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Washing your Face Too Often – 4 reasons to Stop Over-Cleansing

4 reasons to stop washing your face

Do you want to keep your skin beautiful? Then stop washing your face too often!

Not more than once a day if you wear makeup. Wash it in the evening when you remove your makeup.

This may seem extreme to you, but it is one of the best advice I can give you.

And I’m not the only one.

More and more dermatologists [1] advise against deep face cleaning. Especially if you use mass cosmetics that cause skin imbalances.

So far, you may say, nothing surprising.

But know that even water alone is bad for the epidermis, according to some specialists [2].

The skin is both very strong and very fragile. It is a complex organ with several functions. Some protect us from external aggression, while others preserve internal hydration.

I invite you to read carefully the 4 reasons why you should stop washing your face so often.

1- If you wash your face too often, you change the pH of your skin

The pH – or hydrolipidic barrier – of the skin is not neutral (pH≠7).

The surface of your skin is rather acidic. Its pH is between 4 (dry skin) and 6 (oily skin).

But there is a problem. Water has a neutral pH (pH=7). And many facial treatments have an alkaline pH (between 8 and 11), which is too high [3] for our skin.

By washing your face (with water or with face care), you increase the pH of your skin.

This is not without consequence: if your skin is covered with an acid mantle, it is to protect you from germs, dehydration, UV rays, and pollution…

It is therefore important not to unnecessarily disturb the pH of your skin!

But there are other reasons to leave your face alone.

2- If you wash your face too often, you prevent your skin from staying hydrated

I told you earlier about the “acid mantle”. It acts as a raincoat that protects us from pollution, germs… and preserves internal hydration.

By cleaning your face morning and evening under tap water, you damage the skin’s natural moisturizing factors.

This slows down the regeneration of the skin.

As crazy as it may sound, rubbing your face with water will cause your cells to become waterlogged. They will stretch, puff themselves up, until they burst. As a result, they release their water and… the skin dries out.

And you end up with skin that ages prematurely.

This seems contradictory: but outside water can quickly become the enemy of inside water.

3- If you wash your face too often, your skin will be more sensitive

Dermatologist Yaël Adler warns: the excessive use of these irritants only weakens our skin barrier, which takes a month to renew itself.

However, these irritating agents are hidden in apparently innocent products. Often the saleswomen themselves are unaware of the dangers they are being asked to promote.

Only once your skin barrier is damaged, your skin becomes more sensitive to aggression: stress, pollution, hard water (calcium content), genes, environment.

In the long term, this can cause redness, inflammation and skin flakes. And in the most serious cases, rosacea (a condition characterized by redness on the face).

4- If you wash your face too often, you disturb the microbial flora

Whether you like it or not, your body is colonized by billions of bacteria (good and bad) that make up the microbiota. It is found in the intestines, genitals, mouth and skin [4].

The microbiota is essential for health.

But washing your skin too much will weaken your skin flora.

Indeed, tap water and mass cosmetics contain chemical agents that “strip the skin”.

A destroyed microflora allows all kinds of problems to develop:

  • redness,
  • blackheads,
  • pimples,
  • acne
  • but also germs (more or less harmful) such as staph [5].

Solutions for healthy skin

So you got this: stop washing your face several times a day. The skin takes care of itself very well.

In the morning, if you really can’t do without water, adopt thermal water [6]. This is groundwater enriched with mineral salts and trace elements.

Their properties vary according to their composition [7]; the one from Avène repairs the skin, while the one from La Roche-Posay protects it, and the Biotherm targets skin ageing.

Spray the thermal water on your face and dry by gently dabbing with a towel.

Syndet soaps (SYNthetic DETergent) are less aggressive because they respect the pH of the epidermis. You can find them in pharmacies or parapharmacies.

And to maintain a healthy skin microflora, use gentle cleansers. I can recommend the Intense Defense Cleansing Gel from Avalon Organics or the Mild Facial Cleanser with AHA, Lactic Acid, Aloe Vera & Antioxidants from Toulon.

Avoid those containing sodium lauryl sulfateSLS or SLES on the INCI list.

[1] 
http://www.nononsensecosmethic.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/Baranda-Correlation-between-pH-and-irritant-effect-of-cleansers-marketed1.pdf

[2] 
https://www.stylist.co.uk/beauty/new-movement-cleansing-reduction-this-weeks-magazine-issue-393/175112

[3] 
http://www.nononsensecosmethic.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/Baranda-Correlation-between-pH-and-irritant-effect-of-cleansers-marketed1.pdf

[4] 
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25126558

[5] Skin Barrier Function – NCBI – NIH

[6] 
Effects of thermal water on skin regeneration

[7] https://www.jeancoutu.com/en/beauty/beauty-tips/the-benefits-of-thermal-water/

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