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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at U Ottawa chapter.

What’s a roster of all-star players without a solid game plan? It might put up a few wins here and there, but it’s not a championship team; that’s for sure. 

Although I’m (clearly) not great with my sports analogies (hey, I’m a beauty editor, not a sports writer), I can say with confidence that the same is true of your skincare lineup: without the right plays, your Most Valuable Products can’t perform to their full potential. But, as they say, practice makes perfect. And here are the moves that make it all possible.

Don’t shoot on your own net.

Your hands carry, like, a lot of bacteria, which, when transferred to your face, can contribute to acne and skin infections. Always wash your hands before you wash your face. Always.

Be a team player.

Sometimes referred to as double cleansing, one key to effective face washing is to remove your makeup before you cleanse your face. Use micellar water, makeup remover, cleansing balm, cleansing oil, whatever; just make sure that you do. Your cleanser can only do so much on its own.

Remember to warm up and cool down.

Pre-rinse with lukewarm water to open up your pores and stick with the same temperature to remove your cleanser. Then, switch to cool water to tighten them back up. Don’t go too hot or too cold; both temperatures should feel nice ‘n’ comfy on your skin.

Watch the clock.

Your cleanser needs time to do its thing… but not too long. Use your fingers to gently massage your face in a circular motion for approximately 60 seconds. Anything less and you probably haven’t given your cleanser a chance to work; anything more and you risk drying out your skin.

Don’t Play Dirty.

Pat your face dry with a clean, soft towel. Most experts recommend switching out your face towel every three uses, but you can probably get away with four or five… max. Avoid abrasive towels and aggressive rubbing to reduce damage over time.


Wash your face twice a day everyday (once in the morning and once at night) to keep it clear of bacteria and pollutants. Avoid overwashing to prevent excess oil and dryness. This one is kind of personal, so, if you want, you can experiment to find the schedule that works best for you.

And, swish!

Emily wrote and edited for Her Campus and Her Campus at uOttawa from 2020–2022.