The 'Caveman' Beauty Regimen: Why It May Not be Wise

Something old is new again, and by old, we mean prehistoric. The latest trend in skin care, known as the “Caveman Regimen,” is based on the theory that not washing your face for months or in some cases as long as a year could actually improve your complexion.

The growing number of men and women who subscribe to this method of skin care instead opt for rituals that would make our grandmothers cringe. These include rinsing with only water and “oil cleansing,” which involves massaging oil into your face and then wiping it away along with any dirt or toxins. Many swear that the lack of soap can make skin softer, minimize acne, and eliminate the need for moisturizer. On the other hand, others report a dulling effect and say they actually looked older after giving it a try.

Before you join the club (or pick up a club), consider how it will affect another regimen: your anti-aging efforts. At our medical spa in Albuquerque, we advise our patients to wash with a gentle cleanser, such as SkinMedica® Sensitive Skin Cleanser, before applying anti-aging creams and serums. Here’s why:

  • Clean, exfoliated skin can better absorb wrinkle-fighting or acne-destroying ingredients, giving you a bigger bang for your buck.
  • Dirt and oil left on the skin can clog pores and actually worsen acne symptoms.

For those who want to avoid the drying and dulling effect of harsh soaps but aren’t ready for the Caveman Regimen, consider a soap-free cleanser. We love SkinMedica’s cult-favorite Facial Cleanser. But not washing your face for a year á la a Neanderthal? In most cases, we think it’s a Yabba-Dabba-Don’t.