I Saw The Cleansing Oil Light

Joanna Douglas
Senior Editor

If I didn’t jump on the oil-as-moisturizer bandwagon, I certainly wasn’t going to start using one to wash my face. Sure, I’ve read about all the benefits, I’ve heard the pitches, I’ve even smelled the gorgeous formulas, and maybe rubbed them into my hand. But on my face?  No thanks.

But then Shu Uemura sent me their Ultime8 Sublime Beauty Cleansing Oil ($90). To be frank, I took it home because the bottle is gorgeous. Their oils have helped fuel the current craze for all things oily, but it was only when I put the repackaged bottle, by Japanese photographer Mika Ninagawa, on my bathroom sink, that I actually considered foaming up. I stared at it for a few nights before I actually did wash my face with the oil and let me tell you—I should have done so a long time ago. 

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I knew that cleansing oils worked because they melted away oil-based makeup, but what I never took the time to understand was that thanks to the addition of emulsifiers, a cleansing oil forms little droplets that easily rinse off in water.  And this particular formula uses eight skin-softening botanical oils that actually leave your skin so hydrated that I’m not using moisturizer and my skin is still so plump and soft that I have to force myself to stop touching my face. And that’s not a bad problem to have.