How Bad Is Tap water for your skin?

How Bad Is Tap Water For Your Skin

Although your skin is not too picky, the water you wash your skin with will significantly affect your complexion. All the same, the best skincare practices is all about how you do it.

If you own a facial cleanser, moisturizer, eye cream and put on a broad-spectrum sunscreen before leaving your house, you may think you practice the best skincare routine. Let’s face it. As far as skincare routine is concerned, washing your face comes first. For a clearer complexion, the kind of water you use is as important as your facial cleanser.

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So, what water is suitable for your skin? What is the ideal temperature? Is there a recommended pH for face wash? For a lovely skin tone, you need to use uncontaminated water at the perfect temperature. Ideal cleansing will feel refreshing on the skin without necessarily heightening skin sensitivity or causing it to dry.

In this article, you will find answers to all questions about the suitable water for face wash and generally the skin. Keep reading to get the best face washing and skincare tips.

How bad is tap water for your skin and why you shouldn’t be using tap water to wash your face

Washing your face is akin to spiritual practice. If you are trying to create a pH-centric skincare routine, you might have noticed that water is seriously affecting your skin’s pH level.

Drink Responsibly. Water Filters 

While we tend to think that tap water is a totally neutral part of our skincare routine, the ugly truth is that it is not. Tap water has an average pH level of 7, which is probably hurting your skin. For those who have no idea, pH is the measure of acidity or alkalinity of a water-soluble substance.

Typically, the pH level of your skin is around 5; therefore, washing it with tap water bumping it two points or more above what it should be. If your tap water happens to be hard, it means more alkalinity, which in turn becomes very harsh on your skin.

Getting back to the question, why should you not wash your face with tap water? A precise answer would be – it weakens your skin’s acid mantle. The effects of tap water on the skin will form one person to another. According to dermatologists, the impact can be intensive if you use hard tap water.

Chlorine Removing Shower Filter

Generally, hard tap water has a high mineral content consisting of heavy metals like calcium, iron, nickel, zinc, copper, and magnesium. While these minerals are good for drinking, they can lead to irritation and dryness, leaving your skin reddish, itchy, and inflamed. Tap water can also contain chlorine, which can strip off necessary natural oils; therefore, drying out your skin.

Cleansing with tap water leaves your skin less protected from pathogens and highly vulnerable to dehydration. Simply put, washing your face with tap water is running away from a perfect, clear, and brighter complexion.

What PH should water have (when it comes to face wash)

Continuously disturbing your skin’s pH level can cause severe skin disorders or worsen many problems. Smooth and radiant skin is attributed to washing your face with water having the right pH level. If you get used to washing your face with water at the proper pH, it will soon become a no-brainer to do it.

So, what pH level is ideal for water intended for face wash? Usually, your skin pH level is around 4.7, and so should be the water you use for face wash. Men’s skin tends to be more acidic, meaning they can use water with a slightly lower pH without any problems.

When you mildly disrupt your skin’s pH, it is likely to equalize to its normal pH, probably within an hour. Cleansing with acidic water can help your skin produce essential substances it needs to look smooth, supple, and radiant. However, repeatedly disturbing your skin’s pH means it will take longer to get back to normal. Highly acidic or alkaline water dismantles the acid mantle, which affects your skin’s ability to repel environmental insults.

If at any point your suspect your tap water is hurting your skin, you may consider humping into your skincare routine with distilled or filtered water. To know the pH, you can ask your water supplier or buy an at-home pH test.

What is the difference between tap water, distilled water, filtered water

Again, the water you wash your face with is as essential as your favorite facial cleanser. To help decide what water is suitable for your skin, here are the differences between tap water, distilled water, and filtered water.

Free Water Test

Tap water is simply the water you get from your faucets. The quality of tap water can significantly vary by location and is said to be neutral with a pH of 7. Tap water has a high TDS (total dissolved solids), which can potentially hurt your skin.

On the other side, distilled water is water processed through the distillation process. Because many contaminants in tap water have higher boiling paint, water is usually separated from them by boiling. The pure water turns into vapor, which is captured and condensed. The process leaves behind the contaminants residue. Distilled water absorbs carbon dioxide, which lowers its pH to around 5.8.

Filtered water is tap water that has undergone filtration, primarily through carbon and micron filters to remove chlorine and other contaminants.

What are the benefits of using distilled water or filtered water for your face?

Distilled water is a beauty secret of getting a smooth, clear, and brighter complexion. The primary reason you may consider washing your face with distilled or filtered water is to improve your skin condition.

With next to no contaminants, distilled water or filtered water retain your skin elasticity. The water unclogs the pores; therefore, leaving your face very clean ready to benefit optimally from facial products you apply after cleansing. Washing your face with distilled water could be the only solution you need to keep your face glowing and healthy.

Drink Responsibly Filtered Water


The kind of water you are using for face wash could be wreaking havoc on your complexion. However, with the above tips, you can help your skin look better than ever. Wash your face with moderately warm distilled or filtered water for astonishing results.

  • Wow, I have definitely never thought about how the water I use to wash my face might be affecting my face! I clicked on your free water test link, and I plan to test my water ASAP – especially because I’m afraid that my water is super hard. Now I’m paranoid about what it might have been doing to my face all this time!

    Do you have any recommendations for how to get distilled water to wash your face with? I’ve only ever seen it for sale by the gallon.

    Thanks for such an informative article!

    • ola.young

      Hi Jade, thanks for your comment. Many people don’t realize how water is actually affecting skincare. We spend hundreds on the products but very few think what kind of water is going from the tap. I highly recommend getting a water test. You can surely get less than the gallon. You should be able to find 2 liters bottles as well. Personally, I recommend water filtration system. It’s the most eco-friendly and also money saving option.

  • I found the article interesting as I have only ever considered drinking distilled water with the needed minerals added to the distilled water afterwards. I have never considered washing my face with distilled water. I guess it also depends what part of the world you live in whether distilled water is required to wash your face or not. I am curious to know what the PH of the water in London is more or less. Perhaps a Google search is all it takes. In general I know that the water can be quite hard in the UK. Many thanks for a very interesting article indeed.

    • ola.young

      Thanks for your comment Schalk, I really appreciate it. You are right, it really matters where do you come from. I used to live in Essex, UK and I experienced extremely hard water in there so perhaps you are facing the same issues in London. Get yourself PH strips to have an idea what PH you have unless you would really like to get your water tested. Reach back anytime.

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