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DIY Oil Cleanser with Tamanu Oil & Clay

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DIY Oil Cleanser RecipeOil cleansing is a fantastic way to detox the skin. Today, I’m sharing a DIY oil cleanser recipe that contains ingredients that are geared towards oilier skin types that may or may not be experiencing acne. You’re going to love this beautiful green cleanser from the moment you try it! Tamanu and French Green Clay work wonders!

I realize I tend to focus many of my DIYs around anti aging solutions.  It’s been many years since I’ve dealt with acne prone skin.  It’s also been years since I’ve dealt with oily skin.  I usually base my recipes on how the product works for me so I don’t feel very qualified to share recipes that I “think” will work for oilier and problematic skin types.  But-I’ve had some extra clogging lately and had an idea….

Since I swear by The Oil Cleansing Method, and a lot of you are very apprehensive to try it, I thought it makes perfect sense to make an DIY oil cleanser recipe that is geared more toward clog prone skin! 

I’m so happy with the way this cleanser turned out-I’ve been using it for a week and while it hasn’t dried me out-it’s smoothed me out, brought a few blackheads to the surface and nourished my skin as well!  Continue reading to find out how to make an DIY oil cleanser for problematic skin!

DIY Oil Cleanser Recipe

French Green Clay

First off, if you are oily and deal with zits you need to get acquainted with clays.  Clays are incredibly helpful because they pull toxins out of the skin.

I always use French Green Clay, not because it’s better then bentonite, kaolin, or fuller’s earth but because I bought a 1lb. bag and it lasts forever!!  So, if you already have a clay, use what you have. Any clay is awesome for the skin. 

Since I do have FGC let me share what Mountain Rose Herb says about it because it’s awesome-

“Our French Green clay has enormous absorbent powers due to the constitution of its micro molecules. It literally โ€œdrinksโ€ oils, toxic substances, and impurities from your skin. Its toning action stimulates the skin by bringing fresh blood to skin cells.”

DIY Oil Cleanser Recipe

Ingredients for a DIY Oil Cleanser:

Clay is mineral rich.  We are all mineral deficient to some degree.  Nourishing our bodies from the outside in can actually be very beneficial for the quality of our skin. 

Clays have anti inflammatory properties as well helping to calm skin all while absorbing dirt, oils and dead skin!  As you can tell-Clay is super beneficial for our skin-even if we are dry!

I’ve also use Tamanu Oil in this cleanser.  I love tamanu oil.  It is one of the oils that I personally used for a while when trying to heal my skin from a bout of acne.

I also use it in my spot treatment stick recipe. Tamanu oil is extremely helpful in healing skin and calming inflammation.  It is also not the type of oil you could use as a moisturizer if you are dry.  Some people have even claimed it dried out their skin.  I personally have not experience it-I just felt like it improved the clarity and texture of my skin and it did it quickly.

Castor Oil is added because it is a cleansing oil.  It is also an oil that can be drying to the skin so I add it sparingly in this cleanser. 

I added jojoba oil because it is an excellent oil for all skin types.  It is said the jojoba oil is the closest oil to our own natural oils.  It often times will balance the skin. 

When oily skin types try to dry out their skin using harsh products like Proactive, many times the skin will get the signal to produce more oil.  The harsh products have thrown the skin out of balance.  Adding jojoba oil can give skin the message that there is no need to produce excess oil.

Essential oils can also be added to this recipe.  Tea tree is a good one for acne prone skin.  It is powerful for killing bacteria.  I also like lemongrass, lavender, lemon and ylang ylang for oilier skin types.

DIY Oil Cleanser Recipe

DIY Oil Cleanser Recipe

2 TBSP. Jojoba Oil (find it HERE)

1 TBSP. Tamanu Oil (find it HERE)

1 TBSP. Castor Oil (find it HERE)

1 TBSP. Beeswax (find it HERE)

6 drops Tea Tree Essential Oil (find it HERE)

1 TBSP. French Green Clay (find it HERE)


  1. Fill a medium sized pot 1/2 full with water.
  2. Place a glass pyrex bowl with a spout in the water.
  3. Turn heat on medium.
  4. Add jojoba, tamanu, castor oil, beeswax and clay to pyrex bowl.
  5. Allow ingredients to fully melt.
  6. Remove from heat and add essential oil.
  7. Pour into glass jar (super cute one HERE).

To Use:

  1. Scoop a quarter size of cleanser into the palm of your hand.
  2. Massage your skin for at least 1 minute.  This cleanser is gentle enough to effectively remove eye makeup without burning.
  3. Apply a hot-warm cloth over the skin and let sit until lukewarm.
  4. Wipe the cleanser off.
  5. Rinse cloth with hot water and re-apply to the face, letting it cool.
  6. Follow up with a toner and moisturizer if needed.

DIY Clay Oil Cleanser

I am really loving the DIY oil cleanser.  I typically use THIS cleanser but to switch things up, this DIY is doing the trick. 

Like I’ve said, my skin is not oily nor do I have breakouts that aren’t associated with hormones, but this cleanser feels so good on my skin.  My skin feels smooth and clean afterwards.  I don’t feel tight AT ALL

I love that the clay adds and element of physical exfoliation!  It’s very gentle but with the warm cloth softening the skin, this cleanser can really help with dead skin.

Clay is such an incredible tool for every skin type.  I thought at one point that it was just too drying for dry skin but I have since found some very interesting information on using clay on dry skin

This is such an easy DIY oil cleanser.  It literally took me 10 minutes from start to finish.  I got all my products from Mountain Rose Herbs because they are simply the best. 

I’m 100% positive this will be among my top 5 DIYs this year!

xx, Jenni


DIY Oil Cleanser Recipe

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Jennifer Phillips

Jennifer Phillips

Jennifer Phillips worked as a licensed aesthetician for over 8 years before creating the green beauty blog, Jenni Raincloud and her natural skin care line, J. Raincloud Organics. Jennifer has been blogging full time for 9 years and loves to gain and share knowledge on how to achieve beautiful skin the natural way.

48 thoughts on “DIY Oil Cleanser with Tamanu Oil & Clay”

  1. Jenni,
    Wow, this is a great idea! I have bentonite clay on hand, so that is what I would use. For any of your readers who are still scared off by oil cleansing, please try it! I had oily skin and it truly balanced me out. I have been doing it for almost three years and my skin has never been better.
    Thanks for all your great ideas Jenni! I am in LOVE with the hylaronic acid serum. Seriously in love!

      1. Jenni,
        I am obsessed with collagen. I feel like I mention it in every single post on my blog. I’ve never really had a problem with it. I mix it into something substantial, like my coffee that has coconut oil and ghee, or my matcha latte. I put it in my daughter’s smoothies also. It’s upping the protein and good for her skin, hair and nails. Let me know how you make out with it!

    1. I know this is a really old post so hoping you see this! I was curious why your oil cleanser recipes are mostly balms, vs. just a blend of oils. Is it just application preference?

      I also wondered if you’ve tried high linoleic oils like hemp or grapeseed as an alternative to the castor oil. Castor oil seems to cause a LOT of comedones for me.

      Last question was your thoughts on adding raw honey to this? I love honey cleansing but don’t want to add too many steps so I was curious how it would interact.

      1. Rachel-Hi! I like a cleansing balm mainly because it is less messy and more creamy. There’s no other benefit to a balm vs. oil that I can think of. Plus, with a balm I can add clay.
        I haven’t tried hemp or grapeseed to substitute for castor oil-that is a fantastic idea though! I haven’t had an issue with castor oil personally but hemp would be a great alternative.
        I am fearful of adding honey to recipes just because of bacteria and mold growth. I don’t know for sure that it would cause an issue but I can’t find info. saying it’s safe.

        1. Got it! I am looking forward to ordering some clay and beeswax so I can try it.
          I have heard that honey is pretty bacteria-resistant in the absence of water, but I’m really glad to know your thoughts on it as well.
          Thank you!

  2. I so appreciate and love your anti aging formulas and really all of your shares. I have a very bad problem with over stretched skin and want to know if you have any soloutions. I am 58 and have lost 150 lbs. ๐Ÿ™‚ My inner thighs and upper arms are literally hanging. I am retired and on a very restrictive budget so plastic surgery is not am option.
    Would really appreciate any information!

    1. Hi Julia-First off-That’s awesome-Wow, that must have been hard! Unfortunately there is nothing that I know of to remedy loose skin. I know with pregnancy, depending on the natural elasticity of the skin, in time the skin will revert back in most cases. Maybe time will do the trick? In the meantime, I would really make sure you stay hydrated with drinking water and using lots of body oils or lotions so that if the skin will tighten up, it’s healthy enough to do it.

      1. Great ideas! Something else that might possibly help is taking a high quality collagen powder. It has done wonders for the firmness of my skin. The two brands I have used as Vital Proteins and Great Lakes. I mix the powder into my coffee, but you could blend into a smoothie as well. I take 2 TB a day.

  3. I have been loving all your skincare DIY’s! Oil cleansing is truly a wonderful remedy and practice for skin! I will be making this soon with the substitution of Grapeseed for jojoba since Grapeseed is what my skin likes! Thank you!!

  4. Hi! I’ve done your clay cleanser but I have a problem.The clay goes to the bottom and the oils up. I dont know why .Instead of tamanou oil I put grapeseed oil. Thanks for all your DIY’s.

      1. I had the same issue. Would an emulsifying was be better for this recipe? Or would that not make a difference since there is no water in the recipe?

        1. Claudidia-Not sure what issue you are referring too. An emulsifying wax is only used if there is water present. Are you referring to the issue of the clay not staying suspended? Nothing will help that except stirring as it begins to cool or even after it’s cooled would be fine.

      1. Hello,

        Thanks for posting this formulation. I tried it with a few substitutes with the ingredients that I had with me at the time. I replaced the beeswax with Jojoba Wax, the Green Clay with Kaolin Clay, and omitted the E.O. My skin type is Normal-Dry, Dehydrated & Sensitive.

        I also found that in the first few days there was some oil build up at the top. I thought I had done something wrong but actually, after about a week this settled. I was in a rush to use it tho:) I made up to separate batches and kept one in the fridge. I actually found that the one in the fridge was more watery. After a few days out of the fridge, the consistency settled itself down. Without the E.O the smell of the Tamanu oil was definitely overpowering. I left out the EO because I like to use cleansers all over the face including the eye area to remove makeup.

        Love using the clay but I think it is still too drying for my skin and when I make the next batch I was thinking of reducing the castor oil?

        1. Sadee-Hi! I think you’re issues are due to the jojoba wax. I’ve never worked with it but beeswax will thicken things up more and help emulsify as well. Yes, tamanu is quite stinky!!! Reducing castor oil will probably be fine. It can be drying but it is the “cleansing” oil in the DIY. Good luck and thanks for sharing!!

  5. Hi Jenni,
    After mixing, the mixture will solidify by itself? I’m on oil cleansing but when I see this recipe, I wanted to incorporate the benefit of clay in my cleasning. Never used beeswax before, so have no idea how to do it properly to get that consistency. Please enlighten me on the step by step of mixing the ingredients

  6. Hi Jenni,

    I wanted to try out this cleanser recipe. Want to get youri input on the sequence of adding the ingredients. The liquid will slowly solidify? Do I need to put in fridge to let it solidify?

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  8. Hi Jenni!
    I made this cleanser and am almost finished with it. I just love it! Was thinking for my next batch I would mix it up and use Rhassoul clay… do you think this would work ok in the recipe?

  9. Hi im definitely going to try this how long is the shelf life should I add vitamin e to make last longer as want to make for friends for xmas
    Thanks kim x

  10. Hi do you think I could use sweet almond oil and marula oil instead of tamanu an castor oil as I don’t have these oils but itching to get cooking some potions x

  11. Would this be a good morning cleanser? I’ve just started oil cleansing at night using your oily skin recipe, but I still feel this urge to use a traditional OTC cleanser. I’ve not had a beauty routine beyond the ol’ clean and clear cleanser from store, and I use minimal makeup. My skin is neither good or bad, some breakouts at times but not terrible, but it is oily and always has been. I saw somewhere else that you no longer use your anti-aging cleanser in the mornings?

    1. Shana-Hi! I love this cleanser. It’s great for oily/acne/normal skin types and O.K. for dry types. I oil cleanse morning and night now. I would give it a go!

  12. Hi Jenni,

    First of all, oh my god the cleanser works like wonder! My skin has never felt this clean and supple after using any cleansers. Kudos to you for such a great recipe. Love!
    Btw, thought of making some for a friend’s birthday, and found a really pretty metal container to fill it in. Would the metal container be okay since there’s clay in it?
    Thanks! xx

  13. Hi! I’m just wondering if I could make this without the beeswax. I know you said it won’t thicken up but will that lessen the effectiveness of the cleanser? I think the tamanu oil will solidify when it gets cold so maybe if I put it in the refrigerator…

  14. I really love this cleanser! I previously tried a blend of castor and other oils but it was really drippy/messy. I really love the creamy stay-put consistency. I leave it in the bathroom and the consistency doesn’t change once it’s set up. At 58 I usually don’t have a problem with break-outs but in the hot humid Summer I notice small whiteheads in the Nasolabial folds. I dab them tea tree oil and they are gone the next day.
    I’m working through your recipes one acatagory at a time. Thanks for frelyposing them.

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  17. Thanks for the amazing oil cleanser. The rose clay oil cleanser can also be used as a mask, is that the same for this one? Or is there different ingredients to use to make this a mask?

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