How do you care for your skin? Do you Skin Cycle?
Caring for your skin at home each day is so important. Think about it - caring two times
a day, 365 days a year, is a lot of care. And your skin will benefit from all this love.
Caring for your skin at home requires a commitment, but once you’re in the groove it’s not overwhelming, but actually fairly simple. The key is getting the steps down and using skin care products with ingredients that focus on your skin concerns. Simply
focusing on the latest product trend may not be the right solution for you.
Here are several concepts for your daily care regimen:
1. Protect in the day; treat at night
Daytime care requires you to wear sunscreen every day all year long. During the day you
are protecting your skin from sun exposure, pollution and blue light, to name a few.
Nighttime is when our bodies restore and repair during sleep. This is the time you use
your treatment products to get the full benefit for your skin
2. Use your products on your face, neck and décolleté, and include your hands
when you can both morning and night.
3. Seasonal Skin Care Changes
In the Midwest, there is a seasonal aspect to caring for your skin - we really only have 2
seasons, summer and winter. Summer is more forgiving with the higher humidity levels,
although sun protection is essential. Winter is harsh on our skin and requires extra moisture
and protection on the outer layer of the skin. The furnaces suck all the moisture out and
the wind and cold can damage the outer layer or the barrier layer of your skin. Changing
your cleanser and moisturizer can help your skin throughout the winter. And don’t forget
to wear sunscreen every day all year long.
4. Change your skin care routine as you age
What worked for you a couple of years ago may not work for your skin now. Your skin
changes as we go through the aging process especially hormonal changes reflected in
your skin. If you feel your skin is dull, dehydrated and not looking healthy it is essential
to change your skin care products to aging beautifully.
What’s in your products?
Do you know what’s in your products? Do the ingredients match your concerns? If not,
you may be wasting precious resources for no results or potentially hurting your skin. To
learn more about what’s in your products schedule a session at SkinTrust with Ask The Esthetician.
What is the right order of applying your products?
I get a lot of questions about the order of applying products and it’s important so you get
the best benefits from them. Here’s some guidelines:
AM - Morning
Toner - there should be a specific reason you are using a toner, otherwise it’s not
Eye Cream - yes eyes need special care with specifically formulated products
Treatment Serum - always want this closest to your skin for best results; If using a liquid
and cream serum, the liquid goes on first.
Moisturizer or face oil
*It is important to cleanse your skin in the morning. For mature skin, you could use a
hydrating toner especially in the winter. For other skin types, cleansing is essential
because bacteria builds up during the night along with unwanted oil that needs to be
** Remember sun damage is cumulative; even ten minutes of exposure a day over the
course of a lifetime is enough to cause major problems.
PM - Evening
• Makeup Remover - remove eye and then face makeup. Makeup removal is not the
same as cleansing. Be sure to remove above the eyebrows and around the nose.
You can use a makeup removal oil, a wipe, dampen a cotton round with toner or
place a small amount of cleanser on a cotton round to remove your makeup. Then
proceed to double cleanse.*
• Exfoliate - 2 to 3 nights a week & can be your second cleanse
• Eye cream
• Spot treat blemishes
• Treatment serum
• Treatment product or moisturizer
• Lip balm
* Never go to bed with makeup on. If you do it can result in clogged pores and breakouts,
and the development of milia - white heads. And over time not taking off your makeup
can cause premature aging. If you are too tired to really remove your makeup and
cleanse your skin, grab a wipe and at least get the makeup off. But, don’t do this every
What is Skin Cycling?
The new buzz in skin care and social media is Skin Cycling. Developed by
dermatologist Dr. Whtiney Bowe, this approach to daily care of your skin treats and nourishes while reducing or stopping inflammation. That’s important because
inflammation can lead to increased sensitivity, break-outs, and might even accelerate the aging process.
In my practice, I see clients that over exfoliate or over resurface their skin, don’t nourish
at all. Many people believe more is better, but really that’s not true with your skin. Skin
Cycling is a great approach to gently, but effectively treat skin. As Dr. Bowe explains,
and The world of skincare was becoming needlessly complicated. After listening to my
patients and examining how their skin was reacting to different routines, I saw the need
to streamline their routine to optimize skin health, she says. "The truth is you only need
a few products used in a very deliberate way to drive amazing results. And the few
products both treat and nourish."
How to Practice Skin Cycling
To practice skin cycling you need:
• Chemical exfoliators (AHA’s - lactic, glycolic or BHA - salicylic acid) depending
on your skin type and conditions
• Retinoid - many different formations - have a professional guide you on what
formulations is best for you skin
• Moisturizer - with nourishing ingredients like anti-oxidants, peptides, hyaluronic
acid or anti-inflammatory ingredients
• Moisturizing or nourishing mask
The Skin Cycle Routine is:
• Night 1: Exfoliate using a AHA or BHA, followed with moisturizer
• Night 2: Treat - use a Retinoid product
• Night 3 & 4: Recovery and nourish. Use a moisturizer or a face mask
• Repeat Cycle
If these steps are properly followed, results should be seen in roughly two skin cycles or
eight days. Let's dive a little deeper into the purpose behind each one.
Night 1: Exfoliate
A chemical exfoliant like a AHA or BHA, not physical exfoliant is recommend. The reason for this is because chemical exfoliants prep the skin to get the most out of the retinoid that is used on night 2. So no physical exfoliators- those with a grain like texture. This step is designed to only be followed up with a moisturizer.
Night 2: Retinoid
After cleansing on the second night, apply a small amount of a retinoid. If you have sensitive skin, you can us a retinol acetate or a retinol sandwich method on this day of the skin cycling journey. Retinol sandwiching is applying a moisture first, then retinoid, followed by the moisturizer again, especially in areas like around the eyes, the corners of the nose and mouth, and the neck. Never use the retinoid cream close to your eyes.
In fact, apply your eye cream prior to applying the retinoid. Learn more about retinoids and what formulations is right for your skin.
Night 3 & 4: Recovery
The recovery night is exactly what it sounds like. This is the time to give your skin a chance to recover from the chemical exfoliation and retinoid that were just used. It is key in this step to not use any active ingredients or exfoliants. These nights should focus on nourishing, hydrating and repairing the barrier. This gives your skin a chance to bounce back.
In summary, Skin Cycling is a beneficial way to get the most from your active products for sensitive skin, mature, or acne prone skin. It’s also a great way to introduce a product into your skin.
Another way to look at Skin Cycling is to use a particular skin care brand for 4 to 5 months, then change to another brand. This is great for seasonal skin care concerns. And allows for different actives on your skin, which can be very beneficial. To learn how to skin cycle your products, schedule Ask the Esthetician session at SkinTrust.
SkinTrust, Palos Heights Esthetician
Highly recommended for serving Palos Heights, and the surrounding Palos Park and Palos Hills, SkinTrust offers services and treatments ranging from a classic facial, to chemical peels, to aging beautifully treatments, and the finishing touches of makeup.
Although not a dermatology practice, SkinTrust offers advanced treatments including fillers, botox, micro-needling, and threading provided by our Nurse Practitioner.
Whether you want a single facial, several treatment options from our Power of Youthful Aging skin, or product recommendations - all options are customized to meet your needs. Let Skin Trust help you with Aging Beautifully and enjoying healthy, beautiful skin.