Thoughts on Facial Cleansers

Refinery29 recently posted an experiment where four women tried five different cleansing routines: http://www.refinery29.com/2014/04/66856/not-washing-face. The point of the article seemed to be to simplify and use a single ingredient, but mostly to see if the women could make it through the week. Although the experiment proved interesting, it did not seem to have sound basis for existing. Does anyone consider changing their skincare routine to simply olive oil, really? This seems doubtful. Needless to say most of the more outlandish options: just using coconut oil, olive oil, or apple cider vinegar, all pantry essentials did not succeed. Complains ranged from oily skin, problems with breaking out, too difficult to implement etc. The two skin care systems that were more typical: Purity face wipes and Josie Maran cleansing oil – seemed more doable, but still not as good as the face care systems the women had in place.

Overall, it seemed that the article was uninspired. Not one of the women was going to switch her skin care routine, or more to the point was looking for something different to begin with. It seems that if you are comfortable with the routine you have in place it is inevitable that a risky or strange option will not sway you after using it for a week. I wondered, why would these women switch? A few used Dermatologica skin care systems – rated a 4 by Environmental Working Group (out of 10). I’d argue this is a pretty good rating and they are happy with the product.

It seems that Refinery29 tried the wrong approach: instead of choosing women who are already attached to their routine, why not target women who are unhappy with their current skin care practice. There would be more incentive to try something new, and something more natural. Here is where I offer some alternatives to simply using kitchen oil as a cleanser or the chemical intense drug store options. There are in-betweens:

  1. An all natural cleanser is great – such as Ava Anderson cleanser. It’s the one I have been using recently. It is a really wonderful product with a lot of environmental and healthful integrity
  2. In the article they have women use coconut oil as their entire skin care routine. It didn’t seem to work out. Instead, consider adding it to your routine and using it instead of eye makeup remover. It does a great job. It’s what I use pretty much exclusively at this point. I use it with a wash cloth instead of disposable pads or cotton. If you remove make up with it and then cleanse your face with something else it works perfectly.
  3. A rose petal spray – helps with moisturizing your face and cleansing at the same time. An example of a good one is Thayers Alcohol-free Toner Rose Petal Hazel with Aloe Vera Formula. This one is good for acne prone skin. Or you could be like my mom and make your own.
  4. Another good brand for oily skin is the Borage line of skin care. As far as exfoliating cleansers go, this is a good one. It uses oatmeal instead of the microbeads that are big contaminants.
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