Cleansing Your Skin Properly

Ensuring your skin is clean before you start and end your day is an essential part of any beauty routine. Although it may be a simple task, there are many different ways to clean your skin and may need to change based upon how your skin is reacting to the current season, environmental elements and conditions.

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Firstly, gently wash your face no more or less than twice a day. Cleaning the skin is so important because it removes the make-up but also dirt, oil and bacteria that would otherwise be left on your skin. If you wash more than twice a day, it can dry out the skin as the protective oils are not able to rebuild in the allotted time.

Next, use an appropriate cleanser for your skin type. I would recommend a natural or organic cleanser because they provide more benefits without irritatnts. Understanding your skin and its current state is essential part of any beauty routine.

  • Normal Skin – This is the goal for everyone, skin will not get oily or dry. The goal with normal skin is to maintain it’s natural pH balance.
  • Dry Skin – Sometimes the skin transitions to dry skin during the winter, when using harsh exfoliates like retinols or even as you age. When the skin is dry, make use of more creams and ointments rather than just lotions. The skin can utilize more creamy washes. Look for products that contain hyaluronic acid, glycerin and ceramides. These humectants draw water into the outer skin then use an emollient to seal water in the skin.
  • Combination Skin – If you have combination skin, elect to use a mild cleanser and elect to balance the skin’s natural pH balance. The challenge is to moisturizer without causing breakouts. One way to maintain moisturizer is to Avoid
  • Acne Prone Skin – Blemishes can pop up even when the skin is cleansed regularly and may have certain triggers like hormones, incorrect products or stress.  For more information clearing acne, check out our article focused only on acne issues and resolutions.
  • Oily Skin – Select a product that will clean the oily spots without over drying. This is typically achieved with natural or organic products. Your goal is to balance the skin’s pH level while effectively cleaning the oily spots. Avoid harsh or irritating products and utilize a toner that controls the oily spots rather than a face wash.
  • Sensitive Skin – Sensitive skin can be very reactive and requires a gentle cleanser that is mild and maintains the skin’s natural pH balance. Avoid any products that contain alpha or beta hydroxyl acids, fragrance, alcohol, paraminobenzoic acid (PABA), benzophenones, sulfate, sodium, retinols, glycolic acid or parabens.   Cleansers and the redness can be controlled with products like Aloe Vera. Keep in mind when using other products like shampoos and conditions, it may also affect the skin that result in a negative trigger. Always use clean hands to wash your face and when applying products. Gently touch the skin when washing and drying. If your face isn’t oily or acne prone, choose a cleanser that is creamy.  Moisturizing can actually to help the skin heal.  Adding a vaporizer can also help skin retain moisture. If you need extra help, an oatmeal-based mask makes for a great skin soother after using a cleanser.
    • Rosacea Skin – Red and ruddy skin with small red bumps can worsen with certain triggers like harsh climates, stress, hot food or beverages, spicy foods, alcohol or even harsh products. Cleansing skin with Rosacea is more than sensitive, it’s really a medical condition and should be treated as such. Inflamed skin will need mild, fragrance free, hypoallergenic cleansers. Select a cleanser that will not strip the skin’s protective oils and maintain a proper moisture and pH balance of the skin.
    • Psoriasis Skin – Red and scaly skin can be hard to manage especially when it’s triggered by infections, sickness, stress, certain medications and injury to the skin. The key is to stay away from extremes, like cold and hot. Choose products that are hypoallergenic since the skin is sensitive. Make sure nothing dries out the skin and keeping it moist will help control the dryness. Use cleanser contains moisturizer. Most people with psoriasis use traditional moisturizers in the daytime so that they don’t appear greasy during the day. Then at night the use of ointments and heavy creams can help provide that extra moisturizer the skin needs.

Follow these steps and monitor whether a change is necessary based upon how your skin feels.

  • Wash your skin, gently with warm water. If the water is too hot, the protective oils from your epidermis will be washed away. This can lead to dry, tight and even itchy skin. The lower temperature will keep the stratum corneum from rinsing away and strip Instead use lukewarm water so that the pores open up and can be gently cleaned.
  • With your face wet with water, take the cleanser and ensure you work the product up the hairline and to through to the chin.
  • Gently use circular motions and continue so that each spot has been gently cleansed twice to ensure you have a clean face.
  • Splash your face gently with warm water to remove all traces of the product.
  • After the face is clean it is essential to close the pores by splashing your face with cold water.
  • Pat your face gently with a clean towel and begin your moisture routine immediately so that the moisture from the wash can be sealed into the skin.

Remember to always check your products and their expiration dates. As many of us have several different products, they can expire or acquire bacteria overtime. I recommend changing out cleansing products every three to four months so that the product is fresh and purposeful.

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