(BPT) - With so many cleanser options on shelves, choosing the right one for your skin type and daily routine can be an intimidating feat. To help you identify your skin type and decode the cleanser aisle, New York City-based board-certified dermatologist Dr. Kiran Mian shares her go-to cleansing tips to help build an expert-approved routine.
Identify your skin type
“Before cleansing or using any skincare products, it’s important to identify your skin type to help determine your skin’s individual needs,” says Mian. “From there, you can choose the right ingredients and products that are the best and most effective for treating your unique concerns.” When it comes to identifying your skin type, Mian says there are a few standard types, which you can identify based on how your skin feels throughout the day. According to Dr. Mian:
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- Normal skin: Your skin likely doesn’t experience excess dryness or oiliness, and is generally free of visible pores, acne and sensitivity.
- Dry or sensitive skin: Your skin can feel tight throughout the day and may be easily irritated by certain products or using them too often.
- Oily skin: You skin may feel “degreased” after washing but may start feeling sticky or oily throughout the day. You may see a sheen develop on the whole face as the day progresses.
- Combination skin: You may see or feel oiliness on your T-zone — forehead, nose and chin — where oil glands are more prominent.
Cleanse your skin according to skin’s needs
Once you’ve identified your skin type, it’s time to pick a cleansing routine that’s suitable for your skin’s needs.
- For normal skin: Cleanse one to two times a day in the morning and at night.
- For dry or sensitive skin: Look for products with hydrating ingredients to prevent further drying out skin and replenish hydration. Be careful not to over-wash as it could cause irritation. Simply rinse your face with lukewarm water in the morning and cleanse your skin only at night.
- For oily skin: In addition to cleansing in the morning and at night, it's recommended to also use a cleanser immediately after working out or sweating to help prevent breakouts.
- For combination skin: You may need to cleanse more often, both in the morning and at night.
Use derm-approved products
No matter your skin type, Mian recommends using products developed with dermatologists from CeraVe, which gently, yet effectively cleanse skin without over-drying or stripping the skin barrier of moisture. Two of Dr. Mian’s favorites are CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser and new Makeup Removing Cleanser Balm, which can be used together as a two-step, double cleansing routine:
Step 1: Remove Makeup
Removing your makeup before bed is non-negotiable! The CeraVe Makeup Removing Cleanser Balm is the perfect first step in a cleansing routine, as it gently removes stubborn long-wear makeup, including waterproof mascara, as well as excess oils, dirt and debris accumulated throughout the day. Formulated with 3 essential ceramides along with plant-based jojoba oil, the Cleanser Balm helps retain the skin’s moisture during cleansing, leaving skin feeling comfortable, and helping to maintain the protective skin barrier.
Step 2: Cleanse Away the Bad, While Keeping the Good
As the second step in a double-cleansing routine, use a facial cleanser formulated for your skin type to give you an effective, balanced cleanse. CeraVe’s Hydrating Facial Cleanser is best for normal-to-dry skin, as it was designed to cleanse and refresh skin without leaving skin feeling tight and dry. The Hydrating Cleanser supports your protective skin barrier long after applying, and also gently removes dirt and oil, and provides hydration with hyaluronic acid and 3 essential ceramides.
The best way to cleanse your skin
Treating your skin with care while washing also makes a difference, according to Mian, no matter what skin type you have. When cleansing, Dr. Mian recommends:
- Gently massage your cleanser onto skin in a light, circular motion.
- Rinse well using lukewarm water, rather than cold or hot water.
- Pat dry. Avoid rubbing, as it can cause irritation and inflame your skin.
- Avoid direct contact of the cleanser with your eyes. If contact occurs, rinse thoroughly with water.
“Cleansing is the foundation for an effective skincare routine,” advises Mian. “By choosing a cleanser specific to your skin type and incorporating into a regimen that fits your skin needs, you can maintain not only your skin barrier, but your overall skin health.”
Learn more about how to care for your skin at CeraVe.com.