It’s January, which means it’s detox season — that time of the year when you’re convincing yourself (and everyone who stalks your Insta Stories) to give up carbs, eat healthy, skip the sugars and alienate soda. Basically, give up, to clean up!
Translate this to skincare and the newest stance is to give up beauty products altogether. This is Skin Fasting — the skincare trend that believes in letting your skin breathe (also a beauty trend btw) by moving away from exhaustive skincare routines. Popularised by Mirai Clinical in Japan, skin fasting essentially roots from Hippocrates’ belief in traditional fasting being an enabler for the body and therefore, a form of healing for your skin. This is because the skin has an inherent tendency to take care of itself that skin fasting simply puts to use.
What’s interesting is that skin fasting works perfectly in sync with skincare minimalism — something we’d established being the order of the day. So you’d be right on trend to want to give it a go. Just be sure to keep a few basics in mind, so you know you’re doing it right.
Start slow but go steady
Try going 24 hours without using any skincare products. This ought to prep your skin to deploy its ‘TLC mechanism’ aka produce natural oils and substitutes to replenish itself. As you progress, you’ll realise how little external help your skin needs.
‘Can I at least moisturise?’
Nope. Are you forgetting that the best form of hydration for your skin is water? If the ‘drink water’ reminders weren’t enough, you can now find ‘chug it like it’s wine’ water bottles to help your cause. So really, zip it and sip it! Hydration is the only constant to having great skin.
Cleanse, cleanse, cleanse
This is probably your only cheat into keeping your skin clean but with water, no face wash. It is, however, debatable whether to use sunscreen. Your skin does need sun protection but that also doesn’t make your skin fasting any less authentic. So do what suits you.
Watch the temperature
Make sure your room isn’t too cold and dry, especially when sleeping at night. Your surrounding temperature affects your skin too. Cold temperatures mean dry air—something that draws moisture away from your skin.
Remember, it’s only an experiment
Which means there’s no hard and fast rule to it. Whether you want to go bare or simply dial down your routine to a few basics, is entirely up to you. Be wary though, if you have acne-prone skin, you might want to stick to your anti-acne routine till your skin clears up.
All in all, to form a verdict of this experiment, it’s best you try it for yourself (as is the case with all trends that come and go) to see how it works for you. Even if it doesn’t entirely win you over, skin fasting will at least ingrain the idea of ‘less is more’ in your skincare routine and that just might be a good takeaway.