Putting on your makeup is the fun part, but taking it off is an absolutely crucial step if you want to maintain optimal skin health. Neglecting to do so can result in clogged pores, breakouts, dullness, dryness, and damaged skin cells that can lead to premature aging. Not to mention, nighttime is when the skin repairs itself. When the surface is clean and your pores can breathe, sebum can effectively rehydrate and protect your skin from pesky free radicals. But don’t go reaching for those wipes for an effective cleanse. While they can work in a pinch on occasion (think post-gym, on an airplane, etc.), here’s how to remove your makeup sans wipes.
Break Down Your Makeup
Proper cleansing really is a two-step process, so start by breaking down your makeup with a gentle remover. Apply with a soft cotton square or round and sweep over the entire face — including eyes and lips.
When you cleanse your skin, think about how long an esthetician takes during this process when you get a facial. On a damp face, apply a couple of pumps (or squirts) of cleanser to your face with your hands. Whether you choose a gel, foam, sorbet, oil, or cream formula, make sure it’s the correct one for your skin type no matter what the trend of the moment is. Massage the product all of your face, to include hairline, around your ears, and underneath your chin as it’s likely there’s makeup harboring in these areas.
Next, wipe your face with a washcloth or better yet, a softer, microfiber face cloth that effectively removes makeup and impurities without irritating the skin. Choose a lighter color so you can see if you’ve completely removed all traces of makeup. If you still see product, repeat the cleanse — but only if necessary. Over-cleansing can strip the skin which can cause dryness or an overproduction of oil.
Gentleness Is Key
Remember, you need not fastidiously scrub your face to get it clean. Excessive tugging and pulling can cause irritation and premature aging near your eyes as the area is thin and delicate. This is why makeup wipes should be an occasional last resort; it’s hard to avoid a heavy hand when your rubbing your face squeaky clean.