5 Signs You’re Overwashing Your Face

  • Time 3 min
  • Date September 18, 2020
Find yourself dashing to the powder room every two hours for a quick ‘face wash’ break? You’re not doing your skin any favours. Under the pretext of keeping your pores squeaky clean, here’s how overwashing your face is secretly spelling disaster.

No, we’re not going back on our words — cleansing is still the most important step in skincare. But you know how too much of a good thing is a bad thing, over-cleansing or overwashing your face might be doing more harm than good.

How much is too much?

Dermatologists say that irrespective of your skin type, washing your face twice a day is more than enough. Once in the p.m. — to get rid of makeup, dirt and grime that has settled on your skin throughout the day and once in the a.m. — to wash off indoor irritants and oils that were secreted through the night.

Apart from this, the only other reason to squeeze in the third round of cleansing is right after a sweaty workout session or a dip in the pool.


Signs you’re overwashing your face

Your skin feels tight

Most of us associate the post-wash tautness of our skin to it being squeaky clean. You may not be ready to hear this, but that’s not true. Instead of cleansing it to perfection, not only have you stripped your skin of its natural lipid barrier, but you’ve also altered its pH level. Simply put, your facial skin is now dehydrated and vulnerable.

Your skin becomes oily very quickly

We’re sure you’ll confirm the fact that the tightness doesn’t last long — your skin becomes greasy before you know it. This is because stripping the natural moisture content of your skin makes it feel attacked, sending sebaceous glands into a frenzy. The result — an unwanted greasy shine, thanks to the overproduction of sebum.

Your skin breaks out more often

By now, you know what happens next — excess oil and sebum production clogs your pores and results in frequent skin breakouts. This hits worse in the case of acne-prone skin — you wash your face every two hours to keep your pores clean but little do you know that overwashing creates a vicious cycle of sorts.

You develop rashes too

Overwashing compromises your skin’s protective barrier, making it susceptible to bacterial infections and environmental damage. Plus, products that would ordinarily sit on the top of your skin can now easily permeate the surface and reach deeper layers of the epidermis. Which sounds like a recipe for inflammation and rashes.

How to wash your face correctly

  • Greasy skin isn’t reason enough to subject it to a harsh, heavy-duty formula. Stick to a mild, gentle formula instead.
  • Use your fingers to cleanse your face, instead of a washcloth that could be abrasive. Also, while you’re at it, massage your face in upward circular motions. Do not scrub.

Last up, always follow cleansing with hydrating. Whether you’re content with a traditional moisturiser or are obsessed with a new face serum, it’s important to seal the good stuff in.