The right and effective cleanser is the foundation of your skincare journey and your skincare regime to be precise. Although targeted skin care products like serums and creams enriched with Retinol, Niacinamide, etc are considered highly effective, however, their effectiveness amounts to nil with inadequate cleansing coupled with cosmeceuticals not tailored to your skin type. Such an errored combination can lead to-
- Clogged pores
- Severe acne
- Premature aging and wrinkles
- Pigmentation and dryness
- Irritated skin and red patches
Cleansing is the first step in every skincare regime and is crucially essential to get rid of unwanted makeup, sebum, germs, and pollutants that one encounters daily.
Skin cleansers function as surface-active agents and help remove dead cells/skin whilst maintaining the equilibrium of the skin resulting in improved skin tone and texture. Cleansers have two components, the hydrophilic part, which clings to water and the hydrophobic part (oil-loving), which adheres to pollutants trapped in the skin matrix. Both combined aids in removing accumulated toxins on the surface of the skin that are major causes of breakouts, premature ageing, and dehydration.
It is crucial to cleanse at least twice a day. Once in the morning to get rid of excess sebum production, dead cells, and toxins that the skin exudes overnight. It also balances the skin's pH levels and gives it a fresh start. Additionally, an evening cleanse is equally important as it helps get rid of pollutants, dirt, and germs collected throughout the day and improves overall skin health. Make sure to stick to cleansers that are non-comedogenic, sulfate-free, pH balanced, and have mild cleansing effects
Some essential benefits of cleansing include -
- Enhancing the effectiveness of anti-aging products and therapies
- Maintains pore size
- Promote skin hydration
- Inhibits the formation of surplus oils and acne breakouts.
- Remove dead skin cells, whiteheads, and blackheads
- Remove toxins and pollutants
A perfect cleanser should be able to accomplish all of the above without causing the skin any stress or irritation and also function to keep the skin's surface hydrated and supple.
There are skin-specific cleansers that are well-formulated to treat multiple skin issues such as pigmentation, acne spots, and wrinkles. However, cleansing can sometimes make your skin seem unusually dry or oily. This usually happens when you are either using the wrong product or applying it incorrectly coupled with an outdated version of your skincare regime. Another important factor you might be missing out on is the choice of ingredients in the formulation. Let's browse through skin-specific cleaners and power ingredients.
Normal to dry skin prone to hyperpigmentation
Look out for ingredients that have moisture-retention properties. Worthy ingredients to look out for if you have normal to dry skin -
- Sugarcane Extract- It facilitates clearing up breakouts, and blemishes, diminishing wrinkles and delivering a smoother skin texture. Alpha hydroxy acid, an essential ingredient of the sugarcane extract is regarded to be an excellent ingredient for maintaining skin radiance and removing age spots.
- Vaccinium Myrtillus Fruit- This helps delay the onset of premature wrinkles, dark patches, and other ageing symptoms. For glowing, youthful skin, the antioxidants in this extract can also reduce hyperpigmentation, scars, and blemishes.
- Lemon Fruit Extract- It cleans the face while clearing clogged pores and assisting in regulating oil production. Lemon extract also provides antioxidant properties to help decrease oxidative stress, reduce signs of premature aging and impart improved skin tone and texture. It also aids in reviving the skin's inherent radiance by fighting acne and age spots.
Normal to oily, combination & acne-prone skin type
Sebum production is significantly higher in oily skin types, especially in the T-zone. The appearance of enlarged pores, acne, blackheads, pimples, and other imperfections may also be evident. Hence, your best bet will probably be a face wash that has the following ingredients with functioning capabilities such as-
- Zinc PCA- It is known for its excellent anti-inflammatory properties, reducing sebum production, acne breakouts, and blackheads. Equipped with skin healing properties and maintaining skin hydration.
- Cocamidopropyl Betaine- It is derived from coconuts and has inherently high levels of hydration. It is a perfect cleanser for sensitive skin types and works best to remove pollutants and oil that tend to get embedded in the skin matrix.
- Glycerol Oleate- It is known to increase skin firmness by permeating the stratum corneum of the skin structure and imparts skin softening effects in addition to balanced moisturising properties.
- Niacinamide- It aids in minimizing excessive oil production and further prevents the onset of blemishes, dark spots, and wrinkles. It also effectively repairs the skin barrier function.
1. What are essential factors to keep in mind while selecting the right cleanser?
If you are investing your time and resources in finding the right cleanser suitable to your skin type, make sure to look for the following indicators-
- pH balanced
- Irritation free
- Gentle & mild cleansing action
2. For an excessively oily and dry skin type, is a facial cleaner enough?
The prime objective of a facial cleanser is to remove excessive sebum production. But its effects can be magnified if utilised in conjunction with pore-refining face toner and an oil-free mattifying moisturiser. Even though you cannot adjust the size of your pores as it is majorly influenced by factors like ageing, and sun damage, one can minimize how prominent enlarged pores appear with a suitable type of toner and top it with an oil-free moisturiser enriched with components like glycerine, alpha bisabol, and betaine.
3. What are the most common cleansing mistakes that often get overlooked?
Some of the common cleansing errors that should be kept in mind while following your skincare rituals are-
- Cleansers with harsh surfactants can damage skin proteins and lipids, resulting in tightness, dryness, barrier damage, irritation and even itching after washing. Opt for mild cleansers to begin with.
- You might be using the wrong cleanser that isn’t tailored to your skin type. So pay heed to symptoms like itching, redness, tingling sensation, and acne breakouts. The good news is there are a variety of face cleaners available in the market today, reading through this blog coupled with some research might help solve the problem.
- Use of hot water on the facial skin can strip off the natural lipids and oils. Always go for lukewarm water whenever you wash your facial skin.
- Too much exfoliation can be overly abrasive for the skin. This may produce more breakouts and blackheads. Go for medicated acne washes that are sulfate-free and non-comedogenic.
- The correct technique when using a towel to dry off is to pat rather than rub. Even though rubbing is simpler and more soothing, it tugs and pulls on your skin, damaging the elastin layer. It is crucial to designate an exclusive towel just for face cleansing.