We all wash our face to keep it free from dirt, dust and other particles. In fact, face washing is the most important step in any skin care regimen. Many people consider it to be the simplest part of their beauty routine. Unfortunately, most of us do not do it correctly.
Washing your face in the wrong manner can contribute to a lot of skin problems including dryness, irritation, oiliness, breakouts, acne, wrinkles, premature sagging and more.
By incorporating a proper face washing technique into your daily skin care regimen, you can enjoy flawless and younger-looking skin.
Here are the top 10 common mistakes to avoid when washing your face.
1. Over Washing
Not cleaning the skin can cause yeast buildup that can result in many skin problems. So, many of us wash our face at regular intervals throughout the day. But washing too often can cause irritation, promote oil production and age your skin.
Washing your face twice a day is a good protocol. First, wash it in the morning after you wake up to remove dirt and bacteria that accumulated while you were sleeping. Secondly, wash it at night before going to bed.
If you need to wash your face between those times, do not use water. Instead, use facial wipes for a quick cleanse, but do not use them excessively.
2. Rinsing with Hot Water
Using hot water to rinse your face, especially during the winter, can be very relaxing but it can dry out your skin. Even washing your face with water that is too cold can be bad as it irritates the skin and breaks the capillaries.
The best option is to use either lukewarm or room temperature water. This will help keep your skin healthy. You can also opt to use filtered water. Do not wash your face with water that is not suitable for drinking.
3. Not Removing Makeup First
It is true that washing your face with a cleanser helps remove makeup and other dust particles from the skin. However, it is beneficial to remove your makeup before washing your face. This way, your cleanser can work deep into your skin pores without mineral powder getting in the way.
Remove your makeup first with a homemade makeup remover. You can use coconut oil, olive oil, or whole milk as a natural makeup remover. Soak a cotton ball in any of these ingredients and gently wipe off all the makeup residue. Give special attention to your eye makeup.
Never sleep with your makeup on. This can cause significant damage to your skin.
4. Using Wrong Cleanser
Many people use a facial cleanser to wash their face. Unfortunately, many of us do not choose the right cleanser and end up doing more harm than good to our skin. As different types of skin have different requirements, always opt for a cleanser that suits your skin type.
A good cleanser is one that helps completely remove dirt, makeup and grime, but does not strip away too much of the skin’s natural oils. In addition, after using the cleanser, your skin should feel moist and healthy.
Never use a cleanser that contains soap as it can strip your skin of its natural oils and cause irritation. Always buy a mild, non-soap cleanser, which is gentle on your skin. Those who have sensitive skin should opt for a cleanser with calming ingredients, such as green tea, that soothe sensitive skin.
5. Not Rinsing Completely
Using a cleanser to wash your face is a good idea. However, if the cleanser is not rinsed off properly, it can be harmful to your skin. The residue left by the cleanser can clog the pores and dry out the skin. Moreover, cleanser that remains on the skin will attract more dirt.
Rinse thoroughly, especially along the hairline, neck and sides of the nose, until all the cleanser is gone from the skin.
Avoid rushing. Take your time massaging the cleanser into your face and, when you are done, take your time rinsing it off completely.
6. Not Exfoliating Properly
Exfoliating is an important step for healthy skin. It helps get rid of dead skin cells, encourages skin cell renewal, enhances skin texture, improves skin tone and makes the skin look younger and healthy. However, very few of us exfoliate our skin in the right manner.
Either over-exfoliating or not exfoliating at all is one of the big mistakes many of us make. One must exfoliate once a week, or twice a week at most, using a gentle scrub. Use a fruit-based, over-the-counter scrub or make one at home.
Mix equal amounts of sugar and honey, and add a few drops of olive oil. Gently scrub your face with it, using your fingers. Do not rub your skin harshly. Wait for 5 minutes, then rinse it off with lukewarm water. Do this on a weekly basis.
It’s best to exfoliate your skin at night, since when you go to sleep your skin is in “renewal mode,” generating new skin cells.
7. Washing with Dirty Hands
Many people start washing their face without washing their hands first. Stop doing this if you wish to have healthy and flawless skin.
When you wash your face with dirty hands, dirt from your hands is transferred to your face. This will double up your work, as you have to clean dirt from your hands and face at the same time.
Make sure your hands are clean before washing your face. Wash them with a good quality liquid soap, and then wash your face.
8. Rubbing with Towel
Many of us rub our face too vigorously with a towel after washing. The constant friction and abrasion can strip your skin of its natural oils, leading to irritation and dryness. Moreover, the constant tugging and pulling of the skin can lead to sagging.
Instead of grabbing the nearest hand towel, use a soft washcloth and pat dry your skin.
Keep a separate washcloth designated for your face. Do not dry your face with the same bath towel used to dry your body after a bath or shower.
9. Using Dirty Washcloth
Always use a fresh, clean washcloth for your face. A damp washcloth can become dirty quickly and using it again can redeposit dirt and impurities back onto your skin. This in turn can lead to problems like acne, pimples and blemishes.
Wash the washcloth every day after using it. Use a mild detergent to wash your washcloth and dry it under the sun. Also, do not keep the washcloth in your bathroom. Store it in a clean, dry place. Moreover, do not share your washcloth with others.
10. Not Moisturizing Immediately
Many people do not apply moisturizer to their face after washing. Cleansing removes moisture from the skin, making it important to apply a moisturizer on your face each time you wash to help your skin retain its natural moisture. A good moisturizer will create a protective barrier that prevents water from evaporating and drying out your skin.
Make the most of your face washing routine by applying a mild moisturizer immediately after you’ve cleansed and patted your face dry. This will maximize absorption and help seal in moisture. Be sure to choose a moisturizer suitable for your skin type. Those with oily skin, for example, can go for an oil-free, water-based moisturizer.
When you apply moisturizer to your clean face, do it gently and avoid pressing and pulling your skin harshly. Use light, even pressure, and move your fingers in upward strokes from your neck to your forehead. Be extra careful when applying moisturizer around your eyes, as that skin is even more fragile.