Since an early age, you’ve known that face washing is a necessary step in your skin care regimen. And with the number of times you’ve done it during your life, the process has probably become second-nature. But it turns out that face washing isn’t quite as cut and dry as you may have thought. In fact, you could be making mistakes that are preventing your skin from looking its most beautiful. From using the wrong face wash in your skin care routine to skipping nighttime face washing, keep reading to find out what eight of the most common face-washing mistakes are and what you should do instead.
FACE WASHING MISTAKE #1: YOU’RE USING THE WRONG CLEANSER
OK, this probably seems like a no-brainer, but it’s worth repeating: You should use a cleanser that’s formulated for your skin type. The good news is, there are plenty of different types of face wash out there, ranging from gel to cream to foaming. In need of a new cleanser? Here are some of our favorites.
L’Oréal Paris Pure-Clay Detox & Brighten Cleanser: This clay-to-mousse cleanser is powered by three different clays in their pure form and enhanced with charcoal. The formula removes everyday impurities without over-drying, leaving skin purified of dirt, oil, and pollution and looking more radiant and luminous.
L’Oréal Paris Ideal Clean™ All Skin Types Foaming Gel Cleanser: This foaming gel cleanser lifts dirt and impurities up and away from skin without drying it out.
L’Oréal Paris RevitaLift Bright Reveal Brightening Daily Scrub Cleanser: This scrub cleanser is formulated with gentle micro-pearls and glycolic acid to exfoliate dead skin cells on skin’s surface.
L’Oréal Paris Micellar Cleansing Water Complete Cleanser Waterproof - All Skin Types: This micellar water is powered by micelle molecules that cluster together to surround and lift away impurities and makeup—even waterproof mascara—with no harsh rubbing required.
L’Oréal Paris Men Expert™ Hydra Energetic Extreme Cleanser Infused with Charcoal: This cleanser acts as a magnet on the skin to capture and get rid of all kinds of dirt—think excess oil and impurities. The coolest part: The black cleanser turns into a rich white foam as you use it.
L’Oréal Paris Age Perfect Nourishing Cream Cleanser: This gentle cream cleanser is formulated with precious oils for mature skin.
FACE WASHING MISTAKE #2: YOU’RE APPLYING CLEANSER THE WRONG WAY
Yep: There is a right way and a wrong way to apply a cleanser to your face. It’s important to be gentle. So, massage your cleanser lightly onto your skin—don’t aggressively rub—then rinse (unless you’re using a no-rinse option like micellar water) and follow up with the rest of your skin care routine.
FACE WASHING MISTAKE #3: YOU’RE NOT REMOVING YOUR MAKEUP FIRST
If you think that cleansing your face doubles as a makeup remover option—think again! While cleansing can help get rid of excess impurities, makeup, and oils on your skin, it’s not meant to remove a full face of makeup. When you use a cleanser as your makeup remover, you aren’t giving your face wash the opportunity to serve its purpose: washing your face! Before cleansing, remove all traces of makeup with a makeup remover towelette, like the L’Oréal Paris Ideal Clean All Skin Types Makeup Removing Towelettes, or micellar water. Then reach for your cleanser!
FACE WASHING MISTAKE #4: YOU’RE WASHING YOUR FACE IN THE SHOWER
Trying to multitask and wash your face whilst in the shower? You may not realize it, but there’s actually an argument against washing your face in the shower. There are a couple of reasons to back this up. Namely, washing your face post-shower is a guaranteed way to ensure all traces of hair care products used in the shower (like your shampoo and conditioner) that may have run onto your face are cleansed away—after all, these products aren’t meant for your delicate complexion!
FACE WASHING MISTAKE #5: YOU’RE USING DIRTY HANDS
This one is quite gross when you think about it, so pay attention! Before cleansing your face, you should wash your hands to ensure they’re completely clean before you put them on your precious visage. You touch lots of things in your daily life, from door handles to your cell phone, and your hands could have bacteria on them from the various surfaces you come into contact with throughout the day—hence needing a good wash before they go anywhere near your face.
FACE WASHING MISTAKE #6: YOU’RE USING HOT WATER
It’s time to turn down the temps! Hot water can strip your skin of natural oils, which can lead to dryness. Yikes! Whenever you wash your face, use lukewarm water instead. Trust us, your complexion will thank you!
FACE WASHING MISTAKE #7: YOU’RE OVER-EXFOLIATING
Exfoliating is the process of sloughing away dead skin cells from the surface of your skin, and it's something you don’t want to go overboard with. Everyone’s skin is different—so there’s no hard and fast rule about how many times a week you should exfoliate. Some people may benefit from daily exfoliation, while others may only need to do so once or twice a week. It depends on your individual skin, so pay attention to how your skin responds, and you can determine how often it’s appropriate to exfoliate. And remember: Be gentle!
FACE WASHING MISTAKE #8: YOU’RE NOT FOLLOWING UP WITH MOISTURIZER
What you do after you wash your face is just as important as how you wash your face. If you always skip using moisturizer post-cleansing, it’s time for a change—and yes, that applies to oily skin types, too! After you’ve rinsed off your cleanser, apply a moisturizer, like the L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care - Normal/Oily Skin, L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care - Normal/Dry Skin, or L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care - Extra Dry Skin to damp skin to help lock in hydration.