It’s Step #1 in our skincare routine - cleanse. Not rocket science. Agreed?
Actually…. there’s more to cleansing than you might realise. And if you’re doing it wrong then you run the risk of the rest of your routine not being as effective as it could be.
Good cleansing is the cornerstone of healthy skin. It’s so easy to think “well, I’m going to wash this stuff off anyway!” and go for a cheap cleanser. Anything that says “Unclogs Pores” will do, right?
Cleansing with a product that respects your skin's balance (acid mantle) is absolutely vital. This way you’ll get way more benefit out of your headline acts - your serums and creams.
You may even find that you need *less* of the expensive serums and creams when a quality, acid-mantle-loving cleanser is used.
This week we’re going to let you in on 9 cleansing mistakes you should stop making today to make sure you’re getting the most out of your routine.
1. Over-cleansing? Oh no!
If you’ve ever had that tight, squeaky clean feeling after cleansing then it probably means that you’re over-cleansing. That means you’ve stripped your skin of too much of it’s natural oils which upsets your delicate acid mantle.
Your acid mantle is responsible for protecting your skin and is made up of oils. Wash it away and you’re asking for problems - dry skin will become drier, your skin will become more easily dehydrated, and oily skin might overproduce oil and become even oilier.
Happy tip: Stick with either an oil-based cleanser (like the Cloud 9 Deep Cleansing Balm or 3 Cheers Cleansing Oil) or a water-based cleanser with a blend of very gentle surfactants (like the Chirpy Charcoal Cleansing Gel).
2. Exfoliation - another balancing act
Your skin is constantly producing new skin cells, and shedding the old, dead ones (sorry, it’s a little gross, we know). Sometimes those dead skin cells just fall off, but other times they like to hang around and clog your pores.
If you have dry skin and get congestion or breakouts, this is probably the cause!
Exfoliation will help get rid of those dead skin cells so your cleanser and other products can do their thing, so you definitely want to be doing it.
BUT… be careful not to OVER-exfoliate. If you over-do it you can cause micro-tears in your skin, sensitivity, and irritation. Not happy Jan.
Remember to be very gentle and leave the exfoliation to once or twice per week.
3. Take it off
You’ll want to make sure you’re removing all of the cleanser from your face after cleansing. With water-based cleansers this is usually a cinch, but if you’re using a cleansing oil or cleansing balm you need to take a bit of extra care here. Leftover cleanser on your skin could be a cause for irritation, or even breakouts.
Our favourite way to remove a cleanser is with warm water, a Konjac Sponge, and then patting dry with a towel. You could even dry a double cleanse - start with your oil-based cleanser and then follow with your water-based cleanser (like the Chirpy Charcoal Cleansing Gel), or even the Tickled Pink Perfecting Tonic can be used as a 2nd cleanser.
4. No harsh washers please
Using a harsh face washer (or rubbing dry with your towel) falls under the same no-no category as over-exfoliation. Your skin is incredibly delicate so you need to avoid tugging at it - you might be surprised that being too rough with your skin could cause redness, irritation, and premature wrinkles (which most of us want to avoid if we can!).
Happy tip: Switch to a Konjac Sponge (which has so many other benefits for your skin too), and pat dry with your towel instead of rubbing.
5. Lock in the hydration, stat!
There’s no need to wait for your face to dry fully before you move on to the next step in your routine. You can keep moving on while your skin is still damp - give yourself a spritz of your favourite tonic and get that serum and moisturiser on, locking in your hydration for the day.
6. Wash your hands first
Unless you’re wearing gloves everywhere you go, your hands collect a TONNE of bacteria as you go about your day, so please remember to wash your hands with a gentle hand wash before you start your cleansing routine. Bacteria on your face = breakout city!
7. Not too hot
Contrary to popular belief, you do NOT need super-hot water to open your pores.... Pores don’t open and close like doors! Plus if your water is too hot you could end up causing redness and burst capillaries, sensitivities, or over-production of oil (i.e. sebum).
You just need lovely luke-warm water for your cleansing routine - your skin will thank you for it.
8. Lacking commitment?
Cleansing isn’t something you should do every third day. Or even once a day. Cleansing is a twice-a-day, every-day-of-your-life kinda commitment to keep your skin in tip-top shape. Scared of commitment? It’s time to jump into the deep end. Don’t worry, it doesn’t have to be time consuming - perhaps you could do a lovely deep cleanse in the evenings but do a quick one in the morning just with your Konjac Sponge and water.
9. Don’t be afraid to double up
When your skin is reeeeeally dirty or you’re wearing heavy makeup or sunscreen, you might need to do a double cleanse to remove it all. Your first cleanse will remove the bulk off the surface of your skin, and then a second cleanse will allow you get down deep into your pores for ultimate skin rejuvenation.
If you’ve made some of these cleansing mistakes maybe you could try changing things up for a few weeks and see what results you get. It’s so much easier taking care of your skin if you’re having fun and feeling like you’re really treating yourself at the same time.
Remember, there's no 1 perfect cleanser for everyone, so make sure you have the right cleanser for YOU. If you’re looking to try some new goodies, our Super-Sized Sample Packs are the place to start.