You know the saying, right? Well I’m not sure that a clean face is going to get you closer to The Good Place, but, you still need to make sure your face is clean. Really clean. The cleansing process is really what sparked my interest in K Beauty. Korean women know that you should spend at least as much time cleansing your skin as you do making it up. I don’t remember where I read that, but it made so much sense. At the same time, I learned about the double-cleansing method.
In the double-cleansing method, you typically use an oil-based cleanser first. An oil-based product emulsifies makeup, natural oils and environmental pollutants making it much easier to remove fully than with another type of cleanser. Then, you follow with a water-based cleanser to remove the residual grime.
Before I started double-cleansing, I was using a very expensive cleanser and I knew that it was removing all of my make-up. Because I wanted to debunk the double cleanse, I washed normally and then used a cotton pad with micellar water. There was a TON of residual makeup. I mean seriously, a TON. It was disgusting. All those years I thought I was doing such an awesome job of cleaning my skin and it was still filthy. Two things resulted from this experiment: I test every cleanser using this method & I religiously double-cleanse.
Think about it – if your face isn’t pristine, your skin care products won’t absorb as completely. Let that sink in for a minute (pun totally intended). All those hard-earned dollars being spent on serums, essences, eye creams, moisturizers, night creams and sleeping masks (just me?) and you’re not optimizing their effectiveness because your face isn’t squeaky clean. Yeah, I just threw up a little too. The double-cleanse also does more than eliminate dirt and make-up. Massaging your face improves blood flow to the area which kicks up blood flow and regenerative processes that take place while you’re dreaming of Sephora gift cards hand-delivered by David Beckham (just me again?).
The double cleanse is catching on. I recently saw a Western product being sold as a two-pack cleanser, but I can’t recall the brand. Quick note: if you have oily skin and think adding more oil will be catastrophic, you’re wrong. Many of the oil-based cleansers rinse easily and almost completely, and they are incredibly gentle. Once you follow with a water-based cleanser, there will not be residual oil just clean, plump, pretty skin. Another quick note: I use these cleansers to remove my eye makeup as well. I just rub it all over mah face and even my seriously tough mascara and eyeliner comes off after a brief period of looking exactly like a raccoon. However, if you have eyelash extensions, you’re going to want to make sure oil-based cleansers do not come near them because the oil will definitely emulsify the glue.
I have really enjoyed my little journey into Asian beauty cleansers and here’s rundown on some of the ones I have enjoyed the most.
Ciracle Absolute Deep Cleansing Oil – This Korean cleanser is surprisingly light, but does a serious job of removing makeup. It doesn’t have a detectable fragrance at all, and you can find it for about $20*.
The Face Shop Rice Water Bright Cleansing Light Oil – I have really enjoyed products from The Face Shop and this cleanser is my current fave. It’s a very light oil with a faint floral fragrance that is clean and pleasant. Rice water is said to be an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant to help brighten and soothe skin. This also gently but powerfully removes even tough make-up and typically retails for around $10*. Wonderful product! I would recommend this as your starter oil because it’s so affordable and so light.
I know quite a few people that swear by the DHC Cleansing Oil which has been around for a looong time. I have used it, but I don’t love it. It’s olive oil based making it quite a bit heavier than the others I have recommended. Further, I find that it smells a bit greasy in the way that oils can as they inch towards rancid. At $28 a bottle, it’s also kinda spendy.
For those of you that aren’t at all afraid of really slathering on the oil, I have two examples of creamy goodness that are UHMAZING. For real. I love both of these little gems and don’t ever want to be without them again, for any reason.
Heimish All Clean Balm – This product is a hypoallergenic light cream cleanser that applies creamy and rinses extremely clean. Ideal for sensitive skin, it doesn’t contain artificial colors or fragrances and blasts away tough makeup gently. It has a slightly minty fragrance, I keep getting samples of these in my Asian Beauty box subscriptions. While I usually tuck this type of thing away for travel, I blast through my samples before even I know what happened and all that’s left is a small plastic container filled with my tears. Typically in the range of $18*.
The Face Shop Mango Seed Cleansing Butter – This is by far my favorite product of them all, and I absolutely adore this product. This is a very thick and rich cream cleanser that sort of has the consistency of body butters. It smells delicious – gently floral, gently fruity. It blasts tough makeup away instantly. I love to apply this slowly and really take my time massaging the product in. The fragrance is very soothing. I remove it with a warm, wet washcloth and my skin looks instantly soothed and nourished and really clean. I’ve already washed my face tonight and I literally want to go use this again just thinking about it. Bliss. $18* bliss, but bliss.
So beauties, what do you think? Are you currently doing a double cleanse? What are your fave first step-cleansers. If you’re not, please give it some thought. Or at least test your current cleanser with a micellar water test and make sure it’s doing what you think it’s doing!
* All of these products are available on Amazon and other retailers for the price listed. I haven’t ordered from any of the Amazon sellers that I found tonight, so I’m not comfortable linking them. I’ve purchased my products from subscription box sites and availability is often spotty.