With so many products out in the market claiming to fix a certain skincare concern, it’s hard not to have a 20-step skincare routine day and night. By the time you’ve had a chance to stop and think, your vanity or beauty shelf is overflowing. Have we all gone a little too far with beauty products? Maybe it’s time for skin fasting..?
Well, What Is Skin Fasting?
It’s essentially taking a break from the 10+ step skincare routine to give the skin a bit of a detox cleanse. Minimising your skincare routine would theoretically help the skin regain skin health and resilience naturally and on its own without the help of skincare products. Pretty much regaining natural homeostasis and working with self-regulating cycle. It’s also a great opportunity to determine if any products that have been used for a while are causing any irritation, breakouts or any other skin issues.
How Does One Skin Fast?
While the concept is relatively straightforward, the ‘how’ can vary from person to person. Like food fasting, how much is eliminated and for how long is very much dependant on the person. It’s unique to the individual and not a one-size-fits-all process. There are two general ways to go about this – slowly eliminating products or going cold turkey.
If you decide to go cold turkey and go for a complete skin fast, then we recommend still sticking to your basics like cleanser, moisturiser and sunscreen and eliminating everything else (toner, serums, masks etc). It will be very hard to eliminate sunscreen without completely eliminating sun exposure. If you haven’t heard already, we’re supposed to be wearing SPF everyday.
Completely eliminating all skincare products entirely can cause adverse effects and wreak havoc on your skin. For example, if we stop cleansing our face daily, at least once a day, dirt, excess oil and makeup can build up and cause breakouts.
If you’ve been sticking to a particular skincare routine and have experienced troubled skin, then you may benefit from eliminating one product at a time to determine which product is causing havoc.
What Are the Benefits of Skin Fasting?
Pretty much anyone can benefit from skin fasting, especially those who seem to be experiencing dryness, irritation and more blemishes even with their current skincare routine. Often products, such as serums or chemical exfoliants, are loaded with actives that great for the skin but can sometimes cause inflammation or sensitivity. Therefore, skin fasting is a great opportunity to give the skin time to recover from inflammatory episodes.
If you have any prescribed topical products to help with skin disorders like eczema, acne, rosacea, melasma or any other skin disorders, please do speak to a dermatologist or prescribing physician before going ahead with a skin fast. When your skin is dependent on certain prescribed topical products, it’s best not to take these out of your routine - if it works, it works!
Take Home Message
As always, the key here is to listen to your skin! If it’s feeling a little congested, irritated and sensitive, then it’s probably a wise idea to try skin fasting to give the skin a little ‘detox’. BUT if you feel like you’ve got your current skincare routine down pat and it’s giving you beautiful and glowing skin, then you don’t change what isn’t broken. As the saying goes, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Just remember, our bodies, including our skin, is built to be smart and resilient over time. It has the ability to rest and rebuild. While it’s great to give our skin topical help, it’s sometimes a great opportunity to let it do its own thing once in a while (provided you don’t have a skin disorder).