In my quest to stay healthy, I spend Sunday mornings at Jibe, Portland’s newest indoor cycling studio. After class this past Sunday, a fellow rider turned to me in the locker room and said, “I can never get my makeup off from the night before using these things.” The “things” she referred to were cleansing wipes. Of course, I immediately chimed in with my two cents--I couldn’t help myself! I recommended she use a cleanser in conjunction with a separate eye makeup remover; doing so will help break down makeup for a more thorough cleanse. I added that cleansing wipes can leave a soap-like film on the surface of the skin, never completely cleansing the face of dirt and makeup.
The interaction got me thinking: I’ve found that most people I ask (including clients), say they like cleansing wipes because they are quick and easy to use. I know my clients want the best for their skin (and to see the best results), but how can we achieve the best results from our skincare routine if we are not starting with a clean canvas?
I always tell my estheticians, when doing skin analysis, the first thing to ask a client is how they are cleansing their skin. This information is so vital! Although cleansing may seem simple and inconsequential, many people use the wrong type of cleanser or skip important steps in the process, which can be detrimental to skin health. Estheticians are experts at teaching people how to properly cleanse and take care of their skin with appropriate products. That is why consulting with an esthetician is the best way to ensure optimal results from your skin care routine.
Here are a few quick cleansing tips you can follow on your own:
1.) Remove your makeup thoroughly, every night!
Take your makeup off every night--never, and we mean never, go to sleep with your makeup on! Skipping your nighttime skincare routine and leaving your makeup on overnight will clog your pores. Your skin rests at night as your body temperature rises, and this is when skincare products can do their best to repair your skin.
2.) Consult an expert to ensure the correct cleanser is selected!
Using a cleanser that is made specifically for your skin is imperative. Each individual’s skincare plan should be customized by an esthetician for that person’s unique needs, in order to create the proper canvas for more active ingredients to be applied.
3.) Wash your skin immediately after physical activity!
Don’t allow sweat to dry on the skin, as this will cause inflammation, redness, irritation, and more congestion. We recommend soaking cotton rounds in toner and keeping them on-hand in a plastic baggie. It’s an easy way to ensure you’ll be able to remove excess sweat from your skin on the go!
4.) Avoid over-exfoliating your skin!
Please don’t treat your skin like you’re cleaning the kitchen floor! Over-exfoliation can cause damage to your skin’s natural barrier, as well as the integrity of the skin. When we over-scrub our skin or use ingredients that are too harsh or drying, we can create an imbalance in the skin. As a result, the skin can become dehydrated, red, inflamed, and irritated. Scrubs often contain nut shells that can scratch your skin’s surface, creating micro-tears which can pool bacteria, making your breakouts worse. Alternatively, scrubs can be made out of gentle jojoba beads. We recommend using a gentle scrub, enzyme, or mask a few times a week for cell turnover. Look for products that contain beta hydroxy acids (such as salicylic acid) if you're on the oilier side to help decongest your skin. If your skin is drier, look for products that contain acids for exfoliation, such as lactic acid and malic acid.
5.) Avoid using bar soap!
Bar soap disrupts the skin’s natural pH, leaves a film on the skin, and strips water away, causing dehydration.
6.) Get a facial!
Facials will help with exfoliation, and estheticians can guide you to the right at-home products that work best for your skin type. All facials exfoliate the skin, but advanced skincare facials (such as micro dermabrasion, peels, and micro-needling) can improve the skin texture and pigmentation.
With so many skincare products on the market, it can be overwhelming and frustrating trying to establish the right cleansing routine. Enlisting the help of an expert can save you money and teach you how to set up a healthy cleansing regimen to maintain healthy skin for life.