The Beauty Basics: Step 1 - Cleansing

The Beauty Basics: Step 1 - Cleansing

Jan 24, 2024Jeanne Orcino

Why you shouldn't use your bath soap to cleanse your face

Hello there and welcome to my first skincare blog here at I would like to start from the foundation of a skincare regimen - cleansing. Choosing the right cleanser for your skin type and need is important because this can correct and fortify your skin. The purpose of cleansing is to remove dirt, bacteria, pollution, makeup residue, and oil which block pores that can lead to breakouts.

Using the right cleanser for your skin type and concern will allow your serums and moisturizers to penetrate your skin more effectively. Facial cleansers comprise three main ingredients: a surfactant or wetting agent to reduce surface tension on the skin, oil to dissolve grease, and water to wash away dirt and grime. Avoid over-washing as your skin needs an adequate amount of oil.

Types of cleansers:

Cleansing lotions - oil in water solutions. These can feel light, sharp, and refreshing on the skin.

Cleansing milk - oil-based emulsions with high water content.

Cleansing creams - mainly water-in-oil emulsions but with a much smaller water content than the milk.

Cleansing foams - foam or mousse consistency. This can remove make-up efficiently and avoid dragging mature skin. These can be washed off with water, leaving the skin feeling refreshed.

Cleansing gels - alcohol-free gels lather well and have a strong degreasing action to remove excess oils without causing moisture loss. Massage the gel on dry skin then add water to create a lather then remove with a cloth, splash with water then dry.

Exfoliating creams and facial scrubs - fine exfoliating particles like oatmeal, crushed nut kernels, and pumice, soften and remove dead skin cells and impurities. They combine a detergent cleansing action with gentle abrasion. I recommend that you choose scrubs with finer particles to avoid damaging the skin. Use this once or twice per week.

What are the skin types?

The ideal facial cleanser formula depends on your skin type, which can change from season to season and even fluctuate based on hormonal or environmental factors (such as travelling to a climate your skin is unaccustomed to).

(1) Normal skin

Normal skin is not too dry and not too oily. It has few imperfections or none at all. No severe sensitivity, barely visible pores, and has a radiant complexion.

Use: cleansing cream, cleansing lotion, foaming cleanser and use an exfoliator at least once a week.

My recommended products: DP Dermaceuticals Tri-Phase Cleanser, Maria Akerberg Foaming Wash Gentle

(2) Dry skin (xerosis) - cleansing cream

Those with dry skin need to preserve and enhance skin moisture levels. Dry skin occurs when the skin loses too much water and oil. You need a cleanser that is hydrating but does not leave your skin feeling heavy or greasy. Dry skin tends to have: almost invisible pores, dull, rough complexion, red patches, less elastic skin, and more visible lines.

Use: cleansing cream, cleansing lotion, exfoliator at least once a week

My recommended products: DP Dermaceuticals Tri-Phase Cleanser, Maria Akerberg Olive Cleansing cream

(3) Oily skin

Produces an excess of sebum that causes the skin to appear shiny and feel greasy, especially throughout the T-zone (forehead, nose, and chin). People with oily skin may tend to have fewer wrinkles, according to the American Academy of Dermatology, but they may also be more prone to enlarged pores, acne blemishes, blackheads, and whiteheads. Just because oily skin produces more natural oils, this doesn’t mean that it requires any less moisture than other skin types. Choose the right products that nourish and hydrate, without clogging your pores or triggering breakouts.

Use: gentle, foaming cleanser, cleansing lotion, or cleansing milk, exfoliator once to twice a week

My recommended products: DP Dermaceuticals Foaming Cleanser, Maria Akerberg Foaming Wash Clearing

(4) Combination skin - cleansing milk

The skin can be dry or normal in some areas and oily in others, such as the T-zone (nose, forehead, and chin). Many people have this type. It may need slightly different care in different areas. Combination skin can have pores that look larger than normal, blackheads and shiny skin.

Use: foaming cleanser, cleansing lotion, or cleansing milk, exfoliator once to twice a week

Try: DP Dermaceuticals Foaming Cleanser, DP Dermaceuticals Microderm Exfoliant, Maria Akerberg Foaming Wash Clearing,

(5) Sensitive skin

If your skin feels sensitive, try to find out what the triggers are so you can avoid them. There are many possible factors but it can be because of a particular skin care product. Sensitive skin can have redness, itching, burning and dryness.

Use: cleansers that contain gentle surfactants along with barrier repairing ingredients like glycerin, hyaluronic acid, natural oils or ceramides

My recommended products: DP Dermaceuticals Tri-Phase Cleanser, Maria Akerberg Foaming Wash GentleWhen you have chosen the right cleanser for your skin type and needs, remember to avoid over-washing it. Allow your face to maintain adequate oil.

  • Begin by splashing warm (never hot) water on your face to stimulate blood circulation. Then apply a pea sized amount of cleanser on your fingertips and gently work this into your skin. If you have sensitive skin, refrain from using a wash cloth or scrub pad.

  • Rinse with cool (not cold) water to refresh your skin. This cooling action will constrict the blood flow as well as trigger a natural plumping action to remove cellular waste material from the facial tissue. This will also close your pores.

  • Pat dry.

  • Use filtered water when you can as chlorine is one of the leading causes of dry skin. It strips the skin of its protective hydrolipid barrier, as well as being toxic.


Close, B. (2005). Pure Skin Organic Beauty Basics. California Chronicle Books. 

Foulston, J. (2006). The Art and Science of Beauty Therapy, Fourth Edition. London: EMS Publishing.

Stuart, A. (2021, October 13). What’s Your Skin Type. Retrieved from

Akerberg, M. Deepskin Organics product catalog. 

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