Is It Bad To Wash Your Face With Cold Water?

You know the feeling of having clammy skin from a too-warm night of sleep or after a long hot day and you also know how refreshing a splash of cold water with your cleansing routine can feel, but should you be doing that to your skin? Does water temperature matter for those of us who want the most from our products and skincare regimen? Let’s find out what cold (and hot) water could mean for your skin whether you’re running a bath or cleansing your face.

How Does Cold Water Affect The Skin?

If you’re the kind of person who loves a cold shower to wake up in the morning or takes on challenges like the polar plunge, you already know the invigorating if not shocking effect a cold temperature can have on your body and skin. And there’s some science that indicates cold water may even be good for your skin’s appearance. Cold water shrinks pores and helps tamp down inflammation, making it beneficial for people who are struggling with early morning puffiness. The shock of the cold temperature also stimulates your nervous system, waking you up more quickly and helping you look and feel more alert and energized.

However, over-washing your face for the sake of these benefits isn’t good for your overall skin health. Cold water can also dry out your skin and strip it of good natural oils that protect it.

What Does Hot Water Mean For Your Skin?

Waiting for the water to get hot from your sink or shower can be a frustrating time but the reward is a luxurious, calming experience. However, water that’s too hot can make your skin sensitive and red, and running a hot shower for too long can actually raise your body temperature, causing you to sweat. If that’s the case, you may have trouble properly cleansing and applying other skincare products and makeup in the morning.

The Best Water Temperature For Your Skin

Ideally, the water you wash your face and shower with should be near lukewarm: not too hot, not too cold. This prevents the negative consequences of using extreme temperatures and allows your products to be evenly distributed throughout the natural skin environment. So while it’s okay every once in a while to enjoy a hot shower or cold splash of water, don’t build extreme temperatures into your routine.

Ideal Cleansers By Skin Type

With this ideal temperature in mind, skincare product manufacturers design their products to work most effectively for specific skin types and lukewarm water. Here are our recommendations for what to use if you have the following skin types.

Dry Skin

Dry skin needs to be treated gently with warm, but not hot, water and a mild cleansing formula. Our go-to for dry skin is our Herbal Cleanser powered by essential oils and other natural ingredients.

Acne-Prone or Oily Skin

For more oily, clammy skin, your cleanser is your first weapon against the slickness and grease that can build up throughout the day. Our Clarify Cleanser is perfect for cutting through the grime while leaving your skin appearing silky smooth and ready for the rest of your routine.

Sensitive Skin

Lukewarm water is especially important for sensitive skin that can have a lower threshold for tolerating extreme temperatures. The cleanser we recommend for dry and sensitive skin is our best-selling Apricot Cream Cleanser. Its rich formula feels great on your skin and helps prevents excess moisture loss while smelling great.

Combination Skin

Dealing with combination skin can be tricky, which is why we recommend our Silk Radiance 3-in-1 Cleansing Oil to help with your skin’s different zones in a single product.

Discover More Skin Health Tips

Epicuren Discovery is more than just your source for high-quality cleansers and skincare advice. We’re also here to help you get the personalized skin care routine you deserve with potent products for every step of the process you could want. Find out what’s ideal for your specific goals and skin type by taking our Skin Quiz today.

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