How to Wash Your Face

How to Wash Your Face

Washing one’s face seems like an easy concept to grasp, and it is. The tricky part lies in doing it the “right” way. To complicate matters, some exercises that might seem like good ideas, such as washing often and scrubbing hard can harm skin instead of keeping it healthy.

Water Temperature

Hot water can feel fantastic at times, especially in cold weather. Unfortunately, it can also dry out the skin, especially skin that’s already sensitive or dry. The best water temperature for skin is lukewarm. Put a hand under the running water to test it, and don’t splash any water on the face until the stream reaches a temp that’s warm but not hot.

Be Gentle

Thorough cleaning is important, but thorough does not mean vigorous or aggressive. Harsh scrubbing and rubbing won't help solve skin problems and won’t clean your skin any better than soft, mild actions. When washing your face, move fingertips in a gentle, circular motion rinsing with water and applying cleansers as directed. The same strategy goes for drying. Softly pat damp skin dry with a towel rather than rubbing the towel forcefully over the skin.

Use a Cleanser

Washing with water is a good first step, but using a cleanser is necessary to remove dirt, oil, makeup and other buildup that collects on the skin throughout the day. To minimize skin irritation, pick a cleanser that is gentle, alcohol-free and non-abrasive. Apply the cleanser with fingertips rather than a washcloth, sponge or brush, which can collect bacteria.

How Often?

More is not necessarily better when it comes to face washing. In fact, the American Academy of Dermatology recommends limiting washing to about twice a day and after heavy sweating. Consistent, gentle washing can make a real difference in the appearance of your skin, and all it takes is water and cleanser.