What causes skin purging or acne purging?
Sometimes, we try new skin care products and our face flares up with pimples, and so you stop the product application. This could be your skin PURGING and it’s a good sign to continue. Let me explain:
For most people, while using a product, their skin moves from bad to worse and then good. But you are impatient and fearful of causing more damage so you stop when it’s at “worse”.
Skin purging happens when your skin tries to fit into the new product.
The rate at which skin cells are shed and replaced are sped up by the product you are using, making microcomedone turn into whiteheads/blackheads/pimples/cysts more quickly, so you’ll suddenly see a rush of blemishes showing up their ugly heads.
Microcomedone is a clogged pore –usually by dead skin cells that don’t detach and get to the surface properly.
They aren’t visible at the surface of the skin.
Meanwhile the sudden appearing of blemishes when using a product could also happen when your skin is reacting.
Let me differentiate both:
Remember that microcomedones are clogged pores that doesn’t get to the surface of the skin, products causing skin purging pushes them to the surface, and less microcomedones form, and soon your face becomes clearer.
On the other hand, a reaction will occur when the product is causing new Clogged pores or increasing irritation. New clogged pores means more blemishes overall, while irritation means inflammation, so your pimples becomes inflammed, e.g cysts, papules etc.
Active Ingredients or products that can induce purging are:
– hydroxy acids (glycolic, lactic, malic, mandelic, salicylic, lactobionic acids; gluconolactone; “fruit acids”)
– retinoids (retinol, tretinoin, adapalene, tazarotene, isotretinoin, retinyl palmitate)
– benzoyl peroxide
– chemical peels, lasers, microdermabrasion
– other exfoliants (scrubs, brushes, enzyme exfoliants)
If it’s purging, it should only make pre-existing microcomedones come to the surface faster, so if you’re breaking out in places where you don’t normally experience breakouts, it’s likely that the product is wrong for you. However, if it’s an irritating product, it could be making the type of acne you’re experiencing worse.
For example, an area where you used to have clogged bumps and whiteheads could start developing full-blown pimples. A purge should last about a month since that’s the period of time it takes for new skin cells to form. So if your skin isn’t getting better after 6-8 weeks of using that product, throw it away.
To reduce the severity of a purge, take things slowly Start products application at smaller amounts, use them less frequently. Helping your skin function perfectly by moisturizing and staying hydrated and also using enough sunscreen will speed up recovery and reduce inflammation too.
I hope you understand now? So, If your skin is purging, you need to keep going.
If your skin is reacting with a breakout, you need to stop using the product.