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Do’s and Don’ts of Washing Your Face

Washing Your Face – Some Important Facts to Know

Many people believe that you only need to wash your face when it looks dirty or to remove makeup. However, it is recommended that you should wash your face twice daily.

The number of times you wash your face, though, is not as important as how you wash your face. In fact, the different ways in which you wash your face can also have a significance in many health conditions. (1)

Regardless of your skin type, texture, and any skin condition, a nighttime face cleansing routine is of utmost importance. It is essential to remove all the makeup, dirt, grime, and oil from the entire day before you go to sleep. This not only prepares your skin for the skincare regimen you follow but also supports the skin in the regeneration and renewal processes that take place overnight.

Do’s and Don’ts of Washing Your Face

Do’s and Don’ts of Washing Your Face

Here are some do’s and don’ts that you should follow for washing your face recommended by expert dermatologists.

Do: Remove All Your Makeup Before Sleeping

It is very important to remove all your makeup properly before going to bed. (2) You can use a gentle makeup remover to remove the makeup before you actually clean your face.

Your pores purge out all toxins during the night as you sleep and if these get clogged, then everything will start getting backed up, pulling down the brightness of your face. Keep in mind that this applies to all skin types.

You can follow through by washing your face with a mild face wash to help wash away the remaining dirt and oil. You can use micellar water, makeup remover, or natural oils to remove your eye makeup.

Don’t: Use a Generic Bar Soap

Bar soaps are not generally manufactured specifically for the face. This is why these bar soaps can change the pH balance of the skin, allowing for more bacteria and yeast to grow.

Opt for using facial cleansers that are made for delicate skin.

In fact, a study in 2012 by Johnson & Johnson (3) concluded that surfactants prevent your skin molecules from staying in order and thereby promote the outbreak of acne or other skin conditions. It is, therefore, better to use cleansers that are specifically made for the face.

Do: Use Lukewarm Water To Wash Your Face

Washing your face with hot water is not going to help your pores open up magically. At the same time, cold water does not close them.

The truth is that extremes in water temperatures irritate the skin. This is why it is recommended to go with the middle ground. Use lukewarm water to wash your face for best results.

Don’t: Do Not Scrub With A Washcloth

Do not wash your face with a washcloth. Scrubbing with a washcloth is going to strip away the protective barrier of your skin. The best way to wash your face is with your fingertips. Gently run your fingers around your face cleaning the surface for just a minute or two.

If you are looking to exfoliate, then look for ingredients in the cleansers that contain glycolic acid, lactic acid, fruit enzymes, or salicylic acid.

Conclusion: Experiment With Your Routine

If you do not experiment with your routine, it will soon become, and after some time, your skin also starts getting used to the products you are using. Experimenting and trying out new routines can help you understand your skin better. But always remember that no matter what you try, washing your face is the first and number one step to maintain your skin’s natural state and to keep it healthy. Furthermore, the food you eat, whether you exercise or not, and the environment to which your face is exposed to every day, also has a profound effect on your skin. So stick to the basics of washing your face and figure out your cleansing routine one step at a time.


  1. Ryall, R.L., Grover, P.K., Thurgood, L.A., Chauvet, M.C., Fleming, D.E. and van Bronswijk, W., 2007. The importance of a clean face: the effect of different washing procedures on the association of Tamm–Horsfall glycoprotein and other urinary proteins with calcium oxalate crystals. Urological research, 35(1), pp.1-14.
  2. Neutrogena® Skincare. (2019). The Importance of Removing Your Makeup Before Going to Sleep. [online] Available at: https://www.neutrogena-me.com/beauty-and-skincare-tips/face-care/importance-of-removing-makeup-before-sleep [Accessed 11 Oct. 2019].
  3. Walters, R.M., Mao, G., Gunn, E.T. and Hornby, S., 2012. Cleansing formulations that respect skin barrier integrity. Dermatology research and practice, 2012.
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:January 23, 2020

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