Recently I have been seeking to better understand the science behind our skin and how we care for it. Just because a product is natural, does not necessarily make it safe or effective. I have been reading a lot about Korean and/or Asian skincare practices, and the use of low-pH cleansers is the very foundation – for good reason! Here is what I’ve learned…
Have you ever experienced that tight, dry feeling left on your skin after using a facial cleanser? You might believe that this is your cleanser doing it’s job. However, most standard cleansers are too high in pH, causing damage to the skin.
Our skin is made up of a barrier of skin cells and fatty acids. This barrier is known as the “acid mantle” and it serves to protect your skin. The acid mantle keeps bacteria from getting into your skin as well as holding water within the skin (keeping your skin hydrated). It keeps the good stuff in, and the bad stuff out.
Our skin has a natural pH of between 4 and 6 (acidic). A pH of 7 is neutral and anything over 7 is considered alkaline. Many basic cleansers are too alkaline to help protect and preserve the acid mantle. This leads to skin feeling dry, sensitive, redness, and acne. Your skin will start producing extra oil/sebum to overcompensate. Skin may feel dry immediately following the cleanser, and then turn into an oil-slick later in the day.
In order to protect your skin, prevent acne and irritation, and promote hydrated, glowing skin, you need to use a cleanser that has the same pH has natural skin: between 4 and 6.
Here are some low-pH cleansers:
Cosrx Good Morning Gel Cleanser
CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser
*I use this as a body wash
Hada Labo Tokyo Gentle Hydrating Cleanser
Give a low-pH cleanser a try and see the results – happy, hydrated skin!