Monday, September 8, 2014

Quick Fact: Over-cleansing your face can damage your skin

I think that this is the most common mistake we make when it comes to skin care. It is easy to assume that the cleaner your face, the healthier it will be so we tend to over do it when it comes to face cleansing. In reality, our skin needs sebum to be healthy, but if you're stripping too much of it away in your daily face cleansing routine, then it's likely you're doing more harm than good. When you strip your skin of its natural oils, you compromise its barrier, which can set you up for irritation and dehydration.

 Don't wash your face with cleansers more than twice a day, and choose cleansers with gentle and skin nourishing formulations. Avoid cleansers that contain harsh surfactants, which rid skin of too much oil and leave it so dry that it feels taut—and might just squeak if you dragged a finger across it. Some common surfactants include sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), sodium lauryl ether sulfate (SLES), and ammonium lauryl sulfate (ALS). Instead of these, look for gentler cleaning agents, which may be glucose-based or derived from coconut oil. They can take off makeup but still maintain skin’s suppleness. These include coco betaine, cocamidopropyl betaine, coco glucoside, decyl glucoside, and sucrose laurate. And if you use cleanser at night, a quick splash of cool water alone will suffice in the morning, unless of course your nighttime moisturiser or serum is a heavy one, then you will need a gentle cleanser to remove any excess product, if any. (However, if you’re a morning gym-goer, you’ll need to cleanse again, since sweat can clog pores.) For midday greasiness, try oil-blotting papers or waterless cleansing wipes.

Personally, I use the oil cleansing method as a night cleanser, and 'madu kelulut' (stingless bee honey) as my morning cleanser. This honey does not irritate my skin or cause redness like conventional honey, and really keeps my skin supple without any dry or taut feeling. Since I have dry and sensitive skin, I find that any soap based cleansers (even the most natural ones) dries out my skin. It did take awhile for my skin to adjust to my OCM and honey cleansing routine, but after about 2 weeks my skin transformed from being dry to being balanced. Plus, I no longer feel like I have to apply so much moisturizer anymore! Before, my skin was either too dry from not enough moisturizer or too oily from too much, so I'm really glad now that I have finally found an all natural routine that works for me!


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