The Secret to Cleansing

The Secret to Cleansing

Cleansing is the first and most important step in any good skincare routine. But so often what cleanser we use or how we cleanse our skin is an afterthought. We tend to spend a lot more time and money on finding the perfect treatment or moisturizer, but the right cleanser, paired with proper cleansing methods, is the first crucial step to healthy skin. Below we share our cleansing knowledge, and our top picks for your skin type.

Double Cleansers

What exactly is double-cleansing?

The double cleanse is one of the main reasons K-beauty’s popularity has soared in recent years. It's as simple as its name— double cleansing means cleansing your skin twice at nighttime. Why? First cleansers eliminate makeup, sunscreen, and oily residue. They are often oil-based, since oil removes oily residue best. Only then can the second cleanse work properly. Second cleansers usually come in the form of gel or foam, and are water-based, getting rid of dirt and sweat that might be trapped within pores.

TIP: Go slow. To truly eliminate makeup (especially waterproof makeup), you need to take your time by gently massaging the cleanser into your skin for about a minute before rinsing.

Can I use the same cleanser morning and night?

A gentle cleanser is great for morning and nighttime use. However, night is the perfect time to target specific skin issues, like acne. So if you’re using an acne wash or deep cleanser at night, using it in the morning too will actually strip your skin of natural oils, creating more imbalance and exacerbating the problem.

Anna at Ohlolly

TIP: Be gentle. We say this tip a lot, but it’s so vital to the health of your skin that it’s worth repeating. Treat your skin delicately! Gently wash and don’t over-exfoliate.

Do I really need to wash my face in the morning?

During the night, oil residue and dead skin cells accumulate on your skin. Cleansing removes this buildup, which is why proper cleansing is an essential first step in the morning. With clean skin, you have a blank canvas for the following beneficial steps. If your skin is very dry, irritated or damaged, then rinsing with water alone in the morning is sufficient. Or using a pH-balancing toner and cotton pad for a gentle swipe will do.

ma:nyo Our Vegan Cica Heartleaf Toner

TIP: Don't forget to wash your pillowcases! Oil from your hair, dust accumulation, and other buildup can accumulate on your pillow and cause acne & irritation to your face. Regularly switching out your pillow case (and cleaning your phone screen too) can help!

Is it bad to wash my face with bar soap?

Yes, if we're talking about a typical bar soap. Bar soaps tend to have a pretty high pH, which means they can severely dry out your skin. Using cleansers with low pH will help maintain healthy, happy skin. The optimal pH level for healthy skin is around 5.5. This is especially important if you have dry, dehydrated or sensitive skin. If you love bar soaps, however, Toun28 has a good range of low pH face bar soaps, like this one. Safe and gentle to use on your face!

Toun28 Face Bar

TIP: Turn down the heat. You want to wash your skin with lukewarm water, never hot. That’s why it’s not advised to wash your face in the shower.

What’s the best cleanser for my skin type?

Oily & Acne Prone Skin

If you have oily and/or acne-prone skin, it’s especially important to keep your skin clean to help prevent congested pores. Proper, not excessive, cleansing is really the key to oily skin. Focus on cleansers that control excess sebum in the morning and treat acne at night.

Daily Cleansing

Heimish Matcha Biome Amino Acne Cleansing Foam  Gently removes overnight build-up of sebum and dead skin cells for fresh, clean skin. Low pH, great for all skin types especially for acne-prone. 


Heimish All Clean Balm A soft oil-based balm cleanser that effortlessly removes makeup and residue without stripping the skin's natural oils.

Cosrx AC Collection Calming Foam Cleanser Made with salicylic acid and centella asiatica, this second cleanser lifts up dead skin cells and unclogs pores.

Helen at Ohlolly

Weekly Deep Cleansing

Heimish All Clean White Clay Foam This cleanser delivers a special deep cleanse with kaolin (Amazon white clay). Kaolin purifies the skin by drawing out the dirt and oils trapped in pores, while 10 different types of natural herb oils refresh and revitalize skin and remove toxins. Use this a couple times a week.

Dry Skin

If you have dry skin, choose cleansers that are gentle while adding needed moisture. With truly dry skin, it’s ok to occasionally skip your morning cleanse, especially in colder months or when your skin feels particularly irritated. Just rinse well with lukewarm water in the morning and follow with a toner.

iUnik Centella Foam Cleanser

Daily Cleansing

Huxley Be Clean, Be Moist Cleansing Gel Enriched with certified-organic Sahara’s prickly pear cactus oil, this gentle low pH cleanser creates a fine lather to provide a thorough, refreshing and hydrating cleanse without irritation. Or try the newly arrived iUnik Centella Milk Cleansing Foam.


Heimish All Clean Balm Mandarin Ohlolly's best selling cleanser, Heimish ACB, has a new twist--Mandarin! Effortlessly remove stubborn makeup as well as oily impurities, excess sebum and SPF while hydrating the skin. Follow up with Solved's Coconut Water Cleansing Foam or the Huxley cleanser from the AM, both gentle and low pH.

Weekly Deep Cleansing

A small amount of the Sioris My Soft Grain mixed in with the Cleansing Milk will produce an excellent yet gentle skin purifying combination. Try once and you'll be hooked.

TIP: Remember to wash your hands before cleansing so that any germs on your hands don't transfer to your face!

Dehydrated & Oily Skin

Does your face often feel tight but look oily? Dehydrated skin is a condition (not a skin type) caused by external factors like stress, climate, or diet. It often leads to an imbalance in the skin’s water and oil levels, which can result in excess oil production. Focusing on a routine that provides lightweight layers of hydration is key to restoring balance, starting with the right cleansers.

Daily Cleansing

Toun28 Ceramide Bifida Face Bar Great for sensitive skin, using ceramide to strengthen the connection between skin cells and nourish and protect the skin’s barrier. Its low pH formula is moisturizing, elasticity-boosting and lathers easily.


ma:nyo Herbgreen Cleansing Oil This all-purpose first cleanser removes makeup, sunscreen, and excess oil while keeping skin hydrated with Vitamin E-rich Artemesia vulgaris (mugwort) oil and calming tea tree leaf oil. Follow with the face bar used in the AM.

Weekly Deep Cleansing

ma:nyo Pure & Deep Cleansing Foam As hydrating as it is cleansing, this second cleanser creates an easy lather with fine bubbles that work deep within pores to clarify and brighten the skin. A unique ten floral complex, herbal extracts, and ceramides help to nourish the skin.

Normal to Combo Skin

For more normal or combination skin types, the goal is to maintain proper levels of hydration and oil in your skin. Any cleanser too harsh could push your skin towards the dry side, whereas lack of proper cleansing can lead to excessive oil buildup. Cleansing twice a day using gentle cleansers will help keep your skin healthy and balanced.

Daily Cleansing

Heimish All Clean Green Foam pH 5.5 A cleansing gel that keeps the skin’s optimal pH balance while effectively removing impurities. This gel-to-foam cleanser is formulated with centella asiatica to heal and soothe skin.


Urang Natural Cleansing Oil Soft and rich, this all-natural first cleansing oil emulsifies completely and effortlessly lifts away makeup and sunscreen, leaving the skin cleansed, silky smooth and hydrated. 

Weekly Deep Cleansing

Pyunkang Yul Cleansing Foam The stretchy consistency of this foamy cleanser (a.k.a. a vacuum cleaner for pores) adheres to dirt and oil trapped in pores and removes them, leaving the skin feeling clean and fresh without over-drying. Use a couple of times a week.

Sue at Ohlolly

I’m in a rush… What can I do?

Try a cleansing water, like Huxley's Be Clean, Be Moist Cleansing Water or Pyunkang Yul's Low pH Cleansing Water. Just saturate a cotton pad and sweep over your face. Though not required, a quick rinse with water is recommended. Follow with a moisturizer and sunscreen, and you’re set to go.


A must-have for those inevitable lazy nights, Olivarrier Wash All Barrier Relief Cleanser double cleanses in one step. This oil-to-foam cleanser with pH level of 5-6 lathers to work as a makeup remover and barrier protecting bubble cleanser in one, making it perfect for those late nights.


The Lapcos Milk Feel Exfoliating & Cleansing Pad offers a thorough cleansing when you’re traveling. Soaked in a rich essence packed with milk protein extract, bamboo water and castor oil, this convenient pad cleanses and exfoliates to reveal a fresh and radiant complexion in no time.

TIP: Be consistent. Busy mornings and late nights are inevitable. We get it. But when you can, be consistent with your cleansing routine. Cleansing is the first step towards glowing skin!

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