So you’ve heard the beauty gurus saying double-cleansing is what allows them to have clear baby-soft skin, but are you double cleansing for the sake of double cleansing? Does it actually make a difference or are you just wasting your time?
We ask Biologi’s Dermal Specialist, Lucy Macdougald, if double-cleansing actually makes a difference.
Most people would assume that cleansing is pretty straightforward and double-cleansing is simply the process of making your skin extra clean. However, the truth is it’s a lot more complicated than that. What many people don’t realise is that your skin is affected dramatically by both not enough cleansing, or too much cleansing. The balance really needs to be just right.
Not cleansing your skin enough or leaving your make up on before you go to bed can cause an array of problems in the skin. Dirt, sweat, oils and any product build-up may clog your pores and lead to acne breakouts or irritated skin. On top of this, your pores will appear larger and your skin will likely start to look dull and textured (rather than radiant and glowy).
One of the main reasons or arguments for cutting back on cleansing is how the skin can react to too much cleansing. Most people will cleanse their face in the morning and in the night, with some opting for double cleansing methods too. Whilst removing all product build-up and makeup is incredibly important, you can also risk removing all of the skin’s Acid Mantle which is a protective layer over the face that your skin needs for a balanced pH. The skin is home to a complex ‘skin microbiome’ or ‘skin flora’ which refers to the microorganisms which reside on the skin, comprised of trillions of bacteria that are part of the immune system. In the skincare industry, the skin microbiome is often referred to as the ‘Acid Mantle’ which is made up of a mixture of sweat, oils and dead skin cells. The skin’s microbiome is our first line of defence against disease and infection. Its job is to protect the skin from bacteria, environmental pollutants and moisture loss by neutralising contaminations and holding cells tightly together (which make it harder for viruses to penetrate and moisture to escape). Our skin is designed to naturally fight off environmental stresses and any infections and its ability to do this is affected by its pH level. So, stripping it of its natural oils regularly and then adding a plethora of products can confuse your skin and throw it out of whack. When we cleanse too much, we essentially affect how effective our acid mantle is, which can cause skin issues like excessive oil production which can lead to blemishes.
People have a tendency to over cleanse simply because germs and bacteria have a bad reputation. However, the good news is that not all of them are bad. Our bodies actually house an estimated 100 trillion ‘good’ bacteria, many of which reside in our stomach. Good bacteria helps our bodies to digest food and absorb nutrients, whilst also producing vitamins and protecting us from bad bacteria. For our skin, surface bacteria helps to maintain the skin’s healthy balance which is particularly beneficial for those with sensitive skin.
So how do you get that balance right? Look for products that will effectively clean the skin, without leaving it feeling dry or stripped of its natural oils. Many cleansers contain harsh ingredients which can dry the skin out and then make it overcompensate by producing more oils. Then it can become a vicious cycle, where your natural tendency is to try stripping away those oils again. Unfortunately, many mainstream products are jam-packed with some pretty cheap and nasty ingredients like – Sodium lauryl sulfate which is a harsh foaming detergent, triclosan which is an antibacterial ingredient but has been linked to hormonal disruption and mineral oil which is actually derived from petroleum.
We certainly think double cleansing is important so long as you’re using the right products and implementing it at night. Avoid any cleansing products that make your skin feel tight after cleansing – this basically indicates that you’d stripped your skin. Then, only double cleanse in the evenings or when you’re washing off make up. We recommend using Biologi’s Microfibre Cloths with some water as a first cleansing step to remove makeup, followed by Biologi’s Bc Refresh Cleanser. Harnessing the untouched power of Soapberry extracts, Biologi’s Bc Refresh Cleanser gently washes away dirt, pollutants, and impurities from the skin’s surface. Biologi’s Bc Refresh Cleanser contains the 100% active and organic ingredient of Soapberry extract which offers a powerhouse of hardworking active compounds that form a lather to leave skin clean, clear and fresh. Biologi’s Bc Refresh Cleanser is free from synthetic foaming agents that can traditionally strip pores and leave the skin feeling tight. Instead, this revolutionary cleanser relies on the non-irritating, single-plant ingredient of Soapberry extract to gently purify even the most problematic of skin types.
Words by Lucy Macdougald – Biologi’s Global Managing Director and Dermal Specialist. Biologi are a clean cosmeceutical skincare brand who are the innovators of the only 100% active organic plant serums in the world.