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DIY Olive Oil and Lavender Cleanser and Face Cream

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DIY Olive Oil Cleanser & Face Cream
Olive Oil is one of my favorite oils to use in my homemade moisturizers and cleansers.  It is so healthy for the skin and hair!  It is packed full of antioxidants and vitamins.  I bet you didn’t think you could make a super easy DIY olive oil and lavender cleanser and face cream!
Vitamin A is a healing and rebuilding vitamin found in olive oil.  It helps your cells to repair and renew.  It is awesome for preventing the signs of aging. 
Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps fight free radicals. It is one of many antioxidants that olive oil contains.  One of the most potent antioxidant in olive oil is hydroxytyrosol.  It is very rare and is easily absorbed into the body through the skin.  Antioxidants are so important because they go after free radicals which cause cancer and aging.

Antioxidants are a good thing.  Due to the large amount of antioxidants in olive oil it is very anti inflammatory, making it an excellent choice for people with sensitive skin.

It might seem scary to put oil on your skin, especially if you are oily or deal with breakouts.  Olive oil’s molecular structure is similar to the oil the skin produces so when you cleanse with it or use it as a moisturizer the skin does not feel like it has been stripped and there is no need for the skin to over produce oil.  Also olive oil is able to penetrate clogged pores and dissolve the clog.  As well known dermatologist  Dr. Perricone says “like dissolves like”.

If you are new to making your own skin care olive oil is an easy place to start.  Olive oil can be used by itself to cleanse the skin.  It is an excellent eye make up remover!  You can apply a thin layer on your skin for a moisturizer as well.  Add essential oils to it for even more benefit.  Lavender smells amazing when mixed with olive oil.  It is one of my favorite scents.

3 Rules to Follow When Choosing Olive Oil:

  1. Stick with organic.
  2. Always get Extra Virgin.  This means it has been processed the least and is more pure.
  3. Look for “cold pressed”.  This simply means that there was no heat involved in extracting the oil from the olive.  The benefits of most oils, including essential oils can be lost if exposed to heat.

I use THIS olive oil for DIY skin care recipes.

DIY Olive Oil & Lavender Cleanser


  • Mix all ingredients in a pump bottle.


>>Since this is an oil cleanser, there are no bubbles!  Cleansing with oil can be very effective in purging the pores of excessive oil and dirt.  I personally oil cleanse and have never looked back to a cleanser that contains soap.  Soap can easily strip the skin of it’s natural oils which can cause fine lines and wrinkles as well as sensitive, dry skin. <<

  1. Squirt 1-2 pumps in the palm of your hand.
  2. Massage all over the skin, including your eyes-This cleanser will thoroughly remove eye makeup without irritating the eyes!!
  3. Gently massage your skin for 1-2 minutes.
  4. Warm up a wash cloth with warm-hot water from the sink.
  5. Lay over your skin for 1 minute or until cloth has cooled, letting the heat and steam from the wet cloth open your pores.
  6. Gently wipe oil, makeup and dirt off the skin.
  7. Rinse towel and heat again.
  8. Repeat warm towel 1-2 times.

For more info. on Oil Cleansing, go HERE and HERE.


DIY Olive Oil & Lavender Face Cream


  1. Fill a medium pot halfway full with water.
  2. Place a glass pyrex measuring cup in the water.
  3. Heat olive oil and emulsifying wax (slowly, never let the water boil).
  4.  In another “double boiler” heat water and neodefend.
  5. Heat both mixtures to around 165 degrees before mixing together (this is vital, otherwise your cream won’t set)  HINT:Water heats up slower then oil.
  6. Pour water/neodefend into oil/wax mixture.
  7. Using a stick blender, blend mixture for about a minute.  Let set for 15 minutes then blend for about 30 seconds.  *I leave my cream out for a good hour and continue to blend, just to make sure it totally mixes.
  8. Add Lavender essential oil.
  9. Funnel into containers, and let set for 24 hours.

**You can also leave your mixture in the glass bowl and mix with a hand held mixture.  You will need to shake or mix on and off for about 30 minutes.  Once 10 minutes pass without mixing and your water stops separating from the cream, your mixture is fully mixed.**
Your cream will need to set for 24 hours before the consistency will set.  This recipe will make about 12 ounces.

These are 2 very simple recipes that will do a world of good for your skin!  You won’t find anything this nourishing and pure on any cosmetic counter.  Be aware that homemade moisturizers are vulnerable to mold and bacteria.  NeoDefend is a certified organic, non GMO preservative.  Keeping it in the fridge will prolong the shelf life immensely as well as putting your cream in a dark bottle with a pump-(like THESE)

Remember, it takes sometimes a month or more to see the results of any new product you are using.  If you are dealing with specific issues such as acne, eczema, sensitivity or excessive dryness check out my post on 10 DIY Skin Serums.  This post has lots of info. on specific oils that can be used for specific skin ailments.

xx, Jenni


DIY Olive Oil Cleanser & Lotion

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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.

46 thoughts on “DIY Olive Oil and Lavender Cleanser and Face Cream”

  1. I started using the oil cleansing method and my cheeks got so dry and painful that I only use the method when I wear make-up. Your recipe actually has soap in it. I wonder how it would affect my skin if the oils alone dried them? Any suggestions? My skin is sensitive and mature. I have very few wrinkles for my age and everyone thinks I am younger then I am. My skin is not oily though I occasionally get a few breakoust. I really want to break the store-bought product habit so any advice would be helpful.

    1. Did you use castor oil? I have heard that castor oil is extremely drying and many people have to reduce the amount they use while oil cleansing. You can cleanse with out using castor oil-coconut oil is a good option. It will even take off eye make up! Castile soap can be drying too so depending on your skin you might have to adjust the ratios. Hope this helps!!

      1. I did not use castor oil because I read that it can be drying.
        I recently made your cleanser. I really like it for washing my face in the morning but I don’t feel like it takes my makeup off as well as the oil cleansing method. Do you think I could up the olive oil, or reduce the water a little?

    1. Hi Cindy! Yes, this will take off eye makeup but be warned that castile soap is strong and it will sting if you get it in your eye. I use this to remove my makeup and make sure I keep my eyes shut and remove thoroughly. If you are looking for something that doesn’t sting at all I would look into oils. Coconut oil is wonderful for the skin and will take off eye makeup! Hope this helps!

  2. Hi Jenni, Can you use L Ascorbic acid in place of the citric acid since they’re almost the same thing? I purchased the L Ascorbic from your link in another recipe you posted. Would there be a problem with sun exposure with this mixture? Thanks so much! I am making a ton of your recipes once my products arrive!

    1. Hi Rhanda, I’m not 100% sure about this but I don’t think it would work. Citric Acid is a very fine powder and easily dissolves in water so in that respect it would work much better than L. ascorbic acid. As far as their functions-I had never heard that they are almost the same thing-If I were you, I wouldn’t try it-I think you are right and would have issues with sun and possibly irritating your skin. Thanks!! Keep me posted on how your products turn out!

  3. Thank you! I made both of these recipes and have been using the wash for about 3 1/2 weeks and moisturizer for a week or so. At first my results were great. My skin looked moisturized and bright and I was surprised I didn’t break out! But the last two days I’m seeing lots of new zits trying to come in (the zit zapper and melaleuca serum are helping). I’m a little nervous that this may not be working for me after all… Do you think I should stick with it or change something? You’re so awesome for putting this information out for everyone!

    1. Hi Rhanda, Thanks! Figuring skin out can be really hard. Usually, if your skin is going to get clogged from something it will happen much quicker then 3 1/2 weeks. Could it be hormones or stress? It’s possible that the olive oil is clogging though-what is your skin type? I would not suggest olive oil for oilier skin types. Let me know your skin type and I’ll make further suggestions!

      1. I have oily, acne prone skin and I’m 30. Was using proactiv which really helps (no break outs in years) but drys me out now and I need to really start nourishing my aging skin. I’m wondering if I should use the proactiv every other wash. I thought maybe it was the evoo face moisturizer (sad because I love it!). I have a new baby (yes bfing her-almost 5 mos) so I’m definitely not stressed more now than I was when she was 1 month. Thank you!!

        1. The cleanser is probably fine-It’s most likely the moisturizer. I think you should use the clearing serum day and night-the aloe is light but will moisturize. If you end up needing more moisturizer you could use coconut oil. You could also remake the moisturizer omitting the olive oil and using coconut oil or safflower oil(use the same amount you did of the olive oil). Safflower oil is non comedogenic and coconut oil is antibacterial, antiviral, anti fungal, and antimicrobial! You could continue to use proactive but it is so drying and harsh. You could replace the olive oil with coconut or safflower oil in your cleanser too. I hope this helps!!

          1. Thank you so much! I will omit the moisturizer (it works great on my arms and stuff so I’ll use it there) and use the melaleuca serum. I will use a little coconut oil if I need it. Would you recommend the oil cleansing method for people with my type skin?

            1. Rhanda, I have not personally tried the oil cleansing method but I’m going to start. I keep hearing people with oily, clogged skin types doing the oil cleansing method and ending up with clear skin. I always hear that it makes things worse then better at first. It makes sense that it would work, like dissolves like. Keep me posted!

      2. Sometimes it takes a few weeks for a product to hit its stride, and during that time, deeply buried congestion in the skin can manifest. It can be a sign that a product is working. I hope it works for you!

      1. Sharon-I have done a bit more research and Potassium Sorbate is a very natural preservative that I would use but it is only functional if the pH is between 3-6. Citric acid is a pH adjuster and will help to lower your pH so that the potassium sorbate will work correctly. Citric acid must be used when you are using a natural preservative like potassium sorbate.

    2. Could I use jojoba oil in places of the olive oil in the moisturizer?. I need something in the morning after cleansing with honey and a witch hazel toner.

        1. I went ahead and made it..waiting for the mixture to cool.
          Thank you for your great information. I made three of your recipes today.

    3. Hi Jenni!
      Could I use Citric Acid instead of the NeoDefend? I’ve got a huge bag of CA that is for food and cosmetic use, so I’d rather use what I have on hand instead of buying a new product.

      1. Phoebe-The problem with citric acid is that it lowers the pH of your product quite a bit. It makes a cream very acidic-It’s actually not a preservative but by lowering the pH, it makes it harder for bacteria and mold to grow. You can use the citric acid in place of the neodefend (I did my recipes with just c.a. for quite a while) but you will have an acidic cream that could irritate over time and won’t be as nourishing. NeoDefend is actually very cheap-$3.75 a lb. I think. It will last you forever. The citric acid will come in handy for cleansers so it’s not a loss. Hope this helps!

        1. Thanks Jenni!
          I’ll get some NeoDefend. The reason I have so much CA around is because I use it to make homemade tonic syrup for drinks, so I’ll eventually use it all anyway.

      1. Carey-If you left out the NeoDefend your cream or cleanser would last about 2 weeks. If you leave out citric acid, your pH would be extremely high and dry out and possibly irritate your skin. You for sure can get by omitting the neodefend as long as you make small batches at a time. I would not omit citric acid-the pH of castile soap is extremely high and needs to be brought down so it won’t damage your skin. Thanks!

        1. Jenni, thank you. I have tried this recipe 3 times now though, and the oil keeps separating from the water 🙁 Any troubleshooting ideas? Do I need to add the essential oils at a certain time?

          1. Carey, are you making the cleanser or the face cream? The cleanser naturally separates, that’s totally normal and the will need to be shaken each time you use it. You can add your essential oils anytime you would like with the cleanser. Let me know if we’re talking about the lotion though-that’s a whole different story!

            1. I was making the lotion….but I was using beeswax, not emulsifying wax. Doh!!! I thought it was the same thing. Thank you so much. I already ordered tons of ingredients to make about 5 of your recipes for Christmas gifts.

    4. Ok, I feel silly. I just realized that you have you use “emulsifying” wax…not BEESwax! I clicked on your link to emulsifying wax and beeswax showed up first, so I thought it was the same thing. Haha…Going to buy emulsifying wax now!

    5. Hi Jenni, ever since I was diagnosed with breast cancer, I gradually replace the commercial products I am using with homemade ones. I love your recipes. However, I live in Singapore and it is costly to purchase NeoDefend online due to the high shipping fee. What are the other alternatives to NeoDefend? Thanks. MW

      1. May-this is tricky-What I would suggest is making small batches, storing your creams in the fridge and throwing out every 2 weeks. This way you can skip the preservative (neodefend) all together. Let me know if you don’t like this idea and need some natural preservative alternatives-they are hard to find but I can give you a couple of names-all though I don’t think you’ll find them any easier to ship. Luckily essential oils are anti fungal and antibacterial so adding them really can help!

    6. Hi Jenni,
      I made the olive oil cleanser and started using it and it seems pretty watery. I put it in my hand and by the time it gets to my face, it seems to slip away. Is it supposed to be so watery? I want to be sure it’s removing makeup and dirt effectively. Any suggestions?
      Thanks. Jen

      1. Jennifer-Yeah, it is really watery. You can use guar gum or xantham gum to thicken it up. I find that blending the mixture minus the castile soap will really thicken things up the longer you blend. I suggest blending for about 40 seconds then adding the soap, blend for about 5 seconds and hopefully it will be much thicker!

        1. Hi Jenni – I had also read that about not mixing neodefend with citric acid. Having that information, would you personally still continue to use the neodefend in your products? Thanks!

          1. Rose-I will check into this. Yes, I will still use neodefend in my lotions but sounds like I need to find a new one for washes. I believe that mixing neodefend with citric acid is simply an issue of pH. Both lower pH so possibly the thought is that the pH will be way too low but the thing is, Castile soap’s pH is way too high. If I had a proper pH instrument we could know exactly what the pH is!

    7. Pingback: The Beginner's Guide to Essential Oils

    8. Hi Jenni, you look gorgeus!
      I want to know if you wash your face with this recipe twice per day, in the morning and in the evening?.
      It is necessary the lavender?, or can I replace with other one?

      1. Edith-Thank you so much! Yes, I oil cleanse 2x a day! I don’t use this particular oil cleanser daily at the moment but I love it. You can skip the lavender and use any essential oil you like!

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