Skin Cleanser is a staple product for everyone. While some may get away with using an all-purpose soap for cleansing the skin on their face, it is generally accepted that using a specially formulated skin cleanser – which need not be expensive – will result in healthier and more attractive skin.
Types of skin cleansers
Some people use a bar soap as a skin cleanser, but soaps are not formulated for this purpose and can result in dull, dry skin. Cream cleansers are often heavy in moisturizers and can help soothe dry skin, especially skin chapped by cold weather or windy conditions. Gel skin cleansers are popular with those who have oily skin, and is often formulated to reduce the production of oil and control the breakouts associated with excess oil production. Foaming cleansers are another popular choice for skin cleansers and can be formulated for oily skin, dry skin, normal skin or any number of skin conditions.
The action of skin cleansers
Skin cleansers should be capable of killing bacteria and viruses in order to prevent breakouts and many skin rashes and inflammations. Many skin cleansers formulated for acne have an antibacterial agent specifically for this purpose. Antibiotic chemicals such as benzoyl peroxide have been shown to be effective in reducing acne associated with bacterial infections of the skin.
Many skin cleansers also have a gentle acidic component that helps slough off dead skin cells and reveal fresher, glowing skin. Lactic acid, citric acid, tartaric acids, or some combination thereof can be included in formulations for the purpose of assisting in the removal of dead skin cells.
Some skin cleansers are designed to also act as makeup removers, consolidating two steps into one for those who wear makeup on a regular basis. While base foundation can be easily removed with these types of skin cleansers, it is still recommended that a separate makeup remover be used for stubborn eye makeup such as mascara, eyeliner and eye shadow. This will reduce tugging on the delicate skin in this area while still completely removing the makeup.
Special skin cleansers
Acne-prone skin requires special skin cleansers that treat the base causes of the condition in order to break the cycle. Active ingredients in acne skin cleansers include salicylic acid to dry up excess oil and slough off the dead skin cells that can clog pores, lactic acid to also slough off dead skin cells, benzoyl peroxide to kill the bacteria found in blemishes, or some combination of these. The active ingredients may be found in various concentrations and new users should start at low levels, increasing as necessary, in order to minimize the risk of side effects such as overdrying, peeling, redness and irritation.
Delicate skin also requires specific skin cleansers in order to prevent further damage. Skin can be particularly delicate in cases of a skin condition like eczema or psoriasis, or in chemotherapy patients and other chronically ill people. Using a harsh skin cleanser can result in peeling, irritation and even severe damage that results in similar symptoms to chemical burns. Gentle skin cleansers will remove soil and germs without stripping the skin’s natural protective layers, and are usually fragrance-free in order to minimize the possibility of any sensitivity.