One of the rampant beauty rumors around the internet is that you shouldn’t wash your face in the morning. After all, if you wash your face at night, how dirty can it possibly get while you are sleeping? Based on this belief, I stopped washing my face in the morning and started using a cleansing water. My sister recently visited and was appalled by this routine. “That’s gross. How can you not wash your face before putting on makeup?” she exclaimed. We got in a heated debate regarding how often you should was your face. Is it necessary to wash your face in both the morning and night?
I spoke to Dr. Kally Papantoniou from Advanced Dermatology PC to answer the pressing skincare question (and to be honest, I wanted to prove my sister wrong). Dr. Papantoniou explained, “It is ideal for you to wash your face twice daily, this is an essential time of the day to refresh and cleanse. By gently removing the residue on your skin you will prime your skin for any products you apply such as moisturizers or serums, and your results will be better as well.” This means that even if you washed your face in the evening, it’s still important to still cleanse your face in the morning. Cleansing your face preps your skin so that your skincare products absorb more effectively.
Okay, I concede. This makes sense a lot of sense. But is it possible to over wash you face? According to Dr. Papantoniou, “Over washing can happen if the wrong cleansers are being used, and washing more than twice per day is not a good idea.” Her tip is to avoid using washcloths and loofahs on your skin. These can be abrasive to the surface of the skin, which can lead to dryness. You should only wash your face twice per day and make sure to select cleansers that will be best suited to your skin type.
But it turns out my sister was not completely right! Dr. Papantoniou clarified, “Skin type is important to take into consideration when choosing your cleansers. For dry skin you may want to use an oil based face wash, that will help remove make-up without stealing the natural oils found in your skin leaving your skin feeling soft and moisturized. Another good choice for dry skin is a cleansing water that is soap-free, these are light and refreshing without leaving the skin feeling tight and dry. For mixed skin types you may alternate with a gentle cleanser in the morning and a deeper wash for the evening. And for oily skin a cleanser that may do better work at lifting oils will work best, but remember not to over wash as this can lead to rebound production of oils in the skin.” So if you are like me and use a cleansing water in the morning, this is actually still an effective way to wash your face. Score. I guess we’ll call this debate a tie.
It’s also important to consider how the environment can affect your skin. Find out if you need to change your skincare routine for fall here.