Signs You Are Washing Your Face Too Much

Frequent face-washer? We have a tip. Watch for these signs to see if you're washing your face too much

Here's how to tell you are washing your face too much

It is common knowledge that your face should be washed daily because of dirt, pollution, and makeup that collects on the skin all day long. Skipping the important step is likely to leave you with a breakout or two over the next few days. That being said, experts confirm that there is such a thing as washing your face too much. Although it is common knowledge that everyone should be washing their face daily, there are a lot of people who do not do it properly and many who wash too frequently, causing just as many problems as if they were not washing their face at all. Here are some symptoms to look out for that are letting you know you wash your face too much.

1. Your skin feels tight and dry

You may have gone overboard if your face feels taut and dried out after you wash your face. It’s a very common misconception to believe that your skin is supposed to feel this way after cleansing. That feeling is uncomfortable for a reason. It could mean that your skin is being damaged from the overuse of products, especially if those products have ingredients that are harsh on the skin, drying it out even further. Use a type of cleanser that is particular to your type of skin — i.e. a face wash designed for oily skin — and it should leave your skin feeling refreshed and hydrated. Be careful of washing with very hot water, as this can dry out your skin too.

2. You notice rashes developing on your skin.

If your skin becomes more sensitive over time and your begin to see reddish patches of dry skin, it could be because your are overwashing your face. These rashes and dry patches occur when you strip the skin of its natural essential oils causing your skin barrier to weaken. When your skin barrier is weak, products can be absorbed into the skin even deeper causing allergic reactions.

3. You have frequent breakouts or adult acne

You are following a strict skin care regimen, and yet you are still experiencing breakouts and blemishes on a regular basis. Your problem may be that your are washing your face too much and stripping your skin of its natural essential oils, sending oil production into overdrive and causing acne.

4. You notice seborrheic dermatitis

Commonly found on the T-zone of the face, seborrheic dermatitis is a skin disease that appears to be an itchy rash. Similar to psoriasis or eczema, skin will begin to flake with a white or yellow tint and the affected area will be swollen and sometimes appears greasy. It is a treatable condition that dermatologists can prescribe medications to treat.

How often should you wash face?

The face on your skin is collecting grime throughout the entire day from makeup, dirt in the air, and pollution. So regardless of your skin type, you should be washing at a minimum of at least once per day, preferably at night to clean off what has collected from that day. The real question is whether or not your should cleanse your skin again in the morning. Many experts claim that there is no real need to rewash your face in the morning considering that there isn’t much to remove, such as makeup or sunscreen.

The natural oils that are produced on your skin overnight are actually great for your skin, providing a defense barrier for all of the external stressors that will approach your skin the next day. That being said, there is such a thing as indoor pollution and the air circulating throughout your home may have irritants that can settle into your pillows and blankets over time and transfer to your face throughout the night.

Since washing your face multiple times can dry out the skin, if you already have dry skin upon waking in the morning, you may want to opt for a cleansing face oil in the morning instead. The only time you really should wash your face more than once a day, is if you need to remove something specific like sweat from a workout, or saltwater from the ocean.

Resources — Allure, Byrdie, Self, NY Times

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