How to Choose the Best Face Wash for Your Skin Type

Shopping for face wash? We have tips. Here's how to choose the best face wash for your skin type

Here's how your skin type determines the best face wash to buy

Knowing and understanding the nuances of your skin type is important. Without this knowledge, you leave cleansing and caring for your skin as complete guesswork. By learning your skin type and applying that knowledge to your shopping, you can select the best face wash options for your skin type without wasting any money on an ineffective product.

How Do I Determine My Skin Type?

Skin types typically fall under five different categories.

  • Oily: Your skin is often shiny or greasy in appearance
  • Dry: Your skin may be flaky, rough, or scaly in places
  • Combination: You have places on your skin that are dry and others that are oily
  • Sensitive: Your skin is easily irritated by environmental factors or products applied to the face; it may become reddened easily
  • Normal: Your skin is typically neutral and doesn’t show signs of irritation or irregularity

Determining your correct skin type is the most important first step before selecting a face wash. In order to cleanse your skin properly, you need to understand what product types will interact best with your face. In the best case scenario, you could simply purchase a product that doesn’t help cleanse your skin properly, but in the worst case scenario, choosing a face wash not meant for your skin type could irritate your skin or cause a bad reaction.

What Type of Face Wash Is Best for Oily Skin?

Face washes that contain hydrating qualities are best for oily skin. The skin over-produces oil when it is dehydrated, and the natural oils are meant to provide relief to the skin. However, all those excess oils often mix with sweat and dirt, leading to pimples forming on the face.

It may seem counterproductive to choose something hydrating when your skin is already producing oil to hydrate itself, but choosing a hydrating product is actually what your skin needs most to slow down oil production. When you receive proper hydration from your skincare products, your skin doesn’t receive signals to produce extra oil. Because the extra oil isn’t present, your skin stays cleaner and is less prone to breakouts.

What Type of Face Wash Is Best for Dry Skin?

With dry skin, hydration is key. Dry skin needs an extra boost of hydration to keep it feeling smooth and free of rough patches. Seek products with gentle formulas intended to moisturize as they cleanse.

When choosing a face wash for dry skin, it may feel tempting to purchase an option with an exfoliator included in the formula, but it is best to avoid these products. Using an exfoliator may seem like a good way to remove excess skin flakes from the face, but facial skin can be very sensitive—using something abrasive to clean it may deliver negative results!

Exfoliating face wash applicators also exist and they should also be avoided. Again, using something with an abrasive surface may seem like a good way to remove excess dry skin, but in the end, these products usually cause more harm than good. Using clean water and clean hands to gently massage the face wash onto the skin is the safest and most effective method for getting dry skin washed.

What Type of Face Wash Is Best for Combination Skin?

Choosing products for combination skin can feel trickier than it does for the other skin types. After all, you have both dry and oily skin to worry about washing, so what is the best product to treat both at the same time?

Luckily, there isn’t any need to purchase two different face washes to clean your combination skin. Instead, you can seek products designed specifically for combination skin. Often, these products contain moisturizing properties that both oily and dry skin crave to be cleansed and balanced properly.

You may determine that, while you have both dry and oily patches of skin, one of these problems is worse than the other. If your T-zone is oilier than the rest of your skin is dry, you may want to choose a product that focuses on fighting oil production. Likewise, if your dry patches of skin are worse than your oily patches, you may choose a product that exclusively soothes dryness. If you have an acne breakout, you might want to temporarily switch to a face wash formulated for acne.

What Type of Face Wash Is Best for Sensitive Skin?

Having sensitive skin can feel difficult to manage. Certain ingredients in products can send your skin spiraling into an itchy rash, so it is vital that you identify what doesn’t work for your skin so you can avoid it.

Although some products are specifically formulated for people with skin sensitivities, this doesn’t mean that those products won’t have something in them that could irritate your skin. After all, skin is unique, and because someone else’s sensitive skin doesn’t react to an ingredient doesn’t mean yours won’t, either. Any time your purchase a new face wash for your sensitive skin, it is best to perform a test patch around the bottom of your jawline or chin. This way, you can determine if the product will be too much on your sensitive skin before applying it all over.

What Type of Face Wash Is Best for Normal Skin?

Normal skin folks, rejoice! It may feel nice to have skin that doesn’t react negatively to certain ingredients or over-produce oil, but this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be careful about the products you purchase for washing your skin.

Face washes are also formulated for normal skin types as well. If you have normal skin, you can avoid formulas with excessive added ingredients and opt for a simple daily cleanser instead.

Resources — Allure, Vitals

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