I believe one of the most commonly misunderstood steps in a basic skincare routine is the use of a facial cleanser. There are certainly a lot of taboos surrounding cleansing and a lot of misuse, too. Many people believe that cleansing the face is unnecessary. Some people find it important but do not use the proper cleanser for their skin type. Others are using cleansers that are way too harsh for facial skin. Some believe that if they have dry skin, cleansing may make it more dry.
Regardless of any misconceptions, cleansing the face is in fact important. Dead skin, sweat, bacteria, and oil can all build up on the face. Without cleansing, the probability for superficial skin concerns to occur is more likely. Issues such as acne, texture, and dullness can become more significant. Other than superficial issues, there are health concerns associated with not cleansing the face. Just as we wash are hands to rid of bacteria, microbes, and viruses that cause illness, we should wash our faces for this reason, too.
So, cleansing is important. But. . . now you might be wondering. . . which cleanser should you use for your skin type?
No matter which skin type, you should always look out for a gentle cleanser. This means that the ingredients should not be harsh or stripping. Try to avoid irritating and toxic ingredients such as: sulfates, parabens, alcohols, polyethylene, synthetic colors, and sometimes fragrance (I added fragrance because some people find it more irritating to the skin than others). There are definitely other harsh additives that can be in cleansers, but these are the main ingredients I would try to avoid.
When picking a cleanser for your skin type, drier types tend to have more luck with a non-foaming milkier consistency, whereas oilier types usually benefit from gentle foaming washes. If you have a combination skin type, try to gauge whether you are more ‘normal and oily’ or ‘dry and oily’ when comparing combination areas. Then, you can choose a foam versus milk consistency depending on where you fall on the spectrum of normal to dry within your combination type. For any skin type, remember to try to only wash your face two times a day, because washing your face too much can be stripping to your skin barrier!
Here are some of my personal favorite cleansers. I think all of these cleansers are gentle enough to use on any skin type, but they might suit different preferences based on consistency. I listed which skin type might benefit from each. . .
BONAJOUR Green Tea Foam Cleansing – Oily, normal, and combination skin types.
CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser – Oily, normal, and combination skin types.
Tula Skincare The Cult Classic Purifying Face Cleanser – Oily, normal, and combination skin types.
OZ Naturals Ocean Mineral Facial Cleanser – Oily, normal, and combination skin types.
CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser – Normal and Dry skin types.
La Roche-Posay Hydrating Gentle Cleanser – Normal and Dry skin types.
*I have tried all of these cleansers personally and have not had issues or irritation, but please remember to listen to your own skin! If irritation or sensitivity occurs, cease use of the product.
If you are still unsure of a cleanser for your skin type or situation, please feel free to reach out and leave me a message! I can even answer questions on different cleansers you may have in mind! I’d be happy to help find something that really works for you. Great skin is in your future!