Product Review: Bare Face Cleansing Oil

by Emily R | 24 Comments

When our own Jennifer in Product Development first told her friends about her idea for a face wash made of oil, they were confused. Face wash made from oil? But…don’t we wash our faces to remove excess oil?

Well, turns out that Jenn knows what she’s talking about, and Bare Face Cleansing Oil was soon born. And my face—nay, the world!—would never be the same.

I wear waterproof mascara (greetings from Seattle) and have accepted that a normal skin cleansing/makeup removing regimen won’t take it all the way off, so I have a bit of mascara residue on at all times. It’s the lesser of two evils…without waterproof mascara, I’ll leave work looking good and then walk a few drizzly blocks to show up at happy hour looking like Sad Clown.

Much to my surprise, my first run with Bare Face Cleansing Oil smudged more mascara off my eyes than I’ve ever seen with my regular non-oil cleanser.


Oily face + raccoon eyes. What's not to love?

Oily face + raccoon eyes. What’s not to love?

I was really pleased by this development, but I felt sure that the rinsing process would necessitate a second scrub with my normal cleansing milk. I leaned over the sink and wet my face with nice, warm water. The cleansing oil lathers up a small amount once you get it wet, so I actually washed my face for longer than I normally would simply because the cleanser felt so silky and luxurious.

Note: Warm water is essential here, as cold water will slam your pores shut and trap the oil within.

Then a rinse. And then, WOW.

The raccoon eyes were utterly, completely, absolutely gone, as well as all other makeup and a city-walking day’s worth of dirt and oil. My skin looked and felt super clean and hydrated without my regular post-wash moisturizing routine. I didn’t anticipate how nice my skin would feel post-cleanse, but a glimpse at the product fact sheet pointed to Malvaceae Lipid Extract™a lipid complex that provides immediate and long-lasting hydration. Truer words could not be said. I dig it.

But…oil cleanser for oily skin?

Yes! We’re too accustomed to washing our face with oil-stripping cleanser, which then makes our skin go into oil-production overdrive to compensate. Oil alone does not clog pores or cause breakouts. It’s the combination of dirt, dead skin, etc that builds up with oil, and then hardens in the pores. Soak those pore buildups in cleansing oil and you soften the pore-clogging oil. Oil softens and dissolves oil. It’s not a miracle. It’s science!

To use Bare Face:

-Put it on dry hands

-Rub it on dry face

-Rinse. Rejoice.

Final thoughts

1. There isn’t much in the way of dirt, clogging oil, and makeup that Bare Face won’t tackle.

2. Thanks to the lightly dewy moisture that remains after rinsing, this super-cleanser feels like it’s actually good for my skin. (Psst. It really is!)

3. Bare Face Cleansing Oil is unbelievably easy to use since it removes your makeup, cleans your skin, and hydrates all at once. New holy grail product for me.

Can’t wait to hear what our Mavens and muses think about Bare Face!

Thoughts on the oil cleansing method? Let’s hear it, in the comments!



  • I have acne prone skin, which is oily and dry at the same time! I have been looking for a better face cleanser for my sensitive skin for some time now because cleansers like clearasil and neutragina make my breakouts worse so I have been using regular unscented antibacterial soap along with rubbing toothpaste on my pimples to help them go away! I’m 27 years old and my oily, acne prone skin is a huge confidence killer! I’m HOPING this cleanser helps with my issues!

  • I tend to have acne prone skin & sometimes I worry about products involving the word “oil”… do you think this would still be a good product for me to try? Curious!

    • Emily

      Hi Lisa,

      We fully support the oil-cleansing method for all skin types. Each person has unique sensitivities, and oil-prone skin may take a couple of weeks to adjust, but give it a try and let us know what you think! Oil-cleansing has been around for years and years and years…We’re so excited to finally have one of our own.

      Thanks for asking!

      • awesome, thanks! just chose my september box and i’m looking forward to trying it out! :] will definitely share the results.

  • September

    SUPER excited to try this!!! Since I dont see any “fragrance” in the ingredient list i think it will be fine to at least try on my very sensitive skin. 🙂

  • Renee

    I’m hoping it comes with the sponge in one of the boxes 🙂 Then I would love to give it a nervous try. 🙂

  • Ugh, I really hope it comes in one of the boxes coming soon. I would LOVE to try that. For so long I’ve just been using olive oil mixed with witch hazel and that alone is great but I’d love something I can use when I don’t feel like mixing things up in the early morning.

    • Emily

      Yes! This is a September Maven product!

  • Brodie

    I am So excited for this product! I love using oils in my skin care routine (Dry, Dry Dry skin) and a cleanser that doesn’t leave me feeling like a desert is totally welcome on my washroom counter.

  • Curious about exfoliation – I use a Clarisonic every other day – would it be alright to use with the oil?

    • Emily

      Yes! It’s absolutely fine to use an oil cleanser with your Clarisonic.

  • Angi Smith

    I’m hoping the sponge does not count as the second beauty product for the Maven box. I’m an It Girl, so if it is in this month’s Maven Window, can we get it as an add-on? Also, will it be in the Secret Store?

    • Emily

      The Konjac Sponge is an add-on. As for the Secret Store… That’s a secret! 😉

  • Irene

    Hey–trying to subscribe to Julep Blog but there seems to be an issue, it takes me to an error page–there’s a glitch with subscribing. Please subscribe me! 🙂

  • I was so so so excited to see this product! I have friends that swear by the oil cleansing method but I have been scared to try it. You have totally inspired me and can’t wait to get it!!!

  • Bridget

    I got this in my box and honestly was afraid to try it. I have combination skin and didn’t want to feel like a grease pit all day. But I have to say, wow, I’m really surprised at how great my skin feels and it isn’t greasy at all!

  • Michelle

    So I have been using this since my box arrived (I got the sponge as an add on) and OMG, it’s amazing is all I can say! I have really oily skin and I was hesitant about it but since I have started using it my acne is almost completely gone! I really honestly can’t even believe it, I’ve always struggled with keeping my face clear and even used prescription medication which would dry out my face and then cause it to go into over drive to create more oil and I could never find a balance. I made my friends try it when they came over last night after they mentioned how nice my face looked and they were both really weird-ed out about it as well, but after using it and feeling how smooth but clean it left their face I think they’re sold as well. I’ve always loved Julep’s nail polish but this is by far my favorite product of theirs now!

    • Emily

      Wooo! Thanks for the great feedback!

  • Ameera

    What can I put on my face after the BareFace Cleansing Oil? I really love the product but my face feels a little dry afterwards. Is there any lotion/moisturizer you recommend? Thank you!

    • Emily

      Your regular moisturizer should do the trick. I didn’t change up my moisturizing routine, I only threw out all my old cleansers. 🙂

  • Caitlyn

    I just started Julep this month, sept., so unfortunately I got my starter it girl box with the three nail polishes… Since I am new I still am confused by a lot of this box choosing stuff since I haven’t done it yet…. I am assuming since I got the starter box already coming for September then my only option is to buy it flat out?

    • Emily

      HI Caitlyn,

      Yes, if you want Bare Face immediately, buying it outright is your best bet. The good news is you’ll get your Maven discount and free shipping!

      Or, if you’re patient, wait until the October Maven Box window (Sept 20-24) and it might be available as an add-on at a discount. If not, wait until Oct 1 for The Secret Store to open because we never know what’s going to end up in there until we get the key.

  • Caroline

    Unfortunately I didn’t receive a sponge like all of these happy ladies here 🙁
    But I love love love this product and I’m no longer rushing to the bathroom midday to apply a powder. My skin is so silky and smooth and I can go all day without looking completely greasy! I love this stuff!!

  • kerry

    I’ve tried this product about 3 times, i have combination oily skin, and i use this product as directed. i feel after using this product and drying my face off with a towel I’m still removing a lot of dirt that didn’t come off with the wash causing me to wash my face again with my other face wash. but im g lad it works for others