Powder Cleansers: What Are They, And What Are The Benefits?

Daily cleansing helps remove dirt, oil, and pollutants from your skin's surface to help keep your pores clean and make it easier for skincare products to penetrate your skin. 

Usually, when we hear the word "cleanser," we think of formulations in a liquid or foam form. And while the idea of lathering up with dry, powdery particles in the morning or right before bedtime doesn't sound very pore-friendly, let's not judge a book by its cover, shall we? Trust us when we say they come with their own benefits.


Powder cleansers might seem like they came out of nowhere, but they've been all the rage with beauty enthusiasts across Asia for quite some time now. If you want a cleanser with a double cleansing effect for your skin, a powder cleanser could be your best bet. Here are the benefits of powder cleansers and why they could be the next big trend in skincare.

Powder washes are 2-in-1 cleansers

A powder cleanser, as its name suggests, comes in the form of, you guessed it, powder. To use it, you'll need to mix the formula with water to create a creamy, slippery texture that glides easily on the skin's surface. How is it different from a liquid cleanser, though? Turns out, a powder cleanser can also function like a mild exfoliator to make your skin look and feel smoother over time because it gently sloughs away dead skin cells during each wash.


In an interview with Byrdie, Deanne Mraz-Robinson, MD, explained how "many facial powder cleansers also contain enzymes that are activated upon the addition of water and can give an additional level of cleansing and exfoliation." Since powder cleansers contain fewer preservatives, they are also less likely to irritate your skin. Echoing the sentiment, esthetician and Soko Glam's founder Charlotte Cho also notes to Byrdie that "anyone with sensitive skin type would benefit from this type of exfoliating cleanser because it is likely more gentle than other abrasive exfoliants."

Besides, powder cleansers make traveling a little easier, especially when you only bring carry-on luggage. You wouldn't have to worry about travel-sized container limitations or a major spill.


How to use powder cleansers

Application-wise, powder cleansers offer more control and flexibility compared to liquid cleansers. It's entirely up to you to decide how much water to mix with the powder and customize the mixture to suit your needs. To best use a powder cleanser, dispense a tiny quantity into the palm of your hand, add some water, and rub the mixture together until you get the desired texture.


For non-enzyme powders, use less water for a more exfoliating effect and more for a gentle cleanse. Though you're entitled to mix and stir as you see fit, you'll still want to gently massage the product in circular motions onto your skin before rinsing it off with lukewarm water as you would with a regular cleanser. 

Although a powder wash is gentle enough to maintain your moisture levels, don't skip moisturizer afterward. Applying a generous amount of moisturizer to help seal in hydration and reduce any potential irritation. Although powder cleansers are especially suitable for sensitive skin, all skin types can benefit from adding them to their routine.