Washing your face seems easy enough, right? Right! So long as you know what you’re doing. While simple in theory, there are a few adjustments that you can make to your face washing routine — and skin care routine as a whole — that can help to improve your cleansing experience.
How often should you wash your face? Should you use warm or cold water? How do you know whether you are using the right cleanser? At MadeMan, we’re here to provide all the face washing answers you’ve been looking for.
How Should You Wash Your Face
The first rule of washing your face is that it should be a permanent part of your skin care routine! While everyone’s routine is bound to look different, cleansing your face every day is not something that you cannot afford to skip.
Start With Cleansing
Both during the day and night, substances like dirt, excess sebum, unwanted bacteria, and dead skin cells gather on your face. Cleansing your skin properly is essential for ridding your epidermis of this buildup. When left on the skin, these substances can lead to skin damage that includes premature aging and acne.
To minimize the chances of this happening, you should wash your face twice a day; once in the morning when you wake and once at night before going to sleep. Knowing its benefits, you may feel tempted to clean your face more than twice a day, but excessive washing can be just as harmful as when you don’t wash often enough. which can cause irritation.
Knowing When To Double Cleanse
Washing your face too often with even the most gentle cleanser can cause irritation and make your skin dry out, weakening the natural moisture and lipid barrier responsible for protecting your skin.
One of the instances in which adding a third wash is beneficial for you is when you work out during the day. If you hit the gym for a midday workout or take a dip in a pool with chlorine, it is smart to hit the shower or wash your face to keep your skin clear of chemicals and sweat as you go about the rest of your day.
When washing your face at night, you might also consider employing a method called double-cleansing. Double cleansing is when you wash your face twice in a row using two different cleansers.
The first wash is usually used to target all of the unwanted grime and dirt acquired throughout your busy day. This added wash is popular for those with oily skin or active lifestyles that may need an extra layer of substances removed. Oil-based cleansers, chemical exfoliants, or salicylic acid are typically used to do this.
Another option is to use micellar water, which is purified soft water made up of micelles. Micelles are tiny cleansing molecules that help pull dirt and oil from the skin.
For the second wash of the double cleansing method, the typical cleanser that you use in the morning will do just fine.
Understanding Your Skin’s Needs
When it comes to selecting your cleanser, it is best to consider your skin type. Everyone has a specific skin type assigned by their genetics, though your individual type may be affected by external and internal factors and change with time. The five different skin types are normal, sensitive, dry, oily, and combination.
Each skin type has its own unique set of characteristics and sensitivities. For example, the water content in your skin will influence how elastic it is, its sensitivity level will influence how it reacts to various substances, and the oil content will influence the texture of your skin. Choosing your skincare products accordingly and purchasing the cleanser that most compliments you will render the best results.
When selecting the appropriate cleanser, consider purchasing a gentle product. Using a cleanser that is too harsh on the skin can potentially leave it dry, tight, and stripped of its natural oils. Plus, every skin type benefits from a product designed with sensitive skin in mind.
Products To Avoid
Something to avoid using is soap. It might be tempting to wash your face with the bar soap you use in the shower, but these sorts of generic soaps have the habit of altering the natural pH balance of your skin.
Additionally, you may also want to avoid artificial foaming cleansers. These cleansers contain foaming agents, which give your cleanser the ability to “bubble.”
While it may feel satisfying to see your cleanser foam, and may offer you a sense of security knowing that the ingredients in your cleanser have been activated, these foaming agents can be harsh, particularly on sensitive skin.
Similarly to bar soaps, foaming cleansers have the habit of putting your skin out of pH balance, inhibiting its ability to fight back against bacteria and leaving it dry and irritated.
Another component to exclude from your cleanser when possible is surfactants.
Surfactants are compounds used to break down oil on the epidermis, which is meant to assist with cleaning out dirt. They are found in most cleansers and pose little to no issue when used in moderation. Excessive exposure to surfactants can negatively affect the health of your skin’s molecules.
Invest In Quality Products
With all this in mind, we recommend trying MadeMan’s The Resetter. The Resetter is a two-in-one facial cleanser and shaving gel combines eucalyptus essential oil with a natural foaming agent soap bark to facilitate a smooth shave and deep, though gentle, cleansing.
While most competing drug store brands are loaded with ingredients you can’t pronounce and made of acids that damage most skin types, leaving users with stinging, red skin, The Resetter is water-based and uses all-natural ingredients.
When it is time to wash your face and you have selected your cleanser, start by washing your hands. It is very common for people to use their hands to apply their cleanser rather than a tool.
This increases the importance of ridding your hands of bacteria prior to touching your face. Many neglect to wash their hands prior to washing their face but by applying this simple step, you can drastically improve your cleansing experience.
Along with your cleanser, water is the other essential ingredient for a successful cleanse. Water plays a role in removing the unwanted gathered debris from our skin. Make sure that the water is lukewarm.
Lukewarm water will be warm enough to open up your pores for effective cleaning but will not be so hot that it will dehydrate your skin. It is also important that you use lukewarm water when rinsing the product off of your face. Be sure to rinse your face thoroughly as any remaining cleanser left on your face will pose the threat of clogging your pores, leading to breakouts.
Be gentle as you wash and be gentle when you dry. Air drying your skin is perhaps the most secure method for drying your skin without harming it, but should you choose to use a towel, try patting rather than rubbing it and be sure that your towel is soft.
Is Exfoliating Different From Cleansing?
Yes! Cleansing and exfoliating are not the same and are not replacements for each other.
Exfoliating is a treatment in which dead skin cells are removed from the epidermis. It is known to increase blood circulation and brighten your overall appearance. There are two different methods of exfoliation.
The first is mechanical exfoliation. This is when you use tools like specially made gloves, brushes, and sponges to exfoliate your skin. The second method is chemical exfoliation. This is when you use chemical solutions, typically containing a beta hydroxy acid or alpha hydroxy acid, to buff away at dead skin cells.
Cleansing should be a part of your daily routine, while exfoliating is a treatment performed on average two to three times a week.
What Temperature Should Water Be When Shaving?
Just like when you are washing your face with your cleanser, warm water is the best option. We caution against shaving on dry skin. Instead, soak your hair with warm water and shaving gel prior to applying your blade.
The hair you shave may have a sharp edge and grow back into your skin without doing so. This may result in ingrown hairs, irritation, and razor burn.
What Other Products Are Skin Care Necessities?
In addition to cleanser, moisturizer and sunscreen are necessities for everyone.
While toner, serums, eye cream, spot treatments, and oils can all benefit your skin greatly when incorporated into your skin care regimen, they are not necessary for everyone. Every skin care routine looks different, but should include cleanser, moisturizer, and sunscreen across the board.
Moisturizer is necessary for keeping your skin hydrated and refreshed. Moisturizing daily will assist with keeping your skin consistently healthy. Apply the same standards that you have for your cleanser to your moisturizer.
Choose a product that is gentle but effective and uses all-natural ingredients.
Sunscreen is necessary for protecting your skin from the ultraviolet radiation emitted by the sun’s rays. Unprotected exposure to the skin may result in pigmentation, rough texture, fine lines, and decreased elasticity. Use a sunscreen that is broad-spectrum and has an SPF minimum of 30.
Maintaining your skin’s health is easy when you have all the answers. While getting to know your own skin and its unique needs will require some effort on your part, MadeMan is happy to help you with the rest.
Cleansing Formulations That Respect Skin Barrier Integrity | NCBI
The science behind skin care: Cleansers | PubMed
How to safely exfoliate at home | AAD
Aftershave burns | PubMed