Skin cycling is a skincare pattern, with the switching of the products on a set pattern. This technique became the talk after being introduced by dermatologist Dr. Whitney Bowe. The skin cycling routine sets a schedule for exfoliating, using retinoids, and giving the skin a break leaving the following couple of days as recovery days. The practice is a four-day process. There will be no skin cycling in morning routine, but the nighttime skincare routine will follow this pattern. 

Skin cycling steps

Night 1 – Exfoliation

The first night of the routine starts with exfoliation. This step accommodates chemical exfoliators and not physical ones, as they can cause micro tears on the skin’s surface. It can also aggravate sensitive skin during the process of exfoliation. The point of exfoliation is to remove the dead skin cells upon the skin’s surface and rejuvenate the skin. It can also help products to penetrate the skin better. One can choose AHA- (Alpha Hydroxy Acids) like glycolic acid, as regarded as an effective chemical exfoliator. The exfoliating step is to be followed by moisturizing. 

Night 2 – Retinoids

The next night is for retinoids. One can choose retinoids, like tretinoin and retinol, to help unclog pores. It also has anti-aging properties and will help the skin with fine lines and wrinkles. Retinoids will also help with the unevenness of the skin tone. After applying retinoids, apply a layer of moisturizer to lock it all in. 

Night 3 and 4 – Recovery

The recovery nights will have active ingredients in fewer amounts to work on the skin. Applying occlusives, humectants, and hydrating products to hydrate the skin is employed. Hyaluronic acid is an ingredient suggested by Dr. Bowe. It is effective in terms of moisturizing the skin and keeping it supple and mild on the skin when it comes to giving your skin a break. 

The purpose of skin cycling

Skin cycling is best suited for those with sensitive skin, as they can introduce and incorporate active ingredients into your skin with lesser frequency. It also gives the skin time to recover and get back. Skin cycling routine is also suited for beginners, to start the exposure to active ingredients with breaks in between the routine. 

What to expect from skin cycling?

  • The skin cycling routine can help cleanse the pores.
  • Bringing even skin tone.
  • It can also help brighten the skin. 
  • Reduces the risk of the skin losing its moisture and hydration. 
  • The routine includes exfoliation as a component, and it will help clear the skin by removing the dead skin cells.
  • Answering the question, does skin cycling help acne? Yes, it can help with acne, as the exfoliation and retinoids will clean the pores and the skin’s surface, taking the impurities out.

The ultimate purpose for following this routine is to benefit from the active ingredients and reduce irritation and any effects. Leaving the worries of side effects behind, one can step into practices with active ingredients and improve the quality and texture of the skin.

This blog hopes to bring clarity to the skin cycling method. Please consult a dermatologist in the case of any sensitivities or allergies.