How to use cleanser for your face – everything you need to know to cleanse your face properly

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In this blog post, I am going to tell you how to use cleanser for your face and answer some of the popular questions on cleansers including when to use a cleanser, how to use cleanser on your face, how much face cleanser to use and why use a cleanser.

Using cleanser for your face is very easy. There are cleanser tips below that will help you make sure that you are using your cleanser the right way.

Read on for all the details on everything you need to know about cleansers.

The first thing I want to address in this blog post is how to use cleanser for your face and detail how to apply cleanser.

How to use cleanser for your face

There are lots of different cleansers on the market including cleansing milks, cleansing balms, micellar water and cleansing creams. You can read about all of the different types of cleansers here.

Each cleanser will have instructions on how to specifically use each cleanser, however, below is a general overview on how to use cleanser for your face:

  • Clean your hands
  • Use lukewarm water to splash your face to make it wet
  • Apply a little of the cleanser onto your hands and apply to the face
  • Use your finger tips to massage the cleanser onto your face
  • Wash the cleanser off with water or remove with a wet face cloth

While these are general guidelines on how to use cleanser on your face, each cleanser will have specific instructions on how to use that specific cleanser. Mostly with cleansers, you need to wash the cleanser off your face. With very few cleansers, you can leave the cleanser on. One such cleanser is micellar water cleansers. If the types of cleansers confuse you, read this blog post to easily find out the different types of cleansers.

How to cleanse your face properly

Using a face cleanser takes minutes and is very easy. To make sure that you leave this blog post knowing exactly how to use cleanser on your face, I am going to answer some frequently asked questions on cleansers below.

I also have a guide that you can download below showing you 5 key things that are so important when using cleanser. Don’t forget to download it to make sure you are doing all the right steps.

We went over how to use cleanser on your face but there are certain things you can do to make sure that you are cleansing your face gently and carefully.

I have been using cleanser for 20 years so have the art perfected over the years! There are certain things that you can do to your skin which makes it agitated or is too harsh for the delicate skin on our faces.

Why use a cleanser

Cleansing is one of the most important steps in your skin care routine. If you are applying products to a face that hasn’t been cleaned, then it will be hard for the product to get to the skin. We use a cleanser to clean the skin and remove all dirt and impurities. It’s like washing your hands, we pick up dirt and germs throughout the day and need to wash them away.

We also use a cleanser to remove makeup, sunscreen, pollution or sweat on our faces.

When to use a cleanser?

Knowing when to use a cleanser is key to being gentle on your skin. While you can use a cleanser in the morning and at night, I recommend only using cleanser at night. Unless you have very oily skin and wake up feeling like your face is very oily, there is no need to use a cleanser in the morning.

How often to use a face cleanser?

How often to use a cleanser is similar to when to use a cleanser, but a little different. You can use a cleanser max twice a day and as mentioned above, I recommend that you use a cleanser every night to begin with.

What does cleanser do to your face?

A cleanser is able to remove all the dirt, grime, makeup, remaining SPF, pollution or anything else that your face picks up throughout the day. It’s like washing pots and pans with water versus washing with detergent. There are clearly better results when you have something to wash with in addition to water.

Does cleanser expire?

Most cleansers do not have an expiry date. Certain cleansers specifically for acne do expire. This will be noted on the packaging. Once you open a cleanser, or any other beauty product, the seal has been broken and you usually have 12 months to use. All cleansers will note the expiry date if applicable. There will be a little container icon with a number on the container at the back of the product. This number printed is the number of months that you have to use the product (after opening the product).

What face cleanser should I use?

There are lots of different types of cleansers including cleansing balms, cleansing milks, cleansing bars, micellar water and more. I have a full blog post here that goes through the different types of face cleansers and which ones are best suited for which skin type.

If you don’t know your skin type, you can find out at home, for free. Download my free guide below which shows you how to determine your skin type.

How much face cleanser to use?

How much face cleanser to use will depend on each individual cleanser. What I have found with most cleansers is that a little goes a long way. You really only need small amounts of cleanser. I generally use the size of a quarter but this depends cleanser to cleanser.

Washing face without cleanser?

I have the example above regarding pots and pans which is the same as washing your face without cleanser. Think about after dinner if you were to try wash the dishes with water only. Your pots and pans would still have some oil and residue on the surface. It is necessary to use a cleanser to really clean your skin.

How to use cleanser properly

Why cleanser is important?

As I mentioned above, cleanser is important for taking impurities off your skin. Without doing this, your pores will get clogged which can result in spots and breakouts.

Face cleanser without alcohol

I use a face cleanser without alcohol and I highly recommend that you also use a face cleanser without alcohol. Here are some of my favorite cleansing balms without alcohol.

You can read full reviews on these cleansers HERE.

Cruelty free Face Cleanser

All of my face cleansers that I recommend are cruelty free. The two face cleansers that I recommended above are cruelty free. You can also read this blog post to find out the types of cleansers and my recommendations for each cleanser type.

I love all of these balm cleansers which are all cruelty free.

What is the best facial cleanser?

I have linked my blog post with all of the different types of cleansers along with my recommendation for each cleanser type. A cleanser is one of the key steps in your skin care routine and will take minutes each night so make it a habit and stick to it.

The best facial cleanser depends on your skin type. Download my free guide above to find out how to quickly check your skin type at home. It’s free and very quick.

The first thing that is so important with cleansers is that you really know your skin type. Someone with oily skin generally will use a different cleanser than someone with dry skin. Download my free guide above so you can easily find out your skin type.

Your face will thank you!

More top tips to keep your skin glowing

I love using Cozy Earth’s plush wash cloths to take off my makeup each night. Use your favorite cleanser and remove with a warm, plush, hotel-like wash cloth. My Cozy Earth coupon code LORNARYAN40 gets you 40% off everything on Cozy Earth including these facial towels.

I also LOVE their new silk pillowcase. It is so soft and gentle on your skin and hair. Silk pillowcases have so many benefits which you can read about here.

One benefit about silk pillowcases is that they absorb less hair oil, skincare, and hair products than a traditional cotton pillowcase. This reduces breakouts as you are not continually exposing your skin to product and oil build ups on your pillowcase each night. Silk pillowcases also help reduce frizz (bonus!)

You can get this one at 40% off using my Cozy Earth discount code LORNARYAN40 for a limited time.

Other related blog posts

Types of Cleansers

5 best cleansing balms

20 top tips for glowing, hydrated skin

Best Cleanser with Salicylic acid

Always check in with a dermatologist for any specific skin care concerns and always patch test products before trying out.

About Lorna Ryan

Lorna's fashion & beauty journey began on runways, including NYFW, which sparked her love for all things chic. Lorna spent two years as a SephoraSquad ambassador, sharing hero beauty products. Lorna unveils coveted beauty gems, the latest fashion trends, and best-kept jetsetter escapes.