January 25, 2010

Yay or Nay: Cleansing Oils

Cleansing Oils aren’t really that common in the US market and are probably best associated with Shu Uemura. Although not common place here they are quite common and extremely popular within Asian.

How do you feel about cleansing oils?

Are they a yay or a nay for you?

Jump ahead to hear what the Muse thinks.

It’s a yay for me. Could not live nor would want to live without cleansing oil by my sink. I use other bits and bobs to remove makeup as I love variety but for the most part it’s cleansing oil all the way as nothing does a better job of getting it ALL off plus hydrating my face and making it dewy and squeaky clean.

I’m gonna going right ahead and yay cleansing oil as a must have.

How about you?



Hate ’em?

Love ’em for removing all your makeup?

Do share!

About the Muse

Isabella MuseIsabella is just an average everyday geeky girl who doesn’t blend her eyeshadow correctly, wears too much blush, and hopes she never finds her holy grail products because she likes the thrill of the chase so much. Her mission is to bring you super honest reviews on makeup, skincare, fragrance and all things beauty. She’s in no way an expert on the topic and she sure as hell isn’t a super model. But she’s passionate about makeup and is seeking like-minded individuals that like pina coladas, getting caught in the rain, and ones that enjoy spending hundreds of dollars at Sephora without feeling buyer’s remorse. If you’re that person feel free to reach out and leave a comment or follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Bloglovin‘.

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  • Sheila

    YAY! I LOVE cleansing oils. Like you, I would probably not be able to live without mine. I use maybe a whole bottle of Shu Uemura (the big stuff) every year because I use it everyday to wash off sunscreen. It is the most amazing and effective cleanser ever.

    • the Muse

      me too shelia can’t live without 😀 Shu’s big bottle will def last a year 😀 Shu really does make one of the better oils around must agree!

  • jonnie

    I only tried cleansing oil because I had to have the Moyocco Anno LE bottle, even though I’d never tried it. I like it very much, even though I’m too lazy to use it as often as I should… it makes my skin so smooth and soft when I do use it as I should though. 🙂

    • the Muse

      god I love those bottles jonnie 😀 use it use it! I use it cleansing oil nightly to get all my makeup off 😀

      • jonnie

        Okay okay, I felt guilted into using it tonight. 🙂 I make such a huge mess of my sink when I use it! But my skin feels so nice now…

          • jonnie

            LOL! Awesome.

            I went to eBay last night and got a variety pack of the my beauty diary sheet masks… I’m excited! And I may need to keep water from running everywhere with those too. 😉

          • the Muse

            yayyayaya jonnie! awesome can’t wait to hear your thoughts on MBD! 😀

  • Alyson aka Dustbunnylife

    If you love cleansing oils you HAVE to check out DHC’s line of cleansing oils. Their original one is great and I’ve just tried the new “Mild Touch” cleansing oil and LOVE LOVE LOVE the way it makes my skin feel! I’ve been touching my face all day! (bad, I know)

    • the Muse

      hiay alyson! Oh yes I have the mild touch and adore it 😀 was plotting a review 😀 I like the regular one as well 🙂

    • margaret

      I love DHC’s Cleansing Oil, too! It was the first and only one I’ve tried, and I love it.

  • SoVeryFabulous

    I’m a big fan of MAC Cleanse Off Oil, though I haven’t bought it for a while because it’s kind of pricey. I liked it best for removing waterproof make up, but I find that Neutrogena Oil Free eye make up remover is a great cheaper alternative.

    • the Muse

      hey soveryfab! Love it too 😀 quite good stuff! but yes a bit expensive as is shu ouchie price!

  • imprompturoses

    Love them! My favorite is the Biore pink one you have in this post. I also think that it works much better than other makeup removers. On the stateside when I run out, I also like using Pond’s Cold Cream as makeup remover.

    • the Muse

      roses would you believe biore DOES not having this cleansing oil here!? grrr! I always have to get it from Japan!

  • GlossQueen

    I love cleansing oils! I don’t use them much in summer, but in winter they’re all I use. I use them to remove my make-up, they’re especially good when my skin is dry and irritated.

  • Paris B

    Yay for me 🙂 Not all work on me though – some give me bumps on my skin but in general there’s no better all in one makeup remover

    • the Muse

      me too paris! I have to be careful as mineral oil seems to be what causes it, it doesn’t have often but on occasion 😀

      I agree nothing better than go cleansing oil!

      btw how are you? long time no speak 🙂

  • suz

    I love my cleansing oils!! I started out testing using shu Uemura and began just loving it…so I researched and found gr8 cleansing oils from japan for a cheap price that work just as gr8 as the expensive cleansing oils.

    • the Muse

      hey suz there are SO many from everywhere! korea, m’asia, Taiwan, and at way cheaper prices for sure!

  • Kat

    I must be a bad Asian! 🙁 I’ve never heard of a cleansing oil. Is it just for removing makeup and such or can I use it to replace my Purity? Which brand do you use? HELP! 🙂

    • the Muse

      omg kat! they may revoke your asian membership! haha kidding! It can indeed replace purity, I use purity myself and actually prefer a cleansing oil of it. a good place to start, if you’re in the US, is Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil or more affordable DHC.


  • lyn

    Yay! I like the ease of removing all my makeup and sunscreen with one product. Admittedly I stopped using them for a while (during a period when I became terribly lazy… yikes!) but I have started to use them religiously again and love, love, love them. My favourites are from HABA and L’Occitane.

    • the Muse

      oh noes lyn! whatcha use in place!? oh I never tried or knew L’Occitane had one! Ha!

  • Christina

    Ahhh! I had the Shu (the little one they have at Sephora) for a while. It took everything off beautifully but I think it was breaking me out! And it’s tres expensive, even if it does last me a year :(. Would you recommend any other ones that are similar but hopefully don’t contain mineral oil (as I think that broke me out) and are just a teensy bit more palpable in terms of price?

    • the Muse

      christina not sure if shu has mineral oil but sometimes that’s the prob and yes a bit expensive 🙁 mmmm I’m not sure I use alot of diff ones but not sure which do and do not contain mineral oil as it’s not ingredient that causes any probs with my face but I’ll check and let ya know dear!

  • jackieg02

    I’ve never tried a cleansing oil…I’m not quite sure I would like it. I did get a sample of Ultrabland from Lush, the SA said it was “like a cleansing oil” to remove makeup, but I didn’t want to dish out the cash for it and it kinda gave me little bump things on my face.
    I have been using Babyface, which I know is oil based, and I like it.

    • the Muse

      hey jackie ultrabland is pretty rich but I couldn’t compare it to cleansing oil! Babyface=AWESOME 😀

  • Nikkiz.

    Cleansing Oils for me. I’m almost done with my bottle of Fasio Cleansing Oil (which they discontinued, boo!) and just bought the Etude House Cleansing Dream Cleansing Oil Light. Can’t wait to start using it.

  • Crystal

    hey muse~!
    i hail from Singapore!

    i’m currently using a cleansing oil from Fancl. i don’t exactly have the budget to get the Shu one though.. my mom feedbacked to me that she didnt exactly like it due to the slightly oily afterwash feel.
    BUT! nonetheless, i personally LOVE it to the max!
    i haven’t tried Biore’s or Mandom’s cleansing oil, is it good? i’m trying to search for an inexpensive one after i’m through with my Fancl one. i’m looking for one that doesn’t give any oily sticky afterwash feel.

    thanks muse!

    PS: keep those reviews coming in! i love ur reviews! ^^

    • the Muse

      hey crystal I really love the fancl one 🙂 plus the LE packaging they do on occasion thrills me 🙂

      I like shu too but it is $$$$ 🙁 Biore is ok where as Mandom is cleansing water not oil good for quickie makeup off but not good for long term. try the DHC mild Touch it’s nice 🙂

      Aw thanks hun *hugs*

    • the Muse

      hey mandy I like the missha one but HATE the smell! kinda smells granny-like or is it me!?

  • Ceriene

    I love cleansing oils! They get all my make up off in a jiffy. I’m using Covermark’s at the moment, but I want to switch to Shu Uemura once I’m done with this bottle.

  • Kittenish


    I love cleansing oil. I wear thick sunblock, and I used to worry that my cleansers weren’t getting my skin clean enough. With cleansing oil, I totally don’t have to worry about it. Also, after I remove my mascara with eye makeup remover, I massage cleansing oil on my face and get rid of the last bits of mascara with it.

    Right now I’m using Kose Softymo Deep Cleansing Oil and I love it. I don’t know how I ever survived before cleansing oil. I never want to be without it!

    • the Muse

      kittenish same here! It always gets the last little pieces of mascara and eye makeup right off and really penetrates to get a deep clean!

      Softymo makes a nice one 😀 me either haha!

  • mayrei

    Yay! I’m actually not a fan of the Shu oil I tried (the green one) as it was too thick for me, and hard to rinse off. Also, the smell is atrocious to me. The one I love is a cheapie Asian brand, Kanebo Purenavi. It has a light scent, is just the right consistency, rinses off easily, and leaves my skin super soft and clean with no residue and no breakouts. I may try DHC next, since I hear such good things about it.

    • the Muse

      aw sorry to hear mayrei! Kanebo Purenavi is pretty nice 😀 DHC is def a nice one but it’s also thick, also quite affordable which always appeals!

  • Adrian

    Smashbox is the absolute best I’ve ever used. It gets everything off my skin and doesn’t clog my pores. I’ve been using it for almost three months and can’t say enough good things about it. Even though it is expensive ($69) and made for tradespeople (which makes it unavailable in stores), you can easily buy it for around $10 on Ebay. Plus, it lasts a long time. I stocked up thinking that I would go through it as quickly as the MAC and DHC oils. Color me surprised. After three months I’ve barely put a dent in it. Thank goodness I love it as much as I do, because I’ll be using it a looooong time.

    • the Muse

      hey adrian I haven’t tried it and it’s everywhere on sale really need to snag some. (I’ve seen it on sale at Beauty Ticket, etc…) it sounds amazing!!!! thanks for the rec!

  • Kristina

    I’m not sure how I feel about it. I just bought my first Shu cleansing oil. It’s supposedly for all skin types but I’m pretty sure that’s what caused the gigantic pimple on my chin. I’m going to stop using it for a week and try again, if I get another pimple then I’ll know for sure.

    • the Muse

      mmm kristina could be mineral oil but I’m not sure if Shu has mineral oil in the ingreds but that def could cause a crop up of pimples!

      • jonnie

        The super nice lady at the shu counter told me that if you have pimple issues with the oil and you know you have the right one for your skin it is probably that you are not washing it off well enough. She said it’s usually at the hairline because of stray oil not getting washed off, but it could happen on the chin too I sjuppose…

  • Bonnie

    Muse, how would these work on an uber-oily face? And do they work the same way as a cleanser?

    • the Muse

      hi bonnie

      it should be fine as they rinse clean away and do not cause more of a greasy feel 😀

  • kira

    i used to hate my shu uemura cause it broke me out the first few times i used it. but that was because i used it incorrectly. however, now it’s amazing and i swear nothing will be in between me and my nice bottle of shu. 😀

  • Nina

    I have the regular one from DHC, I love that. I also tried Smashbox, but didn’t like it at all 🙁
    I’m going to try Shu Uemura as well 😀

    • the Muse

      nina haven’t tried the smashbox yet and it’s all over the place on sale too but sounds like a no go 😛 Shu is great! Nice oil for sure! DHC is def a great one 😀 ‘specially for the price!

  • Kimber’s Corner

    I love the DHC Olive Oil cleansing oil. That stuff is the bomb, and I haven’t been without it for years. Nothing takes off mascara and all that other gunk so easily. It even takes off the Bobbi Brown long wear gel eyeliners – which I find very very difficult to remove. I love the stuff, and it’s my go to cleanser when I have a face of gunk and sunscreen.

  • Christine

    It’s a yay, but with caution. I really don’t like the stinging the eyes part

      • Christine

        I was using one of the drugstore cleansing oil by Shiseido, but now I’m using the one from Missha. Both had the stinging

        • the Muse

          oh no christine! that’s awful! I guess you’re really sensitive dear! 🙁

  • PinkyKathy

    It a MUST HAVE item. hehehehe I use FANCL cleansing oil ( green bottle).
    You should try it. It’s awesome. ^_^

    • the Muse

      def kathy, def 😀 I love the fancl one 😀 especially the LE bottles 😀 I’m such a sucker for cutes packaging!

  • Tammy

    Yay for sure but you’re right, def. not an NA thing but still popular with Asians in NA 🙂 The first cleansing oil I tried was from DHC and I liked it decently enough but I do prefer the Shu one more because it feels ‘lighter’ somehow. I love it best for taking the face off at the end of the day but I usually follow up with another cleanser to remove the oil. Redundant? Maybe, but I love to lap my face in luxury XD What are YOUR favorite oil cleansers??? 😀

    • the Muse

      absolutely Tammy! 😀 I normally don’t follow up with a cleanser but a toner 😀 that gets it all off 😀

      I like DHC Mild Touch, Shu of course, Kai Biore, shiseido t version (blue bottle), and kinda dig happy bath day but hate the smell from Kose 😀

      how about you?

  • Gia

    Love them! I’m a super dry skin girl and oil cleansers work great. On a pinch I have tried Neutrogena oil-free cleansers and it was so hard to take off my heavy makeup. I felt like I was tugging on my eyelids to get the mascara off. I love Shu Uemura and Biore but my all time fav is Lancome’s oil cleanser for face and eyes. It’s great!!

    • the Muse

      me too gia I experience that with about 95% of eye make up removers, lots of tugging 🙁 I wish we had the biore one here in the US 🙁

  • Karrie

    It’s a yay for me too.
    I have oily skin, so by the time I wash my face at night, no ordinary cleanser is able to cut through the day’s grime and makeup.
    Before I used cleansing oils, I had to wash my face twice with my cleanser…and that was on days when I had no makeup on.

  • Lilian

    I swear by them to remove all my makeup and sunscreen! My favourite is the one by Garnier, it’s cheap and works like a dream! The oil says it’s for dry skin but I use it even though my skin is oily. I’ve never looked back at the more expensive ones!