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Nowadays, the skincare industry thrives on trusted individuals sharing skincare tips on social media, especially on platforms like TikTok. From skincare recommendations to makeup hacks, you’ll find all sorts of tips — some good and some bad — that might just surprise you. However, one new trend has surfaced recently and has been gaining lots of traction. And if you’ve read the title of this post, then you would know that we’re talking about skin cycling.

@drwhitneybowe

#duet with @specsandblazers She’s absolutely glowing. Love this #skincycling routine! 🙌 #skincycling #thatboweglow #dermatologist #skintok

♬ Super Freaky Girl – Nicki Minaj

For the unacquainted, the buzzy skincare trend that has recently taken the internet by storm took off during the height of the pandemic, when many were stuck in quarantine. Essentially, the trend promotes skin health and prevents irritation by limiting the use of active ingredients and exfoliants to just two nights a week before giving your skin a few days after to recover.

What is skin cycling?

While most of us tend to assume that layering serum over active each night will result in a better complexion, it can, however, increase your skin’s sensitivity, causing you to break out and it can even lead to accelerate the ageing process. And that’s where skin cycling comes in.

Contrary to popular belief, balancing your active and recovery nights are actually essential in leveling up your skincare game. It ensures that your actives are working to their maximum efficacy, driving the best results while minimising irritation. You will then have to follow a four-night schedule: exfoliation night, retinoid night, recovery night, and followed by another recovery night. This way your skin can actually reap the benefits of chemical exfoliation and the use of actives without going overboard and causing potential damage or irritation.

Think of it as a workout. When you’re focusing on your legs, you would want to avoid overworking the same muscle group everyday so it can repair and grow stronger between sessions.

Is skin cycling suitable for all skin types?

In general, people with all skin types can benefit from skin cycling. However, you can customise your routine depending on your concerns too. For instance, for those with acne-prone skin or oily skin, you can cut out one of the recovery nights so it becomes a three-night cycle. As for those with eczema or rosacea, you can adjust the process by adding an extra recovery night.