How You Should be Washing Your Face
It's step one in our skincare regimen, and even if you don't have a skincare regimen (here are the basics, fyi), you’ve been washing your face ever since someone else stopped washing it for you. Yet, for younger-looking, healthy skin, the way you wash your face is vitally important, since you need to get your face clean without promoting wrinkles, rough and dry patches, or blemishes. So incorporate the following face-washing tips into your regular skin care routine for healthier, happier skin.
- Choose the proper product. Certain soaps contain detergents that can be harsh for the sensitive skin on your face. Using a cleanser that is pH balanced and appropriately formulated for your skin type (dry, oily, or combination) and condition (dry patches, acne) will not only be soothing, but also can have lasting benefits in protecting against premature aging and promoting healthy skin.
- Watch water temperature. Use tepid water when you wash your face. Water that is too hot can irritate skin, and the heat will cause your blood vessels to dilate, as the body sends blood toward the skin in an effort to cool it. Sometimes dilated blood vessels break, leaving redness and/or a bruising appearance on the skin’s surface. Yikes. Not surprisingly, as you age, you become more prone to broken blood vessels. Water that is too cold does not have quite the deleterious effects as water that is too hot, but it also might not give you the benefits of using water that is slightly warmer, such as helping to loosen matter in the pores that can cause blackheads. And no one likes those.
- Wash twice a day. Make sure you wash your face at least twice a day and before and after exercise. Sleeping and exercising in makeup can cause breakouts and keep skin from looking healthy and youthful.
- Avoid excessive scrubbing. Harsh rubbing can irritate skin and cause wrinkles by breaking down collagen, the vital protein responsible for your skin’s firmness. When cleaning your face, it is best to gently massage skin, moving fingers upward, and using a light touch anywhere around the lips or eyes.
- Don’t over exfoliate. Using an exfoliating product can promote young, fresh, healthy skin, but overdoing it can irritate and cause dryness. Consider using an exfoliant once or twice a week, and remember not to scrub.
- Rinse well. Residue from your cleanser can make skin can look dry and dull, while also causing irritation throughout the day. Rinse well with warm water to ensure all traces of product are removed.
- Dry with a soft cloth. We can't say it enough: Do. Not. Rub. It's best to use a soft cloth and pat your skin until it is almost dry.
- Consider using a toner. Using a toner as a regular part of your skin care routine can help to remove what your cleanser may have left behind: residual product, dead skin cells, dirt, and oil. Toners also can contain skin-soothing ingredients to help calm skin that might have been irritated by the cleansing process.
- Moisturize. A vital component of younger-looking, healthy skin is moisture. Applying a moisturizer, especially when skin is slightly damp, can help to preserve your skin’s softness, firmness, and glow.