Skin Health
CLEANSING 101: Quick Facts
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A surprising amount of skin problems can be attributed to bar soap which, due to how it’s made, has a very high pH which can be denaturing to skin, contributing to barrier damage and dry skin. Moisturizing soaps tend to leave residue which can clog pores or cause irritations. For the face in particular, it’s best to use cream or liquid facial cleansers with neutral or slightly lower pH levels (the skin’s natural pH is slightly acidic).


Save some for tears.
Resi-“don’t”: Wipes can’t clean as well as washing and usually leave residue. In addition to the acne/irritation risk, this residue normally includes leftover dirt.
Rubbed the wrong way: You may need more rubbing for a better clean which can cause follicular inflammation and acne.
Allergens: The material used in wipes has plastic resins like polyester, polyethylene, and polypropylene, many of which are allergens.
Allergenic preservatives: Because wipes are meant to stay moist, they contain a lot of water — which is heaven for bacteria and other microbes. Preservatives are needed. Wipes with methylisothiazolinone (MCI/MI) made the news for causing allergic reactions in children. There are multiple reports of allergies to adult wipes as well: contact dermatitis tests show enough reactions to make MCI/MI one of the top allergy-causing preservatives.


Isn’t the same thing.
Shaving removes hair; cleansing removes dirt and grime. Cleansing before shaving isn’t only hygienic and good skin care, it can mean a way smoother shave.


Got Milk?
Choose a rich, milky cream with moisturizers like glycerin and virgin coconut oil. Limit cleansing to twice a day at most. If your skin is very dry or you need to cleanse more frequently, try pure virgin coconut oil which has natural antimicrobial properties, too.


Cool it.
Follow tips for dry skin cleansing, steer clear of pore cloggers, and look for anti-inflammatories. Cleanse in lukewarm to cool water.


Don’t be harsh.
Tempting as it might be to over-cleanse or scrub like your life depended on it, this worsens acne. Choose a light, non-irritating scrub and think “gentle massage” not “scour my sins away.” Monthly, get a deep-cleaning facial.


Pre-Cleansing Kindness.
A skin-safe remover prior to cleansing gets more off with less exposure to surfactants (great for heavy or stage/film makeup). This is extra great for eye makeup as skin here is thinner and more sensitive.


With caution.
This big trend may feel nice but can spread bacteria and cause milia (small, white cysts of keratin) or inflamed pores (leading to acne). We suggest a safe scrubbing cream at home and a deeper exfoliation or proper comedone extraction with an esthetician or dermatologist.