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16th Apr 2019

Do you double-cleanse? This dermatologist says you should stop

It could do your skin more harm than good.

Anna O'Rourke

It’s the skincare advice we’ve all adapted into our routines.

Double-cleansing (literally cleansing your skin twice, using one product after another) is all the rage at the moment, but one dermatologist has said that it could actually be bad for your skin.

Dr Sam Bunting, a skin expert favoured by beauty editors from magazines like Elle and Harper’s Bazaar, said recently that if you’re double-cleansing, you need to rethink your routine.

“The problem with multiple cleansing steps is that this disturbs skin barrier function—and this is not good,” she told Byrdie.

“It’s important to realise that ‘squeaky clean’ skin means you’ve gone too far—I think skin should have no residual tightness after cleansing if you’re using the right product.”

She also recommends getting to the source of your skin issues rather than trying to cover them up, which means you’ll need less make-up and therefore less cleansing.

“So my advice to patients, many of whom suffer from acne and rosacea, so are very dependent on cosmetics—is that if you need to double-cleanse you need to re-examine your makeup practices.”

We’re a bit shook if we’re honest – you’d need a trowel to scrape the makeup off our faces after a night out, but maybe we’d go back to the single-cleanse for everyday makeup.