Is Skin Cycling a regimen for the skincare obsessed? More than a TikTok trend, Skin Cycling is the streamlined approach to a skin care that isn't just approved by dermatologists, it was created by one. If you like setting goals and sticking to a balanced routine, this could be for you.
Much like leg day at the gym, the concept of Skin Cycling involves alternating your active products on different days of the week – and having complete rest days in between.
Coined by dermatologist Dr Whitney Bowe, Skin Cycling is the simple method that involves adjusting your PM skincare regimen by rotating active ingredients on different days of the week, with some downtime in between. It's an active schedule that works over a 4-day cycle; 2 days on, 2 days off - now, we know the thought of implementing a new skincare routine may seem like you're gearing up for a marathon you haven't trained for, but you have. It's really that simple.
Is Less More?
There are a couple of reasons you may want to start Skin Cycling, especially during cooler seasons; your skin barrier is most vulnerable and working overtime to hold on to moisture while being faced with a cold, dry climate outside and blasts of heat inside.
LESS IS MORE: The whole idea of this method is to streamline your skincare regimen and optimize the way your products interact with each other and your skin. Rather than layering up, Skin Cycling encourages you to break up the extensive regimen, allowing the products to improve efficacy and minimise irritation, complementing one another.
TAKE A BREATHER: Skin Cycling gives your skin barrier a chance to take a breather from an extensive routine, allowing time to regenerate and repair in between active treatments.
NIGHT 1: EXFOLIATE
Start your cycle off with your regular cleansing product/s, and pat the skin dry. Follow this with your exfoliator, one with AHA's and BHA's are most effective in getting your skin prepped for night two. Follow up with your usual moisturiser.
NIGHT 2: RETINOID
Begin with your cleanse and pat the skin dry before applying your Retinoid, for more sensitive skin types Bakuchiol could be used as an alternative during this step. Apply the product over your face, neck and decolletage. Finish off with your usual moisturiser.
NIGHTS 3 & 4: REPAIR AND RECOVERY
It's time to take a break. Turn your focus to the skin barrier; we are hydrating, nourishing the skin microbiome, and repairing the skin barrier.
After cleansing, leave the skin damp and apply a serum with ingredients such as; ceramides, squalane, hyaluronic acid, prebiotics and postbiotics. Follow with a nourishing moisturiser that will offer your skin barrier extra support, and during winter if your skin is super dry, you could additionally apply a Rosehip or Squalane Oil to the affected areas.
Repeat this on nights 3 and 4 - then start all over again.
THE LOWDOWN: The best thing about Skin Cycling is that you can tailor it to suit your skin type and what you want to achieve as well as the products you use. It can be beneficial to those with sensitive skin, those who want to combine actives and those with multiple skin goals - you can really adapt it to suit you.