Do you wash your face regularly? Of course, the only answer to this question should be a resounding “yes”.
You should never skip on the start-and-end-of-day wash routine, regardless of how rushed or tired you might be. But, why, you ask? Let us explain more.
Even if you spend your hours mostly indoors, the reality is this: dirt and sweat accumulate on your skin throughout the day. Clogged pores, pollutants, and make-up use take a toll on your skin. So to keep your skin bright, fresh, and healthy, cleansing should be a crucial part of your daily routine, as natural in your habits as brushing your teeth.
It doesn’t matter if this is a two-step “wash-and-moisturize” method or an elaborate affair that involves a dozen steps. What matters is that your skin is getting a refreshing cleaning at least twice a day.
Getting under your skin
The skin is the largest organ in your body and needs TLC to keep it healthy. Cleansing removes dirt and residue and helps to remove dead skin cells and sebum. A good cleansing also stimulates blood circulation, which can sometimes give the appearance of a “glow.”
This juncture is where using the right cleanser comes in, considering that not all cleansers are created equal.
Here are some points to remember when picking the perfect cleanser for your face:
- Using the right cleanser will not only clean your skin; it is the first step in keeping your skin well-hydrated.
- Clean skin allows skincare products to saturate deeper.
- Be cautious about using bar soaps on your face! Most bar soaps are not ideal for use on your face because they often contain ingredients that could disrupt the pH balance of the skin there.
- Because most of the impurities we pick up are not water-soluble, washing with plain water will just not do.
- What works for your bestie may not be what’s best for you.
- Using the wrong cleanser can leave your skin dry instead of nourished, leading to breakouts and irritation.
The next step is to understand what’s out there. Cleansers come in different formulations and types. They are usually created for different skin types (dry, oily, sensitive) and come in three main variants (gel, cream, and foam). Some offer added ingredients to boost your skin health.
So look beyond the bells and whistles and first understand the basics, beginning with your skin type.
Gel cleansers: Oily and blemish-prone skin benefits most from cleansers with deep-cleaning properties. Most gel cleansers are created for such skin types and will often offer exfoliating benefits.
Cream cleansers: These tend to be thicker and have moisturising qualities that wash skin without taking away natural oils. Sensitive and dry skin types need this extra moisturising to stay supple.
Foam cleansers: These are often very light and are usually suited for combination skin. Sometimes skin types change due to changes in the weather or environment. Be mindful of possible shifts so that you can adjust your cleansers accordingly.
Now it’s time to nourish your skin. Try your favourite moisturiser on your bathroom shelf, and make sure you have a fresh face before applying it. Plus, there’s nothing quite like using your favourite face roller on a freshly-washed face.
Tools of the trade
Here’s our advice - to get the most out of your products and give your skin the best possible cleaning, add a skincare tool or two into your arsenal.
These products are often gentler on your face than your bare hands with proper use. A soft cloth is a good enough option for gentle exfoliation, but brushes explicitly made for facial washes are worth having. For sensitive skin, opt for one with very soft bristles. The ReFa CLEAR is great for all skin types, waterproof, and provides a soothing, deep cleaning that removes impurities without irritating the skin as the brush head is made of handmade ultra-fine KUMANOFUDE bristles.
So much attention is placed on face washing that we often neglect to discuss the rest of the body. It is just as essential to ensure that your body is getting the proper cleansing it needs too. Recently, there was a buzz in the entertainment world when some celebrities admitted they do not shower “until it starts to smell.” We could not disagree with this practice more! And here’s why:
- As mentioned before, your skin is your largest organ, and it covers more of you from the neck down than the neck up!
- Dirt, sweat, bacteria and environmental pollutants gather on your body, especially in your armpits, genital area, hands, and feet. Pay special attention to those areas when you lather up.
- Sweat and some oils naturally occur in our bodies and are sterile. But over time, they can breed bacteria, cause skin irritations and body odour. Therefore, body cleansing is vital in more tropical and humid climates, where moisture and heat are part of daily life. (Hello, Singapore!)
As with facial washes, you are also spoilt for choice when it comes to body care products. Bar soaps, shower gels, and body washes all do the trick – but in different ways. Use the right product to ensure you are not stripping your body of its natural oils.
Bars tend to have a higher pH value and can be drying unless you’re using one formulated for moisturising.
Body washes are usually more hydrating than shower gels. Whichever option you choose, stay away from those that contain parabens, dyes, and strong fragrances, especially if you’ve got sensitive skin.
As a final reminder, to keep that healthy glow, avoid showers that are too hot, exfoliate with a washcloth or body brush with soft bristles rather than a loofah as it is more hygienic. And don’t forget to moisturise while your skin is still damp post-shower!
With just a little bit of effort, the right regimen, and the proper tools, you can have healthy and clean skin from head to toe.