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A Model’s Guide to Teen Skincare: Cleansers

This is the first part in a series of posts and videos on teen skincare. Obviously I’m not a teen anymore, and I’m guessing that quite a few people reading won’t be teens either (though we all our inside our minds, aren’t we?) but I think that much of the time we share the same problems with our skin and have the same questions. Most women are reminded once every month of exactly how their skin was in their teens, because it turns into an awkward mess of breakouts, oiliness and little dry patches. It turns temperamental, and nothing in the world seems to be able to help it.

So I suppose that this series of posts and videos isn’t just for teens at all – and I can tell you that many of the products I tested (and my teen helpers tested) are ones that I use on a very regular basis myself. Or do now, anyway! I’ve found some real gems as I’ve trawled through my boxes of product – things that I would never have looked twice at usually. A couple of things stand out; the Alpha-H Clear Skin Wash (wouldn’t be right without a new Alpha-H love, would it?) and also the Living Nature Purifying Cleanser. Now the cleanser, unfortunately, I have managed to leave in a hotel bathroom which is why I forgot to put it in the video and also why there’s a face mist in the photo instead of a cleanser! But it is absolutely superb for freshening up oily, congested skin and it’s not too expensive at all.

The main purpose of this video isn’t really to say which cleansers are wrong or “right”, but to stress the importance of good cleansing. Not just a quick once-over with a crappy face wipe: a proper cleanse with warm water and a good, solid face wash. The skin needs to be perfectly clean before bedtime. But not stripped – and that’s the other point that I make; it’s not great to use something that strips and dries out the skin. The skin will just produce oil again anyway, but you might have left the skin vulnerable and aggravated. It’s all about kind, gentle but thorough cleansing.

And models: listen up! Face wipes after doing three shows? That won’t do! You need to grab a proper cleanser (see video!) and really work it into the skin to dissolve the makeup. The reason we all get sore skin around the eyes is that we rub endless cotton wool pads over them, trying to remove fifty layers of waterproof eye pencil, but work one of the cleansers in and you’ll find that after a few minutes everything will dissolve and you can rinse most of it away. Just do a clean-up squad with a q-tip after that and you’ll have avoided rubbing and irritating the skin.

Hurrah! Let’s get on with the show, shall we? All product info is below the video pane!

Products Shown:

Vichy Micellar Water: http://tidd.ly/e3f42a99

La Roche Posay Micellar Water: http://tidd.ly/70eba0f9

Clinique Cleanser: http://tidd.ly/c50ce071

Bioderma Cleansing Milk: French Pharmacy Brand

Naked “Up Tone Girl” Toner

Alpha-H Clear Skin Cleanser: http://tidd.ly/a7ebdcd2

Alpha-H Balancing Cleanser: http://tidd.ly/74fc5a21

Paula’s Choice Cleanser: http://tinyurl.com/c7bwanf

Natural Being Manuka Cleanser: http://tinyurl.com/but48q2

Link to Toners Recommendations: http://www.amodelrecommends.com/2012/04/17/dr-perricones-super-green-apple-breakout-solutions/



Link to Cleansing Video: http://youtu.be/t5Jp3t7BgGM

Makeup and Nails – there’s a tutorial coming out VERY soon, but for now, the base is a Too-Faced BB Cream: http://tidd.ly/4b61b3a3

and the nail polish is from Butter London, shade Lillibet’s Jubilee: http://tinyurl.com/bulw3fu


  1. Nessa
    Hi Ruth, can you help me, I’ve had good skin, just only in the last 2 years my skin has irupted, I’ve tried everything, I’ve always been good with my skin dr haushka, pai skincare, but now I’m having hormonal acne, Ive changed to alpha h, I use the balancing cleanser, and no moisturiser, is this a good choice for my skin? My skin is marked, sometimes itchy sore, same breakouts around my jaw line when its my time of the month, can anything that you put on your skin really get rid of hormonal acne or is it just a myth?, I also ordered the liquid gold to help my marks is that a good choice or not, I’ve tried everything, I really need something that’s going to work, I use to swear by organic products… Now Im not to sure, thank you x

  2. I have an oily t zone, acne and don’t tend to get dry at all, I’m undecided which cleanser to get.

  3. I’m positive that sugar in excess messes up hormones and skin and all sorts of things.

  4. Hey Ruth, I 12 and I go to school and half way through the day my skin gets dry and I have little break outs spots around my face, and I’d like to know what you would recommend me to do. Many thanks janell xx

  5. Hi.. I’m a swimmer and I’m in the pool for two hours a day. When I wake up in the morning my face is slightly oily and throughout the day it becomes more oily. But when I get home from practice its dry and patchy. My acne isn’t bad but I just want to get rid of the little breakouts. I use the same wash morning and night but only moisturizer at night. Any suggestions from the list above?

  6. I found that i break out with the alpha H cleanser I was hoping hoping it’ll clear my skin but it didn’t :/

  7. Hello! I Very much enjoyed the video!I had a question however: I have verrrry sensitive skin ( all ways red not matter what!), and I was wondering about using the Pai Chamomile and Rose Cleanser. I have seen you mention it loads in other videos but I was wondering about it for teenage skin. ( For the record I am 16, with dry sensitive acne full skin). Also, do you have any recommendations for swimmers? I am often in the pool twice a day for two hours and my skin dries out even more!

  8. Hi Ruth, I’m loving your advice and insights. I’m using alpha h liquid gold, as per your recommendation and I love it! Thanks for that. X
    I’m using Cetaphil, which has had no effect on my acne, I need something with a bit of oomph,clearly..! I have an oily t zone, acne and don’t tend to get dry at all, I’m undecided which cleanser to get. The alpha h clear skin sounds right or Paula’s choice,I’ve tried SO many products before I’m losing hope. I’ve also read cutting out carbs and sugar will help my skin. I’m a sugar addict :-s I’m also concerned my contraceptive,the coil has an impact.
    I’m eagerly awaiting your teen/acne moisturiser/serum video, checking my inbox daily… Thanks for everything! Xx

    • First thing, un-addict yourself from that sugar! I am one too, but if I give in to it my skin suffers terribly. I’m positive that sugar in excess messes up hormones and skin and all sorts of things. Secondly, yes – Clear Skin or the Paula’s choice would be lovely for you. See also tomorrow’s post on Triple Action! xx

      • Thanks for your advice! I was so excited to get a reply from you. Also that cheeky spoiler!
        I emailed alpha h about my skin and they recommended renew and resurface kit for me.
        I’m on my second week of my new skincare regime and my skin has enormously broken out, in places I don’t normally get spots too. It must be the deep cleansing masks?!

        I’m right in thinking just to stick with the alpha h and my skin will improve?

        The un-addicting myself from sugar is extremely difficult. Sugar is in everything!! It’s all I think about,haha!
        I wonder if I’m your only reader trying to give up the white stuff and failing miserably? Any advice on giving up the sugar?

        Thanks Ruth!

        • Yes, I did get a few breakouts for a while… So long as you’re not sore or red, keep at it for a couple more weeks. Not everything is for everyone, though, so see how it goes! Giving up sugar? Hardest thing in the world! I mean, I eat too much of it even with being good! Just don’t have sugary things in the house. You’ll break the cycle after a week or so! x

  9. Hi Ruth! I know you’re on holiday at the moment but I’ve got myself in a bit of a tizz with regards to skincare and wondered if you could help!
    I am 21 and I wouldn’t say I’ve ever had BAD skin- just as well as I’ve always had a fairly lazy attitude to my skincare! I’ve never really had acne, but I do get a couple of spots mainly around my mouth and sometimes in the temple area which I’m not massively worried about as they only last a few days max. However, the red mark hangs around for ages afterwards! Even when I deny myself the satisfaction of squeezing the spots I still get a red mark for months. Anyway, I really want to deal with this now and help prevent these blemishes and treat my skin properly.
    I sent an email to Alpha H asking them for some recommendations etc and they’ve sent me three out of four samples that contain glycolic acid. Surely for my young skin that’s not a very good idea? They have sent me two masks containing it as well as the liquid gold. They also sent me the triple action cleanser rather than the balancing which was what I was expecting. All in all I feel a touch lost about what direction I should be going in. If I’ve got relatively trouble free skin should I be faffing about thinking about exfoliators as well or leave well alone? Lastly, I am really annoying because I totally hate the feeling of heavy moisturisers. Almost all of them feel heavy and claggy to me on my face and hands. At the moment I’m using a Chanel one that’s very watery as my exasperated Mum bought it for me in a desperate attempt to get me to use a moisturiser!
    All in all, please help and I’m sorry that this is such a long message!

    (On a side note I noticed that Mr Bear is modelling a very dashing harness in some of your photos and I wondered where it came from?! My own British Shorthair is very jealous…!)

    • Hi Sophie,
      Firstly, the Bear harness is from Zooplus!
      Right, skincare. I’d expect that they sent you the glycolic for the breakouts. I’d say if you’re not worried about the breakouts then you could leave it a good five or six years before cracking onto the Glycolic, but plenty of people use it regularly, including teens. So no real harm, so long as you use a good SPF in the daytime to protect the skin. I’d say that either of the cleansers would work, though I like the Balancing version more, and then why don’t you try a hydrating serum instead of a heavy moisturiser? The new Hyaluron from Boots is excellent! Follow with a day moisturiser containing an SPF or your tinted moisturiser or what have you. Deep cleansing mask once a week, type into search box and all posts will appear! x

  10. Hi ruth, greetings from Malaysia.

    So I wanted to know more about double cleansing. Do you use the same cleanser for the first and second cleanse? And if not, what kind of cleanser would you use for the second cleanse? Also do you use a flannel both times? Sorry for bombarding you with the questions, just wanted to know the best way to cleanse my face.


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