Basically there are two types of facial cleansers:
1. Milk cleansers
These cleansers contain emollients that help dissolve make-up very readily, making it an excellent product for removing make-up. It's more suitable for normal, dry and sensitive skin. For acne skin, a milk cleanser may be used strictly as a make-up remover, followed by a rinseable detergent cleanser for extra cleansing action.
2. Foaming cleansers
These cleansers contain detergent to help remove excess amounts of oil. It's more suitable for combination, oily and acne skin. For people who are used to washing their faces with bar soap, and like the "squeaky clean" feeling, a foaming cleanser is your best bet.
Generally our skin's pH falls within a 4.5 to 5.5 pH range which means our skin has an acid mantle on its surface. Usual cleansers may have a slightly higher pH in order to perform a more efficient job of cleansing the dirt and debris on the skin.
A cleanser with a higher pH is often followed by a toner with a lower pH of 4.0 to 4.5 to help balance our skin's pH. Without using a proper toner, it takes our skin 2-3 hours to recover our skin's normal pH. High pH value can be harmful to the skin, making it easier for bacteria and other harmful substances to enter the body. Typically body soap has a pH balance between 9 and 10. High pH soaps can be very irritating to our skin.
You don't have to spend tons of money on lots of different complicated products. A simple and well selected wash is sufficient as long as you follow these 3 basic steps:
Use a cleanser to remove any oil, dirt and sweat from the surface of your skin. Cleansing is the most important step because it prepares your skin for everything else that follows: toning, moisturizing and makeup applications.
Toner is also a very important part of your daily regimen. Toners are fresheners that help to clarify and tone your skin. They have a relatively low pH, helping to adjust the pH of the acid mantle after cleansing so it is not overstripped.
Always apply moisturizers after cleansing and toning. Even if you have oily skin, you still need moisturize to avoid additional environmental damage. You might try a gel-based moisturizer since it feels lighter and seems to be absorbed more quickly into the skin.
Follow these three steps to basic skin care every morning and night. You'll look better, feel better, and your skin will thank you for years to come.