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5 Skin cleansing mistakes you could be making

Jessica Padykula is a freelance writer and editor in Toronto, Canada covering a wide range of  topics for several online lifestyle publications. She is a regular contributor for SheKnows, covering travel, style, relationships, health and...

Skin care don'ts

Washing your face is easy right? Technically, yes. But there are a few dos and don’ts to consider as you sidle up to the sink. To really get your skin squeaky clean, avoid the following common cleansing mistakes.
Woman washing face

Over-cleansing

You might not think it’s possible for your face to be too clean, but excessive cleansing can cause more harm than good. Cleansing your skin more than twice a day can strip your skin of its natural oils and actually cause your skin to produce more oil -- no thanks. Rather than risk drying out your complexion, stick to cleansing in the morning and before bed.

Make a note

If you have particularly dry skin, you can get away with simply rinsing your face or going over it lightly with a damp washcloth in the a.m., rather than using a cleansing product.

Picking the best-smelling product

We’re all guilty of wanting the products (from shower gels to shampoos) that smell the best. Fruity? Spicy? Minty? Bring it on! But the problem with many yummy-smelling cleansers is that they’re full of unnatural or synthetic fragrance, which can irritate your skin and cause a whole host of complexion problems. If your skin is sensitive or prone to irritation, choose unscented products or those that derive their scent from natural fragrance, versus chemicals.

Not leaving the cleanser on your skin long enough

If your cleanser claims to do something specific, like zap zits, calm skin or moisturize, the only way you’ll get the benefits is to allow the active ingredients to do their job. Rather than quickly wash and immediately rinse, work the cleanser around your face slowly using small circular motions, wait 30 to 45 seconds (or longer if you have time) and then rinse.

Washing your face before your hair

Prone to breakouts along your hairline? Your shampoo and conditioner could be to blame. Keep skin clear by washing your face after you wash your hair. That way you’ll be sure no residue from your hair care products is left on your skin, which can clog pores and cause blemishes.

Using the wrong temperature water

Cold water might wake you up and hot water might feel good, but the key to a well-cleansed face is to find a balance. The water should never be hot, which can dry out your skin, or ice cold, which won’t allow your pores to open. Wash your face in warm water for optimum results.

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