It's something that most people take for granted, either opting for a quick fix with makeup removing wipes or only giving skin a quick once-over. Cleansing should, from now on, be the most important step in your skincare regime.
The most important reasons for cleansing is to remove makeup, dirt and oil from the skin, exfoliate away dead skin cells, aid penetration of serums and moisturisers, improve skin tone, texture and radiance. I will not sell a client a serum or cream without a cleanser. You might as well throw the product down the drain for all the good it will do if you don't cleanse. The product ends up just sitting on top of dead skin unable to penetrate deeper. We all live in polluted places, you only have to look at the back of a bus or the side of a building to see the dirt it's covered in. This is what's sitting on your skin too, so if you don't cleanse properly it remains sitting there seeping into your porses...YUCK!
In the evening it is essential to cleanse twice. The first cleanse is very superficial, removing makeup, dirt, oil. The second cleanse will work deeper into the pores, aiding cell turnover and desquamation. I recommend using an oil or balm for your first cleanse followed by an AHA containing cleanser which you need to really massage into the skin concentrating on any problematic areas. Rinse with warm water or a muslin cloth.
In the morning one cleanse is enough and whilst cleansing in the morning is not as important as the evening it is still essential for preparing the skin for the products you are going to use, remove any heavy night cream, give yourself an even base for makeup, and I find it just helps to awaken and refresh you!