8 Mistakes You Make When Washing Your Face

If you want washing your face to be as cleansing and restorative as possible, you need to focus on the entire process and use extra care in every step.
8 Mistakes You Make When Washing Your Face

Last update: 21 May, 2021

Washing your face is a habit that’s part of everyday life and that has to do with personal hygiene and grooming. However, when we look at it as an aesthetic measure, we often make some mistakes.

Facial skin is different from the rest of the body and has specific needs, even if it doesn’t seem so at first glance. Therefore, it’s incorrect to try to care for it in the same way. Doing so will only alter it, resulting in problems such as irritation, dryness, tightness, imperfections, among others.

Can you tell if you wash your face properly every day? In case you have any doubts, you should review the most common mistakes that are made.

According to an article published in the digital magazine for teachers, facial hygiene is necessary and therefore should be performed both day and night, as this process will remove all traces of sebum, sweat, and pollution accumulated throughout the day.

1. Not Washing Your Hands Before Washing Your Face

Considering that we touch all kinds of surfaces and objects with our hands, and therefore, they’re in direct contact with dirt, dust, germs, and bacteria, it’s obvious that the most correct thing to do is not to touch your face without having previously washed them.

Many people spend all day wearing make-up and, when they get home, they don’t wash their hands. But, after doing various activities, they stand in front of the mirror, take a cotton swab, soak it in micellar water or some other similar product and proceed to wipe it directly on their face to “clean” it. In doing this, they don’t realize that they’ve already soiled the absorbent cotton and are now applying it on the face ─which already had an accumulation of makeup and dirt─ which promotes the appearance of impurities.

2. Not buying the right products

No doubt you have a favorite beauty product. Maybe you love it because it smells fresh and clean and feels soft on your skin. However, the truth is that this soap may not be the most suitable for your skin type.

The ideal cleanser should remove dirt, dust, and makeup without stripping your skin of its natural oils. Therefore, not just any bar soap or shower gel will do.

At the same time, remember that the heat and humidity of summer aren’t the same as the cold of winter. Check which cleansers are best for each time of year and you’ll always be one step ahead when it comes to caring for your face.

3. You Don’t Exfoliate or You Exfoliate Too Much

A woman making a homemade scrub.

You rarely need to exfoliate your face every day, as it can cause dry out various skin types, such as dry, sensitive, and mixed complections. In this regard, some exfoliants could also damage your skin because they are made with ingredients that are too abrasive, or with particles that are too hard.

The Spanish Academy of Dermatology and Venereology points out that it is usually enough to wash the face daily. But ideally, exfoliation should be done once a week or twice a month (depending on the type of skin and the dermatologist’s indications) and always using the right product.

4. You Dry Your Skin Too Aggressively

Do you tend to dry your face quickly and vigorously after you’re done washing? Do you think that the drier your face is, the cleaner it will be? Well, you’re wrong. Drying your face more vigorously won’t make you have less impurities or make them appear fewer in the future.

Drying with any cloth (cloth, paper, etc.) forcefully may be hurting the skin and making it more prone to irritation and other problems.

Always try to gently pat dry your skin.

5. Not Applying Cleanser Correctly

You have to know how to correctly apply your chosen face washing product. Your pores are going to absorb it to the deeper layers of your skin. Therefore, you need to apply it using circular, very light, and smooth movements, or according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

If you do this horizontally or vertically it can take longer to absorb. Review and follow the instructions with your cleanser: you’ll see that while it’s a slow process, it has big benefits.

6. Not Using the Right Water Temperature

A bathroom sink faucet.

There’s a belief that hot water opens your pores while cold water closes them. As a result, many people end up drying out and mistreating their skin.

If you choose to wash your face with very hot water, you’ll easily remove the natural oils that protect the skin. According to an article published by the International Journal of Pharmaceutical Compounds, this can lead to dryness and uncontrolled sebum production. Therefore, it’s best to use lukewarm water as it won’t cause any harm.

7. Instead of Water, You Use Alcohol

If you use 70, 90, or more proof alcohol every day to “clean” your face, you should know that all you’re doing is drying it out and exposing it even more to all kinds of issues. Like other products, alcohol sweeps away the skin’s natural oil layer, thus drying and irritating it.

8. Not Rinsing Well

It’s important that, after applying the cleanser, you rinse it off thoroughly with plenty of water so that no residue remains on your face that can then dry and adhere to the skin along with the new dirt you accumulate thereafter.

Pay special attention to this step when you’re in a hurry in the morning or tired in the evening. Also, don’t forget to rinse your jawline, hairline, and T-zone thoroughly. These are three places that are easily overlooked and can be left with soap residue.

Special care when washing your face

You may have made these mistakes on more than one occasion when washing your face and not even thought about it. Likewise, you may have thought you only needed a little soap and cold water. However, the truth is that having a healthy complexion starts with a good daily cleansing.

Now you have a list of actions to avoid in order to carry out this procedure correctly and thus maintain the health and beauty of your skin.

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