Double cleansing a/k/a oil cleansing is becoming one of the hottest topics in beauty in the US. Double cleansing although new to the west, has been around for centuries and in fact, was the primary method of cleansing used by traditional Japanese geisha’s. This beloved Japanese beauty ritual began with use of a cleansing oil, typically camellia oil to dissolve heavy, stage-like makeup. The next step involved using a second cleanser designed to remove residue and impurities from the skin and pores without stripping skin of its natural moisture. This process allows thorough cleansing that removes sebum, makeup, dirt and debris without causing dryness.
Natural carrier oils are preferred over mineral oil based precleansing oils due to their ability to gently breakdown makeup, sunscreen and sebum without leaving an oily residue on the skin or clogging pores which can lead to breakouts. Double cleansing is recommended for all skin types, including those with oily and/or problematic skin. For most of my life I struggled with oily skin, especially in the t-zone area. My skin’s natural inclination to produce excess oil combined with a full-fringe bang created an endless cycle of breakouts on my forehead despite diligence in cleansing/treating the skin with products designed for oily skin. This all changed in 2008 when I owned and operated a day spa that featured the Dermalogica skin care line. In desperation I followed the advice of my Dermalogica rep as well as one of my estheticians and began the double cleansing routine using one of the original precleansers to hit the US market, Dermalogica’s precleanse. I can personally attest to the dramatic results that can be experienced by routinely following this Japanese beauty regimen as my skin looks better today at age 47 than it did 10 years ago! I no longer struggle with excess oil and have amazingly healthy, radiant skin that is atypical from the majority of women that I meet not only over the age of 40 but in many cases under 40.
Over time the skin experiences changes in texture as well as tone and pores become more visible, especially in the t-zone. These are issues that can be avoided or experienced at a minimum when the skin is properly cleansed with an oil-precleanser as it removes impurities and residue that is left on the skin and over time, can lead to enlarged pores, lack of radiance and sallowness to the skin. Skin regenerates on average every 28 days but as we age, this process slows down, allowing dead skin cells as well as tiny amounts of impurities to build up on the surface of the skin. Healthy skin normally reflects light but when debris begins to form on the surface of the skin, light is scattered in all different directions, causing optical dullness. The double cleansing process will not only reduce the amount of debris that is allowed to accumulate on the surface of the skin, it will also allow skin care products to more easily penetrate the skin and ultimately, produce visible results.
- Dermalogica precleanse has been my “go-to” product for nightly precleansing for more than 7 years and is still in my top five list. Price $38 (Dermalogica recently launched Precleanse wipes and although I am not a fan of makeup wipes for regular nightly cleansing, these contain the same oils found in the original version of Precleanse and claim to mimic the precleanse process. For details visit Dermalogica’s website)
- In January I discovered, Thermal Cleansing Balm from Omorovicza, a luxury skin care line from Budapest. Although there are many precleansing products on the market, Thermal Cleansing Balm is my absolute favorite for its gentle cleansing and easy removal of waterproof eye makeup without causing irritation to the eyes. Thermal Cleansing Balm not only removes oil and debris but also detoxifies and purifies the skin with its unique formula that combines sweet almond, jojoba, apricot oils with Calcium and Magnesium-rich Hungarian Moor mud. Thermal Cleansing Balm is a favorite of many top-notch beauty experts including one of my favorite professional MUA and global artistic director for Revlon, Gucci Westman. Accolades include: Best Anti-Aging Cleanser by harper’s Bazaar, 2012, Gentle Purifier by Glamour Magazine, 2012, Best Balm Cleanser by Elite Skincare Awards 2014 and Best Balm Cleanser by Harper’s Bazaar ‘Best of the Best’ in 2014. Although it’s the priciest option for a precleanser at $110 for a 1.7oz jar, it’s a splurge that pays dividends in producing younger, healthier looking skin regardless of age.
- Philosophy Purity Made Simple. Although I have not personally used this product, I have recommended it to many of my clients because of its low price point and clean formula and never had a single complaint $25
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