How to Pick a Soap to Wash Your Face

The woman is washing her face.
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With so many skin care products and tools on the market today, it can be confusing trying to decide the best way to wash your face. Should you pick a bar soap or a liquid soap? A foaming solution or a non-foaming solution? Or should you go with a facial cloth?

Not too long ago, the only choices that you had in terms of facial cleansers were bar soaps and cold creams. Now, entire store aisles are devoted to various facial-cleansing options.

These tips, below, may help you figure out which kind of facial cleanser is best for your skin. 

The Importance of Facial Cleansing

Facial cleansing is important because the face has so many sebaceous glands that the skin on your face is oilier than the skin on other parts of your body. In addition, whenever you apply cosmetics or other products that create a film on the skin, those things can trap pollutants from the environment like dust and cigarette smoke. So make sure that you wash your face twice a day—once in the morning and once before bed. And women who wear makeup during the day should be sure to wipe off all makeup each night before washing their faces. 

Being Gentle Is Key

You may have a natural inclination to wash your face aggressively, thinking that it will help get rid of any oil and dirt and keep your face cleaner. But, actually, that's not true. Before you scrub your face hard, know that the skin on your face is very delicate.

The top layer of the skin on your face, the stratum corneum, has fewer cell layers than any other part of the body except the genitalia. This thin layer makes the skin more easily irritated.

How to Pick the Best Soap for Your Face

These are some guidelines to keep in mind as you look through the aisles in a drugstore for the best soap for your face.

  • Use Something That's Made for the Face: Don't use the same soap for your face that you use for your body, even if you're using a liquid cleanser for your body. If you're using a bar soap on your body (which you ought to reconsider), don't let that thing get anywhere near your face. Facial soaps are designed specifically for sensitive facial skin, and even the mildest body soap is too hard on the face.
  • Start With Something Mild: Use the mildest cleanser that gets rid of oil and residue.  
  • Pick Something Non-Foaming: Foaming cleansers look and feel cool, but they contain ingredients that might irritate your skin, especially if you have sensitive or dry skin
  • Consider a Facial Cloth: You don't even have to use a soap on your face if you use a facial cloth because the soap is already embedded in the cloth. The facial cloth also exfoliates, helping you slough off dead skin cells that may clog your pores and cause acne. 
  • Think About Your Skin Type: Some cleansers are designed for dry skin, while others are designed for oily, acne-prone skin, so if a regular cleanser isn't cutting it, try something that's more specific to your skin type. And if that doesn't work, make an appointment with a dermatologist (a doctor who specializes in treating the skin) to get more advice.

    Source:

    Nash, Frank, et al. “Maintenance of Healthy Skin: Cleansing, Moisturization, and Ultraviolet Protection.” Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology 6.s1 (2007): 7-11.

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