How Often Should You Wash Your Face?

By Mel Frank

Washing your face seems like an easy task, but washing too much or too little can lead to over-drying, irritation and acne breakouts. It is important to determine your skin type and wash your face accordingly to maintain the best appearance possible.


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Normal Skin


Normal skin should be washed twice daily. Wash once in the morning with cool water and a mild cleanser to remove any dirt or oil that built up while sleeping. Dry the face and go about your daily moisturizing and makeup application. In the evening, start with a facial scrub if you wear heavy makeup. If wearing long-lasting eye makeup, use an eye makeup remover designed specifically to remove thick mascara and eyeliner. Follow up by washing with a mild cleanser.

Oily Skin


Oily skin requires a bit more treatment, as oil and dirt build up in the pores quickly, leaving skin with a greasy look. Wash your face at least twice daily with a face wash designed specially for oily skin. When wearing makeup or moisturizer, use oil-free products that prevent excess oil from building up. Wash your face in the morning, afternoon when possible and again before bed. With your nighttime regimen, use a face wash and follow up with a toner that is designed to remove excess oil and buildup. Toner can also be used throughout the day to absorb excess oil, if dabbing with a tissue does not pick up the excess.

Dry Skin


Dry skin requires special care, as washing too often can over-dry it, causing cracking and peeling of the skin. Wash your face in the morning with cold water only; do not use a cleanser. Choose a moisturizer made for dry skin and apply it as directed. Wash your face again at night, this time using a mild cleanser after a makeup remover if you wear makeup. Exfoliate with a mild face scrub a couple of times a week to remove dead skin cells and follow up with moisturizer to replenish the skin.

Skin With Acne


It is important to handle acne with care. First, determine your skin type -- normal, oily or dry -- and follow that cleansing routine. Use a soft washcloth when washing your face, as scrubbing hard irritates acne and causes inflammation. Use a facial cleanser designed especially for skin with acne. If your problems persist, purchase an acne cream designed to be dabbed on the acne itself and left on overnight.