It is always best to wash your produce even citrus well before using. I suggest tepid water and washing the outer skin well. Dry on paper towels. Using a microplane to zest, (cheese) grater to remove the zest. Do not go into the pith (white portion of fruit) it is quite bitter to taste. If I am using a Lemon for only the juice I will still zest the fruit, place in a baggie (zip-lock bag) and freeze. I will sometimes zest any citrus whether lemon, lime, orange and combine with raw sugar and place in the freezer for a later use. This works out great for desserts and buttercream citrus frostings/icings. Garnishing with zests is wonderful it may be an overnight oats you made and want a fresh citrus zest on top of yogurt and nuts, for example. For myself washing the fruit first just comes easily. Before I allow any citrus to go bad I will take the time to zest it and juice it (I use an electric juicer) place and label freezer container with the citrus juice for a later use. Place zest in zip-lock freezer safe bag for a later use. Zests of citrus fruits are used in muffins, cupcakes, cakes, any dessert. In side dishes, main course meals such as poultry, fish, seafood. Zest of citrus fruits are used to make homemade syrups, dips/spreads. Endless uses. On an average I use zest of citrus fruit at least one time a day. It could be in a sweet smoothie for example, in a salad dish for lunch. Or dinner/supper meal. I will use citrus zest in sweet teas, fizzlers, coolers, all type of beverages. In the intense Florida heat (and humidity) 11 months out of the year, keeping hydrated is essential. Dehydration can occur quickly. I always have Cinnamon Sweet Tea in the refrigerator. Bottles (16.9 ounces) purified water in the refrigerator. In closing, I wish you “Good Health”. Cheryl “Cheffie Cooks” Wiser.