Living in today’s world is a dream for every skincare junkie presenting an ocean of different products to choose form. On the other hand, we see an uprising of skincare gurus promoting a new age beauty trend called skin fasting. The verdict is out in this battle of “more” v/s “no more”. But what is skin fasting? Is it a trend? Or a process worth trying? How do you go about it? Does it actually benefit you? Read this article below to find out all about skin fasting and whether this is something you need to try right away or not!
What is Skin Fasting? What are its Pros and Cons?
Just as during fasting, you maintain long intervals between regular food patterns to flush out the toxins in your body, skin fasting is a new age beauty trend based on similar lines. It aims at detoxification of the skin through non application of any product or ingredient. It follows a simple rule: take a break from your skincare routine and let your skin breathe. Absolutely nothing is applied to the skin (with the exception of sunscreen). Now, let’s not jump to conclusions simply by reading the word “detox” and while living the minimalist life might be a good thing, it is important to weigh both the pros and cons before trying out this new trend.
1. Understand your Prominent Skin Type
Skin fasting allows the skin to work at its own pace. It can naturally balance off the oils produced and help you take a break and reset the skin. A great chance to start over and understand your skin type.
2. Help the Skin Recover
It helps the skin to recover in situations where it acts adversely towards certain products or ingredients. For instance, if you experience severe dryness or break out with acne due to a certain product, skin fasting will help you ease into the transition.
3. Provide Clarity on the way Products React to your Skin
It can help you understand how your skin reacts to different products, especially if you are a skincare junkie applying multiple products to your skin each day. It will give you clarity if you are uncertain about the effect each product has on your skin. For instance, it can guide you to stop using harsh products that irritate your skin. Removing these products can result in sharp changes simply by fasting from them.
4. Helps you Understand if your Routine is Working for you
Products work differently on different skin types. The ultimate goal of your skincare routine is to achieve healthier skin. Sometimes, less is more! Simply applying tons of products and not aching results can be a waste of time, effort and money. Skin fasting helps you reset and tells you if your products are working or not.
1. Low level of Nourishment
Just like skipping meals leads to no good when it comes to our body. This method of skin fasting can be an extreme approach by depriving our skin of its daily dose of nourishment needed to repair wear and tear, fight free radicals and maintain overall health of the skin.
2. Higher risk of Sun Damage
Prolonged exposure to the sun without any protection against the harmful UV rays can lead to sunburn, dark spots, accelerate ageing and even lead to more serious concerns such as cancer.
3. Break down the Skin’s Barrier
Dehydrated skin can compromise the protective barriers and increase the risk of dryness making the skin irritable and dry.
How to Fast your Skin? Is it Worth Trying?
An average person gives up on a skin routine in just about a week while it takes months to see change. The best way to approach your skincare routine is by starting with a few and then adding more products one at a time to adjust to your skin. So many people use products with the same active ingredients without realising and wonder why their skin is reacting or not improving. This is where skin fasting comes into play. However, make sure you follow the right steps laid down below for you:
1. Step 1
The first step to any routine is to cleanse. Failing to wash your face can have extreme effects. For instance, those with oily skin might experience more breakouts due to accumulation of dirt and sebum in the pores while those with dry skin might notice formation of a layer of dead cells, making the skin look dull and lifeless. We recommend Mystique Earth Bubble Facial Cleanser, which is suitable for all skin types to wash away impurities and detoxify the skin.
2. Step 2
The best way to approach skin fasting is by taking one step back each day. This will give you results without disrupting the natural flow of your skin. To see the benefits, you reduce or stop using any skincare product to enable your skin to rejuvenate on its own.
The aim is to follow a 2-step process in the morning and evening by gradually removing all other products one at a time, every once or twice in a week. This would include:
- A gentle cleanser
- A skin hydrator or protector. This may include a moisturiser such as the Ilana Organics All Time Moisturiser or sunscreen such as Dr. Sheth’s Oat and Zinc Mineral Sunscreen, depending on the time of the day.
3. Step 3
Wash your face the next day with lukewarm water, pat it dry and try the Tissue Paper Test after an hour to see how your skin is reacting to the change. All you have to do is take a clean tissue and bolt it over your skin. Then, examine the results:
- If the tissue falls off immediately, it’s a sign that your skin is too dry.
- If the tissue sticks on for a few seconds and falls then off, you have normal skin
- If the tissue sticks on your face for long you have oily skin.
This test will act as a guide, throwing light on the products you need and the ones you can cut down on. For instance, those with oily skin can cut down on the hydrating ingredients while those with dry skin must regularly apply moisturiser.
Who Should Avoid this Trend?
Experimenting with a new trend might be an exciting experience, however do not let temptation get the better of you. Some of the biggest beauty trends can victimise the best of us if they do not suit our skin type. Since everyone has different skin types, the results received by skin fasting can be extremely subjective. Watch out, if you fall into any of these following categories:
1. Dry Skin
Though this is often temporary depending on the climate or your current hormonal situation subjecting the skin to fasting might lead to undesirable outcomes. It is usually harmless but excessive dryness can make the skin crack or bleed and activate diseases causing itching and inflammation. The cracks may allow bacteria to enter and develop infection. Moreover, the skin might trigger an overproduction of sebum to naturally combat the dryness and lead to acne.
2. Acne-Prone Skin
Overactive oil glands, accumulation of dead skin cells and unprotected exposure to environmental pollutants is a recipe for disaster. Abruptly halting a medicated acne treatment or simply discontinuing an over-the-counter acne gel/cream will result in bacteria formation. Substances such as Retinoids, Exfoliating Acids and Benzoyl Peroxide are ingredients that destroy or slow down the growth of bacteria. If treatment is stopped, the pores become impacted again and breakouts return. Therefore, skin fasting is an absolute “no entry zone” for you.
3. Sensitive skin
Those with sensitive skin are prone to reactions even when there is a slight change in their routine. If left unattended, the skin might begin to sting or burn leading to redness or tightness. The skin gets easily inflamed due to certain ingredients or even if there is a void of others. In such a scenario, it is best to play around with only a few ingredients that do not contain fragrance, alcohol or any other harsh chemical. This means it would be ideal to limit the number of products used rather than entirely getting rid of them.
4. Ageing Skin
Ageing has a huge impact on the rate at which our skin recovers from damage. As we age, our body’s capacity to repair diminishes drastically. Using Collagen induced products would not only benefit the skin in many ways by preventing wrinkles and reducing dark spots but also help accelerate the recovery process. Fasting your skin will deprive it from that added boost it needs to maintain its overall health since we produce less sebum and are more prone to damage from external factors as the skin begins to thin.
Skin fasting is a great technique, if followed in the correct manner. This means you should not abruptly stop using products, rather ease your skin into the process. Using more products does not necessarily result in adding more benefits to your skin as it may work in the opposite way due to the immunogenic nature of our skin. Though our while blood cells protect us against infections, they form memory to the ingredients we expose our skin to. By following an intensive routine with multiple products, we allow our skin to become lazy. To reverse this, instead of subjecting our skin to extreme conditions and depriving it from receiving the nourishment it needs, the best approach to skin fasting is to simplify our regimen one step at a time.