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4 Signs You’re Using Too Many Skin Care Products

by kelly / February, 7 2018 01:30

Picture of skin care product bottles

There’s a reason for the saying less is more - sometimes life is just better when we keep it simple. The same sentiment applies to skin care. Overloading products can counteract their effects and irritate your skin. So how do you know you’ve used too much and it’s time to cut back? We’ve got four telltale signs to help you.

1. Skin Is Itchy, Red, Flaky or Sun-Sensitive

There are lots of reasons why your skin might be itchy, red, flaky or sun-sensitive and loading on lots of products can “make your skin especially prone to one or more of these reactions,” according to Dr. Arielle Kauvar of New York Laser & Skin Care.

When people have a bad reaction to one product, they often try to counteract it by applying another. Actually, the best thing to do in this situation is to stop using them all, give your skin a break and add back each product one at a time with a couple of days in between. This will help you figure out which product caused the initial reaction.

In addition to how many products you use, its important to be cautious of how much you apply. According to Dr. Kauvar, “overly generous application of products will increase the risk of a skin reaction.” Consider using less than a dime size amount to cover the face.

2. Skin Is Shiny But Not Oily

Too much exfoliation can make the skin look shiny even when it’s not oily. Dr. David Lortscher explains: “the reason is that overexfoliated skin has lost more of the surface dead skin cells than ideal.”

That might seem counterintuitive – why wouldn’t we want to remove all dead skin cells. Well as Dr. Lortscher explains “What we want is a bit of roughness to the skin surface, so the light scatters, and shine is avoided!”

Another sign you’ve over-exfoliated is a feeling of skin tightness.

3. Skin Is Over-Active

This one is a caution - definitely keep track of the active ingredients you are putting on your skin. Don’t know if your product uses active ingredients? Check the label for “active ingredients” – a list is required by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration if there are any.

The issue is that when active ingredients are used there is the potential for irritation if not paired correctly.

According to Dr. Elizabeth Tanzi "since the ingredients are more active and effective than ever, they can also irritate the skin if overused or used in combinations that are not right for your skin type."

Check with your doctor if you have any questions on how to pair products.

One note, all sunscreens contain “active ingredients” (zinc is the one in our products) and pretty much all dermatologists recommend using sunscreen everyday throughout the year. So sunblock is one type of active ingredient product you don’t want to miss.

4. Skin Doesn’t Fit the Season

The products that work for you in the summer might not in the winter. As Dr. Lortscher explains: “what you might be able to tolerate during humid summer months might be too much for skin that becomes dehydrated from indoor heating or dry winter winds during the winter months.”

Dr Lortscher recommends using fewer, yet heavier, products when the air is colder and dryer. Again, a consult with your doctor might help you figure out what is best for your skin each season.

Healthy Skin Year Round

Finding the right balance of skin care products for you isn’t always an easy task. Based on these doctor recommendations I’d say it’s best to air on the side of less vs. more.

For even more tips and tricks to keeping your skin looking healthy year-round check out our Skin Care or Education blog series.

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