How To Clean A Facial Steamer

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Don’t you just love facial steamers? They can help with clogged pores, moisturize the skin, improve blood circulation, and they can even help you relax. 

It’s always a treat for me to use mine at home or at the spa. After using it, do you just set it aside then come back to it the next time you need to use it? 

Although you may only be putting clean water in your facial steamer, there is still a need to clean it. In this article, we’ll go over how to clean a facial steamer for daily use, and how to deep-clean a facial steamer. 


Why Should You Clean Your Facial Steamer

Facial Steamer

Although you probably won’t use your facial steamer on a daily basis, you can use it multiple times a week to help improve your skin. It can help better clean the pores so they don’t clog or cause other skin issues.

Steamers improve circulation, which will help nutrients to efficiently reach the skin. This can result in an improvement in the skin’s appearance.

Most facial steamers suggest you use water alone. However, there are some that are compatible with herbs and essential oils.  

Regardless, both types of facial steamers should be regularly cleaned. 

Do You Need to Clean a Facial Steamer?

If you do not clean your facial steamer regularly, it can malfunction. That’s especially true if you use tap water.

The minerals and other chemicals in tap water can cause a build-up and negatively affect the functionality of the facial steamer. 

Do Facial Steamers Get Moldy?

Yes! Bacteria could thrive in it. That’s because it is a moist environment. Bacteria can thrive either on the outside or the inside of the units. 

When that bacteria reaches your skin, it can cause a problem by causing irritation. Your pores can be exposed to bacteria and that could lead to acne or pimples. 

Furthermore, molds can form as well. These also may cause irritation to your skin (as well as cause your facial steamer to smell bad!).

How To Clean a Facial Steamer Daily

Ionic Facial Steamer

Cleaning the facial steamer should be done regularly. If you use it daily, it should be cleaned daily. Don’t worry because the daily cleaning doesn’t really take too long to do. You can do it while you’re doing your post-steamer mask.

Here are the steps:

Step 1: Empty The Water Reservoir

When you are done using the facial steamer for the day, it is best to remove all water from the reservoir or jar. You should always empty it out at the end of the day and allow the jar to dry. 

Refill the jar the next time you use it with fresh distilled water. Even if there is still water in the reservoir, it is not advisable to let it stay there and use it the next day. That will become a playground for bacteria and mold to breed.

Step 2: Clean the Rim

Apart from cleaning and drying the jar itself, you should take a look at the rim and clean it up. Due to the small nooks and crannies, many forget to clean it in depth. 

Moisture and dirt in there could contaminate the water in the reservoir. It is best to clean the rim thoroughly to avoid build-up. 

Step 3: Sanitize It

Sanitizing the body of the facial steamer is important. This is especially true if you have different clients who use it. 

If you only use it at home, it is good to clean the exterior by simply wiping it off with a very gentle disinfectant and a rag.

Make sure you use a gentle rag to avoid damaging the finish of your facial steamer. 

How To Deep Clean Facial Steamer

Deep cleaning the facial steamer is crucial as it helps remove any buildup. To do this, simply follow the steps below:

Step 1: Create Your Cleaning Solution

To deep clean your facial steamer, you should first create your cleaning solution. Into the glass reservoir, add about two tablespoons of white vinegar or lemon. Then mix it with water until you fill the reservoir. 

The acid in this mixture helps remove any of the mineral deposits that could have formed while you have been using the facial steamer. 

Step 2: Switch Your Steamer On

Allow your steamer to run for a few minutes. Make sure that the heating feature is on, assuming you have a heater on there. You can let it run for about 5 minutes before you switch it off and allow the facial steamer to cool down. 

Allow about half an hour until it gradually cools down. 

Step 3: Wipe With A Clean Cloth To Dry

After the facial steamer cools down, you can remove any of the liquid that’s left in the reservoir. 

Wipe the different surfaces with a clean cloth. This helps remove moisture together with the mineral deposits that may have been formed. 

Step 4: Run With Clean Water

The last step is to run the facial steamer with fresh clean water. This helps remove any of the residues that could be left in the facial steamer. You don’t want to be steaming with left-over vinegar water!

Run it for another five minutes then cool the unit down for another 30 minutes. Make sure you throw away any of the leftover water from the reservoir. 

How To Clean a Facial Steamer Without Vinegar

What if you don’t have vinegar on hand? Well, the obvious answer is to pick up some white vinegar! It’s inexpensive and useful to have on hand for cleaning (as well as salad dressing, but we would suggest getting better vinegar for that!).

If you don’t have vinegar on hand, you can use lemon juice or baking soda.

Mix a couple of tablespoons of baking soda or lemon juice with water and set that in the steamer. Follow the instructions above and your steamer will be flushed and good as new!

How To Take Care Of Your Facial Steamer

Steamer for Face

Use Distilled Water Only

Using distilled water only will help prevent the minerals from forming. Distilled water is already filtered so the chemicals and the minerals are minimized. 

It is best to avoid mineral buildup. If not, you risk having the steamer spit out hot water instead of just producing steam. This is similar to a humidifier.

Avoid Keeping Water Inside The Reservoir Overnight

After using the facial steamer for the day, you should remove any of the water in the reservoir. The moisture present will allow the bacteria and mold to grow. 

This could contaminate your whole steamer and cause different problems with your skin. 

Deep Clean At Least Once A Month

The deep cleaning procedure we described above helps remove the mineral build-up if there are any. This is best done approximately monthly. 

You could do it more often if your facial steamer gets used frequently. Even if you are using distilled water, there is still some chance of mineral buildup, so you shouldn’t skip on doing the deep clean from time to time. 

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Written by Kayla Young

Kayla is the founder of LuxeLuminous. She has worked professionally in the tanning industry for years. She has been interested in esthetics since childhood, and has tried every hair, skin, and makeup product ever produced (more or less).