Which Products Cause Skin Purging? 🌋 Tips for All Skin Types


Hello beautiful people! Welcome back to Beauty Within! It’s your host, Ro and Fel 🙂 Alright, what do we have today? We’re gonna cover a topic that’s been very highly requested and one that you guys have REPEATEDLY asked us to explain – the mystery surrounding it all. So they’re like twins, one good and one evil. But you can’t tell the difference because on the outside they look the same. Yeah, so if you haven’t guessed already – it’s the topic of purging versus breakouts. And [if] breakouts and skin issues aren’t confusing enough, right? But then you add a random skin purge on top of that, and we’re just like, “What is life?” WHAT IS LIFE? (Ro: WHAT IS LIFE?) So we totally get it. And the reason why purging of the skin even happens in the first place varies so much from person to person. Regardless of what products it is that caused it, some people get it some people don’t. And we only really know once the little whiteheads and pustules that are already on her face comes out! (Fel: comes out) Not cool. So today we’re gonna break this all down like the ushe. And we’ll get into what the term “purging” on our skin really means, how the skin reacts to the products, and if it really is purging. And then we’ll also share with you guys which products and ingredients are more likely to make the skin go through this process. Because like we said not every product does this and also not every person will necessarily go through it. And even for us, we’ve both experienced it, but it was from completely different things. So we’ll share our experience and how we dealt with it. Because sometimes in life we got to go through the bad to get to the good, right? so let’s start talking about – skin ~ So if you’re like, “Yo, I have no idea what you guys are talking about!” When we pick up a new product and apply it to our skin, there are three main things that can happen. One! On one end, your skin can love it! Your new BFF! Congrats because you hit the jackpot! Keep using it! You’re good to go 😉 You’re going great sweetie! You’re doing great sweetie! Keep going! Number two. On the other end, your skin can completely freak out! You’ve made a skinemy, and there’s irritation, there’s burning, there’s flare-ups, there’s rashes! Probably not all of them together. That would be really unfortunate. But sometimes it happens. Yeah! Sometimes all of the above, not a cute situation. In which case, it’s pretty obvious that most likely you want to ditch that goo and never apply it or mention it again. OR number three! Your skin starts breaking out in random areas of the face that it never usually does, and the breakouts are little small pustules. Quite harmless – no pain or irritation, burning, or itchiness, but there’s little breakouts. And then you’re left kind of staring in the mirror, maybe like five to ten minutes longer than usual going like, “Ehh, what is this?” “What are you doing here?” So those are the three main outcomes for any sort of skin situation after introducing a new product. You recently went through purging for the first time. (Ro: Yeah.) So how was it? What happened? I got threading done. (Fel: In Taiwan.) Yeah or “ban bin”. It’s like the – it’s basically threading your whole face. I think THAT was okay. But then afterwards she was applying this exfoliator. You know the – it’s like The Body Shop Peel. That like gentle peel. It’s like a – it’s more of a physical exfoliant than a chemical exfoliant. Bear this in mind! We’re on the streets of Taiwan. It’s like a little umbrella hut – Yeah apparently that’s very common! (Ro: with little stools) It’s VERY common. And I think THAT was what broke me out. The products used after. Because your skin is also bare after the threading. (Ro: Yeah, exactly.) I think your pores are open. And then she put winter melon to help cool it and to soothe it. But you brought up a good point because it’s the – the exfoliating step. Which we’ll get into a little bit later! For me – because I use like a lot of acne products from time to time – it speeds up the renewal of the skin. And so after certain products, I’ll see it along here [jaw]. I’m like, “Why are there even more?” (Ro: Just here?) Yeah yeah yeah. And then it only happens with some products. It’s not like all glycolic or all lactic or anything like that. So I’m like, “Okay, this is confusing.” And we’re on the same boat. Because even you were like, “Am I breaking out?” No, but the thing is it SLOWLY came out. It was like a day or two after [when] I started seeing little bumps. And I was like, “This isn’t normal.” And then a few days later, they started growing out more. And a few days later, they turned into little whiteheads and a few days more (Fel: Oh yeah! They mature.) I was like, “ERMIGERD what is going on!” Yeah, they just evolved quickly. And then yeah – It like – it inflamed and then it turned a little white (Fel: it’s just little things) and then it just eventually disappeared. Yes, so that is our purging experience for dry skin, combo, and oily. So it can happen to anyone. (Ro: Yes.) With all that being said – And now to understand which ones we’re potentially dealing with and why we need to understand what’s really happening below the surface of our skin, with each one a little more. So going back to how a pimple forms in the first place under our skin. It starts off with one of our precious little pores becoming clogged, most likely by the cocktail of dead skin, oils, and bacteria that we accumulate throughout our days. And this all gets stuck with the dead skin cells that can’t fly away off our skin like it normally would, and so it forms an inflamed pore, also called a microcomedone. And these are typically just chillin’ under the skin. And often times, you can’t even see it. If you were to just look at it on the surface because they are deeper and they’re just – they’re not really reactive, they’re just chilling. But the longer this kind of harmless microcomedone hangs out under the skin, the more likely it will slowly but surely become not so mico. And from here, they can develop into a whitehead, blackhead, pimples, or even a cyst. So just imagine a baby fetus pimple that you can barely see. You can’t see the bump or anything like that. It’s invisible. And then it grooooows. According to Lab Muffin, it can take up to eight weeks for a microcomedone to rear its ugly baby head to the surface. And obviously breakouts of any sort can happen for many different reasons. Including internal reasons like, hormones [and] our time of month to not cleansing or even exfoliating properly. And external factors like, weather and the environment. So now that’s cleared up, let’s get into the purging part of it. What is purging? Okay, so we’ve bought all these products! So we have a new product that we’re all excited about to slather all over our face, right? Hoping that it’ll somehow change our life. Either [to] soothe or reduce dark areas of hyperpigmentation, whatever it is. But sometimes it really hits us in the face LITERALLY with a bunch of little breakouts. Or even whiteheads or pustules. This is when you might be experiencing a temporary condition known as – skin purging. It’s not something that necessarily happens to everyone. But if it does happen, it’s usually when we introduce a new product into our skin-care routine that we haven’t used before. And it’s usually products with specific ingredients that help to speed up our skin turnover rate. And remember our skin naturally turns over and sheds skin by itself anyway. But certain ingredients will make this process much quicker and more rapid. So going back to the microcomedones that we talked about that are lingering on the surface of our skin! Skin purging ingredients are essentially pushing these microcomedones to rise to the surface quicker. And this is because of the accelerated exfoliation and increased skin cell turnover that’s happening on the skin when we use certain ingredients. Which is probably what happened to you [Ro]. But fun fact! The shedding of our skin is known as – desquamation. Desquamation [Ro: Desqua…cito] *Despacito Fel/Ro Remix* So if you’ve ever had this happen, the first tip is to think about the product that you’ve introduced and what ingredients it might have in it. If we think about ingredients that speed up skin renewal and regeneration, what comes to mind? [Both: We know you know!] So these include enzyme exfoliants, which can be gentle fruit-based ones. Which are very similar to our good old chemical exfoliating friends, like AHAs and BHAs that we talk to death about like, glycolic, lactic, [and] mandelic acid. And even gluconolactone, which is a milder exfoliant known as – PHA. And all these work by dissolving the sticky glue that’s holding the dead skin together and allowing the new fresh skin to be formed. Other ingredients that are well documented and also work by increasing skin renewal and can cause purging are acne related ingredients like, tretinoin, adapalene, retinols and retinoids, and benzoyl peroxide. Because it’s renewing the top layers of skin much faster than normal so that dead skin doesn’t get clogged in the pores. And that’s why we “break out” in the first place. And even facial services that you go and pay money for can result in purging like, laser treatments or hydrafacials, microneedling, microdermabrasion, and obviously facials using these chemical peels. Which is very often. Because again, often times they use these ingredients and methods aimed at turning over new skin more quickly, exfoliating, and shedding the top layer so that our skin looks bright and youthful! At Ling, we used the malic acid peel, and then she used – I think for you, the apple. Yeah, that’s the malic. So for some people, not only will these ingredients EXFOLIATE that top layer of skin, but it will also simultaneously push out that gunk and impurity that’s lying dormant underneath. So yes, that’s why it happens. And that’s kind of the main reason why it’s so hard to tell whether if it’s your skin freaking out saying, “Nope, not having any of this!”, a breakout, or it’s pimples that were existing underneath without you even knowing. Wearing invisible cloaks until finally being revealed and going, “Everyone evacuate! We’ve been exposed!” PURGE! And the purging process can last anywhere from a couple of days to even four to six weeks. Because this is about how long our skin takes to naturally replace themselves in a full complete skin cycle. Also if it’s dealing with breakouts in the purging process, the turnover of those pimples should also be faster than normal because it’s basically making your baby pimples grow up faster, much faster. Come out! So if you think about it, it’s kind of a good thing? It just doesn’t LOOK like the best situation on the surface. But the good thing is it shouldn’t last that long, and it’s pretty harmless to see a few whiteheads and pustules hanging out. Okay. So now we understand the purging part. Now we have to make sure we’re not just breaking out. If your skincare products do not contain any of these ingredients and you’re seeing breakouts, then this might not be purging. It’s more likely that your skin’s telling you that whatever you introduced into your routine is not meshing well with your skin type, and your skin is not having it and telling you to stop. And in this case, it’s more of a reaction that occurs when the product is either causing new clogged pores or there’s increased irritation on the skin. Which means the breakouts will be scattered more randomly all over, and it’s more painful and, you know, there’s pain with it. With your purging, there wasn’t – Oh, no, it was – it was not random. It’s a group here [temples], a group here [right cheek], a group here [left cheek]. Yeah. So it was very – I could see (Fel: calculated.) Yeah. Fascinating! For example, if you introduce a product like a cleanser or moisturizer without these active ingredients, then it’s most likely more of a negative reaction. Maybe the moisturizer’s consistency is too comedogenic and clogging your pores, causing more breakouts. In which case, you should stop using that moisturizer. Or maybe it has other ingredients that your skin just doesn’t like and doesn’t want to play with. And also now that there’s a lot of the “all-natural” brands and products out there on the market that use very minimal ingredients but [are] also loaded with a lot of plant-based ingredients, sometimes they claim that their products are causing purging because your skin is detoxifying from all the “synthetic chemicals” we’re previously using. But that’s kind of a false statement in our eyes because why would your skin become more angry if you’re reducing the amount of ingredients, right? I don’t know so it’s kind of – At the same time though, a lot of people when they first start detoxing and cutting out coffee and eating – not meat (Fel: vegan) or vegetarian, their body physically goes through the purge too. You’ll start sweating. (Ro: That’s a detox purge.) Anyway. So that’s just something to think about. And even if synthetic chemicals were bad, which they’re not really so… Yeah, I guess it depends on each person and the type of product you’re dealing with. Another important tip and something to look out for to tell whether if it’s purging or just breakouts is to look at where the little pustules or whiteheads are happening. When your skin really is purging, the breakouts will appear in places that they typically already do because they’re helping bring to the surface what’s underneath the skin, right? And where you have hyperactive glands. So for me, I did see this, you know. As I said, it’s always just this bottom region. If I find that I use a new product, and I break out on the forehead or the cheeks, I definitely know that’s not purging. Because I NEVER break out on those areas. Yeah. Or the nose or anything like that. But if it’s [the] bottom half, I’m like, “Okay. Try it out for a little bit longer.” And for me – because I have dry dehydrated skin – I guess I’m blessed that I don’t experience breakouts as often. If I do, it’s during the time of the month. I’ll have one you know here [around the nose]. Or if I eat too much spicy or hot “hot” foods, I’ll get like one or two here [jaw]. But it’s never – (Fel: in a blue moon.) Yeah, but I’ve never “broken out” like that before. And it wasn’t ev – it wasn’t bad. It was like what Fel said. Like on a normal day. (Ro: It was like any other day.) Yeah. And so for me, I think because that’s never happened to me, I just realized like, “Okay. I should just be very careful of not accepting skin-care exfoliation on the streets of Taiwan.” XD But it’s funny because then it like brought to surface (Ro: everything!) Yeah. And it might be from the threading too. But if it does – if it’s not combined with any rash or intensive drying, then that’s fine. You can kind of just keep at it for a while. The ramp up and the cool down was maybe two three weeks. But then the actual – when it was red, inflamed and I saw little whiteheads – was maybe less than a week. As a rule of thumb, we would say that as long as new little whiteheads aren’t popping up all over the place each time you use a specific product, then it should be okay. But you’ll definitely want to stop using that as soon as it happens. Especially if there’s any other sort of irritation like, itchiness and/or rash. And this is a good time to try and figure out which ingredient in that product your skin is causing heightened sensitivity and that it’s not reacting well with. Because this is how some of you realize that you don’t react well with certain ingredients that work for other people, right? In our nicinamide video, we’re like, “Oh my god! I love it!” But some people are like, “Oh my god! I reacted so badly to it!” And it’s not that the ingredient is bad. It’s just that your skin doesn’t react well. Which means you just can’t tolerate that as normal. So you just got to find what didn’t work for you and that specific product through these experiences. The key takeaway is to be aware of the areas you normally experience breakouts prior to starting new products or treatments. That way you have a better idea of whether those treatments or products are doing your skin harm or not. So maybe some of you are wondering, “Can I reduce or minimize purging?” And I think it’s hard to tell beforehand whether or not purging is even gonna happen on your skin with the product or not. And you kind of have to just wait for it to happen and then realize. Because it might not happen at all! But there are always safer methods to introduce new products into your skincare routine. Especially when it comes to these acne or chemical exfoliating ingredients. So as we said, you always want to start low and slow. And once you know that your skin can tolerate that amount, then you can start increasing if you NEED to. But keep in mind you might not even need to increase it either. A daily AHA toner with 2% lactic or glycolic acid can be super useful and gentle enough to keep your skin nice and fresh. So why push the limit if you don’t have to, right? And go all the way up to a 8% if you don’t need it in your life! It’s not like the higher the better. And generally what works best is: Let’s say if you have your go-to cleanser, toner, serum, moisturizer, [and] SPF. If you want to introduce a new product or any new thing into your routine, we would recommend just switching one out. Not doing a complete overhaul of your routine. Like EVERYTHING changes! Although that’s what we do. (Fel: We do.) *LOLS* But I also feel like we know our skin very well. And the new products that we introduce in have generally been these very hydrating, moisturizing, [and] soothing ingredients that we know our skin reacts well to. And you can’t really go wrong with them. Yeah, but if I’m ever trying a new chemical exfoliant or anything that’s more intense – ’cause we haven’t been using these types of products as much – I’ll make sure everything else that I do for the week is very gentle and I can rely on, and then I’ll just try that – I’ll just (Fel: one thing) add in that one thing. For at least one or two weeks. If you’re just at home and you’re a normal human being who’s not rotating products everyday! It’s kind of like an equation, right? You have – you put your X ONCE in the equation. Just once. Aand that way you can be safe. So better safe than sorry. And just to recap of the different acids: lactic acid is more gentle. PHA is more gentle because the molecular size is bigger. And then glycolic is smaller. It’s the smallest so it’s the most “intense”. And potentially irritating. But, you know, you – you have to know your skin a bit. And our favorites are The Ordinary Lactic Acid. There’s also the Go-To Swipeys that we mentioned recently. And also the Ren Ready Steady Glow AHA Tonic. For glycolic, there’s the Pixie Glow Tonic and Kale-lalu-yAHA. Typically the higher the percentage the formulations, they’re more designed for specific skin types like acne-prone or very oily. Because there’s no reason why a dry skin person would need that much exfoliation. So just keep that in mind, “Higher the number is not always better.” And you don’t need it if, you know, you’re fine. And that being said, AHAs are – generally lactic acid is gentle enough to use daily. Well it really depends on the formulation (Fel: the formulation), right? But [for] most of the glycolic acids we mentioned, The Pixie could be daily. The Kale-lalu-yAHA is not daily. And with all the products we just mentioned, [it’s] worth noting that some of them are daily use – and they’ll say on the back of the packaging – and some of them are, you know, once or twice a week. To start (Fel: as treatments) as you slowly build up your tolerance. But we would recommend you don’t really need a heavy glycolic toner like the Kale-lalu-yAHA. I think you can feel it on your skin. If you’re feeling very crusty, I think that’s a good time to – Or if you feel congested. The blackheads and you can’t breathe. And the pores are looking really filled. THAT’S a good time to use chemical exfoliating toners. So that just poses the question we always like to reiterate. Just know how to read your skin so that you know how to really – nurture – it. “What do you need?” “What do you want?” “Let me help you!” “Let me help you help yourself! “We are one!” “But really!” So that’s purging in a nutshell. You know, purging versus breakouts. If you want to learn more about how the skin purges and maybe more details, you can check out articles from Lab Muffin Beauty or even from beautifulwithbrains.com and some other sources, which we’ll leave in the description below. Because they do a really good job in summarizing the differences that we mentioned so you can just reiterate that. Hopefully this has helped clarify what skin purging is and that it is a real thing! And it can happen to anyone, depending on the products you’re using and just how your skin reacts. Which is unique to every single person. Because we’re all unique! (Fel: Yeees!) Just remember be patient and really learn to read and understand your skin. Don’t freak out and give your skin time to adjust. Because I think we know straight away if something is really horrible for our skin. You can just kind of tell, in which case our survival skills will kick in. And we will automatically just stop using it and push it away. Versus something much more mild and not irritating, in which case you can try to let it run its course and see what happens. Because seriously you know, right? Like, “Oh my god. This feels wrong.” You know what’s interesting. Before this video, I thought purging was something more intense. (Fel: Bad?) Yeah. ‘Cause the word purging just sounds like – (Fel: it’s intense!) It’s like PURGING, but it’s just (Fel: but it’s a -) they’re just little micro – And it’s making way for the good. And let us know if you’ve had this happen [and] what your experiences were because we’re also curious. We have our experience and we want to know yours. So thank you so much for watching! And we’ll see you in the next videoo! Byeeeee. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR WATCHING