The idea behind skin fasting is to give your skin the chance to repair naturally rather than be stimulated by external product usage.
Just like you give your body rest from eating excesses by fasting, you give your skin a break from your regular skincare routine. Skin fasting is when you give your skin a break from all the creams, serums and lotions. It is about giving up your skin care products for a certain period of time.
When you follow this practice, it helps the skin to recuperate from excessive product usage. According to Dr Rashmi Shetty, Dermatologist & Cosmetic Aesthetician at Ra’s Clinic, based in Mumbai, it is good to go on a skin fast once in a while to help your skin return to its natural state.
How does it work
When you go on a skin fast, your skin’s natural lipid and moisture barrier gets rejuvenated and restored. Skin is able to normalise itself and regulate its natural renewal process. Skin fasting allows your skin to breathe, reset and be more resilient by restoring its stratum corneum or the natural skin barrier. “Whenever you feel that your skin is overloaded with too many things, and feels stressed out, take a break from using any product and let your skin. All you need to focus on is keeping it clean,” she adds
Who should try this out
If you have normal, sensitive and dry skin then skin fasting once in a while is a good idea. It gives your skin time to recover from inflammations and irritation. Oily skin types can also benefit from skin fasting, as it allows you to check how the products have worked on balancing sebum on your skin. However, if you are prone to skin issues like eczema, dermatitis or excessive acne, then skin fasting may not be a good idea, since not using treatment products can aggravate the situation.
The steps to follow
When you go on a skin fast you should start it slowly to enable your skin to get used to the natural process. However, it is unique to your skin condition and need. “While, taking a break from your skin care products sounds easy and good to do, but I would not recommend a complete break. Start by eliminating one or two products for about three to four days, and then add to the list till you are no longer using any product. Then you take a complete break for up to two weeks,” advises Dr Shetty.
Start by giving up heavy moisturizers or active-based serums. Stick to minimal product use till your skin gets used to the change, which can take about a week. Then you can continue to eliminate other products like a night cream and eye cream and switching to one skin lotion, which can also be slowly phased out for a while.
“Cleansing your skin for one is something I would suggest you continue to do. Using a face wash on a regular basis, at least at the night ensures your skin is able to breathe and be clean,” says Dr Shetty. Finally, only product you may continue to use is your SPF-based moisturizer when heading out to keep your skin protected from photodamage caused by the UV rays.