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Home Beauty & Style What is a Cleanser? Types, Benefits, and Comparison

What is a Cleanser? Types, Benefits, and Comparison

Doing a face cleanse is all that plays in your mind after a long and heated day at work. For this purpose, you’ll need a good cleanser to hack the process before tucking in at night.

For a successful outcome, you must first determine the type of skin you have. It will help you decide on the best remedy for your face cleanse. Also, knowing your skin type helps you to pick the right product offering the best results with minimal side effects.

In this article today, you’ll get discover the different types of cleansers available. You will also learn about their benefits and what makes cleansing different from a face wash.

Are you ready? Let’s dive in!

What is a Cleanser?

A cleanser is a facial product that helps you remove oil, dirt, makeup, and dead skin that pile on your skin. The build-up of all these muck and debris is a normal occurrence that happens daily.

Cleansing helps to unclog your skin pores while exfoliating the upper skin cells. It does this without damaging the top skin cells.

When done well, it refreshes your skin and gives your complexion a new vibrance. You can also say that it transforms your skin into a clean canvas for your laying your new makeup.

You must pick the best face cleansing option for your skin. There is a variety that includes creams, balms, lotions, gels, oils, and even foams.

Benefits of Using Cleansers

Cleansers serve 2 main functions.

The first one is to remove accumulating pollutants that may damage your skin’s health. These pollutants come from things like makeup, dirt, oils, and other cosmetic products. Cleansing also gives you a better skin surface for laying fresh makeup.

The second benefit is that skin cleansers are much gentler than facial washers. There are several types of cleansers that don’t require an after wash to get the desired results. A simple wipe with a towel will get the job done. And unlike many soaps, cleansers also don’t have strong ingredients that may irritate your skin.

Types of Cleansers Available

Finding the right facial cleanser for yourself could be an uphill task. This is especially when you consider the numerous options available. So, the best thing that you can do is to know the difference between them before selecting one.

Let’s take a look at the most common ones below:

1. Gel Cleansers

Most gel cleansers have clear color and have a consistency also seen in other types of gel. Gel cleansers work to soothe your skin with refreshing and cooling formula. I recommend gel cleansers if you’re aiming to perform a deep cleanse.

Gels have a great reputation for clearing excess oil, blocked pores, and eliminating acne-causing bacteria. This is thanks to their exfoliating and antiseptic properties.

Gel cleansers are a great option for you if you have oily skin or suffer from acne.

2. Cream Cleansers

Cream cleansers have a very lush and creamy texture. Most cream cleansers have hydrating capabilities. They are also gentler on sensitive and dry skins than the other type of cleansers. This is because they can clean your skin without affecting the natural oil reserve on your face. In addition to that, they’re also effective for double cleansing if that’s a thing you’re into.

3. Foam Cleansers

Foam cleansers work well if you have combination skin. Their texture is somewhere in between a cream and a gel. During application, foam cleansers start as a gel or cream then later turns into a foamy lather.

Foam cleansers perform as well as gel cleansers and are the best for removing makeup or sunscreen.

4. Micellar Cleanser

This type of cleanser originated in France. Basically, it’s a soft water solution with small oil molecules called micelles. These micelles present in the water are what attract dirt, makeup, and oil from your skin. Micellar cleansers are also effective at tightening your skin pores after a cleanse.

The best thing about them is that they don’t contain alcohol in their formula. Thus, it’s perfectly safe for you if you happen to have sensitive skin.

5. Oil Cleansers

Oil cleansers work to remove dirt from your skin without disrupting the oil balance on your skin. They’re also gentle and can remove waterproof makeup that tends to block pores.

The oil in these types of cleansers works hand-in-hand with your skin’s natural oil to clear the debris. These cleansers function in such a way that they do not interfere with your skin’s barrier.

6. Powder Cleansers

You may use powdered cleansers if you have oily or sensitive skin. Before application, you must first mix the powder with water. The resulting creamy paste exfoliates and cleanses your skin without being too invasive. This is because the powder paste runs smoothly over your face and doesn’t need beads or scrubbing.

7. Clay Cleansers

Clay cleansers use the same science behind facial masks to clean your skin. Once applied to your face, a clay cleanser will absorb all the excess oils and impurities. This process draws out any toxin blocking your pores.

Now, as they don’t require any rough scrubbing, you may use them on sensitive skins. Clay cleansers are also great for a ‘combination’ or oily skin.

8. Bar Cleansers

Bar cleansers have been also getting a lot of buzz in recent years. Contrary to what may spring to your mind, these types of cleansers contain little to no soap at all. They have a well-balanced pH, are nutrient-rich, and contain essential oils for hydration.

Bar cleansers have a luxury ambiance but still, carry out some pretty effective cleansing.

9. Balm Cleansers

Cleansing balms offer a fast and convenient way to cleanse your face. Their simple formula does not require water to remove makeup, dirt, or oil from your face. What’s more, most of them have high moisturizing features that keep your skin hydrated throughout.

Also, they’re a good fit for people with sensitive or dry skin because they don’t have harsh ingredients.

The Difference Between Cleansing and a Face Wash

Face washes are a mainly water-based type of face-cleaning agent. They also come as gels, bars, foams, and other forms. The ingredients contained in many facial washes are way stronger than regular cleansers. Compared to cleansers, face washes are more focused on in-depth cleaning of the pores.

All in all, what are the main differences between the two? Let’s check some of them below:

  • You do facial cleansing every day to remove the makeup and debris buildup on your skin. A face wash can be only done at occasional moments as it can cause damage if overused.
  • Most cleansers have more hydrating and moisturizing qualities than facial washes.
  • Most face cleansers don’t have sodium lauryl sulfate. This compound’s known to cause skin irritation when used frequently. Many facial wash soaps do have this element as part of their main ingredients.
  • Facial cleansers are much gentler on your skin compared to face wash soaps.
  • Most face soaps foam when used compared to only a small fraction for cleansers.

Picking Between a Face Wash Vs. Cleansing

There is no one answer when trying to know the best process to use when cleaning your face. Most of the time, you’ll have to experiment with the various options and methods available. That is exactly what I recommend too.

For a safer, more clinical approach, you should arrange for an appointment with a dermatologist. That way, you’ll get the best advice on the most effective products to use on your skin type.

Knowing Your Skin Type

Now, getting to know your skin type is an important step when picking a cleanser. It helps to prevent misuse or adverse side effects of certain products.

Right now, there are 2 main ways which you can easily use to know your skin type.

They are:

1. Bare-Faced Method

For this method:

  1. First, use a mild cleanser to cleanse your face and pat dry when you’re done.
  2. Let your skin remain bare for at least 30 minutes. Don’t use any cosmetic product at this point as it will defeat the purpose of the test.
  3. After the 30 minutes have elapsed, check yourself in the mirror and see whether your skin shows any shine or oiliness. Areas that can tell this are your cheeks, chin, nose, and forehead.
  4. Repeat the steps above one more time. Ensure, still, that you leave your skin bare for 30 minutes without any product.
  5. Check to see if your skin has an oily or shiny appearance.

What do you make of the observations?

If your skin retains an oily appearance after both rounds of cleansing, then you have oily skin. On the other hand, a dry and ‘tight’ texture falling in after the procedure means that you have dry skin.

Also, you may notice small hints of shine on restricted areas of your face such as the nose and forehead. That indicates that you have pretty normal skin. However, oily patches showing on scattered areas all over your face alone shows you’ve got combination skin.

Note: The Bare-Faced method takes quite a while before you can tell the results. On the brighter side, it works magic in revealing what type of skin you have.

2. Blotting Sheet Method

This second method comes in handy when you are on the clock and need a quick diagnosis. It is a fast process and will give you instant feedback.

To do this:

  1. With a clean and unused blotting sheet, pat different areas of your face.
  2. Lift the sheet against a source of light and observe how it looks.
  3. Repeat the patting once again around your face and see how the sheet looks afterward.

What do you make of the observations?

If the blotting sheet appears soaked in oil regardless of where you patted it, then you have oily skin. If the oil patches appear to be a tad smaller or show no presence at all, then you may have dry skin.

On the other hand, picking oil patches only from particular spots on your skin means that you have normal or combination skin.

How Regularly Should You Cleanse Your Skin?

The best answer is twice every day. Once in the morning before you start your day and, in the evening, right before you sleep.

As you sleep at night, your skin tends to sweat and release extra oils. That is why the face looks shiny when you wake up in the morning. Cleansing then helps to give your skin a fresh start by removing the excess sweat, oil, and sebum.

In the evening, cleansing clears all the dirt and makeup that piles up on your face during the day. Doing this allows your skin to ‘breathe’ and gives it a chance to regenerate overnight.

Before getting to it, make sure that you have identified the best cleanser to use on your skin. Also, you’ll find that consistency and use of each face cleanser vary in a great way. In that regard, some cleansers will require water rinsing while others work well with only cotton pads.

What you will need (Cleansing Tools)

For simple cleansing, you might need some accessories to help you through the process. These tools will help you to achieve a deeper and better face cleanse thus, better results.

Some of the tools include:

  • Mitts
  • Cotton balls or pads
  • Konjac sponges
  • Wash clothes

Some of the examples above come made from special fibers and plant-based materials. Such features help to avoid unnecessary damage from aggression on your skin.

How to Hack a Perfect Cleansing

How can I perform a proper facial cleansing at home?

Well, to get the best results from a facial cleanse, follow the steps below:

  1. Remove any signs of hair resting in front of your face. Tie, use a pin, or a hair clip to hold them back.
  2. Apply a small amount of the selected cleanser on the palm of your hand.
  3. Starting from your cheeks, massage the cleanser slowly onto your neck, chin, and forehead.
  4. Keep massaging in consistent circular motions until you’re satisfied.
  5. Afterward, use a mitt or cotton pad to wipe the cleanser off. (Use water if the instructions on the cleanser you picked recommends it)
  6. Rub the sponge or cotton ball in a circular, up-and-outward motion to wipe the cleanser off.
  7. Make sure that you get your neck and jawline too.
  8. To close the session, you may use a toner if you have one in your possession.

Summary

Cleansers offer a fantastic way for you to free your skin from toxic buildup. They are a much better option compared to face washes as they’re gentler on the skin.

What’s more, using cleansers has a higher chance of leaving your skin highly moisturized. You can also select from a wide variety of cleansing options in the market. Several of them don’t even need water for rinsing as you’d expect with a face wash.

And to crown it all, ensure that you’ve identified your skin type. It’s significant in determining the most appropriate cleansing product and/or method to use.

That’s all from me today!

Have you used cleansers before? Which among the different types works for you? Are there any special tips you have that may give better results? Feel free to share with me in the Comments Section below!

To better days and brighter skin!

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