High-quality. Timeless. Consistent.
The best results — a radiant glow and a nourished, healthy barrier — come as a result of building a consistently, daily routine that includes high-quality ingredients that address the concerns of your skin type.
That said... every now and then there's a trend too good to pass up! And in this case, it's the trend that has already racked up 373.2 million views and counting on TikTok alone: Skin Cycling.
Keep scrolling to learn more about skin cycling, why dermatologists love it, and why CBD skincare is a must for getting the most out of this new craze.
WHAT IS SKIN CYCLING?
First things first, let's start with defining this trend. Coined by NYC dermatologist Dr. Whitney Bowe, skin cycling is a nighttime treatment methodology that alternates different types of products on different days in order to get the best results without damaging the skin barrier.
Typically run over the course of 4 days, skin cycling recommends using harsher actives or ingredients two days a week, and restorative ingredients the other two nights of the week.
WHAT DOES A TYPICAL SKIN CYCLING ROUTINE LOOK LIKE?
Broken down, an easy and effective skin cycling routine might follow the below protocol:
NIGHT 1: EXFOLIATE
Focus the start of your skin routine on exfoliation. Exfoliating once (or at a maximum, twice) a week sloughs dead skin cells off the surface of your skin. You're left with not only a baby fresh glow, but with skin that's primed to drink up all of the actives and moisturizing goodness to follow throughout the rest of the week.
Start this step by cleansing your skin and then incorporating a chemical exfoliant directly to the skin: "You want to cleanse [the skin], pat dry, then put on an exfoliating product,” explains Dr. Bowe, who recommends using a product that contains ingredients like AHAs, BHAs or PHAs. Avoid physical scrubs, which can be irritating.
After exfoliating, apply a lightweight, comedogenic moisturizing agent (either a cream or a nourishing face oil like our Mauvaise Herbe Indica Oil) to further support the skin barrier.
NIGHT 2: RETINOL OR RETINOIDS
It's prime time, baby! Night two is all about incorporating retinol or retinoids into your routine. Firstly, let's start by clarifying what these popular skincare actives are, and why they're so beloved in the skincare world.
Retinoids — derivatives of Vitamin A — are one of the most studied ingredients in the space and have been clinically proven time and time again to boost collagen production, diminish wrinkles and fine lines, smooth rough texture and reduce acne or breakouts.
Everyone should be using a retinoid or retinol, as virtually all skin types can benefit from this gold-star active. However, they are also known for being quite potent and can take some getting used to. To avoid the trademark redness that often comes during the retinoid "purge" period (a stage of increased skin irritation that occurs as your barrier gets adjusted to the ingredient), be sure to start slow and avoid overdoing it: a pea sized amount spread across your face and neck is more than enough to work magic.
As dermatologist Dr. Dendy Engelman shares in Bustle, choose products that are replenishing, non-irritating and known for fortifying the skin barrier. Calming and inflammation-reducing ingredients like CBD or other adaptogens are a must on these nights.
We can't enough of pared back, soothing combos for recovery nights like our Full Flower Ritual, which de-stresses and rebalance skin, promoting recovery an replenishment. Reach for this two-step ritual to infuse much needed hydration and nourishing antioxidant power back into the barrier.
Final pro tip? When skin cycling, you'll want to make sure you're cleansing regularly and using SPF every day. Harsher actives like exfoliants and retinoid can increase sensitivity and dampen your ability to withstand sun damage, so you'll want to ensure you're providing your skin with adequate protection.
Derms and other experts agree that skin cycling is a great way to introduce highly effective active ingredients into a routine without overburdening the barrier. Retinoids and exfoliants in particular are proven to be game-changers for your skin, but are also known to come with troublesome side effects such as itchiness, flaking, redness and dryness.
Skin cycling is an easy-to-follow routine that allows you to reap the powerful benefits of those actives while also allotting time for healing, thereby reducing the risk of compromising the barrier with painful irritation or flare ups.
WHO SHOULD BE SKIN CYCLING?
The long and short of it? Everyone. Because skin cycling is so simple and effective, it's beneficial for virtually all skin types.
In particular, skin cycling is a sound strategy for mature and acne-prone skin types, which can each enjoy the targeted benefits of retinoid and retinols while still prioritizing hydration and balance. Sensitive skin types can flourish with a skin cycling routine as well by structuring a slow build that allows skin to develop tolerance to harsh actives.
Is skin cycling for you? If you're curious about shaking up your stale skincare routine and trying something new, be sure to stock up on soothing essentials for recovery nights. Try our Full Flower Ritual on us and see how it stacks up on Recovery nights! For a limited time, indulge in a free sample set of our plant-based duo on us — just cover the shipping.