Ingredients You Should Never Mix In Skincare

Hi there my beautiful lovelies! Hope you guys are doing well and staying safe. Today, I want to talk to you about ingredients that you should never mix in your skincare products. If you have very sensitive skin like mine, it will be detrimental to your face skin.

Never Mix

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Benzoyl Peroxide and Retinol: While these ingredients are both used to fight acne, they can cause irritation when layered. They can, however, be used on the same day. Benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid are the biggest acne-fighting ingredient on the over-the-counter market, usually found in cleansers and spot treatments. Using benzoyl peroxide with retinol can lead to them deactivating each other’s potency. On the other hand, salicylic acid and retinol can cause dryness and flaking. Instead, use these acne products in the morning or on opposite nights that you use retinol.

Vitamin C and Alpha Hydroxy Acids: This acidity in these two ingredients can cause an irregular pH balance on the skin, rendering the products ineffective. Although vitamin C is labeled as a vitamin, it still is technically an acid (L-ascorbic), and combining two acidic ingredients can lead to irritations like peeling and dryness. It can also cause vitamin C’s low pH to be altered, leading to redness and inflammation. A good rule of thumb is to use acids like AHAs/BHAs at night since they can make your skin more susceptible to sunburn if used in the morning. Again, using vitamin C in the morning can give added benefits to the skin.

Vitamin B3 (niacinamide) and Alpha Hydroxy Acids: The low pH produced by AHAs can cause vitamin B3 to produce nicotinic acid, which can irritate the skin. Vitamin B3 is most effective when the skin has a neutral pH balance. Moreover, niacinamide consists of high pH levels, which go around 5-7, whereas acids have low pH levels of about 3-4. If they are layered together, niacinamide will increase the pH levels of acids that can turn less effective and cause a problem absorbing into the skin. This combination can also result in flushing and redness.

Vitamin C and Retinol: Retinol is a powerful skin care product that can cause drying of the skin. Therefore, some ingredients simply do not work well with retinol and can cause skin irritation. The ingredients in each of these have different purposes (vitamin C’s pH level is lower), which can work against each other and cause irritations. Vitamin C is an antioxidant, it’s best used in the mornings, while retinol, being photosensitive, is best used at night. That way, retinol can work overtime while you sleep, and vitamin C can give you antioxidant protection when you wake up.

Alpha Hydroxy Acids and Retinol: Some ingredients simply do not work well with retinol. Oftentimes, different hydroxy acids will be used in face washes or exfoliators, and while you can use two different products with these ingredients on the same day, it is not recommended to layer one on top of the other. Adding retinol after acidic skincare can increase dryness and lead to extra irritation. If retinol is a part of your everyday routine, skip out on it on days you use AHAs. But this doesn’t mean you can’t have both in your routine. It is recommended to apply your AHA in the morning and retinol at night, but you should always proceed with caution and take it slow. Dermatologists recommend starting with only one, and once you are stable after a few weeks, consider adding the other. Start by using your retinol once a week, and slowly increase your frequency. Then, add the AHA slowly as well. This also depends on what type of AHA you’re using. Using a cleanser with a bit of glycolic acid vs. a 20 percent AHA/BHA treatment is very different; a cleanser is much more easily tolerated, while a high-potency AHA should only be used once or twice a week.

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