For most of us young women, when we wake up to get ready for the day, our skin routines are probably fairly simple. Maybe you wash your face, maybe you tone(or not always), maybe you use an eye cream, a moisturiser, and SPF(it’s a must). But after your skincare maybe you apply a foundation, or a concealer, maybe you use a setting spray or a powder. We now have multiple layers of stuff on top of our freshly washed skin starting with every product you use. You walk outside, there’s pollution in the air, dirt attaches itself to your face, you take a metro, or get in your car, touch something and touch your face, you’ve now added dirt or oil on top of your skin. Throughout the day we are accumulating lots of dirt, pollutants, oil, etc on top of our skin. It’s essential at night to remove all of the gunk on our face, without disrupting our natural oils and stripping our skin.
Our skin has an optimal pH of 5.6, we need to tread very carefully with the types of skincare products we use to remove all that gunk, because you could be stripping your skin of the very essential oils that help regulate it. Most cleansers tend to be too alkaline(high pH) for the skin, and can leave skin feeling dry and stripped(think squeaky clean). The opposite end of the spectrum is acid(low pH) which can also strip your skin, but usually it happens slower over time. Maybe you’ve heard of people destroying their water barrier on their skin, this usually happens when you use an excessive amount of acid products.
You might be wondering how do we know the pH of our skincare, the only real way to know is if you take pH strips and test the actual product yourself. Some companies put out willingly the pH of their products, but that seems to be pretty rare.
We should start out always with an oil cleanser, oil helps break down our natural sebum without stripping it off our skin, it helps break down dirt, pollutants, and our makeup. Over time it can also help to break down blackheads and clean out pores. A key point in oil cleansing is that oil does not have a pH, pH is only for aqueous solutions. It’s crucial for helping balancing your skin, and no, putting oil on your face does not make you more oily. The only thing that can truly break down your natural oil on your face, is by using an exterior oil, water and soap will not actually break down excess oil, they don’t mix. Have you ever tried washing your face with just soap, and then using a cotton pad after with your toner and there’s still crap on your face? You need to start with oil so that it pulls out all the stuff sitting on your skin.
Some people don’t even believe in using a second cleanser, I still use a secondary cleanser, but one that’s much more gentle. When I turned 24, my skin took a turn for the worse, I never had acne or cysts as a teenager, I had always thought of myself pretty lucky for not having a pepperoni face in high school. Instead, I had it as an adult, which in my opinion, is way worse. I started using cerave and products based towards acne, which tend to be extremely alkaline. Not only was I using these products on my acne areas, but I had been using them all around my entire face even though I wasn’t breaking out there. Then all of a sudden my forehead erupted in oil, and I had always had normal to dry skin. I had no idea what was going on, and it wasn’t until I went in for a skin consultation at Oh My Cream that the lady told me I was stripping the oil off my forehead with my cleanser, causing me to produce way more oil.
I switched from my acne cleanser to the milk jelly cleanser from glossier and emulsion nettoyante from oh my cream. Glossier’s cleanser has a pH of 4.5-5 which is excellent. I’ve noticed a huge difference in my skin in the last month, I’ve been having way fewer break outs, my forehead looks way less oily, my pores on my nose looks cleaner, and my skin looks less bumpy.
To learn more about double cleansing you can check out Oh My Cream’s explanation here! Let me know in the comments your favorite cleanser!