How to Cleanse Your Skin Like a Dermatologist

How to Cleanse Your Skin Like a Dermatologist featured image
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With all the new product categories, ingredients and trends emerging in the skin-care industry on the daily, it can be overwhelming to try and nail down the most effective, expert-approved ways to keep your skin happy and healthy. Thought it’s easy to get caught up in all the newness, what many of us tend to overlook when it comes to out skin-care routine is exactly how we’re cleansing our skin. Washing your face may seen self explanatory, but the expert dermatologists at one of the biggest skin-care brands in the industry, CeraVe, are on a mission to inform users on exactly how to #CleanseLikeADerm.

Last week, I had the pleasure of stopping by CeraVe’s Cleanser Playland in New York, and got to learn more than I could have imagined about how to properly cleanse your skin from some of CeraVe’s most trusted experts. New York dermatologist Marisa Garshick, MD and Stockbridge, GA dermatologist Wallace Nozile, MD not only walked me through the brand’s incredible playland pop up, but also explained how these three simple steps can transform your cleansing routine to derm-level quality.

Step 1: Identify your skin type

With such a wide array of cleansing products available to us, it’s easy as consumers to purchase cleansers that we’ve seen online or in our favorite celeb’s routines without considering whether or not it is suitable for our individual skin type. According to the experts at CeraVe, identifying your skin type is the essential first step in creating a derm-level cleansing routine. We all know about oily versus dry skin, but according to the American Academy of Dermatology, there are actually five distinct skin types: oily, dry, combination, normal and sensitive. Each skin type has different needs that determine the look and feel of the skin, which is why it’s imperative to understand where you fall within the categories in order to cleanse most effectively.

For people with oily skin, the skin produces an excess of sebum that results in a shiny, greasy look and feel to the complexion in addition to a tendency to have enlarged pores, acne blemishes, whiteheads and blackheads. “Supporting oily skin comes down to choosing the right products that nourish and hydrate, without clogging your pores or triggering breakouts,” the experts at CeraVe explain. “The ideal oily skin routine should feature a gentle, foaming cleanser that effectively removes dirt, excess oil, and other impurities,” as well as “a lightweight, oil-free, and non-comedogenic moisturizer that provides your oily skin with the essential hydration it needs.”

Normal skin is neither prone to excess oils or dryness, and typically features small pores, a smooth texture and less overall sensitivity. But, individuals with normal skin still need a properly curated skin-care routine that supports the skin’s healthy barrier. Combination skin describes skin that has both dry and oily areas and can vary at the hands of a number of factors including seasonal changes and hormonal fluctuation. The key to tending to combination skin, according to CeraVe, is hydration and effective cleansing.

Step 2: Choose the proper cleanser for your skin type

Many people don’t understand just how important it is to curate your cleansing routine to meet your specific skin-care needs, which is why the derms at CeraVe are on a mission to teach consumers how to properly cleanse like a dermatologist: it goes beyond just removing dirt. For those with dry skin, cream and lotion cleansers as well as micellar water and cleansing bars are the best bet for cleansing the skin while still providing soothing and moisturizing properties. CeraVe’s Hydrating Facial Cleanser ($18) and their newest launch, the Hydrating Foaming Oil Cleanser ($18) are great options for dry skin.

If you’re more prone to oily skin and breakouts, CeraVe’s Foaming Facial Cleanser ($19) is a solid choice for removing impurities without disrupting the skin’s barrier and further inflaming the skin. For more normal to combination types, the brand’s Renewing SA Cleanser ($17) will help to cleanse, exfoliate and soften the skin without drying or stripping.

Step 3: Use your cleanser in a derm-approved skin-care routine

For the experts at CeraVe, the final step to cleansing like derm is fairly simple: put it all together! Once you’ve developed an understanding for what your skin type is and chosen a cleanser that best suits your individualized needs, incorporating your cleanser into a derm-approved skin-care routine is the final step in learning how to cleanse like a derm. What is a derm-approved skin-care routine? According the CeraVe, a derm-approved skin-care routine features dermatologist-developed and tested products with tried-and-true ingredients like retinol, hyaluronic acid and essential ceramides. Of course, an expert-level routine also includes protective products like moisturizers and SPF to ensure your skin is the healthiest it can be.

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