One of the most underrated products in your daily skincare routine is the cleanser. Several skin conditions such as dehydration, sensitivity and overproduction of oil could come from using the incorrect cleanser for your skin type and condition.
Cleansing is important as it removes sweat, makeup, dead skin cells and pollutants from your skin, ensuring that the serums and creams use afterwards penetrate and work optimally. Cleansing has to be done twice a day: in the morning and in the evening (a double cleanse) and it is important that your skin’s integrity is not disturbed by this process.
An array of cleansers are available, so how do I choose the correct cleanser for my skin? Let’s take a look at the different cleansers and who can benefit from them.
- Oil cleansers – this is for everyone! Yes, even you with the oily skin. Oil cleansers work wonders especially when wanting to remove makeup. When double cleansing at night this would be the first cleanser you apply. Double cleansing is not necessary in the mornings as the debris on the skin is not as much. Oil cleansers are loved by individuals with dry, mature and dehydrated skins. I recommend following an oil cleanser with a different cleanser or to mix it with a clay-based masque for gentle exfoliation.
- Milk cleansers – milk cleansers are great for all skins especially dry, dehydrated and sensitive skins. They are gentle on the skin and often contain soothing ingredients. These cleansers do not foam as they do not contain any surfactants. This is great as it keeps your skin barrier intact. For acne prone skin, this is a great option as it is light and it helps with inflammation due to the soothing ingredients. You may feel that you need more after using this cleanser, but I recommend following it with a good toner to give the skin a clean crisp feel.
- Cream cleansers – a little bit heavier than the Milk cleanser and ideal for dry, mature and sensitive skins. Both milk and cream cleansers can be emulsified by wetting your fingertips and making circular upward strokes on your skin. These cleansers maintain your skin’s natural PH giving it a better chance to stay hydrated and fight off pathogens.
- Gel cleansers – This cleanser is great if you are in need of a deep cleanse, and is useful for men or oily, acne prone skins. Please make sure that the gel cleanser is not too harsh for your skin as oil is not bad for your skin and if the gel cleanser strips your skin, it activates the skin to make more oil, so you might actually worsen your oily condition by drying out your skin too much with the incorrect or too harsh a cleanser.
There are still foam cleansers, balm cleansers, bar cleansers just to name a few but the above are the most common. Foam cleansers are gaining popularity and I would put them in the same category as a gel cleanser as it often leaves your skin feeling dry.
I hope this helps give you a bit more clarity on the different cleansers available and which one would suit YOUR skin type best. Always look or ask about ingredients to make sure that the product you buy is intended for the purpose you are buying it.