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Double Cleansing – Really??!!??

Updated: Aug 16, 2023

Clean Skin and Cleansers: Is Double Cleansing Really Necessary?


There is no discounting the importance of clean skin. It is essential to skin health and a clear complexion. But honestly, double-cleansing? Is it really necessary? Is it even good for you? I remember when it was popular to use stripping shampoos that removed everything, leaving only clean hair. Now the trend is to wash your hair less and allow the natural oils to nourish your hair and create a healthy scalp biome.


So, if you are an advocate of double-cleansing and it works for you, stick with it. But for those who just feel guilty because they won’t wash their face twice each morning and night – I’ve got some good news¹.


Woman washing face

What is Double Cleansing?


Double cleansing means washing your face twice. First with an oil-based cleanser and following with a water-based cleanser.


By starting with an oil-based cleanser, you effectively remove oil-based makeup, excess sebum and some sunscreens. Oil-based cleansers may leave dry skin softer than water-based cleansers. Oil-based cleansers can remove excess oil from skin, but those with acneic tendencies may find that an oil-based cleanser worsens their acne, rather than improving it.

Finishing a double cleanse with a water-based cleanser helps remove water-based particles like dirt and sweat. Water-based cleansers are often a good fit for those with sensitive skin or acne-prone skin. As most of us know, cleansing is a balancing act requiring a product that removes make-up and other impurities without drying skin or leaving a film.

Finding a Good Cleanser

Finding a good cleanser is like finding your favorite fragrance. There are thousands to choose from and your favorite may change over time. You will find many cleansers that are “pretty good”. But when you find the one you love – you know it’s special. A good cleanser leaves skin feeling clean and soft, with no make-up or sunscreen residue and no tightness or dryness. Your favorite will also smell good to you and rinse away easily and cleanly. Below are a few tests to see if you and your cleanser are a good fit.


Testing Your Cleanser:


1) It should clean your skin well with one wash. You can test this by following with toner or a light-colored towel. You should not see make-up or dirt on the toner wipe or towel.


2) The tools used to cleanse your face should rinse clean. Brushes, silicone pads, or cloths should be clean as well – if your cleanser won’t clean your facial brush is it really cleaning your skin?


3) Your skin should not feel dry and tight or oily and greasy after cleansing. It should just feel clean. If your skin feels tight or oily after cleansing, your cleanser may not be the right one for you.


4) Many of us have post cleansing rituals to further enhance our skin's appearance, tone, and suppleness. There are many serums, moisturizers and enhancements to improve your skin's texture, color and appearance. These will be discussed in a future post. You may also want to schedule a free consultation with our aesthetician Lisa, to further discuss how to achieve the best results for your skin.


5) Cleansing your face should feel good and should not be a chore. That fresh, natural feeling after you wash, rinse and dry your skin feels amazing! You deserve that feeling every time you cleanse.

At Yag-Howard Cosmetic Dermatology (YHCD) we offer at least 4 different facial cleansers (YHCD/Shop) and that doesn’t count any of the medicated cleansers that might be prescribed. If you aren’t sure about your cleansing routine, schedule a skincare consult with our Esthetician. Last, there’s no shame in double-cleansing if that works for you. But if you just can’t . . . don’t! Instead, spend your extra time finding a cleanser that you love! We’re here to help.

Please call for a complimentary skin consultation or appointment 239-529-DERM(3376) or reach us at: Contact YHDerm.


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