The 13 common face-washing mistakes you might be making: washing your face seems simple, right? Lather up, rinse off, and you’re done. Not quite. In fact, you’re probably making fairly common mistakes.
If your skin lacks that fresh, glowing look, you may want to take a closer look at how you wash your face. A few seemingly harmless face-washing habits can wreak havoc on your skin, leading to excessive dryness, oiliness, or even breakouts.
This should still not be happening, and if you are curious, why not keep on reading to find out just what you have been doing wrong.
Avoid these 13 common face-washing mistakes for better, clearer skin:
1. Using the Wrong Cleanser
The most important step to having flawless skin lies in purchasing the right products for your skin type. Skin types include dry, oily, or acne-prone; different products work best for each skin type. Your cleanser should remove all dirt and day-to-day grime from your face, but not strip your skin of its natural oils. Dermatologists recommend a hydrating, creamy cleansing lotion for normal to dry complexions. Meanwhile, those with oily or combination types should pick an anti-inflammatory foaming or gel cleanser.
2. Not Cleansing in the Morning
You may be diligent about washing your face before you hit your bed, but what about in the morning? Even if your skin doesn’t feel dirty, don’t forgo a morning stop at the sink. “You’re getting rid of the natural oils that have built up overnight, as well as any residue from products you applied before bed,”
3. Washing your Face Too Often
Did you know washing your face too often could actually worsen your skin? People with dry skin might only need to cleanse once a day, but people with oilier skin should wash twice a day, max. Washing more than twice daily will dry out your skin, causing it to produce more oil to compensate for the dryness.
If you only wash your face once a day, be sure to wash it at night rather than during the morning. This will remove all of the dirt and pollutants that accumulate on your skin during the day. Air pollutants contribute to aging skin, so you need to wash them off before bed.
However, do not skip a morning cleanse if you already wash your face twice per day. This rinse gets rid of the natural oils that accumulate overnight and any residue from products applied before bed. A clean complexion lets the products you use in the morning, including sunscreen, penetrate your skin and work effectively. You have to be consistent with your skincare routine to see the results that you want.
4. Using Hot Water
A myth says that hot water opens pores and cold water closes them, this is not absolutely true. The reality is that pores don’t have muscles to open and close. While hot water may feel good on your skin, it can mess with your skin’s natural, protective oils and lead to over-drying or over-production of sebum. Lukewarm water is the best bet to cleanse gently yet effectively.
5. Too Much Exfoliation
Exfoliation is a healthy practice to slough off dead skin cells, but moderation should be employed. Reduce the use of harsh exfoliants and use more sugar scrubs and fruit acids as they are more gentle. Also, stick to exfoliating once every week.
6. Not Rinsing your Face Well
Not rinsing leads to residue build-up, which can clog pores and dry out the skin. Rinse thoroughly, even when you’re rushing in the morning or very tired at night. The jawline, hairline, and nose are the most commonly neglected spots, so show them some attention!
7. You’re Rubbing your Face Dry
Rubbing your face will remove the lipids, proteins, and fatty acids that protect your skin from irritation. Pat, don’t rub your face with a towel after cleansing.
8. You’re Using Washcloths.
Always wash your hands before washing your face so you don’t introduce bacteria to the skin. When using a washcloth, make sure you always use a soft and clean one for each wash.
9. Using a Towel to Scrub your Face
Pat your face after rinsing, please don’t rub. Rubbing can feel really good, but it tugs and pulls your skin, which puts your elastin at risk. And don’t just use the nearest towel, dirty or not. Do not let friends spread bacteria—especially all over a nice, clean face. Designate a clean, soft towel to blot your fresh face.
10. Not Moisturizing Immediately
To maximize absorption and help seal in moisture, apply moisturizers immediately after cleansing while skin is still a bit wet. This also applies to serums and special treatment products. Waiting until your skin is completely dry will make it harder for the active ingredients to sink into your skin and can also cause the skin to feel greasy or uncared for.
11. You Leave your Skin Bare
Once you’ve cleaned and patted your skin dry, make sure to apply a serum or moisturizer within 60 seconds. Dermatologists recommend applying creams after you wash your face. Applying a moisturizing product immediately after washing helps to lock in the hydration your skin received from the water before it starts to evaporate. The only exception to this is acne products, which can cause irritation when applied to wet skin.
12. You Rely On Makeup Wipes
While extremely convenient, makeup wipes can cause skin problems. These products actually smear dirt, makeup, and oil across the skin rather than removing it. When you do use them, follow up with a full wash as soon as possible.
13. Residual Makeup
Makeup does not simply dissolve as you wash your face; you have to physically wipe the makeup away. When you rinse your cleanser off, use a facial sponge to thoroughly wipe your skin. Afterward, pat your face dry. This is especially important for your nighttime wash because sleeping with makeup on inhibits your skin from rejuvenating itself while you sleep.
Your Next Steps For Flawless Skin
Have you made any of these common face-washing mistakes? Whether washing your face too often or relying on makeup wipes, we all fall short of washing our faces properly at times. But with simple modifications to poor habits, you can effectively wash your face and obtain that flawless complexion.