All about: The Science behind Double Cleansing

Should you be double cleansing? In a word: yes. Double cleansing can be one of the best things you ever do for your skin, and essentially every skin type can benefit.
Put simply, it’s a two-step process that has been long-practised in Japanese, Korean and French beauty cultures. The first involves purifying your face of makeup, pollution, dirt, debris and sunscreen - basically anything found in your pores and on the surface of the skin at the end of the day – whilst the second step ensures anything that wasn’t removed in the first step is washed away (including leftover cleanser residue). The end result? Skin that’s gloriously clean and ready to absorb whatever you slather on next.
A double cleanse should only happen in the evening: first with an oil cleanser, immediately followed by a cream, gel, or water-based formula. The biggest benefit of adding in this first oil cleanse is that oil attracts oil. Anyone that checks in here regularly will know that I’m a huge fan of oils - body oils, hair oils and facials oils - and love the fact that nine times out of ten, they are brilliant multitaskers and are great travel companions too. Cleansing your face with one is a given with me, but for many oil may seem counterintuitive, especially for those who associate it with breakouts and the like. Well it just ain’t true, and there are more and more great oil-based cleansers arriving on the market all the time that are making their way into bathroom cabinets across the globe.
Oil-based cleansers remove sebum, makeup, SPF, and environmental pollutants far more efficiently than water-based cleansers can, because water and oil don’t mix! What water and cream-based cleansers can do in the second cleanse is further remove any sweat and grime, while nourishing and infusing the skin with active ingredients.
Apply your chosen cleansing oil or balm with dry hands to start with and then add water. This means the cleanser will be able to lift and melt everything off effectively. Oil dissolves oil (both oil-based makeup and oil on the skin), and when you add water it’ll start to turn milky before your final rinse.
Using a cream gel or foam second will ensure your skin is left squeaky clean by removing any traces of makeup, debris etc, and won't require a lot of product as the hard work is done with your first cleanse. No matter how oily you think your skin may be, don’t be tempted to use a foam, gel or exfoliating cleanser for both steps. This will strip the skin and compromise your barrier, leading to even more issues that none of us need right now! And always use tepid water to cleanse, particularly if you're doing a double cleanse.

Some of my personal favourite cleansers whether you’re double cleansing or not (you should be, just saying) are:

Tatcha One Step Camellia Cleansing Oil
A favourite with beauty freaks and media alike for so many obvious reasons, this lightweight oil from Tatcha easily removes makeup and sunscreen without congesting the skin. It’s infused with Japanese camellia oil, which is rich in oleic acid, omegas 3, 6 and 9 and vitamins A, B, D and E, and the beautiful brand’s signature Hadasei-3™ complex (an anti-ageing trio of green tea, algae and rice) that aims to restore a natural glow to the skin.

Emma Lewisham Illuminating Oil Cleanser
I feel in love with Emma’s Illuminating Oil Cleanser from the get-go – the experience of using it is super luxe, and the results clear from the first time you hit the pump and start massaging it in. Containing 23 high-performing actives and full-spectrum, skin- beautifying antioxidants, nutrients, and vitamins, it’s definitely a cleanser that delivers on all fronts.
The formula harnesses the considerable powers of a signature blend of four flower enzymes: Neroli Absolute, Rose Absolute, Jasmine Absolute, and Bulgarian Lavender. Upon contact with water, the oil transforms into a milky emulsion to ensure a residue-free finish and yes – it smells absolutely heavenly.

MV Skintherapy Gentle Cream Cleanser
Gaining cult status around the world with good reason, this heavenly formula is like a ritual in a bottle. As well as smelling simply incredible, the utter soft cream effectively melts away all traces of make-up and grime, delicately exfoliates, and leaves skin supremely supple and smooth. Designed for daily use with a muslin cloth, it supports the skin and the senses and has proven an absolute godsend when I’m dealing with a rosacea flare. The scent is also a wonder when it comes to calming the mind at the end of the day, and like everything MV, a little really does go a long way.

Trilogy Rosehip Transformation Cleansing Oil
A NATRUE certified marvel from the creators of well-priced, botanically-based natural skincare, this Trilogy beauty is suitable for all skin types. It comes with a powerful combination of high performance pure plant oils, and like many of my favourite oil-based cleansers it instantly transforms from an oil to a cleansing milk when mixed with water and, once applied to the skin, goes straight to work. I’ve found it super effective on even really tough-to-remove waterproof formulas, and it leaves the skin feeling super soft and dewy afterwards.

Main photo by Andrey Zvyagintsev on Unsplash


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