CHENNAI: Has anyone noticed that it’s June already? As weeks of us staying indoors and masked up turn into months, and then years; I have come to terms with the fact that life moves on the way it always has rushed and unavoidable. It’s no wonder people are looking for an escape. Based on the boom in the skincare industry over the last few months, it looks like skincare is that escape for a lot of people. Well, if we can’t control the world around us, at least we can control our pores?
Feelings of disappointment only get amplified when we look into a mirror and see another mask or stress induced little zit. It just sits there, like an uninvited house guest who always manages to kick your plants over and leave cigarette burns in patio furniture.
Masks have inevitably become a new common irritant, the moisture trapped inside creating utopia for bacteria to have a party, the fabric tugging at our skin causing chafing and barrier damage. Combined with the big trend of using resurfacing products it’s no wonder that bad skin days and damaged skin barriers are becoming the norm.
Here’s the tea: with exfoliation, less is always going to be more.
If your skin is otherwise compromised, it is begging you to slow down. Forget exfoliating toners, resurfacing peels or anything heavily fragranced. The 30-odd layers of your skin that have been disrupted are trying to rebuild, so let them. If you’re experiencing breakouts because of your mask, a spot treatment can help. I’ve been particularly enjoying Kaya’s Purifying Spot Corrector which is a combination of glycolic and salicylic acid. You’re looking for targeted treatments that would work on a specific area of your face instead of an all-over treatment. Be extra careful with exfoliating acids or masks if retinol is a staple in your beauty cabinet, because your potential for a face wound just went up.
Damaged skin is just another reminder that you don’t need to buy another product or try something new to immediately “fix something”. Because really, the answer is quite simple. All you need to do is take your hands off your face and let your skin do what it does best: protect you. Having said that, it can sometimes take years, and plenty of trips to different dermatologists to understand how to get rid of acne on your unique skin.
There’s no one-size-fits-all, and fortunately the umbrella of beauty is big enough for all of us to fit in.