Keeping your skin clean is very important for preventing acne as well as for treating existing acne. The first step in keeping your skin clean is to wash your face two to three times per day with warm water and a mild cleanser that contains the proper ingredients for your skin type. (Ask your doctor if you are not sure what your skin type is or if you would like a recommendation for an appropriate cleanser.) For example, individuals with oily skin should use a cleaner that removes the dirt and excess oil.
On the other hand, individuals with dry skin should use a cleaner that removes the dirt and adds moisture to the skin. For combination skin types, look for a cleanser that combines the ingredients for the two skin types. Using warm water to wash your face will dissolve the oil in your skin, making it easier to wash away. Also, rather than using a washcloth or towel (which are usually sources of irritation for the skin and may spread bacteria), simply splash the water on your face using your hands. However, be careful not to over wash your face; over washing may stimulate oil glands and cause your skin to become irritated. Medicated skin pads and astringents used for cleansing skin may also cause irritation and discomfort after use. For individuals with dry skin, applying a light moisturizer to damp skin after washing may help reduce dryness or flakiness.
For those of you who wear makeup, try to select cosmetics that are oil free and labeled noncomedogenic. Also, it is very important that you remove the makeup from your face each night. If you have found the right cleanser for your skin type, it should remove the makeup from your face without the need of other commercial makeup removal products.
Drinking water is also another good way to keep your skin looking and feeling healthy. In fact, drinking water is good for your overall health and, since your skin is the body’s largest organ, it is important to keep your body well hydrated.
The skin should also be washed thoroughly after exercising or sweat-producing activities. Properly washing the skin immediately after exercising will remove oils that mix with the sweat and cause plugging of the pores.