You don’t need to look in the mirror to know that your face is dirty. And you probably don’t need a guide on how to wash your face. (Though, here are a few tips just in case.) But when it comes to this seemingly simple task, there is one mistake we all make: over-washing.
According to Barry Resnik, a Miami-based dermatologist and founder of Resnik Skin Institute, the biggest misconception people have about washing their face has to do with having “squeaky clean skin.” This leads to the removal of all of the protective oils our sebaceous glands produce.
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“Yes, oil can be bad if we let it collect, clogging pores and messing up our awesome makeup,” says Resnik. “However, it’s there for a reason: to soften and protect our skin.”
It may be hard to wrap your mind around the concept of not giving your face a real good scrub. But as Resnik explains, the goal should be to remove the “bad oils,” along with dirt and other aerial contaminants.
“Our skin will replenish the oil, but the ongoing assault of washing will yield only reddened, irritated skin,” says Resnik. “This will also make it harder for our repair processes to replace collagen and keep us looking good. Tired, irritated skin with lots of lines is not a great end point!”
If you’re wondering about the right time to wash your face, Resnik says stick to cleansing at the beginning or end of the day. He also recommends using a gentle, soapless cleanser — one that’s free of synthetic detergents that can irritate sensitive skin.
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