LifestyleLiving a Better Life


Do you wash your face properly? Ever sleep in your makeup? Time to soak up "Face Washing 101"

Posted at 5:07 AM, Jul 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-16 11:23:55-04

NORTHVILLE, Mich. (WXYZ) — Here’s a question for men and women. Are you washing your face properly every day?

And, ladies, do you ever fall asleep with your makeup on?

When you’re out and about, environmental pollutants, oils, and bacteria can dirty your skin.

And of course, then there’s makeup. And it’s a real no-no to fall asleep in your makeup.

Truth in reporting – I have done this numerous times (not proud of it!) And I’m apparently not alone.

“Have you ever fallen asleep with your makeup on?” I asked Starr Bryant of Detroit. “Quite a few times. I try not to every night,” she replied with a grin.

“There are some times I am guilty of sleeping with makeup on or whatever it is if it was like a long night and waking up in the morning like, ‘Why did i do that?’” Suzanna Slamaci of Dearborn explained.

Crystal Peace of St. Clair Shores nodded when I asked her if she’d ever dozed with her makeup still on. “Yes. Often. I’m very guilty,” she laughed.

When you’re tired, you're tired! Many of us can say we’ve been there…done that! But are we hurting our skin?

“It is definitely very important to wash off your makeup at the end of every day,” explained Dr. Helene Dombrowski – a dermatologist in Northville and Dearborn.

In a nutshell, it’s not good getting shut-eye when you’re still sporting your “smoky eye.”

“If you go to sleep in your makeup, number one – you’re going to clog your pores. You’re going to trap bacteria in the natural skin’s oils on the skin surface. That leads to the micro comedones -- black heads and acne,” said Dr. Dombroski.

Dr. Dombrowski says the most important time for skin renewal is while we’re sleeping. So, it’s critical to send your skin to bed with a clean, well-nourished surface.

Question: Can you just wipe off your makeup with makeup remover and call it a day?

Answer: Nope!

“You really can’t – not if you expect a lot from your skin and its appearance,” said Dr. Dombrowski.

So.. here is her three-step skin cleansing process.

Step one: Use an oil-free liquid makeup remover that’s gentle enough for contact lens wearers or those with sensitive eyes.

Step two: Use a facial cleanser to gently foam your face with your fingers or a soft washcloth, and then rinse with lukewarm water. Don’t “scrub” or use abrasive cloths or sponges because they can irritate your skin.

NOTE: Your cleanser should be determined by your skin type.

There are four different skin types: normal skin, oily skin, acne prone skin, and dry skin.

If you have normal skin, an unscented bar of soap like Dove or a liquid cleanser works well.

For oily skin, use a cleanser with a moisturizer with no extra moisturizer afterwards.

Acne-prone skin may require a medicated cleanser to get rid of bacteria that causes breakouts. So, look for cleansers or soaps containing benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid, plus an oil-free moisturizer (since the cleanser can dry out your skin).

If you have dry skin, find a cleanser or bar specifically for “sensitive skin.” That way you won’t irritate the largest organ of your body.

Once you cleanse, pat your face dry with a soft towel.

Step three: Apply the appropriate moisturizer (unless as mentioned above you have oily skin).

The American Academy of Dermatology recommends you limit face washing to twice a day – once in the morning and once at night -- and after sweating.

If you have questions, contact your dermatologist.

I’d like to thank Dr. Dombrowski – who also happens to be the dermatologist who diagnosed the skin cancer on my face a few years ago.

Here’s wishing all of you a healthy and happy looking face!

Alicia Smith is the morning anchor at WXYZ – TV 7 – the ABC affiliate in Detroit.
She produces the Living a Better Life series each week. If you have a story idea about something that impacts your mind, body, and spirit, please email her at: