Double cleansing 101
For many, skincare routines are daily rituals that are taken very seriously — and for good reason. Throughout the day, your skin collects airborne bacteria and pollution that contribute to aging, pigmentation, and breakouts if they aren't washed away properly.
But what's the best way to cleanse your skin? That's where double cleansing, one of the most effective skin care techniques, comes into play.
Double cleansing at a glance
In short, double cleansing involves first using a cleansing oil, balm, or micellar water to help break down make-up, SPF, and sebum on the surface of the skin, and then following up with a water-based cleanser. This method also removes sweat, bacteria, and old skin cells, providing a deeper clean that penetrates pores to remove impurities.
How to double cleanse
As the name suggests, double cleansing involves two different steps. During the first step, you use an oil-based cleanser or micellar water to wipe off makeup and oil buildup. Using these products leaves natural hydrating oils behind on the surface of the skin.
Step two involves using a water-based cleanser to get deeper into the pores to thoroughly clean them. You should wash your face upwards and outwards to achieve the deepest cleanse possible.
Follow this double cleansing process with a nighttime moisturizer.
What are the benefits of double cleansing?
According to dermatologists, there are two main benefits to using double cleansing. When you wear foundation and powder, double cleansing provides you with a better clean. It can be helpful to remove the layer of makeup, which allows the cleanser to clean the skin. Double cleansing also allows skincare products, like moisturizers, to penetrate deeper, rendering them more useful.
Should everyone double cleanse?
The short answer? Yes. Even if you don't wear cosmetics every day, it's essential that you're cleansing your face right before bed each night. Double cleansing helps remove dirt and pollution that accumulate during the day. If you don't wash your face thoroughly enough, you'll cause oxidative damage to the skin, resulting in fine lines and wrinkles.
If you have super sensitive or dry skin, you should first cleanse your skin using an oil-based cleanser, and then follow with just a water rinse. This prevents the skin from over-drying.
- "A Beginner's Guide to Double Cleanse and Its Importance to Your Skin-Care Routine," Allure, May 11, 2018.
- "Just a Super Useful Guide to Double Cleansing Your Skin," Elle, December 20, 108.