How To Clean Face At Home: 6 Simple Steps You Need To Follow

by Ramona Sinha

Who doesn’t know how to clean their face? Isn’t that the simplest and most basic task that we all do every day? Rub a cleanser, rinse, pat the skin dry, and that’s it. Right?

Wrong! Turns out that a proper face clean up takes a lot more than that. The old-school rub-rinse-dry pattern is not going to work anymore. Here are the new face clean-up rules you need to know. Scroll down for a step-by-step guide to do a proper facial clean-up.

What Is A Face Clean-up?

A face clean-up is not as extensive as a facial. A clean-up involves cleansing the skin thoroughly, exfoliating, steaming, followed by toning and moisturization. A face clean-up helps to remove traces of dirt, makeup, sebum, pollution, and dead skin cells. Regular clean-ups keep the skin healthy and glowing.

Face cleansing or face clean-up is essential for maintaining proper skin health. However, it is different from the facials.

Face Clean-up: How Is It Different From Facials?

A regular face clean-up keeps dirt and impurities away from the skin. It helps to exfoliate dead skin cells, remove excess sebum, and cleanse the skin pores. Do not confuse a face clean-up with the facial that you get done at salons and spas.

Face clean-up is what you do at home using regular products like cleansing oil, cleanser, toner, and exfoliator. You do not need any special products. However, facials are done by experts and involve massaging your face and may also include other special treatments.

You can do a face clean-up regularly at home. It is not necessary to follow all the steps every day, and you may skip a step or two. This will ensure that your skin is thoroughly cleansed and stays healthy and glowing.

How To Do Face Cleanup At Home: A Step-By-Step Guide

Step 1: Cleanse Your Face

This is a two-step process – first, remove your makeup, and second, cleanse or wash your face.

  • Rub an oil-based cream or cleansing oil all over your face. The cleansing oil gets mixed with the natural oils of your skin and dissolves the makeup particles, dust, and dirt that are stuck in the skin pores.
  • Take a cotton pad, dip it in water, and wring out the excess. Wipe your face with the wet cotton pad. You may also use an emollient face wipe for this step.
  • Take a pea- or dime-sized amount of a gentle cleanser (pick one that is soap- and sulfate-free) and rub it on your face thoroughly.
  • Splash your face with lukewarm water and pat it dry.

This is known as double-cleansing. A cleanser alone cannot remove makeup and dirt particles from your face. That is why you need oil cleaning to remove all traces of makeup and impurities.

Step 2: Exfoliation

The next step is to exfoliate the dead skin cells from your skin. Do not repeat this step every day. Limit it to just once or twice a week. Over-exfoliating can make your skin react and breakout.

There are two ways to do it – use a gentle scrub or an exfoliating acid peel.

To exfoliate with a scrub,

  • Wet your face.
  • Take a dime-sized amount of any gentle and soap-free scrub.
  • Apply it all over your face, except for the delicate skin around your eyes. Massage in a circular motion, focusing on your problem areas (where you get whiteheads or blackheads).
  • Do this for five minutes and then wash your face with lukewarm water.

To exfoliate with an acid peel,

  • Wet your skin and pat it dry.
  • Apply the exfoliating acid peel on your face.
  • Leave it on for the duration mentioned by the manufacturer in the instruction booklet. Wet a washcloth and clean your face with it.

Points To Keep In Mind

  • Do not use exfoliating peels if you have never used acid on your face before.
  • Do a patch test to see if your skin can tolerate the acid.
  • Adhere to the instructions provided by the manufacturer.
  • Never use acid peels more than twice a week or as mentioned by the manufacturer.

Step 3: Steaming

Steaming the face after exfoliation softens the skin and opens up the pores. This process makes it easy for your skin to absorb the goodness of other skincare products (that you will apply in the following steps), and it also becomes easy to extract blackheads (if you have any). To do this:

  • Pour warm water in a bucket or fill a basin with warm water (as per your convenience).
  • Add essential oils to the water (if you wish). You may use lemongrass, lavender, peppermint, sandalwood, eucalyptus, or bergamot oils.
  • Bend over the steaming water and cover your head with a towel.
  • Hold your face over the steam for 10 minutes.

You need not steam your face every day. Do it twice a week.

Step 4: Applying A Face Mask Or Face Pack Or Face Solution

After steaming, applying any topical solution lets the ingredients sink deeper into the skin. This way, your skin gets the maximum benefits of the face mask or topical solution.
You may use

A Face Mask Or A Face Pack

  • You may use a store-bought face mask or prepare a face mask at home (explained later in this article).
  • Apply it generously on your face and let it dry.
  • Wipe it with lukewarm water.


A Sheet Mask

  • Apply the sheet mask on your face.
  • Let it stay for 15-20 minutes (or follow the instructions given by the manufacturer).
  • Take it off. Do not wash the product from your face.
  • Massage the remaining product all over your face and let your skin absorb it overnight.

Use a face mask or sheet mask thrice a week.

Step 5: Toning

Now that your pores have absorbed all the goodness of the skincare products, it is time to balance the pH levels of your skin. Use a chemical-free and mild toner as per your skin type. You may even use DIY toner on your face.

All you need to do is:

  • Spritz the toner generously all over your face.
  • Let it dry.
  • Do not wash it afterward.

Toning helps the skin stay hydrated and also shrinks the pores. Use a toner every day to keep your skin healthy.

Step 6: Moisturize

This is the final and most relaxing step in the process. Moisturizing helps to keep your face hydrated and also addresses specific skin issues (in case you are using targeted moisturizers and creams). You may use a moisturizing serum or an anti-aging night cream.

Here’s what you need to do:

  • Take a pea-sized amount of the serum or cream or lotion. Dot it all over your face and neck.
  • Gently massage in a circular motion.

These steps might seem extensive but offer numerous beauty benefits.

Benefits Of A Face Cleanup

  • Regular face clean-ups keep your skin free of excess dirt and impurities.
  • It ensures that your skin remains refreshed and rejuvenated.
  • It keeps the skin pores unclogged and clean. This helps to reduce breakouts and other skin issues.
  • Cleaning your face regularly keeps it hydrated and prevents skin issues caused by dryness, such as flakiness and itchiness.
  • It brightens your skin and reduces tanning and pigmentation issues.

If you have a bunch of skincare products that you swear by, you can use them for cleaning your face at home. However, if you are a DIY freak and love all-natural things, check out the next section!

Ways To Use Natural Ingredients For Face Clean-up: DIY Skin Care Products

1. DIY Cleanser

You Will Need
  • 1 cup jojoba, coconut, or sweet almond oil
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 5 drops of lemon essential oil
  • 5 drops of lavender essential oil
  • A glass jar for storing
  1. Melt the oil (if you are not using coconut oil, skip this step).
  2. Mix all the ingredients and store the mixture in the bottle.
  3. Use it to clean your face.

Note: For oily and acne-prone skin, replace the two essential oils with tea tree essential oil.

2. DIY Scrub

You Will Need
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 5 drops of essential oil of your choice
  • A glass jar for storage
  1. Mix all the ingredients well.
  2. Store it in the glass jar.
  3. Use a tablespoon of the product to scrub your face.

3. DIY Face Pack

You Will Need
  • 2 tablespoons multani mitti (Fuller’s earth)
  • 1 teaspoon rose water (adjust the quantity)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice (use this only if you have oily skin)
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  1. Mix all the ingredients and make a paste.
  2. Apply the pack all over the face and let it dry.
  3. Wash it off.

4. DIY Toner

You Will Need
  • 1 grated cucumber
  • 5 tablespoons rose water
  • Spray bottle
  1. Squeeze the juice out of the grated cucumber.
  2. Mix it with the rose water and store the mixture in the spray bottle.
  3. Shake well before using.

There are a few things you need to keep in mind while cleansing your face.

Essential Tips For The Perfect Face Clean-up At Home

  1. Do Not Forget Your Hairline: You can get acne even on your hairline. Hence, clean your way up to the hairline.
  2. Do Not Use Hot Water: Hot water can dry your skin, and cold water may not remove dirt properly. Use lukewarm water.
  3. Be Slow: Do not hurry up while cleaning your face. Take your time to focus on each area of your face and neck. It should be a mini-massage session for your face.
  4. Choose The Right Cleanser: Not all cleansers suit your skin. Choose one based on your skin type and skin issues.
  5. Wash Thoroughly: It is important to wash the skin thoroughly after applying cleanser or any other product. Check the hairline, near your eyebrows, and your nose. Rinse thoroughly.

This is how you should wash and cleanse your face. You might think it is too much effort. But a bit of extra effort will help you save those extra bucks you may spend on facials and clean-ups in salons.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are there any side effects of face clean-up?

No, if you are using the right products and cleaning your face in the proper way, there are no side effects.

Can I steam my face every day?

It is better to do it twice or thrice a week as anything excessive can be bad for the skin.

How often should we do face clean-up?

Regularly. However, you can skip a few steps like exfoliation and steam. Do these steps only twice or thrice a week.

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Ramona Sinha

Ramona is a journalist-turned-content writer. She holds a Master’s degree in English Literature and has been writing for the digital world for over five years. She specializes in writing for Skin Care. She has done a certificate course titled ‘Dermatology: Trip To The Skin’, offered by Novosibirsk State University. She believes that beauty begins with a good skin care regimen and is on a mission to eliminate all toxins from her routine. She helps and guides readers in selecting products and ingredients specific to their skin type/issue. When Ramona is not working, her books and passion for music, good food, and traveling keep her busy.