A Derm's Fun Tip To Make Sure You Are Washing Your Face Long Enough

mbg Beauty Director By Alexandra Engler
mbg Beauty Director
Alexandra Engler is the Beauty Director. Previously she worked at Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire, SELF, and Cosmopolitan; her byline has appeared in Esquire, Sports Illustrated, and Allure.com.
Portrait of a young woman with great skin, taking of face foam with white towel

People often overlook face washing in favor of the other skin care steps. People are so focused on getting the other parts of the routine right: I'm so often flooded with questions about serums, moisturizers, toners, and so forth. ("How do I layer these products?" "Should I apply moisturizer to dry or damp skin?" "Do I need a toner, and if so, why?" You get the picture.) Hardly do I ever get questions about cleansing! And, yet, the step is the bedrock for all others to build on.

Lest you forget: Your products cannot properly penetrate the skin if there isn't a clean canvas to begin with. Plus, without proper and regular cleansing, you may experience clogged pores, excessive skin cell buildup, and damage from free radicals. This is all to say: It's an important step, and worth making sure you are doing a good job of it. 

Which brings me to a recent TikTok video I saw from board-certified dermatologist Alexis Stephens, D.O., in which she discussed common skin care mistakes. The last one certainly caught my eye.

Are you washing your face long enough? A fun trick to make sure. 

You may be concerned with how often you should be washing your face (the answer is: It depends, and everyone is different. For more info, check out our guide), but you should also be concerned with how long you do so. 

"The third mistake is that you're not cleansing your face long enough," says Stephens. "Sing or play your favorite song up until the hook." While each song is different, this fun trick will likely get you in the ~30-second time frame that skin care experts recommend. 

On a particle sense: This marker will ensure that you're getting off makeup, grime, and any particulate matter that settled on the skin that day. It's also ample enough time to make sure you're hitting every area of your skin, so each zone gets enough attention. Plus, it means you're really working your skin, massaging on the cleanser, and allowing yourself to be in the moment. 

Perhaps this leaves the last question: What should you be washing your face with? Well, check out our favorite clean and natural face washes for your new go-to.   


The takeaway.

Don't overlook the simple act of cleansing. It's a vital part of your routine, and you should make sure you're doing it correctly—for your skin overall and so that the other products in your lineup can do their job effectively. 

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