Most daily cleaning routines consist of no more than washing the face with soap and water, which may not be the best way to maintain healthy skin. Water alone only removes a small amount of impurities and makeup from the surface of the skin.
Cleansers are designed to remove make-up, dirt, excess oils, bacteria and dead skin cells from the skin. However, there are so many facial cleansers on the market, all with fabulous claims of clean, clear, bright skin, how do you choose the right one for your skin?
First, you should understand what kind of skin you have – is it dry, oily, acne-prone, sensitive, combination skin, or do you have a skin condition such as eczema or psoriasis, etc. It also helps to know your skin type. There are six recognized skin types based on The Fitzpatrick Classification Scale. This scale was used to determine a person’s skin type based on heritage and to assess their tolerance for sensitivity to sunlight. After that, it helps to understand what kinds of cleansing options there are, and how they best suit your skin type and condition.
Facial cleansers generally fall into four categories
Lotions, Creams and Milk Cleansers – these are known as emulsion cleansers. They are ideal for dry, aging, or sensitive skin. They will not strip the skin of any essential oils, but they can also leave behind a creamy residue which could leave a build-up on the skin. If you use this type of cleanser regularly, it is recommended that you follow up your cleaning routine with a toner.
Soapless Cleansers – soapless cleansers are ideal for those who like the clean feeling a soap cleanser can give, but without the dry, tight feeling soaps leave behind, but they must be rinsed off thoroughly. Soapless cleansers are milder than soap, but they clean the surface oils and correct the pH balance, leaving the skin soft. Ideal for those with oily skin, acne-prone skin, sensitive skin, and those with skin problems like dermatitis, or eczema. Many soapless cleansers are non-comedogenic, hypoallergenic, and fragrance-free.
Gel Cleansers – these are ideal for oil skin and acne-prone skin. Gel cleansers are also ideal for those who wear a lot of makeup. Gel cleansers rinse off well and leave little or no residue on the face.
Oil Cleansers – ideal for dry skin or people with skin conditions such as eczema where dry flaking skin is present. Oil cleansers leave behind a slight residue, making the skin feeling soft. Oil cleansers will not remove surface bacteria so if that is one of the goals of your cleansing routine, this is not the right cleanser for you.
Towelettes – perfect for a quick touchups while on the run but towlettes don’t clean as thoroughly as water and cleanser and can leave a residue that may eventually lead to blocked pores.
Cleansing is only the first step in a skincare regimen designed to maintain healthy skin – but it is the most important step in the routine. If you are not cleansing properly, your pores will remain blocked and you will not be able to reap the benefits of the rest of the routine – the toners, moisturizers, serums, whatever else you include in your daily routine to maintain healthy skin. Blocked pores also lead to acne and other skin problems – so pay close attention to this critical, first step.
Now that you know how to select the right cleanser – are you cleaning your face in the right way? Visit our site next week when we will discuss the right way to cleanse.
- Keeping Sensitive Skin Healthy (healthyskinsolutions.com)
- Do You Know Your Skin Type (healthyskinsolutions.com)