The Best natural face wash for teenagers - Tweengreens Skip to main content

If you don’t feel like reading, don’t worry! You can also watch this as a video! 

As we mention in a previous blog, the aging process starts as soon as the teenage years. That is why establishing a proper skincare routine for your tweens and teens is mandatory. A good skincare routine is composed of different habits (check our blog about it) and the first one is the habit of cleansing the skin. So, how do you choose the best face wash for teenagers? and why is it important?

Why cleansing the face is so important for teenagers

Acne can be a frustrating condition that affects teenage skin particularly. It is estimated by stats, that 79% to 95% of the population show some type or another during this age; this happens because teenage skin generates massive amounts of sebum (oil) which accumulates on the skin surface and mixes with dead cells clogging pores leading ultimately possible acne breakouts – also known as “comedones.”

This clogging-pores process makes teenage skin acne-prone skin however, it doesn’t have to be that way. We probably can’t avoid the excessive sebum that accumulates on the skin due to hormonal changes during adolescence, but with a proper cleansing habit, we can help remove the excess oil, environmental toxins, sweat, and bacteria that accumulate on the skin throughout the day.

The 4 criteria for choosing the right cleanser

Beyond the specific product you can buy when your kids start needing a cleanser, you need to understand what to look for in a cleanser:

  • Criteria 1: Age
  • Criteria 2: Cleansing process
  • Criteria 3: Ingredients according to the cleanser type
  • Criteria 4: pH

Let’s go deeper into this.

Criteria 1: At what age should a child use face wash?

When choosing a face wash for teens, the right one will depend on the specific needs of the teen’s skin. for example, if the goal is to prevent or reduce breakouts, a face wash with salicylic acid might be a good choice. For teens with dry skin, a hydrating face wash could be the answer!

That is why we decided to write this blog and guide you through different natural brands which have included the two-steps cleansing routine in their offering.

Face wash for tweens

The delicate skin of a tween is prone to dehydration, so they need highly moisturizing cleansers. Cleansing too much with an adult product can lead your child’s face to irritation and dryness which could cause acne breakouts later on down the line!

Face wash for teen skin

Teenage is the age when we generate more sebum in our lives. However, because the skin is still young, it is prone to irritation. At this age, a proper cleanser needs to remove the excess oil without causing dehydration.

How then to balance both hydration and proper cleansing to keep our tween’s or teens’ skin healthy?. Here is where criteria 2 comes into action.

Criteria 2: The two-steps cleansing process

The dilemma of how to remove oil-soluble dirt without also removing the lipidic mantle from the skin has been an ongoing challenge in skincare. To create more tension, surfactants -which are the detergents in a cleansing product- have been added. However, using more amount of surfactant can lead to dehydration, which weakens the function of the skin barrier, leaving it unprotected to face the hormonal imbalance of age.

A solution seems difficult at first glance because there are two opposite sides: one where you want your teenager’s face clean but still contain all its natural integrity; another tuning out most surface impurities to avoid these clogging their pores.

The “two-step cleansing process” isn’t just a catchy name for your beauty routine. It’s an innovative way to cleanse and moisturize the skin without compromising its natural oils, which can be difficult with other types of cleansers that dry out or strip away too much moisture from our pores over time!

To start, you need something called “pre-cleansers.” These are oil-based products that have been designed to mix with sebum and become milky in contact with water. Then the sebum excess can be removed without affecting the skin surface tension.

Then, the second step is where you rinse off all remaining dirt from your face using a gentle skin cleanser (water-based) like a foaming face wash for example. This way, the first phase will emulsify sebum along with any other gunky substances attached like makeup residue or sweat without compromising the skin’s natural lipids including its thickness!

Using an oil-based cleanser wouldn't lead to clogged pores?

That is the beauty of the process. An oil-based cleanser is not about taking any oil and putting directly into the face. It is more about using a specific product made as a cleanser, which includes a surfactant ingredient that supports the cleansing process but in contact with water becomes milk. This avoids bringing excess oil to teenager’s skin.

Can the 2-Step-Cleansing process apply to sensitive teenage skin as well?

Indeed, this is the best way to clean if there are skin issues. If we rely only on a water-based face wash, a higher amount of surfactants can lead to irritated skin.

How to choose the right cleanser duo for teen's skin?

When choosing a face wash for teens, the right one will depend on the specific needs of the teen’s skin. for example, if the goal is to prevent or reduce breakouts, a face wash with salicylic acid might be a good choice. For teens with dry skin, a hydrating face wash could be the answer!

That is why criteria 3 is so important. Let’s take a look!

Criteria 3: Why choose natural ingredients in your cleansers?

The skin is the largest organ in our body. for good or for bad, everything we put on it can potentially get absorbed into skin deeper layers or even into our bloodstream. So, the question would be, what do you prefer for your children? natural products made with ingredients that can talk and feed the skin? or products made of harsh chemicals that could potentially be harmful to their health? The answer is yours.

Best natural ingredients for oil-based pre-cleanser

My best tips when choosing the right oil-best cleanser would be:

  • Avoid oil cleansers based on mineral oil. This is not just bad for the environment but for young skin as well. Since the skin does not absorb it easily, it can create a film on the skin that could lead to clogged pores.
  • Choose vegetable oils instead. The natural oils of your skin love vegetable oils! These are formed of skin-like fatty acids that will provide food to it from the moment they’re applied.
  • Check the comedogenic index. This index measures the potentiality to clog the pores of an oil. Vegetable oils are rated on a scale from 0 to 5, with lower values being non-comedogenic. Oily skin or normal skin should go for oils with rates of 0 or 1, while sensitive and dry skin could tolerate even index 2 without risk of clogging pores.
  • Argan oil, sunflower oil, watermelon oil, berries oils, and hemp seed oil, are examples of oils with a comedogenic index between 0 and 1. (you can find more information about oil’s comedogenic index here)

Best natural ingredients for a gentle face wash

When it comes to choosing the best face wash for teenagers, we first need to think that it has to be a gentle face wash. But what is that? what makes a face wash gentle?

  • A facial cleanser targeting adult skin will have a higher amount of surfactants which can irritate sensitive skin. A gentle cleanser targeted as a face wash for tweens or face wash for teenage should contain a lower surfactant charge
  • A face wash for teens should contain humectant ingredients. This way the gentle cleanser will help to soothe skin and keep skin hydrated
  • The main natural ingredients used as humectants in cleansing products are aloe vera, glycerine, and propanediol, among others.
  • Despite hyaluronic acid being known for its humectant properties, it is commonly used in leave-on products like moisturizers because it would make the cleanser too expensive.

Ingredients for cleansers that target acne prone skin

When teenage acne has already appeared, my recommendation is to follow the instructions of your dermatologist for acne treatment.

However, below are some ingredients commonly found in an acne face wash that look for clear skin after breakouts have appeared:

  • Salicylic acid. It’s one of my favorites. It exfoliates gently bringing a clearer skin. The usual concentration in a product is 2% however, I only recommend this concentration above 16 years old. Before that, 1% of concentration would be my choice to avoid skin irritation.
  • Salicylic acid is usually present in water-based face cleansers. However, to activate this ingredient, the pH of the product should be very low (3 to 4) which is too acid for young skin. I would recommend it in the pre-cleansing step, as it disperses very well in oil without having to be in a specific pH range
  • When it comes to natural ingredients, tea tree oil is very used due to its antibacterial properties. However, this ingredient can cause sensitization and I wouldn’t recommend it for tween or teen skin
  • If we are looking to calm irritated skin, I would choose fragrance-free products

Criteria 4: pH

PH is a very important factor when it comes to maintaining healthy skin. The “acid mantle” keeps our skin’s immunological system running smoothly by creating an acidic pH (between 5 and 6) that bacteria and micro-organisms can’t survive in.

When we use alkaline products like soaps, the skin becomes temporarily more alkaline. And despite its acid mantle will turn it back to normal again, this back and forth can result in a degradation of the skin barrier leaving it exposed to possible infections caused by microorganisms (including acne).

Therefore, my recommendation when choosing the right cleanser for tweens and teens, is that always choose a cleanser with a pH 5.5 or 6. This will be more friendly with your children’s faces.

My top oil-based cleansers and their matching-water-based cleansers

Two-steps cleansing for dry or sensitive skin types

iUNIK’s selection of natural ingredients in their cleansers really blew me away. These are not just natural but carefully selected to avoid any toxic-rated ingredients.

iUNIK Calendula Complete Cleansing Oil

The cleansing oil combines sunflower and canola oil, providing the skin with a fair balance between Omega 6 and Omega 3 essential fatty acids which keeps the skin’s natural barrier in a healthy place. Also, Its high content of oleic fatty acid will enhance penetration of the product into the skin.

The combination of calendula extract and jojoba oil provides the skin with a calming and relaxing effect and wound healing properties which makes it ideal for dry or sensitive skin.

The selection of macadamia oil brings palmitoleic fatty acid to the formula, which is part of the natural skin sebum inheriting its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.

iUNIK Centella Bubble Cleansing Foam

On the other hand, the cleansing foam has an amazing selection of ingredients itself:

  • Is pH balanced which I adore for a water-based product, as it makes the use of a toner unnecessary
  • The surfactants ingredients are not just smart but gentle with skin. It’s more a moisturizer with a fair proportion of cleansers which makes it ideal for dry or sensitive skin
  • The preservative system looks efficient and with a moisturizer effect

Cons or precautions

iUNIK two-steps cleansing routine has minimum contra’s in my point of view which I mention below but these are irrelevant to give this product with a top score in the natural choices:

  • The oil cleanser has ylang-ylang essential oil as its fragrance, which can cause sensitization when is present in the formula in amounts above 0.4%. It’s one of the last ingredients in the formula so, it is probably below this amount. However, if your kid has sensitive skin would try a patch before for this and any other skincare product
  • The foam cleanser has a lot of botanical extract in very low proportions (which I assume according to the ingredients list). In my opinion, less is more, and I would have chosen fewer ingredients in higher proportions.
  • The adding of licorice extract to the foam cleanser would be the only negative-rated ingredient in the list (Check it here). Despite licorice has been widely used for whitening and skin regeneration, this extract exhibits estrogenic activity due to a possible impact on the pituitary hormone secretion.

Why not for acne-prone skin?

It has a high content of oleic acid, which could increase sebum production if the teenage skin is already displaying some imbalances in sebum production.

On the other hand, some studies have shown that the presence of unsaturated fatty acids such as oleic acid and palmitoleic acid could induce scaly skin and abnormal keratinization involved in acne vulgaris and keratosis pilaris.

Two-steps cleansing for oily or combination skin types

This two-steps cleansing combination of Caudalie, have the right choice for acne-prone skin type.

Vinoclean Make-Up Removing Cleansing Oil

The choice of vegetable oils includes a high content of linoleic fatty acid which makes this oil a natural skin regenerator and keeper of skin’s natural barrier. Also, castor oil brings anti-fungal and antibacterial properties very useful for acne-prone skin types.

Vinopure Purifying Gel Cleanser

This natural face wash gel is the perfect combination for the oil-based one. It is pH balanced, has a mild surfactant and preservative selection and, has included salicylic acid in the formula which helps exfoliate the skin gently, removing dead skin cells in teen skin.

Cons or precautions

The use of fragrance is always a risk as this could contain irritant ingredients that could worsen skin conditions such as acne. For the “Purifying gel cleanser” the essential oils forming fragrance have been disclosed which I appreciate, however, no matter how much I love essential oils, these could cause skin sensitization.

 

So, we come to the end of this post. I hope you have found it helpful and informative. Remember, getting into the habit of cleansing skin should happen as soon as possible, preferably when your teenager is still young. The right cleanser for them will be determined by their skin type or any specific challenges they may have. We suggest giving our analyzed products a try – they’ve worked well for us and thousands of others! Thanks for reading.

Disclaimer: As an Amazon affiliate I may recieve compensation for the purchase of the products bellow. This will not involve any costs for you. This site does not offer financial advice.

Free E-Book

A parent's guide to tween's natural skin care

DOWNLOAD YOUR E-BOOK NOW

Subscribe to Our Blog!

Your Name(Required)
Email(Required)

About Me

Beatriz Morales

CEO Tweegreens

If you don’t feel like reading, don’t worry! You can also watch this as a video! 

As we mention in a previous blog, the aging process starts as soon as the teenage years. That is why establishing a proper skincare routine for your tweens and teens is mandatory. A good skincare routine is composed of different habits (check our blog about it) and the first one is the habit of cleansing the skin. So, how do you choose the best face wash for teenagers? and why is it important?

Why cleansing the face is so important for teenagers

Acne can be a frustrating condition that affects teenage skin particularly. It is estimated by stats, that 79% to 95% of the population show some type or another during this age; this happens because teenage skin generates massive amounts of sebum (oil) which accumulates on the skin surface and mixes with dead cells clogging pores leading ultimately possible acne breakouts – also known as “comedones.”

This clogging-pores process makes teenage skin acne-prone skin however, it doesn’t have to be that way. We probably can’t avoid the excessive sebum that accumulates on the skin due to hormonal changes during adolescence, but with a proper cleansing habit, we can help remove the excess oil, environmental toxins, sweat, and bacteria that accumulate on the skin throughout the day.

The 4 criteria for choosing the right cleanser

Beyond the specific product you can buy when your kids start needing a cleanser, you need to understand what to look for in a cleanser:

  • Criteria 1: Age
  • Criteria 2: Cleansing process
  • Criteria 3: Ingredients according to the cleanser type
  • Criteria 4: pH

Let’s go deeper into this.

Criteria 1: At what age should a child use face wash?

When choosing a face wash for teens, the right one will depend on the specific needs of the teen’s skin. for example, if the goal is to prevent or reduce breakouts, a face wash with salicylic acid might be a good choice. For teens with dry skin, a hydrating face wash could be the answer!

That is why we decided to write this blog and guide you through different natural brands which have included the two-steps cleansing routine in their offering.

Face wash for tweens

The delicate skin of a tween is prone to dehydration, so they need highly moisturizing cleansers. Cleansing too much with an adult product can lead your child’s face to irritation and dryness which could cause acne breakouts later on down the line!

Face wash for teen skin

Teenage is the age when we generate more sebum in our lives. However, because the skin is still young, it is prone to irritation. At this age, a proper cleanser needs to remove the excess oil without causing dehydration.

How then to balance both hydration and proper cleansing to keep our tween’s or teens’ skin healthy?. Here is where criteria 2 comes into action.

Criteria 2: The two-steps cleansing process

The dilemma of how to remove oil-soluble dirt without also removing the lipidic mantle from the skin has been an ongoing challenge in skincare. To create more tension, surfactants -which are the detergents in a cleansing product- have been added. However, using more amount of surfactant can lead to dehydration, which weakens the function of the skin barrier, leaving it unprotected to face the hormonal imbalance of age.

A solution seems difficult at first glance because there are two opposite sides: one where you want your teenager’s face clean but still contain all its natural integrity; another tuning out most surface impurities to avoid these clogging their pores.

The “two-step cleansing process” isn’t just a catchy name for your beauty routine. It’s an innovative way to cleanse and moisturize the skin without compromising its natural oils, which can be difficult with other types of cleansers that dry out or strip away too much moisture from our pores over time!

To start, you need something called “pre-cleansers.” These are oil-based products that have been designed to mix with sebum and become milky in contact with water. Then the sebum excess can be removed without affecting the skin surface tension.

Then, the second step is where you rinse off all remaining dirt from your face using a gentle skin cleanser (water-based) like a foaming face wash for example. This way, the first phase will emulsify sebum along with any other gunky substances attached like makeup residue or sweat without compromising the skin’s natural lipids including its thickness!

Using an oil-based cleanser wouldn't lead to clogged pores?

That is the beauty of the process. An oil-based cleanser is not about taking any oil and putting directly into the face. It is more about using a specific product made as a cleanser, which includes a surfactant ingredient that supports the cleansing process but in contact with water becomes milk. This avoids bringing excess oil to teenager’s skin.

Can the 2-Step-Cleansing process apply to sensitive teenage skin as well?

Indeed, this is the best way to clean if there are skin issues. If we rely only on a water-based face wash, a higher amount of surfactants can lead to irritated skin.

How to choose the right cleanser duo for teen's skin?

When choosing a face wash for teens, the right one will depend on the specific needs of the teen’s skin. for example, if the goal is to prevent or reduce breakouts, a face wash with salicylic acid might be a good choice. For teens with dry skin, a hydrating face wash could be the answer!

That is why criteria 3 is so important. Let’s take a look!

Criteria 3: Why choose natural ingredients in your cleansers?

The skin is the largest organ in our body. for good or for bad, everything we put on it can potentially get absorbed into skin deeper layers or even into our bloodstream. So, the question would be, what do you prefer for your children? natural products made with ingredients that can talk and feed the skin? or products made of harsh chemicals that could potentially be harmful to their health? The answer is yours.

Best natural ingredients for oil-based pre-cleanser

My best tips when choosing the right oil-best cleanser would be:

  • Avoid oil cleansers based on mineral oil. This is not just bad for the environment but for young skin as well. Since the skin does not absorb it easily, it can create a film on the skin that could lead to clogged pores.
  • Choose vegetable oils instead. The natural oils of your skin love vegetable oils! These are formed of skin-like fatty acids that will provide food to it from the moment they’re applied.
  • Check the comedogenic index. This index measures the potentiality to clog the pores of an oil. Vegetable oils are rated on a scale from 0 to 5, with lower values being non-comedogenic. Oily skin or normal skin should go for oils with rates of 0 or 1, while sensitive and dry skin could tolerate even index 2 without risk of clogging pores.
  • Argan oil, sunflower oil, watermelon oil, berries oils, and hemp seed oil, are examples of oils with a comedogenic index between 0 and 1. (you can find more information about oil’s comedogenic index here)

Best natural ingredients for a gentle face wash

When it comes to choosing the best face wash for teenagers, we first need to think that it has to be a gentle face wash. But what is that? what makes a face wash gentle?

  • A facial cleanser targeting adult skin will have a higher amount of surfactants which can irritate sensitive skin. A gentle cleanser targeted as a face wash for tweens or face wash for teenage should contain a lower surfactant charge
  • A face wash for teens should contain humectant ingredients. This way the gentle cleanser will help to soothe skin and keep skin hydrated
  • The main natural ingredients used as humectants in cleansing products are aloe vera, glycerine, and propanediol, among others.
  • Despite hyaluronic acid being known for its humectant properties, it is commonly used in leave-on products like moisturizers because it would make the cleanser too expensive.

Ingredients for cleansers that target acne prone skin

When teenage acne has already appeared, my recommendation is to follow the instructions of your dermatologist for acne treatment.

However, below are some ingredients commonly found in an acne face wash that look for clear skin after breakouts have appeared:

  • Salicylic acid. It’s one of my favorites. It exfoliates gently bringing a clearer skin. The usual concentration in a product is 2% however, I only recommend this concentration above 16 years old. Before that, 1% of concentration would be my choice to avoid skin irritation.
  • Salicylic acid is usually present in water-based face cleansers. However, to activate this ingredient, the pH of the product should be very low (3 to 4) which is too acid for young skin. I would recommend it in the pre-cleansing step, as it disperses very well in oil without having to be in a specific pH range
  • When it comes to natural ingredients, tea tree oil is very used due to its antibacterial properties. However, this ingredient can cause sensitization and I wouldn’t recommend it for tween or teen skin
  • If we are looking to calm irritated skin, I would choose fragrance-free products

Criteria 4: pH

PH is a very important factor when it comes to maintaining healthy skin. The “acid mantle” keeps our skin’s immunological system running smoothly by creating an acidic pH (between 5 and 6) that bacteria and micro-organisms can’t survive in.

When we use alkaline products like soaps, the skin becomes temporarily more alkaline. And despite its acid mantle will turn it back to normal again, this back and forth can result in a degradation of the skin barrier leaving it exposed to possible infections caused by microorganisms (including acne).

Therefore, my recommendation when choosing the right cleanser for tweens and teens, is that always choose a cleanser with a pH 5.5 or 6. This will be more friendly with your children’s faces.

My top oil-based cleansers and their matching-water-based cleansers

Two-steps cleansing for dry or sensitive skin types

iUNIK’s selection of natural ingredients in their cleansers really blew me away. These are not just natural but carefully selected to avoid any toxic-rated ingredients.

iUNIK Calendula Complete Cleansing Oil

The cleansing oil combines sunflower and canola oil, providing the skin with a fair balance between Omega 6 and Omega 3 essential fatty acids which keeps the skin’s natural barrier in a healthy place. Also, Its high content of oleic fatty acid will enhance penetration of the product into the skin.

The combination of calendula extract and jojoba oil provides the skin with a calming and relaxing effect and wound healing properties which makes it ideal for dry or sensitive skin.

The selection of macadamia oil brings palmitoleic fatty acid to the formula, which is part of the natural skin sebum inheriting its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.

iUNIK Centella Bubble Cleansing Foam

On the other hand, the cleansing foam has an amazing selection of ingredients itself:

  • Is pH balanced which I adore for a water-based product, as it makes the use of a toner unnecessary
  • The surfactants ingredients are not just smart but gentle with skin. It’s more a moisturizer with a fair proportion of cleansers which makes it ideal for dry or sensitive skin
  • The preservative system looks efficient and with a moisturizer effect

Cons or precautions

iUNIK two-steps cleansing routine has minimum contra’s in my point of view which I mention below but these are irrelevant to give this product with a top score in the natural choices:

  • The oil cleanser has ylang-ylang essential oil as its fragrance, which can cause sensitization when is present in the formula in amounts above 0.4%. It’s one of the last ingredients in the formula so, it is probably below this amount. However, if your kid has sensitive skin would try a patch before for this and any other skincare product
  • The foam cleanser has a lot of botanical extract in very low proportions (which I assume according to the ingredients list). In my opinion, less is more, and I would have chosen fewer ingredients in higher proportions.
  • The adding of licorice extract to the foam cleanser would be the only negative-rated ingredient in the list (Check it here). Despite licorice has been widely used for whitening and skin regeneration, this extract exhibits estrogenic activity due to a possible impact on the pituitary hormone secretion.

Why not for acne-prone skin?

It has a high content of oleic acid, which could increase sebum production if the teenage skin is already displaying some imbalances in sebum production.

On the other hand, some studies have shown that the presence of unsaturated fatty acids such as oleic acid and palmitoleic acid could induce scaly skin and abnormal keratinization involved in acne vulgaris and keratosis pilaris.

Two-steps cleansing for oily or combination skin types

This two-steps cleansing combination of Caudalie, have the right choice for acne-prone skin type.

Vinoclean Make-Up Removing Cleansing Oil

The choice of vegetable oils includes a high content of linoleic fatty acid which makes this oil a natural skin regenerator and keeper of skin’s natural barrier. Also, castor oil brings anti-fungal and antibacterial properties very useful for acne-prone skin types.

Vinopure Purifying Gel Cleanser

This natural face wash gel is the perfect combination for the oil-based one. It is pH balanced, has a mild surfactant and preservative selection and, has included salicylic acid in the formula which helps exfoliate the skin gently, removing dead skin cells in teen skin.

Cons or precautions

The use of fragrance is always a risk as this could contain irritant ingredients that could worsen skin conditions such as acne. For the “Purifying gel cleanser” the essential oils forming fragrance have been disclosed which I appreciate, however, no matter how much I love essential oils, these could cause skin sensitization.

Disclaimer: As an Amazon affiliate I may recieve compensation for the purchase of the products bellow. This will not involve any costs for you. This site does not offer financial advice.

Free E-Book

A parent's guide to tween's natural skin care

DOWNLOAD YOUR E-BOOK NOW

Subscribe to Our Blog!

Your Name(Required)
Email(Required)

About Me

Beatriz Morales

CEO Tweegreens

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