Magazine / Beauty / Skincare

Skinimalism: Choosing the Right Cleanser for Your Skin

MD Alexandra Dorobantu
Dermatologist
On Sep 8th, 2020

In our second episode of the skinimalist mini-series, we introduce you to cleansers according to your skin type. Learn about different cleansing methods for your face and how to identify the best-suited products for you.

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Our face is the first thing that everyone notices. You want to look fresh and young. But in these times, everyone is so busy juggling multiple daily tasks that they often neglect their skin. Our complexion deserves care and attention as it faces the harsh, polluted city environment. A regular skincare regime can help you maintain healthy skin and fight specific concerns like acne, dark spots and wrinkles. Cleansing is the first and most important step of a minimalist skincare regime.

Facial cleansing removes dirt, oil and other unwanted debris. Throughout the day, your face is exposed to bacteria, pollutants, dirt and sweat. Cleansing twice a day takes off these impurities and gives your skin a fresh look. Washing your face in the morning, removes oils and toxins that you have produced during the night and provides a clean canvas for your daily skincare routine. In the evening, cleansing removes makeup, excess sebum, dirt, impurities and dead skin cells.

Regular cleansing is essential in keeping your skin radiant and healthy. It also prevents oil build-up, thus preventing acne.

Without proper cleansing, long-term skin issues may develop. I am sure you do not want clogged and enlarged pores, eczema, dermatitis, or prematurely ageing of the skin due to free radicals breaking down collagen and elastin.

Free radicals are molecules produced by UV light and pollution, which can damage DNA, proteins and lipids in your skin, leading to premature ageing.

Double Cleansing

The double cleansing method requires the use of two different types of cleansers: an oil-based cleanser followed by a water-based one. The first product breaks down sebum, dirt and makeup, and the second cleanser washes the skin. You can skip the double cleansing if you remove your makeup with micellar water or have extremely reactive, sensitive skin.

Should I Use a Cleansing Device?

Yes and no. It depends on your skin type. There are many cleansing tools you can use with your cleanser. They gently massage the product onto your skin, toning your facial muscle as well. But if you have acne or dry, itchy skin, such a device isn't right for you.

Numerous brands are selling various cleansing products for your face, some containing harmful ingredients like sulphates, phthalates, parabens and artificial fragrance. Check the composition and buy mild products for your skin.

Identify Your Skin Type

To choose the best suited cleanser, you need to identify and understand your skin type.

  • Normal skin is clear and not sensitive when touching.

  • Dry skin is usually rough, itchy, or flaky.

  • Oily skin is shiny and greasy due to excess sebum.

  • Sensitive skin may burn or sting after product use.

  • Combination skin is oily in some areas and dry in others.

If it is too hard to identify your skin type or have problematic skin, the best approach is to visit a dermatologist.

There are many different types of cleansers on the market, which are suitable for different skin types.

Combination and Oily Skin

Gel and foam cleansers are suitable for oily and combination skin. Foam cleansers are lightweight. They start as a cream or gel and burst into a rich, foamy lather. Foam cleansers tend to be more drying than gel cleansers. Gel cleansers are clear, with a bouncy-jelly texture and designed for deep cleansing. Both types of products are effective at decongesting clogged pores, removing excess oil and killing acne-causing bacteria.

Normal to Dry Skin

Cream, balm and oil cleansers are suitable for all skin types, especially normal to dry skin. Cream cleansers have a thick, creamy consistency and are full of moisturising ingredients like botanical oils. They gently cleanse your skin without exfoliating it. Cream cleansers can come in the form of 'milk' or 'lotion' too. Oil-based cleansers and balm cleansers are usually used to remove makeup. They are considered the first step of double cleansing. The oils in these cleansers are highly beneficial and nourishing to the skin. After rinsing off your oil or balm cleanser, make sure you use a regular deep-cleansing one. Both leave the skin feeling replenished and hydrated.

If you are new to the world of cleansers, my suggestion is to buy mild and chemical-free products, suitable for your skin type. Choose formulas with fewer and more natural ingredients.

Seaweed Cleansers

One natural ingredient that has excellent cleansing and detoxifying agents is seaweed. Suitable for all skin types, marine-sourced ingredients do wonders for your skin.

Seaweed or algae are rich in antioxidants, amino acids, and hydrating compounds. Products containing seaweed are moisturising, minimise fine lines, boost radiance, fight inflammation, and help treat hyperpigmentation. It is an excellent choice for those suffering from rosacea, a skin condition that gives red flare-ups on the cheeks. With such antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, seaweed is quickly becoming one of the superstars in skincare.

Well, don't go running to the beach and start rubbing seaweed on your face! Instead, choose an outstanding formulated product to enjoy all the benefits of these marine jewels. 

The right cleansing product helps rejuvenate your skin, giving you a youthful and smooth appearance. Properly following this step helps the products you invest in to be absorbed and work on your skin. It is essential to use a moisturiser or serum after cleansing to seal in the hydration.

If you are feeling excited about what you have just learned, we look forward to your next visit when we dive into the world of moisturisers. Our third episode is all about nourishing your skin and keeping it hydrated.

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