Double cleansing: what is it and how do you do it?

Always wanted to try double cleansing, but didn’t know where to start? We’ve got you covered.


Double cleansing is more than simply a beauty buzzword and it’s certainly no fad—it is, in fact, the key to a successful skincare routine. If you’re not cleansing thoroughly at night, then achieving a clear, glowing complexion is going to be tough. So why is a diligent two-step cleanse worth your while?


Well, for starters, this process of washing your face ensures you remove every last scrap of makeup, dirt, and pollution from your skin, sloughing away anything that could act as a barrier to the skincare you apply afterwards. This means you’ll be getting your money’s worth out of those essences, serums and night creams, because they’ll be able to navigate into the skin where they can do the job they’ve been bought to do. For the first step you’ll be using a wash cloth to remove the cleanser which gently exfoliates your complexion too—great for brightening!


Double cleansing for every skin type

Double cleansing is a quick routine that suits all skin types, even sensitive since you’re sparing the skin from sleeping with potential irritants, and it’s ideal for city-dwellers whose skin has to deal with a barrage of grime every day. For the first step you ideally want to use a nourishing balm cleanser, so it’s a great technique for dry skin. If you’re oily or spot-prone then there are simple tweaks you can make to ensure double cleansing won’t trigger a blemish, more on that below. It really does suit all.


Want to reap the benefits of this effective two-step cleanse? Keep reading for our simple guide to double cleansing right.


Whay you will need for Double cleansing:


The steps for double cleansing your face

Step One

In the evening, work half a teaspoon-sized amount of balm cleanser over your face, neck and decolletage, using it to emulsify your makeup and any invisible dirt or pollution that will have accumulated on your skin throughout the day. Using a wash cloth, gently buff away the cleanser.


Step Two

Now, time for the second cleanse. Use a water-based cleanser, this can be a wash-off formula (ideal for normal or spot-prone skin) or a micellar water (a good choice if your skin is dry). The second cleanse ensures that every last scrap of makeup, dirt and pollution are whisked away. Pay particular attention to the delicate eye area, the T-zone and around the nose.


Top tips

  • If you don’t have evening plans, cleanse as soon as your day is done rather than waiting until bedtime.
  • If your skin is blemish-prone you can use the oil cleanser, as oil breaks excess sebum, but be sure to follow with the Velvety Smooth Cleansing Foam for your second cleanse. Listen to your skin—if the oil cleanser feels too heavy or you break out, start with the foam and follow with the micellar water instead.
  • If your complexion is particularly dry use the micellar water or even a Cleansing Milk for your second cleanse.


You don’t need to double cleanse in the morning if you’ve followed the two-step routine the night before—a gentle cleanse with a water-based cleanser will do.


Amy Lawrenson

Amy Lawrenson

Amy Lawrenson is a UK beauty editor with over 13 years of experience writing for magazines and websites including ELLE, Grazia, Women's Health and Byrdie. She has a keen interest in all things beauty and wellness, especially skincare because who doesn't want a clear, glowing complexion?