skin care essentials

What Are the Benefits Of a Water-Based Cleanser?

This cleansing option could be the key to your best complexion.
March 07, 2022
Water Based Cleanser


There’s no denying that cleansing isn’t the most exciting step in a skin care routine. But if you’re neglecting to give your cleanser selection the same amount of consideration that you give your serum or moisturizer, you could be missing out on key benefits. 


You see, not all cleansers serve the same purpose. Their formulas contain different bases 一 such as water or oil 一 which dictate how exactly they cleanse the skin. And if you’re not sure why a water-based cleanser may be beneficial for your needs, it’s time to expand your knowledge. 


Ahead, we’re sharing what there is to know about water-based cleansers. Plus, how to choose the right water-based cleanser for you. 


What’s a Water-Based Cleanser? 

As you can probably guess, the main ingredient in water-based cleansers is water. This means when you look at the ingredient label on the back of your cleanser, water should be the first ingredient listed. This cleanser type comes in many forms, from cleansing waters to gel formulations, all of which can help remove water-based impurities like dirt and sweat from the skin. 


Think of it like this: like removes like. Similarly to how water-based cleansers remove water-based impurities, the idea is the same with oil cleansers. Cleaning oils and cleansing balms are great for removing makeup because most makeup is oil-based. 


What Are Water-Based Cleansers Good For? 

Opting for a water-based cleanser can have several benefits depending on your skin type and skin concerns as well as the formula you choose. 


For example, if you have dry or sensitive skin, a micellar water, like the L’Oréal Paris Micellar Cleansing Water Complete Cleanser Waterproof - All Skin Types, is a great choice for you. It’s an ultra-gentle option that works to remove dirt, oil and makeup with no harsh rubbing or tugging necessary. It does an excellent job at cleansing the skin without stripping it or leaving a tight feeling. It can also allow you to cut down on steps in your routine as it’s both a makeup remover and cleanser in one. 


If you have oily skin or are dealing with uneven skin texture, an option like the L’Oréal Paris Revitalift Derm Intensives 3.5% Glycolic Acid Cleanser is best for you. People with oily skin might prefer this type of cleanser to one that contains oil in order to minimize excess greasiness on their complexion. It has a water base and includes glycolic acid and salicylic acid in the formula, which work to gently exfoliate the skin, refine the appearance of pores and overall brighten the complexion. 


How to Use Water-Based Cleansers 

To yield the benefits of your water-based cleanser, keep reading to learn how to use it properly in your routine. 


Step 1. Remove Your Makeup 

If you’re not wearing makeup, skin to step two. While you can use micellar water to remove your makeup, if you prefer to use a cleansing oil or cleansing balm, use those first. Thoroughly removing your makeup is key to getting a deep clean with your cleanser. Makeup-free skin allows your cleanser to better penetrate the skin’s surface.


2. Wash Your Face With Your Water-Based Cleanser 

Once your makeup is removed, it’s time for the cleanser. Wash your face using circular motions to work the product into your skin. If you have oily skin, you can benefit from doing this twice. 


3. Follow Up With the Rest of Your Skin Care Routine 

After you’ve cleaned your skin, complete your routine with serum, moisturizer, eye cream and SPF during the daytime. 


Editor’s tip: If you’re looking to cut down on steps in your routine, combine moisturizer and SPF in one with the L’Oréal Paris Revitalift Triple Power Day Lotion SPF 30.  It combines hydration with SPF protection in addition to retinol, hyaluronic acid and vitamin C to help address fine lines and wrinkles


Next: Face Oil vs. Face Serum: What’s the Difference?

Written by: Alyssa Kaplan, Photo Credit: Chaunte Vaughn

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