Review: Open Formula Oil Cleanser

Where to purchase: Available on Open Formula’s Website HERE

Price: £11.29

Volume: 100ml

What is it?: ”An Oil Cleanser which is a makeup remover, delicate enough for daily use, that can remove both sunscreen and waterproof makeup. Washes off thoroughly with no oil residue.”

Description: An 80% containing olive oil (it smells strongly of olive oil too) which is rich in antioxidants, omega fatty acids and vitamins E & K. This oil supposedly nourishes normal + dry skin as well as balancing oily skin and is gentle enough for sensitive skins and does not strip the skin of its natural moisture.

Good for: OF say dry and sensitive skins, I don’t think this is overwhelmingly hydrating, but I think dry skins could tolerate it. I do think oily and sensitive skins however wouldn’t mind as this emulsifies and doesn’t leave a greasy residue.


Packaging: A plastic bottle with a flip top cap (like inkey list serums) – you are easily able to squeeze the bottle to get product out. No leaking so-far, so I would say this is ok to travel with.

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Directions: ”Apply a handful of the facial cleansing oil to dry face and gently massage until the makeup and impurities dissolve. Wet hands and continue to lightly massage. The cleansing oil will turn milky. Rinse well. Wipe with wet cloth if desired.” – From the Open Formula Website.

How I use it: I apply this to remove my SPF, my sister uses this as a makeup double cleanser (she uses this first and then the Pixi Coconut Cleanser). A good trick to make the makeup removal more effective as OF suggests is to wet the hands slightly and then continue rubbing, to emulsify both the oil and break down the makeup further.

Key Ingredients: AntioxidantOlea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil (Olive oil contains antioxidants, but I don’t know if this matters so much as you’re going to wash the oil off? But I do think the olive oil prevents this from being an exceptionally drying cleanser, so that’s good! Also Olive oil contains many fatty acids), Tocopherol Acetate (Vitamin E).

Full Ingredients: Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit OilCaprylic/​Capric TriglycerideSorbeth-30 TetraoleateTocopherol AcetateOctyldodecyl OlivatePelargonium Graveolens Flower OilWater

Not a laundry list of ingredients which I like – straight and to the point.

NOTE: The Incidecoder Have an ingredient list breakdown HERE

Pelargonium Graveolens Flower Oil

Texture: It’s a lightweight oil that emulsifies when water is added. Not: I find this fine at removing my SPF!

Do you see it has a sort of yellow-ish tint? But nothing near as yellow as the DHC Cleansing oil. The texture of this is nice, spreadable and easy. Not too thick however.


Makeup Removal: I tested this to see how good it is at removing makeup.

Sephora Eye Liner, Mac Lip Liner, Fenty Beauty Concealer, Etude House Eye Primer, Pat McGrath Lipstick


It is dissolving a lot of the makeup. Easy to do, no tugging or rubbing required.


As you can see, the Mac Lip Liner and the Pat McGrath Lipstick remains! My hand doesn’t feel hydrated but it doesn’t feel tight either.

Second Cleanse:

Here, I applied some more cleanser just to see if I could get rid of the lipstick and the lip liner. I massaged for longer than the first attempt.


Do you see how this product emulsifies (turns milky) when water is added? It makes it much easier to wash off! I’m not left with an oily residue! The smell of this product also seems to wash off which I appreciate!

I can still vaguely see the lipstick (doesn’t show that well on camera) BUT I think if I did swipe with a tissue, it would have removed the lipstick more efficiently. (I simply added water and didn’t swipe but dabbed with a tissue to clearly test the effectiveness of the oil). I do think however a lip + eye remover would be required when removing lipstick and/or mascara from one’s face. But still, this managed to remove eyeliner and a non-waterproof lip liner as well as concealer!

In terms of my skin condition, my hand doesn’t feel too stripped, but I know double cleansing for me does make my skin tight usually regardless of the cleanser (other than my beloved Deciem Squalane Cleanser).


Youtube Video! Live Swatch of the product if you would like to see how it looks LIVE!

Fragrance?: Yes this has a strong smell. This contains Pelargonium Graveolens Flower Oil (an essential oil) – it is fragrant and sort of enhances the smell of the olive oil (olive oil does have its own natural smell). I find the essential oil addition unnecessary.

How long have I been using this?: For about a month

The Effect?: Cleansed skin that isn’t too tight and no oily residue (as this emulsifies when water is added). But double cleanses are required to remove makeup. And if I do double cleanse then yes my skin does feel relatively tight.

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What I like:

  • I like that this emulsifies (turns milky) making it easy to wash off
  • No Oily Residue
  • Good at removing my SPF
  • I like the packaging (easy squeeze-y flip, top cap)
  • I’m glad that nothing has been added to enhance the colour of the oil (which would be unnecessary *cough* DHC *cough*

What I don’t like:

  • Inclusion of Essential oil Pelargonium Graveolens Flower Oil (unnecessary)
  • Intense smell (you have to like the smell of both olive oil and the essential oil
  • Doesn’t leave my skin untouched i.e. it does take away some moisture from the skin so it’s better for me to stick to one cleanse hence why I like to use this to remove my SPF!

Overall Rating and Conclusion: 3.4/5 – I like that this emulsifies, doesn’t leave an oil residue and I like the packaging. The smell of this is so strong and the addition of the essential oil is unnecessary, this doesn’t leave my skin too tight but it does take some hydration away and it certainly doesn’t leave my skin moisturised after cleansing – but as you can see it is not a bad makeup remover and does dissolve foundation and lip liners/eye liners, it’s just tough lipstick or waterproof mascara I think, that would require some extra help!

Would I purchase?: I don’t think I would just because the DHC is such a fav of mine, however I really don’t think this is a failed product. And I genuinely appreciate that this emulsifies and doesn’t leave an oil slick on my skin (so important for a cleanser).

Dupe?: Nothing beats the DHC Deep Cleansing oil for me (Review HERE).

My Skin Type: I am acne prone and have combo skin. My skin is usually tight where the cheeks and eye area is and the outer parts of my face. My T zone is oily. My skin isn’t a fan of thick/heavy formulas so I opt for lightweight formulas to prevent it from clogging up. My skin doesn’t like essential oils either and I try to avoid fragrance when I can.

Disclaimer: I am a skincare enthusiast and not a skin expert. I am not qualified to give out dermatological advice. This type of advice should only be given by a medical practitioner. Upon trying / using any of the reviewed products on the blog, please follow the manufacturer’s instructions and warnings and please seek medical advice if needed.


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