Cleansing is the first and most important step in a skincare routine (or just skincare in general) especially for oily, acne prone skin.
Getting straight to the point, here are 7 tips you will want to apply to your cleansing routine to achieve better skin and get better results from your other skincare products in your routine.
1 Cleanse twice
More applicable for those of you who wear makeup and/or sunscreen, starting off with an oil-based cleanser will remove more effectively.
Double cleansing is a where you use an oil-based 1st cleanser targeted for removing makeup, sunscreen and other buildup on the skin followed by a 2nd cleanser (usually water-based) to then cleanse the skin itself. (Check out my post on double cleansing here)
Using an oil-based cleanser first helps to more effectively remove non-water-based products such as long wearing makeup and sunscreen using the concept of like-dissolving-like. (Check out my post on Oil Cleansing Method) This then allows the second cleanser to more effectively clean the skin itself without a layer of dirt and makeup in the way.
2 Massage against the grain
Instead of going from the center of your face and going in an outward direction, flip it over. Start from the outside perimeter of your face and massage gently inwards. Use only your fingertips and use very little pressure.
You’ll be able to feel the clogged pores under your skin better and massaging it this way encourages the clogs to move to the surface and purge quicker.
3 Multiple rinsing technique
Adapted from the popular Korean 424 technique (which stands for 4-minute oil cleansing, 2-minute second cleanse & 4-minute rinse), the multiple rinsing technique ensures a thorough removal of cleansers from the skin with very little friction.
Keep splashing water onto your skin to remove the visual residue of any cleansers and then keep splashing. A rough guide would be to splash the skin between 9-18 times. Depending on how much patience you have, in this case, more is more.
4 Use lukewarm water (not hot)
Warmer water increases the ability of the surfactants (stuff in your cleansers that cleans) to penetrate the skin more than it needs to. This may sound like a good thing, but not necessarily. This increases the stripping of oils and other good stuff from the stratum corneum (protective layer of the skin) that actually functions to protect the skin. As we have addressed in previous posts, a damaged SC brings about a whole bunch of unnecessary problems.
5 Less is more
Less cleanser & less contact time – Use only the amount of cleanser that you need and don’t let it sit on your skin for too long.
Less cleanser, less surfactants; less time, less time for the surfactants to soak in which overall causes less damage.
6 Skip cleansers in the morning
Unless you play rugby in your sleep and work up a sweat, or have a tendency to put on makeup in your sleep (which I highly advise against), it is unlikely that your skin needs such a thorough cleaning in the mornings.
If you have cleansed your skin properly the night before, just splash water on your skin and you’re good to go. If you absolutely must, just use micellar water. But note the following tip –
7 Rinse off micellar water and cleansing wipes
While the novelty of micellar water and cleansing wipes rely on the convenience of not requiring a cleanser to clean your skin, it is still advisable, especially for sensitive and acne prone skin, to rinse the skin after using such products.
These products, like regular cleansers rely on surfactants to remove residue and clean the skin. These surfactants are usually very mild. However, some skin may react to it being left on the skin for long periods of time. So just to be safe, give it a rinse with water or just wipe your face down with a damp washcloth or tissue if you absolutely have to use cleansing wipes to ‘clean’ your skin.
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