The unbearable lightness of water

The unbearable lightness of water

Okay. Make-up removed with oil-based cleansers. So now you’re all set, right? Wrong! Your face needs to be cleansed two times –with a water-based product this time. And if you think that this is just a loss of time, it’s because you still haven’t tried the pleasure of a deep cleansed skin…you’ll be hooked once you try!

As explained in my previous article that covered all the good reasons why you should start your beauty routine by removing your make-up with an oil cleanser, now I’m going to illustrate why you should continue with a second step that focuses once more on cleansing.

Korean women call this “double-cleansing”: if oil captures oil-based substances (like make-up, sunscreen and sebum) and eases the process of washing them away, a water-based cleanser will help to get rid of water-based impurities (like dirt and sweat) that might still be on your skin.

A deep cleansing is essential for 2 reasons:

  1. Leaving impurities of any kind on your skin could cause bacterial infections and could congest your pores, that would become the perfect home for pollutants, causing breakouts and slowing down cell turnover;
  2. It’s the foundational step to prepare your skin to receive and better absorb the following steps in your beauty routine –essences and serums, that are full of good nutrients, can’t penetrate efficiently into the deeper layers of your skin if they find impurities on the outer epidermal surface to block their way.

Sure, you can achieve a good level of cleanliness without necessarily having to go through a double-cleansing. Korean companies produce very high quality cleansing waters and cleansing tissues and I’m not saying that they’re not a valid alternative. There are some products in these two categories that I really like (and I’ll make sure to write a short review on them as well). Especially when I’m travelling, I love the fact that they are so compact and convenient to use. Or also after a night out with friends and a couple of drinks –let’s be honest –having to wash your face two times, when the only thing you really want to do is to hit your pillow hard, is rarely in my plans.


Double-cleansing is a different story. To me, it’s really that process that resets my skin after a stressful day out. It’s gentle, it’s refreshing, it’s restoring. I concretely feel that it’s helping my skin to get back what it has lost during the day and to let go of things that it doesn’t need. And, very important, I actually enjoy it a lot! To the point that it has become the first thing I want to do as soon as I get back home.

I really love the fact that the entire process is not aggressive, but it looks more like a gentle massage. I actually know that Korean women love double-cleansing because it helps removing even the most stubborn make-up, but without having to stress out your skin –thing that could in fact damage the texture and cause wrinkles and fine lines: so it’s better to do it gently in more steps, than quickly and harshly in one.

Back to water-based cleansers!

These cleansers are usually creamy and are sold in tubes (or similar packaging). After you wash off your oil cleanser (and all that melted make-up that comes off with it), you apply your water-based cleanser on wet skin and start massaging in circular motions. Water-based cleansers usually get foamy when rubbed, but some won’t make any foam (it really depends on their composition).

So here are a few cleansers that I’ve personally used many times and I want to introduce to you:

  1. Clean It Zero Fresh Foam Cleanser by Banila Co.
Clean It Zero Fresh Foam Cleanser by Banila Co.

As the name suggests, this product is part of the glorious “Clean It Zero” family and is specifically design to follow the cleansing balm. This is its fresh version, which I adore.

2. Chia Seed Fresh Cleansing Foam by The Face Shop

Chia Seed Fresh Cleansing Foam by The Face Shop

The Chia Seed line of this brand is composed of different items and is super popular in Korea (the No Shine Hydrating Cream being one of their steady sellers). Chia seeds are perfect allies to help re-balance the sebum production of the skin, so oily and acne-prone types will love its effects.

3. Let’s Fresh Yogurt Cleansing Foam by Skinfood

Let’s Fresh Yogurt Cleansing Foam by Skinfood

Everyone knows that yogurt has numerous benefits to offer for your health. But did you know that it can also help your skin if applied ON it?

  • It provides moisture
  • It reduces wrinkles and fine lines (thanks to the exfoliating power of lactic acid)
  • It fights acne (as it contains natural anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties)
  • It reduces dark circles (because it has anti-inflammatory properties, which reduces puffiness)
  • It fades blemishes and pigmentation (thanks to its lactic acid contents, it has mild bleaching powers that can smooth out discoloration)

Try to find a reason NOT to use this product now!

4. Water Jelly Aloe Essential Cleansing Foam


5. Donkey Milk Cleansing Foam, both by Pongdang

Water Jelly Aloe Essential Cleansing Foam (on the left) and Donkey Milk Cleansing Foam (on the right) by PONGDANG

Pongdang is one of my treasure find in Korea. Everything they produce is just so exceptional! Aloe Vera lets you retain moisture on the skin while throughly cleansing, thanks to its soothing properties; Donkey Milk is extremely effective for soothing and revitalizing rough and sensitive skin.

Do you want to see these guys in action?

I’ve prepared a short video so you can actually see their consistency and learn a bit more of all the great things they can do for your skin.

Ready to press the play button?

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Let’s go with the k-flow!

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