We recently stumbled across a story that said you should never wash your face with your hands. The reason? Your fingers carry bacteria, and even after washing them, they’re probably not clean enough. If that’s true, many of us would have to change the way we cleanse our skin. That’s why we had to find out the truth.
Luckily, Beverly Hills, CA, dermatologist Robin Schaffran, MD, is here to put our minds at ease. “That’s definitely not true. There’s bacteria all over your skin, and it’s not always bad bacteria. There’s really no need not to use your hands.” She also adds that devices like Clarisonic work well to cleanse your skin, but are not necessary.
In the end, you really only need a gentle cleanser and water to cleanse your skin. The goal in cleansing your skin is to get all of the dirt and debris off of your face at the end of the day. “It’s best to wash your face with warm water as opposed to cold water since warm water helps to soften the skin, allowing for exfoliation,” says Los Angeles celebrity aesthetician Kate Somerville. After cleansing, pat your skin dry to remove any excess water. Follow that with a gentle moisturizer.
But be careful to not strip off all the natural oils on your skin as that can lead to irritation. Over washing your skin can lead to dryness. “If the skin is cleansed more than twice a day, the natural oils will be stripped away. When that happens, more oil is produced to compensate for the dry feeling, which leads to more bacteria production,” says celebrity aesthetician Terri Lawton.
Dr. Schaffran also points out that there’s a tendency in patients who break out to think that it’s because they’re not cleansing their skin enough. “Acne and breakouts are problems from hormones and genetics. But people with acne tend to over wash their face and end up making it worse.” So if you have acne you need more than just cleansing.
Find a Doctor
Find a NewBeauty "Top Beauty Doctor" Near you