Are You Cleansing Your Face Correctly?

Do you wake up to find remnants of mascara on your pillow or tone your face after a cleanse only to find that its removing leftover makeup instead of treating your skin?

Cleansing our face is an integral part of our daily skincare routine and while it may seem fool-proof, it’s something many more of us are doing incorrectly than not. Whether that’s down to using the wrong products or the wrong technique, a careless routine can lead to a long list of issues, from breakouts and clogged pores to increased oil production, premature ageing and irritation.

Giving your complexion a proper cleanse is anything but basic and it’s pretty easy to pick up bad habits along the way, particularly when rolling in after a night out when the idea of your head finally hitting the pillow is far more appealing than double cleansing the nights antics off your face. So to give you a helping hand, here’s where you may be going wrong – and more importantly, how best to cleanse your face for a flawless, glowing complexion.

Wash your hands first

It may seem obvious, but if you don’t wash your hands before cleansing your face you’re essentially washing it with dirty hands. Alternatively, use a flannel or cleansing brush instead and totally remove your hands from the process! In fact, a brush has the ability to remove oil, dirt, and dead skin cells far better than your hands ever could.

Choose the right cleanser

Each and every one of us have unique skin types, but whether your complexion is blemish-prone, oil, dry or all of the mentioned combined, they’ll be a cleanser out there that’s specially formulated (in terms of ingredients and texture) to keep your problems at bay. To discover the right one for you, have a look here.

Twice a day

While you may think it’s less necessary to give your skin a proper cleanse in the morning as you’ve only been sleeping and are already makeup-free, it’s important to cleanse in both the morning and the evening. You see, while you’re snoozing dirt and bacteria gather on your face so it’s important to start the day fresh and cleanse any built up grime away when you wake up.

Double cleanse

We’re big fans of a double cleanse (a key part of many Korean skincare routines), namely because in between the makeup, dirt, pollution, sweat and oil, our poor skin goes through a bit of a tough time and its essential all of the aforementioned is cleansed away – which a quick 20 second rinse with a bit of cleansing gel in the shower quite simply won’t cut through. If you’re double cleansing, use two different textures – for example, a milk like Unani Illuminate Milk Cleanser and a balm or an oil.

Use warm to cool water

Using hot water will damage your skin, so make sure it’s warm or cool. This is where many people go wrong when using a hot cloth cleanser, as the name suggests soaking the muslin flannel in scorching water.

Massage it in for 60 seconds

Really working your cleanser into your complexion will work absolute wonders. Apply it to your face, neck and eye area and gently massage it into your skin using circular motions. Pay special attention to the edges of your face, which many people miss, and your nose.

Step one: wash your hands and apply a 5p sized amount of a cleanser like Unani Illuminate Milk Cleanser to your hands, then massage it into your cheeks using circular motions.


Step two: using the same motions, work it into your nose, making sure you pay special attention to the sides.


Step three: repeat the same process on your chin.


Step four: spend a little time massaging your forehead, making sure you go right up the the hairline. All the hair products you use and the sebum from your scalp build up here and can lead to blemishes!


Step five: the neck is another area people often miss out, so use the same circular motions into the skin from your chin down to your chest- it gets the same amount of dirt as your face so it’s important to give it just as much of a cleanse.


If you’re double cleansing, simply follow with a balm cleanser and repeat the above steps again! A double cleanse will only take you 60 seconds and the payoff is totally worth it.

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Writer and expert