June 28, 2021
What is a Skin Barrier & Why Should You Care
A lot of marketing campaigns and ads catered towards skincare these days talk skin barrier. Your favourite skinfluencer might be posting about it on Instagram too. You might have heard the expression a several times but maybe you still do not know everything about Skin Barriers and why everyone keeps chatting about it.
What Exactly is a Skin Barrier?
Simply put, it is the outermost layer of the skin and the part of your skin that you can visibly see. Its duty is to act like a shield and keep all the bad stuff away from entering the good stuff in the skin. Skin barrier is made up of lipids and cells that work in sync to provide overall protection to your skin. Skin barrier is also responsible for making sure that electrolytes do not evaporate from your skin.
Why Is the Health of Your Skin Barrier Vital?
If your skin barrier is not in good shape, then your skin will feel tight, itchy, and uncomfortable while also looking flaky and sometimes even red. When the skin barrier is in great share then the skin feels soft and supple while looking crystal clear and healthy.
The redness when the skin barrier isn’t in a good shape varies as per the skin tone, in lighter skin tones the skin looks a bit more red than usual while in darker skin colour the skin looks darker than the original skin colour.
Can Using the Wrong Skincare Product Compromise the Skin Barrier?
In case you have a bad flare up right after using a specific product then it is possible to have your skin barrier compromised due to the said product. Let’s talk about Skin Barrier damage and all aspects associated with it.
Skin Barrier Damage: External Factors
Skin on the rest of your body is different from the skin on your face. The skin on your face is much less dense and a lot thinner overall. This means that the face on your skin can be easily damaged. Most commonly barrier damage comes from the stripping of natural oils using harsh cleansers, exfoliators and even practicing abrasive scrubbing. To be honest, we have all been there, a new product with great marketing comes a long, we’re too eager to give it a shot and then we realize that the product doesn’t suit the skin that well. Such short-term experiments are also enough to damage the Skin barrier.
Skin Barrier Damage: Internal Factors
Internal factors such as stress and hormones also lead to an impaired barrier. Studies have shown that intercellular lipids start to diminish with age. Overuse of masks leads to “mascne”, and this has become a topical subject now!
How Is Skin Barrier Repaired?
Think of the skin barrier as a brick wall, each brick is a skin cell that is held in place with mortar on your skin’s natural lipids. When the skin is healthy the brick wall holds the natural moisture and keeps out aggressors like irritants and pollution. Now, to repair your skin barrier, you need to maintain the mortar.
First things first, to repair the skin barrier you need to analyse what is causing damage to it and then remove this source of irritation. Now, this is easier said than done. However, Dr. Jaspreet has a quick way to achieve exactly this, first and foremost, switch your skin care regime back to the essentials. Avoid everything that isn’t essential until the skin starts to feel comfortable again. Then start to slowly re-introduce the products you use one by one to spot the main irritant.
Apart from this also be super gentle with cleaning. Use lukewarm water and formulas that are fragrance and soap-free. Avoid abrasive scrubs, & finally always wear a facial SPF as photodamage from blue light and the sun will aggravate the skin.