Background: The pH at the surface of healthy human skin is around 5. Cleansing the skin with soap increases the pH of the skin, which then returns to a more acidic pH within a few hours. However, the effects of skin cleansing with soap over a long time on the pH regulatory system is still unclear.
Object: We compared the pH of the skin between users of a soap-based cleanser and of a mild-acidic cleanser prior to and following the cleansing.
Method: This study had two groups of subjects, one group who had used a soap-based cleanser for more than 5 years and the other group who had used a mild-acidic cleanser for more than 5 years. The pH on the inner forearm of each subject was measured prior to and for 6 h after cleansing with a soap bar.
Result: There were no differences between the pH of the skin these two groups prior to cleansing, immediately after cleansing or in the pH recovery rate for 6 h.
Conclusion: These results suggest that long-term continuous use of a soap-based cleanser does not affect the pH-maintaining mechanism of human skin.
Keywords: cleanser; pH; skin; soap.
© 2014 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.