Should We Just Be Splashing Water on Our Faces in the Morning?

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benefits of washing face with cold water morning skincare routine
Photo: Courtesy of @gisele

With unpronounceable ingredients and complicated multi-step routines, taking care of your skin is getting increasingly confusing. That’s why we relish anything bringing a bit of simplicity into our lives – like the growing trend for splashing your face with cold water in the morning.

Supermodel Gisele Bundchen is reportedly a fan of washing her face with water, and she’s known for her enviable glow. Not only will doing this in the morning save you some money, but it will also earn you a few more precious moments in bed and might be beneficial for your skin.

If you’re looking for an excuse to simplify your morning skincare routine, splashing your face with water could be the answer.

Cold Water Can Help ‘Wake Up’ the Skin

“The simple step of splashing the face with cold water in the morning can really invigorate and stimulate sluggish and ‘sleepy’ skin,” explains aesthetic nurse Anna Baker.

No, it won’t magically make your pores disappear – that’s a common myth in skincare. “Our pores do not ‘open’ and ‘close’,” explains Baker.

How big your pores look is dependent on a variety of factors. As we get older, loss of collagen causes the skin “to lose elasticity and it makes our pores appear larger”, Baker says, or it could be related to genetics.

What cold water can do is “invigorate and stimulate the skin microcirculation, improving the blood supply”, she says. It can also “make the blood vessels constrict and make the pores appear smaller for a short time whilst the skin is cold”.

benefits of washing face with cold water yana potter morning skincare routine
Photo: Courtesy of @yana.potter.art

It Could Be Worth It for Some Skin Types

If you have dry, normal, or combination skin, you might not need to bother with a morning cleanser – it could just end up being a waste of product or damaging to your skin if you’re using a harsh or drying face wash. Baker thinks these skin types “may only require a splash of water followed by a daytime moisturizer or SPF in the morning”.

However, if you have particularly oily, acne-prone, or problematic skin, this might not be for you. You will likely “require a cleanser in the morning”, Baker explains. “This will help address any surface bacteria and prep the skin for applying any treatment product on top.”

As with many aspects of skincare, it’s about finding what works for you and your skin. If you still feel grimy or are breaking out with just cold water, you might want to revert back to using a cleanser. It also could depend on where you live, and Baker says: “If you live in a hard water area you might not like the feel of your skin after just washing with water, and prefer a cream cleanser or a water cleanser to counteract the hard water feeling.”

benefits of washing face with cold water morning skincare routine
Photo: Courtesy of @retouchingacademy

You Should Supplement It With a Full Night-Time Routine

A dash of water on your face might fit well in your morning skincare routine, but proper cleansing is needed in the evenings to get rid of pollution and any make-up or SPF on your skin.

“I recommend skin is effectively or double cleansed at night, followed by a leave-on overnight skin treatment to support the skin when it rejuvenates optimally overnight,” Baker says.

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