How many times a day should I wash my face?

asian woman washing face splashing water Skincare

“I take good care of my skin, but my skin troubles won’t go away.”

“After face washing, my skin feels extremely tight and dry.”

“No matter how many different products I use, nothing works.”

If you struggle with any of these things, the problem may lie in how you wash your face.

Once you revise how you wash your face, your skin troubles may actually go away.

True, face washing is an important step to maintain healthy skin. But INCORRECT face washing can actually cause MORE skin problems.

So then, what is CORRECT face washing? How many times should you wash your face in a day? How should you wash your face?

Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about CORRECT face washing and say goodbye to your skin problems!

Face washing with a cleanser? No more than 2 times a day

Generally speaking, the correct number of times to wash your face is once in the morning and once at night.

Why is that?

In order to better understand this, we need to look into the following 3 points:

  • Role of face washing in the morning
  • Role of face washing at night
  • Why it’s not good to wash your face multiple times in a day

Role of face washing in the morning 

Washing your face in the morning is essential for removing any dirt or dust that has stuck to your skin while sleeping.

When asked why they wash their face in the morning, many may answer with:

“It just feels like an important part of my morning routine.”

“It helps me wake up.”

True, washing your face in the morning is a good way to start the day.

But it actually has a MUCH BIGGER ROLE that goes beyond getting your day started.

Regardless of the season, people sweat during sleep. Sebum production also increases.

Dust and other germs from our pillow and blankets also stick to our face while sleeping, so our faces are actually incredibly dirty when we wake up.

That’s why it’s crucial to wash your face in the morning.

More specifically, it’s crucial to wash your face AS SOON AS you wake up. By washing your face immediately after your wake up, you can prevent the acidification of sebum and your pores from being clogged by dust. It’s a very important step to prevent skin troubles caused by the dirt your skin has accumulated while sleeping.

Besides that, there are many other benefits of washing your face first thing in the morning.

  • Helps you make time for skincare in the morning
  • Skincare products will absorb better
  • Makeup will apply better

You may not be aware of it, but our skin is quite dirty after we wake up. 

That’s why it’s important to keep your skin clean – especially in the morning – to spend the rest of the day with healthy, youthful skin.

Role of face washing at night

Washing your face at night is also essential for removing all the dirt your skin has accumulated throughout the day, such as:

  • Makeup
  • Sebum
  • Dust and pollen
  • Sweat

If you don’t properly remove all the dirt on your skin, your skin cannot regenerate normally

Normally, our skin regenerates while sleeping, because that’s when our body releases growth hormones that create new skin cells. But if you don’t properly wash your face at night, the accumulated dirt will clog your pores and cause unexpected skin troubles.

Maintaining clean skin before going to bed is important for maintain clean skin in general.

That’s why washing your face at night is crucial.

More specifically, it’s best to wash your face at night when you take a bath or shower.

This is because when you take a bath, your body temperature rises and softens your pores. This makes it easier to remove any dirt that has been clogged inside your skin.

BUT, you should always avoid washing your face with water that is too hot. At high temperatures, water will wash away your skin’s natural oils which are necessary for avoiding dry skin.

The best water temperature to wash your face at is around 35° Celsius, which is your skin’s temperature at room temperature.

Some of you may enjoy a nice, hot shower after a long day. But when washing your face, it’s important to pay special attention to water temperature.

Why you shouldn’t wash your face multiple times in a day

If you have oily skin or combination skin, you may think:

“I should wash my face every time my skin gets shiny – or else my skin will become dirty and gross.”

No matter how much your skin’s shinyness bothers you, you should ABSOLUTELY AVOID washing your face multiple times in a day.

As mentioned earlier, face washing is a crucial step to maintain clean, healthy skin.

But washing your face multiple times in a day is actually a burden on your skin.

If you wash your face more than you should, you are washing off your skin’s natural oils and natural moisturizing particles. These are essential components that your skin needs to maintain moisturization.

When you wash off these essential components, not only will your skin’s dryness worsen but also your skin will overproduce sebum to compensate for the dryness.

Instead of solving your skin’s shinyness, you’d be making it worse by washing your face multiple times in a day. 

Although face washing is an essential step in skincare, your skin is extremely vulnerable after washing.

That’s why it’s important to keep face washing to a minimum – at most, 2 times in a day.

Correct method to wash your face: Step-by-step

Even if you understand that you shouldn’t wash your face multiple times in a day, this knowledge is pointless if you don’t conduct the correct method for face washing.

Here is a step-by-step guide on how to wash your face correctly:

1. Wash your hands

If you wash your face with dirty hands, the bacteria from your hands will transfer onto your face. To avoid this, it’s important to clean your hands before you touch your face.

2. Pre-wash your face with water

Pre-wash your face with room temperature water. No cleanser yet.

By wetting your skin with water, you can minimize the harsh stimulation of face washing on your skin.

3. Take a suitable amount of your cleanser and foam it in your hands

Take a suitable amount of cleanser in your hand, and foam it up by gradually adding water.

If it’s too difficult to foam up with your hands, use a loofah or other shower poufs.

You want to foam the cleanser until stiff peaks form. Even if you turn your hand upside down, it shouldn’t fall off.

4. Apply the foamed cleanser on your T-zone, then your chin area

The T-zone is where sebum production is excessive and is at greater risk for clogged pores. That’s why it’s important to start cleansing from this area.

When cleansing your T-zone, you want to be as gentle as possible. Imagine there’s a foamy cushion in between your skin and hands. Your hands shouldn’t directly touch your face.

After gently spreading the foam over your T-zone, glide it over your chin and mouth area as well.

5. Use the foam to gently cleanse your faceline

Surprisingly, dead skin cells tend to accumulate easily in the faceline area.

Using the same method as Step 4, imagine drawing small circles with your fingertips as you glide the foam over your faceline.

6. Don’t spend too much time cleansing your cheek and eye area

The cheek and eye area have very little sebum production, but are highly prone to dryness. That’s why you shouldn’t spend too much time on these areas and cleanse them lightly.

The hairline area tends to be neglected, so be sure to cleanse this area properly too.

7. Carefully and thoroughly wash the foam off with water

After you cleanse your face, wash the foam off with room temperature water.

When doing this, make sure you aren’t splashing the water aggressively on your face.

Instead, use both hands to cup the water and gently glide it over your skin. You want to wash the foam off as if you’re slowly melting it.

The chin, ear, and hairline areas tend to be left unwashed, so pay special attention to these areas.

If you’re unsure about how many times to rinse, aim to rinse your face at least 30 times.

8. Pat your face dry with a clean towel

After completely washing off the foam, pat your face dry with a clean towel.

Avoid rubbing and pulling your skin with the towel, because this will only cause irritation and lead to more skin troubles.

Instead, press down the towel on your face, allowing the towel to slowly absorb the water.

Now you know how to wash your face correctly!

When washing your face, there are 2 key points to remember:

  1. Gently cleanse your face with foam that has stiff peaks
  2. Carefully and thoroughly wash off the foam

Once you understand these 2 points, it’s also important to be aware of specific cautions when washing your face.

Cautions when face washing

There are 4 specific points to be cautious of when washing your face.

1. Choose a cleanser that suits your skin type

By choosing a cleanser that suits your skin type, you can maximize the effects of your skincare.

You want to pay attention to not just the cleanser’s cleansing power, but also whether the cleanser will strip your skin of its natural moisture.

For people with sensitive skin, choose a low-stimulus foam cleanser. 

For people who enjoy a natural feeling, choose a solid bar soap cleanser.

Like the examples above, it’s important to find a cleanser that matches your skin type and preferences.

2. Gently wash

You want to avoid stimulating and irritating your skin as much as possible.

When washing your face, never rub or pull your skin.

When drying your face, never rub or pull the towel over your skin.

3. Pay attention to the water temperature

It is said that best water temperature to wash your face at is around 32° to 35° Celsius.

If you wash your face with water that’s 40° Celsius or more, it will strip your skin of its natural moisturization.

Face washing with hot water leads to dry skin, so it’s crucial to pay attention to the water temperature.

4. Moisturize immediately after face washing

After face washing, your skin is in an extremely vulnerable state. It is at greater risk for dryness.

The longer it takes you to moisturize your skin after face washing, the more dry your skin becomes. 

That’s why it’s important to moisturize your skin immediately after washing it.

Face washing tips for acne-prone skin

For those of you with acne-prone skin, any stimulation to your skin can become an issue.

Here are some points to keep in mind when cleansing acne-prone skin to prevent any more skin troubles.

How many times should you wash your face if you have acne-prone skin?

Acne-prone skin produces a lot of sebum.

Many people with acne-prone skin become distracted by the stickiness of this sebum and may want to wash their face multiple times throughout the day.

BUT, just like for any other skin type, people with acne-prone skin should also follow the up to 2 times a day rule.

There are 2 reasons why people with acne-prone skin shouldn’t wash their face multiple times:

  1. How acne develops
  2. Skin condition after face washing

Acne is a skin problem that occurs when the skin overproduces sebum. This abundance of sebum clogs the pores, and makes it easier for acne bacteria to grow.

That’s why it’s important to prevent the overproduction of sebum in order to prevent acne.

But remember how we mentioned that your skin is extremely vulnerable after face washing?

If you have acne-prone skin and wash your face multiple times to get rid of the oilyness, you’re stripping your skin of its natural oils and moisturizing particles that it needs. This makes your skin more at risk for dryness. 

Your skin overproduces sebum to compensate for your skin’s dryness, which may worsen your acne.

That’s why, even if you have acne-prone skin, you should never wash your face more than 2 times a day.

Cautions when face washing acne-prone skin

There are 3 specific points to be cautious of when washing acne-prone skin.

1. Use a noncomedogenic cleanser

The safest option is to use a cleanser that has passed a noncomedogenic test.

Noncomedogenic cleansers are cleansers that have been tested and approved to not create pimples or acne.

It is said that noncomedogenic cleansers are the most suitable for acne-prone skin, so it may be worth a try.

2. Avoid high-stimulus cleansers

Many people with acne-prone skin tend to choose cleansers that have a high cleansing power or have strong scrubbing agents to get rid of their skin’s shine.

However, this is counterproductive and will only worsen your skin condition.

Cleansers with high-stimulus ingredients will only put more burden on your skin. It’s best to stick to a low-stimulus cleanser instead.

3. Be EXTRA gentle when washing

Face washing practices, such as washing with a small amount of foam or rubbing your face, are aggresive and highly irritating.

These high-stimulus practices may worsen your acne.

If you have acne-prone skin, be EXTRA gentle with your skin.

As long as you follow the steps for the correct method of washing your, you can maximize the benefits of face washing.


Although there are various skin types, they all have one thing in common: how they should be washed and cleaned.

No matter what skin type you have, you should only wash your face up to 2 times in a day. Be as gentle as possible, and make sure to moisturize immediately after washing your face.




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