Since an early age, you’ve known that washing your face is a necessary step in your skin care regimen. And with the number of times you’ve done it during your life, the process has probably become second-nature. But it turns out that washing your face isn’t quite as cut and dry as you may have thought. In fact, you could be making mistakes that are preventing your skin from looking its most beautiful. From using the wrong facial cleanser in your skin care routine to skipping nighttime face-washing, keep reading to find out what some of the most common face-washing mistakes are and what you should do instead.
MISTAKE #1: YOU’RE USING THE WRONG CLEANSER
OK, this probably seems like a no-brainer but it’s worth repeating: You should use a cleanser that’s formulated for your skin type. The good news is, there are plenty of different types of cleansers out there, ranging from gel to cream to foaming.
Light foaming cleansers
If you prefer light-foaming products that thoroughly cleanse your skin. A light foaming cleaner removes most types of makeup, cleanses the skin thoroughly and softens your skin. Cleansers don’t have to foam to work properly, but many prefer foamy textures for cleansing.
If you prefer lightweight, hydrating products. A good cleansing gel easily removes light make-up, moisturises your skin and leaves your skin feeling fresh.
Skin type: normal, combination or oily skin and skin that is sensitive to redness and acne.
Cream and lotion cleansers
If you prefer cleansers that moisturise your skin. Cream and lotion cleansers have a silky texture and remove most types of makeup but if you use waterproof products you may need a separate make-up remover.
Skin type: normal, dry and sensitive skin.
If you prefer a thorough cleanser to remove heavy makeup or if you like to cleanse your skin twice. To double cleanse, first cleanse skin with an oil-based cleanser followed by a light foaming, gel, cream or lotion cleanser. An oil-based cleanser quickly removes makeup and leaves the skin supple and soft.
Skin type: all skin types.
Micellar water, water-based cleansers and liquid make-up removers
If you prefer to remove your makeup with cotton pads. Micellar water and cleansing water are different names for water- and surfactant-based makeup removers. You don’t necessarily have to rinse them off, but it is better to not leave cleansing agents on the skin for longer than necessary. There are also dual-phase make-up removers. These should be shaken before use and remove the most stubborn makeup without leaving a greasy layer on your skin.
Skin type: all skin types. Follow with a traditional facial cleanser to ensure that no leftover makeup stays on your skin.
If you prefer to quickly cleanse your skin without having to wash your face. These can be a great, efficient cleansing method especially when the wipes are soft and don’t leave a sticky layer on the skin. Take care to not pull on your skin which can cause damage.
Skin type: all skin types
Cleansing balms, cold creams and no-rinse cleansing creams
If you prefer deeply nourishing cleansers that moisturise your skin. These cleansers are best removed gently with a soft wet wash cloth to not damage your skin.
Skin type: normal, very dry and eczema-sensitive skin. These types of balms and creams are too heavy for oily or acne-prone skin.
Soap and cleansers on one piece (cleansing bars)
It is undeniable that soaps and cleansing bars thoroughly cleanse your skin, but they cleanse so strongly that they disrupt the surface of the skin and leave your skin dry and taut. Some cleansing bars are less dehydrating, but the ingredients that give them their solid shape can clog your pores and dull your skin.
MISTAKE #2: YOU’RE APPLYING CLEANSER THE WRONG WAY
Yep: There is a right way and a wrong way to apply a cleanser to your face. It’s important to be gentle. So, massage your cleanser lightly onto your skin—don’t aggressively rub—then rinse and follow up with the rest of your skin care routine.
MISTAKE #3: YOU’RE USING DIRTY HANDS
This one is quite gross when you think about it, so pay attention! Before cleansing your face, you should wash your hands to ensure they’re completely clean before you put them on your face. You touch lots of things in your daily life, from door handles to your cell phone, and your hands could have bacteria on them from the various surfaces you come into contact with throughout the day—hence needing a good wash before they go anywhere near your face.
MISTAKE #4: YOU’RE USING HOT WATER
It’s time to turn down the temps! Hot water can strip your skin of natural oils which can lead to dryness. Yikes! Whenever you wash your face, use lukewarm water instead. Trust us, your complexion will thank you!
MISTAKE #5: YOU’RE OVER-EXFOLIATING
Exfoliating is the process of sloughing away dead skin cells from the surface of your skin and it’s something you don’t want to go overboard with. Everyone’s skin is different—so there’s no hard and fast rule about how many times a week you should exfoliate. Some people may benefit from daily exfoliation, while others may only need to do so once or twice a week. It depends on your individual skin, so pay attention to how your skin responds so you can determine how often it’s appropriate to exfoliate. And remember: Be gentle!
MISTAKE #6: YOU’RE NOT FOLLOWING UP WITH MOISTURIZER
What you do after you wash your face is just as important as how you wash your face. And if you always skip using moisturizer post-cleanse, it’s time to change—and that applies to oily skin types, too! After you’ve rinsed off your cleanser, apply a moisturizer, like Sayeeda Day & Night Moisturiser to damp skin to help lock in hydration.