Before the wide variety of skin products that emerged in the cosmetics industry today, proper hygiene has been known to be the pillar of proper skin care. Proper cleansing is a crucial step to a healthy skin.
Let’s see how you can improve your facial washing technique by going through the list of ways you might be washing your face wrong
1. Not Washing Your Hands First
Let’s start with the basic – clean hands. Wash hands with regular hand soap – because duh… cleaning face with dirty hands is just so wrong.
2. Using warm water to wash face
Have you heard about the beauty tip that says “wash face with warm water to open pores”? Well, proceed with caution due to two main reasons:
- Pores do not open and close at varying temperature.
- It may in fact, cause skin irritation when washing warm water with soap.
A study done by Berardesca E et al (1995) has found out that consistent washing of face with warm water (we’re talking about 40 degrees celcius warm here).
Though significant effects were not observed directly after washing, negative effects become statistically significant after repetition. The surfactant used in the study is SLS which is a known sensitizing ingredient in cleansers.
Even if your cleanser does not contain SLS, it is best to play it safe to stay away from high temperature when washing face.
3. You Don’t Double-Cleanse
Double Cleansing is the use of oil cleansers to remove oil-soluble matter on skin before using your regular facial wash. Oil-soluble materials include your sebum, pigments from makeup, emollients and some product preservatives and fillers. For me, Double-cleansing isn’t always necessary especially if you don’t put too much product on your face. However, if you have full-make up on, or you have layers of products applied on your face, it may be necessary.
The cosmetic industry has done so much improvement in formulations to make their products more Long-lasting and water-proof. So it makes sense that we should step up our cleansing routine too, Yes?
4. Not using Mechanical Tools to Aid Cleansing
Surfactants are the active ingredients in all cleansers that are responsible in removing dirt and oil from your face. Let us take a look at how surfactants actually work:
Surfactants in cleansers attract non-water soluble matters and encapsulates them in tiny spherical micelles. It means that surfactants makes dirt and oil suspend in water. Our cleansers still need mechanical removal of dirt and proper rinsing for thorough cleaning. Though massaging our face with our hands works, using cleansing aids with higher surface area significantly improve your cleaning efficiency.
Here are some examples of Cleansing Aids:
Caution: Keep our cleansing tools clean. If you cant keep ‘em clean, better use your clean hands.
5. Using Dirty Linen to wipe face
A harmless comedone can instantly get inflamed when colonized by bacteria. Don’t make your washing efforts come to waste by drying your face with dirty cloth.
6. Washing too Often
What actually happens when we wet our face? In thermodynamics, the rate at which water evaporates from a surface is proportional to the amount of water in the surface. It means that when your face is wet, water evaporates from your skin much faster.
It’s okay if it’s just water that evaporating – that’s the whole point of drying right? The problem is that a portion of our moisture from deeper layer of your skin also evaporates with the water on the surface. Washing with water, along with frequent stripping of sebum caused by cleansers can result to dryness.
7. You Exfoliate too Often, or too much
There are two ways on how you can possibly over-exfoliate: 1. You are exfoliating too often 2. Your products are too concentrated for your skin’s sensitivity.
Skin’s tolerance to exfoliant concentration vary from person to person. When using exfoliants, always start spot test, and apply at one to two days interval. In case the product doesn’t suit you, a patch of redness is better than walking outside looking like a ripe tomato.
8. You don’t rinse properly
Some people have acne around the jawline because it’s the area that’s often not rinsed thoroughly with water when washing face. Retained Cleansers on face can become food for bacteria, or may contain comedogenic substances that can clog pores.
9. You don’t moisturize right after
Immediately moisturize face after you pat it dry. Do not wait too long either. Stripping off sebum on our face makes it vulnerable to dryness. Make sure you moisturize every time you wash your face.