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The Benefits of Double Cleansing

The Benefits of Double Cleansing

Double cleansing has become a popular skincare trend in recent years. As the name suggests, double cleansing is a two-step process that involves using two separate cleansers to thoroughly cleanse the skin.

The Benefits of Double Cleansing

double cleansing

What is Double Cleansing?

Double cleansing simply refers to cleansing your skin twice, using two different cleansers. Here’s a step-by-step guide to the process:

  1. First cleanse. Start by massaging an oil or balm cleanser all over your dry face for 30-60 seconds. This first cleanse will help break down oil, sunscreen, makeup, pollution, and other impurities.
  2. Rinse. Splash your face with lukewarm water or use a damp washcloth to remove the first cleanser. At this point, many of the impurities on your skin will have already been dissolved.
  3. Second cleanse. Apply your regular water-based gel, foam, or cream cleanser and massage it into your skin for another 30-60 seconds. This second cleanse will remove any remaining traces of dirt, debris, and first cleanser.
  4. Rinse. Finally, rinse your skin thoroughly with cool or lukewarm water to complete the double cleanse.

And that’s it! As you can see, double cleansing only adds one extra step to your regular cleansing routine but offers numerous unique benefits.

Why Double Cleanse? The Benefits

So why add in this extra step? What makes double cleansing so beneficial?

1. Thoroughly Removes Impurities

One of the biggest appeals of double cleansing lies in its superior ability to dissolve and remove impurities.

Your first oil or balm-based cleanser is formulated to cling to and trap debris, breaking down oil, sebum, sunscreen, pollution, makeup, and more. However, many of these impurities won’t rinse away completely with just water.

That’s where your second water-based cleanser comes in. It lifts away any remaining oil residue along with additional debris that your first cleanser loosened up but didn’t eliminate.

By tackling impurities in two different ways, double cleansing ensures your skin is left squeaky clean without feeling stripped.

2. Softens & Smooths Skin

In addition to cleansing more deeply, the one-two cleansing punch also helps soften and smooth your complexion.

The oil or balm you use as your first cleanser nourishes as it melts away debris. These balmy textures protect your skin’s moisture barrier while still clearing away every last trace of makeup and SPF.

Following up with a hydrating cream or milk-based second cleanser enhances this skin-smoothing effect even more.

So instead of feeling dry and tight post-cleansing, double cleansing leaves your skin feeling supple and smooth.

3. Prevents Breakouts

By getting rid of more pore-clogging gunk, double cleansing can also help prevent future breakouts.

Even if you don’t wear makeup, your pores still collect dirt, oil, pollutants, sebum, and dead skin cells throughout the day. Leftover debris like this can lead to increased blackheads, whiteheads, and inflammation over time if not washed away properly.

And while many cleansers do a decent job, double cleansing takes things to the next level for clean, clear pores. Your two cleansers work together to banish congestion and minimize the risk for new blemishes.

4. Enhances Skin Treatments

Interestingly, double cleansing may also boost the effectiveness of other products in your skincare routine like serums and moisturizers.

When dead skin cell buildup, excess oil, and environmental gunk accumulate on your face, this dull residue acts as a barrier preventing your other skincare products from properly absorbing.

By thoroughly removing this debris and film, double cleansing clears the path for serums, creams, etc. to better penetrate your pores. As a result, your skin reaps more benefits from the skin-nourishing ingredients.

5. Perfect for Nighttime Cleanup

At the end of a long day, double cleansing offers the TLC your skin craves at bedtime. It gently whisks away all the pollution, SPF, sebum, and makeup you’ve accumulated without disrupting your skin’s natural moisture barrier.

In fact, the pampering two-step process may even help promote healthy circadian rhythms. There’s some early research suggesting that cleansing before bed helps normalize melatonin production and skin cell turnover overnight.

So consider making double cleansing part of your regular evening wind-down routine to wash the day away and give your complexion a healthy headstart while you sleep.

What Cleansers to Use

With double cleansing, you’ll need two high quality yet gentle cleansers. What types of cleansers make the best pairings?

1. Oil or Balm + Water-Based Cleanser

One of the most common and effective double cleansing duos includes pairing an oil or balm with a water-based cleanser like the ones below:

Oil or balm: Cleansing oils, cleansing balms, micellar oils, cream oils, gel oils etc. Look for plant oils like grapeseed, jojoba, argan etc. as main ingredients.

Breaks down impurities without compromising skin’s barrier

Water-based: Gel cleansers, foaming cleansers, cream cleansers, milk cleansers, etc. Avoid harsh sulfates and fragrances.

Further removes debris without stripping away moisture

When choosing your products, make sure both cleansers suit your skin type.

For dry and sensitive skin, opt for extra-gentle milk or cream cleansers. Oily and acne-prone skin may tolerate clarifying clay cleansers better as a second step.

You’ll also want to ensure your oil or balm cleanser rinses away cleanly without residue before moving onto your water-based cleanser.

2. Cleansing Brush + Cleanser

Another route is using a cleansing brush for your first cleanse. Facial cleansing brushes offer a thorough deep clean by using oscillations or spinning to lift away impurities.

When paired with your regular cleanser, a cleansing brush takes over that initial grime-removing step so you can follow up with a second manual cleanse.

Cleansing brush options range from silicone brush heads to fiber and charcoal bristles. You can also find waterproof electric cleansing brushes equipped with charging stations.

3. Cleansing Wipes + Cleanser

Finally, double cleansing with micellar water wipes + cleanser offers another simple, effective approach:

Step 1: Gently wipe skin with a micellar water-infused cleansing cloth to sweep away makeup and debris from pores.

Step 2: Follow up with your favorite face wash to fully rinse away residue and lift deeper dirt.

This softer form of double cleansing works well for skin lacking oiliness or breakouts. Just be sure rinse thoroughly after using wipes to prevent irritation or dryness.

Tips for Getting the Most Out of Double Cleansing

Want to try adding double cleansing to your current skincare routine? Here are few handy tips:

  • Add slowly: Introduce double cleansing gradually. Use the routine 2-3 times a week at first before increasing frequency to prevent over-stripping.
  • Gentle touch: Be extra gentle. Use light pressure and massage cleansers in slow circular motions. Aggressive scrubbing can damage skin.
  • Dampen first: Splash face with warm water or use damp washcloth before massaging in first oil/balm cleanser. This helps it spread smoothly.
  • Focus on nose: Target oiliest zones (usually the T-zone) where impurities accumulate most, but avoid rubbing delicate under eye area.
  • Rinse thoroughly: Always rinse with cool water after second cleanser to close pores and remove residue. Leftover debris defeats the purpose!
  • Moisturize: Follow up double cleansing with serum, moisturizer, or face oil to nourish and replenish hydration levels.

The Takeaway

In summary, double cleansing is all about giving your complexion some bonus pampering and detoxification. Taking those few extra minutes to cleanse twice ensures your skin feels balanced and refreshed without tightness or residue.

While double cleansing does require an additional small investment of time and products, the thorough results make it worthwhile for many skincare enthusiasts. Those struggling with congested pores, stubborn makeup residue, or dullness receive an added boost too.

So consider gradually introducing double cleansing into your daily or weekly routine if you’re seeking deeper cleansing benefits! Pay attention to how your skin looks and feels to guide you in choosing the right oil, balm, brush or wipe to pair with your go-to cleanser.

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Laura Pucker

A sociable content creator and social media expert, who loves dance, makeup, and has an upbeat attitude towards life.


Lindsey Chastain

Lindsey Chastain

A creative writer passionate about helping others succeed in living their best life, creating art and making a positive impact.


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