to pay $38 bucks for a tiny little bottle of it. I buy the EVOO from Whole Foods - the brand is San Giuliani imported from Italy for 7 bucks. I also love the packaging of this brand. It has a cork top that pops out gently, and a tapered glass bottle that allows you to literally deposit a drop on your hand if you pour slowly enough. I probably will go to the Container Store and get some medicine drop bottles, but until I do, no fears of pouring an ounce in my hand if I'm careful. Yes, it's the kind that you use in your food, but this brand is not overwhelmingly strong at all, it is ALMOST odorless. There are plenty of people who say that OO sold for food is not the same as high end cosmetic OO, and they may be right. However, having used both, it's one of those things where only you will know that you spent 7 dollars (for 8oz) as opposed to 38 dollars for an ounce or less. The end result is the same - no dry patches, and glowy skin that made me look younger! HG for sure!
I've adopted the Oil Cleansing Method (OCM) for my poor, sensitive, Rosacea-afflicted face that has been reacting to everything under the sun. Initially I used only jojoba oil to massage into my skin before taking it off with a damp washcloth/facial wipe. However, I found that my skin has become quite dry (in part due to pregnancy) and hence, jojoba is no longer moisturizing enough.
I now use 1/4 jojoba and 3/4 EVOO to cleanse and to moisturize. The EVOO is much more emollient, and there are days when I don't even need to moisturize after wiping off the mixture used for cleansing. My skin glows.
The olive oil smell is also wonderful (although it does make me peckish for a nice balsamic vinegar and olive oil dip - ha ha!).
Check out this link for details on OCM: http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=5612
When massaging the oil into my face, it feels really relaxing and calming, and it doesn't cause a Rosacea flare-up. It is like giving yourself a mini facial every day.
This is so far the most gentle and non-irritating cleansing method I've come across. The trick is to use a super soft/gentle washcloth for those of you with sensitive skin like mine. The other point to note is the temperature of the water - if you have Rosacea or other skin conditions where you need to avoid use of hot/warm water, then use tepid water to take/rinse off the oil. It still works for me and my face never feels greasy but it does feel very clean. If the water is too hot, my face will feel stripped of the oil and become flushed.
My skin is really clean and calm, and any little whiteheads and crud in the pores are all cleared out...
I also use EVOO as a face and body moisturizer - don't use too much, massage into your slightly damp skin and it won't be greasy - that seems to be the main trick when using oils.
My lips have recently become very chapped and reactive towards Vaseline, Aquaphor, lip balm, you name it (I think I might have perioral dermatitis) and the only moisturizer it will tolerate is EVOO. Of course, I have to use just the tiniest drop and reapply often (I have to find a little roller ball applicator so I can bring this stuff out with me) but when your lips/skin can't tolerate anything else, you make do... :(
When I apply it to my skin, it makes it feel like velvet. Who needs lotion when they have olive oil?
After some searching I came across this excellent article which follows(http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=5612)
on cleansing with oil. In my case, I used straight olive oil (do not have the castor)and followed the method below at night, following with my usual Clarins One Step Exfoliating Cleanser. I have very oily skin. I am impressed with the initial results, plan to continue using this as a nightly treatment and update in a week or two. I also use Clarins Lotus Oil nightly which has been working well to clear my skin and unblock pores, so I am becoming a believer in "oil for oily skin". It's worth a shot, after all who doesn't have extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) in their pantry. Read on:
Oil Cleansing Method, or OCM
When cleansing and moisturizing your skin, it is imperative that you keep in mind that oil disolves oil. Do not be afraid of applying oil to your face. Oil, alone, will not cause you blemishes. Pimples, cysts, zits, blackheads and whiteheads are a result of several different factors including hormones, bacteria, dead skin cells and the buildup of these factors. Your skin naturally produces oil because it needs it. It is not a malicious force to be reckoned with, it is there for the benefit of your skin. It is naturally occurring. Oil helps lubricate, heal, protect, and moisturize your skin so that it may function properly. Properly functioning skin is beautiful, clear, and glowing.
While I'm talking about the benefits of oil applied externally, I'd like to mention how important it is to moisturize from the inside as well. WATER! Drink no less than 8 glasses of water a day. If your skin has issues with blemishes, drink up! Water will help release and remove the toxins from within, leaving behind glowing, dewey, toned skin. Carry a bottle of water around with you throughout the day so water is always available.
Now, to the point of this article.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO) is used for moisture, while Castor Oil (CO) is used for cleansing. Castor Oil tends to be a bit on the thick side, so a mix of the two (EVOO/CO) is frequently used. This allows for the Castor Oil to really sink into the pores and draw out the dirt and grime to the surface. You can vary this ratio to match your skins needs. More EVOO for moisture or more CO for cleansing (25/75 EVOO/CO for Oily skin, or 75/25 EVOO/CO for dry skin). EVOO is incredibly high in antioxidants, while CO is excellent for drawing and healing. CO has been the focus of many books and medical discussion because of its seemingly "magical" healing properties. It only makes sense (after a bit of research) that one would use CO on their face to help treat blemishes and acne, or simply to make their skin look and feel better.
As quoted in The Oil That Heals by Dr. McGarey, a country doctor (unknown?) states, "Castor oil will leave the body in better condition than it found it."
Massage a substantial amount (the cup of your palm, while hand is held open) of EVOO/CO into your face and neck.
This is to be done over makeup or any visible dirt. Take this time to give yourself a facial massage. Really work the oil into your skin. Take your time, breathe deeply, and relax. Sit down to do this if it helps.
You, of course, do not have to sit and relax, but keep in mind that stress isn't good for your skin and you should take any moment you can to destress and let tension float away.
Take a washcloth, terry cloth or flannel preferred, and soak it in steamy hot water. Wring it out and drape it over your face.
What we are doing is steaming your face as an esthetician would, but without the steam machine. You want to open your pores. This helps release any impurities from deep within your pores.
As the washcloth begins to cool, gently wipe the oil and dirt away. This will also help remove any dead skin cells that are stubbornly clinging on.
Rinse the washcloth out in hot water and wipe away any remaining impurities. You may have to do this two or three times more to remove any remaining dirt and oil residue, but it will come off leaving your skin with a beautiful, healthy glow. No additional cleansing is necessary.
After you have rinsed well, you can either splash your face with cool water to help tone and close your pores, or if your face feels tight, you can moisturize.
If your skin feels tight, take a tiny drop of your EVOO/CO, rub it between your clean, damp palms and pat it into your damp skin. Massage any oil residue into your skin so there is no film of oil left sitting on the surface. Being prone to breakouts, myself, I've found that this is perhaps the most important step.
Your skin should glow now.
on its own, i can't stand it--i used to use it on my hands and face and it eventually caused me to break into a rash. i found out from a masseuse that people sometimes develop eczema or other sensitivities to olive oil and that i'm one of the few who can't use it on its own. i make an emulsion with olive oil and a body lotion (without glycerine or mineral oil) to make an even richer body lotion. it works OK for me (because i can't use this on its own, i'm always worried that i'll get a rash from my "concoctions), but for my eczema prone son, it's done wonders for his skin. he had eczema on his eyelid and NOTHING helped the scaling. i made this emulsion and in 2 weeks, you can't even tell that he had eczema on his eye.
I'm reviewing this as a moisturizer because that's the section we're in now, not as a facial cleansing oil, hair treatment, eye makeup remover, etc. As a moisturizer, I find it to be mediocre. I have dry, product-sensitive skin; many common moisturizing ingredients cause me to break out, so I should love olive oil as a moisturizer. I don't, though. The problems are probably obvious: it never sinks into the skin, so if used in the morning it makes one's face shiny for hours but if used at night, it rubs off on one's pillowcase. It also doesn't seem to do much for my dry, flaky skin (more so in winter) compared with a conventional cream moisturizer. And it clogs my pores. It doesn't cause breakouts, so it's a winner in that respect, but I use it only when I'm having a dry-skin emergency--and even then I prefer petroleum jelly.
BEST MOISTURIZER EVER!!! i use this for everything. i use it as a body moisturizer, a hair conditioner, to remove eye makeup, in food, and in the bath tub (highly recomend this for silky skin). it absorbs more easily than lotion for me, and it's a lot cheaper too.
This is a must-have for students on a budget. I can do just about everything with it. I use it like everyone else, as eye makeup remover, cleanser, hair treatment, and type of moisturizing basically. It absorbs better than baby oil to me, and is much more moisturizing. I recently just came to Sweden for a one year exchange program and was only allowed 20kg of luggage. EVOO is a savior! The change in climate resulted in a minor breakout, but it healed fast with the help of olive + jojoba oil OCM. Oh, I also use it to shave my legs! Forget about those messy pricey shaving creams, this gives me the smooooooothest shave. Tastes great, too! Add some cheese, salt, and pepper for a great, healthy salad dressing.
I am African American and a few years ago when I dyed my hair blonde I was concerned about breakage, and started using olive oil as a hair oil (after a recommendation). I had longer hair then and weekly, after a good wash and conditioning, I would heat a small amount of olive oil in the microwave in a bowl, then part my hair in sections, apply the warm oil to my scalp and rub some of the remainder on the hair to the ends, then wrap my hair in a silk scarf and go to bed. And wake up to beautiful, healthy, shiny hair. People often complimented me and wondered how I could keep such a damaging color in my hair. Since then, I use olive oil on my skin (if I'm out of baby oil :-P) and still use it on my hair. Currently my hair is naturally curly and only a couple inches long (and blonde yet again). So, I put some oil in a measuring cup, heat it up, pour it on, let it trickle around on my scalp, then massage it in. And when I'm being responsible, I'll still put a scarf on. If not, I just do another treatment a few days later. I prefer EVOO to regular, but it's all in your own preference.
EDIT 10/28/08: I don't know if its been stress or the fact that I'm easing up closer to 30 or both, but over the last 6 months, my face went absolutely crazy on me. It was excessively oil in the T-zone, the pores around my nose and inner cheek area have become enlarged and cystic acne broke out every where. :-( In August I started using EVOO to remove my makeup (I'm almost scared to jinx myself saying this...) and its been a God send. It actually balanced out the oils so well that on my nose (the oiliest area), most days I don't even need blotting tissues. It seems to keep breakouts at bay and I have not had a cystic pimple since (fingers crossed). The first two weeks I did have a purging breakout along my chin area, but that cleared up within a week and hasn't happened again. As many years as I've been using EVOO on my hair and body, I never knew I could use it on my face. I wish I would've found out sooner....then I probably wouldn't be battling all this post-pimple breakout hyperpigmentation. (anybody got miracle products for that???)
WHO WOULD HAVE BELIEVED IT!!!
So there is NO product I have ever tried that removes eye makeup with the ease of olive oil. AND, by the way, the little lines that are starting to develop around my eys just plump right up and fill in when I use it.
I use it for an all over cleanser, and then wash off the excess oil with a very mild cleanser (okay I admit it, I use a bar of soap..) or on a dry day, I just blot it off. I don't believe it is a natural sunscreen though... my makeup has sunscreen so I'm not tooooo concerned with that.
I don't become oily, nor dry. I do have rather normal skin though. I think In the winter I will only use it as a cleanser and go back to my regular moisturizer.