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Devotees and dermatologists suggest that Skin cycling can have a number of benefits

At Dr Wafaa Clinic in Reading, we have asked Dr Wafaa about the benefits, and here are a few.

The Benefits of Skin Cycling

1-Skin Cycling Can Help Repair Your Skin Barrier

A healthy skin barrier is essential, not just from a cosmetic standpoint but also from a health standpoint. According to a review published in January 2018 in the Indian Journal of Medical Research, the skin barrier protects you from infection, harsh chemicals, and allergens. Indeed, research suggests a compromised skin barrier can play a role in symptoms of a range of skin conditions, from acne to eczema or atopic dermatitis.

Over-exfoliating and using powerful retinoids may harm this barrier (leading to redness and irritation), but that’s where rest days come in handy. “Recovery nights, which focus on nourishing the skin barrier, have been a game changer for so many of my patients,” says Dr Wafaa.

2-Skin Cycling May Reduce Negative Product Side Effects

“The point of skin cycling is to decrease the side effects of many of the active ingredients — the less often you use a product, the less chance for a side effect,” says Dr Wafaa. She recommends applying retinol between two layers of moisturizer to help avoid irritation, a technique known as the sandwich technique.

3-Skin Cycling Can Help Protect Skin Against Seasonal Issues

“Recovery nights become especially beneficial in fall as the air becomes increasingly dry and cool,” says Dr Wafaa. In cold, windy, and dry climates, dry skin happens and worsens certain skin conditions, such as eczema. A more adapted skin care and Skin cycling may help prevent your skin from getting dry in the first place so that your skin can potentially handle the elements better.

Potential Side Effects

Skin cycling can help prevent the potential side effects of ingredients like exfoliants and retinoids because having rest days gives your skin a chance to repair itself, says Wattenberg.

But if you’re not already using a retinoid, you could experience some side effects when you start. “Retin-A and retinol are two common ingredients that cause dryness, irritation, and even inflammation when you begin using them,” says Dr Wafaa. Also, retinol may make you more prone to sunburn, making sunscreen even more essential than usual. These side effects usually lessen as your skin adjusts to the ingredient.

For people with sensitive skin, Dr Wafaa suggests using your moisturizer first to buffer against the potential effect of retinoids, especially in sensitive areas like around the eyes and the corners of the nose, mouth, and neck. Once your skin is used to the retinoid, she advises reversing the order and applying the retinoid first, then the moisturizer. “Again, you want to apply a hydrating, barrier repair cream that doesn’t irritate the skin or drive the retinoid too deeply into the skin to trigger unnecessary inflammation,” she says.

The Bottom Line

The concept of skin cycling isn’t new. Still, there’s a reason why it has become so popular now, as people have begun to realize that using more products doesn’t always equate to better or healthier skin. This is a less-is-more approach that works and gives you a structured schedule that makes intuitive sense.

Not sure if a skin-cycling routine is right for you? If in doubt, ask Dr Wafaa El Mouhebb for your best course of action and book a consultation with her at Dr Wafaa Clinic in Reading.