As someone who, tragically, wasn’t born with perfectly smooth, bright, glowing skin, I pretty much live my life in hopes of one day finding the key to looking like an oiled-up baby angel. So when I heard of something called the 60-second rule — a very self-explanatory method of washing your face for a full 60 seconds (instead of your usual, uh, 10) to get better skin — I immediately deigned this technique as the answer to my face prayers.
The 60-Second Rule Deets
The cleansing method comes from Nayamka Roberts-Smith of LABeautyologist, an aesthetician who frequently tells her 43,000 Twitter followers to wash their face for 60 seconds straight to let the cleanser ingredients really penetrate the skin.
Cleansing your face (with your fingers) for 60 seconds allows the ingredients in the cleanser to actually work. Most ppl wash their face for like 15 seconds max.
It softens the skin & dissolves sebum blockages better.
Texture & overall evenness improves. #60SecondRule https://t.co/TQk6xkopOz
— Esthetician/Skin Specialist (@LaBeautyologist) November 1, 2018
‘Makeup, dirt, and oil are a lot more difficult to remove from the skin most people realise,’ Roberts-Smith tells Cosmo. ‘So not only do you want to give the cleanser a chance to break down and dissolve products and grime, but taking 60 seconds also makes you pay attention to your skin and what you’re doing — like remembering to cleanse around the edges of your nose, under your chin, and around your hairline.’
And though, sure, the technique may sound obvious and basic — because it is kind of obvious and basic — it’s also apparently game-changing. So much so, that it’s earned the hashtag #60secondrule and a following of devotees who swear by it.
— Cici 🥳 (@cyennaaaa) December 8, 2018
@LaBeautyologist knows exactly what she’s talkin bout. adopted the 60 second rule & my skin is Flourishingggg ✨✨✨
— ₩ (@just1oak) January 7, 2019
so I started the #60secondrule washing my face this week and Im on day 3 and Im never going back to the way I used to wash my face, I dont think my face has ever been this soft
— M e s s i e (@yakiponi) January 2, 2019
— mariahdyson ❁ॐ☾ (@M_riah) November 29, 2018
In fact, one user on Reddit says that the 60-second rule actually transformed their skin: ‘I’ve been doing this for about a month now and I have noticed the following: no more forehead bumps, softer skin texture, significant decrease in pimples, and a definite glow!’
I mean, daaamn, right?
… So I Tested It Out
I’m a firm believer in double cleansing (i.e. first using an oil-based cleanser to remove makeup and grime, then using a gentle cleanser to rinse all the residue away), which means, according to Roberts-Smith, I should spend 60 seconds using each cleanser. But two straight minutes of face washing felt a little intense for my sensitive skin, so I decided to split the difference in timing, instead.
Using just the tips of my fingers, I gently massaged my face with a pump of my favourite cleansing oil for 30 seconds (literally counting the seconds in my head), before rinsing and massaging on my equally favourite regular cleanser for 30 seconds.
The fact that 60 seconds felt like an eternity was telling: I clearly wasn’t spending enough time making sure every crevice of my face was makeup-free when I washed my face. So for two weeks, I tried the 60-second rule every night.
And by the end of it, I can honestly say my face looked a bit calmer, less red, and brighter. No, my skin wasn’t radically transformed, and my boyfriend didn’t notice a change (I know this because I stood two inches from his face every night and made him scrutinise my pores), but I definitely saw a difference. And for R0 extra rands and 50 extra seconds? Uh, yeah, I’ll take it.
Cool, But Will It Work For You?
‘Possibly, and possibly not,’ says dermatologist Mona Gohara, M.D., associate clinical professor at Yale, noting that you need to have realistic expectations, first. ‘It can give you softer skin — as long as you use the right cleanser — and also more of a glow, since it’ll stimulate circulation.’ But in terms of the 60-second rule totally annihilating your acne? Not so much. ‘You can’t wash away your hormones, or your DNA, or any of your other acne-causing triggers,’ she says. Sorry to burst your bubble.
But, notes Dr. Gohara, if you usually wake up with, say, mascara residue under your eyes (a sign you’re clearly not removing your makeup well enough), the 60-second rule could actually benefit your skin by getting it, well, clean. ‘Left-on makeup can lead to dryness, irritation, and even breakouts, since it can disrupt your skin barrier over time,’ she says. So taking that extra 50 seconds every day may actually make a huge difference in your skin.
Regardless, this is one of those tricks that really can’t hurt to test out, because at most, you’ll only lose 60 seconds of your life. Just promise me you’ll massage super gently, okay? And take some before-and-after pics, too — I’ll be here waiting for them.
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