Taking care of your skin barrier is fundamental in your skincare and beauty routine.
We know from research that the best way to tackle texture, blackheads, and spots is to use treatments with acids, such as AHAs (citric acid). We’ve incorporated this key exfoliating ingredient into multiple stages of our 4-Step Kit skincare routine to banish spots and acne.
You may have heard about the skin barrier – something widely discussed by TikTok dermatologists – but what is it, and how do you take care of it using Like It On Top?
What is the skin's barrier?
We use barrier-boosting skincare to look after the moisture barrier, which is the outer protective layer that does its best to keep your skin happy, healthy, and hydrated. It’s made up of lipids, the natural fats in our skin including ceramides, fatty acids, and cholesterol, that keep skin moisturised and also keep nasties out. These lipids work hard to bind the tough skin cells together. It’s an essential element of a clear, moisturised complexion.
Having a healthy skin barrier will keep things like dirt and bacteria, as well as pollutants, out of the deeper layers of skin. As a result the skin will look and feel soft, smooth, and bright. But a damaged cell barrier is bad news for your complexion!
What should I do if my skin barrier is damaged?
Having a damaged moisture barrier can’t protect your skin from outside factors, meaning that bacteria and dirt can penetrate your skin and cause damage, including acne and blemishes. This leads to rough-feeling skin that is dull and prone to even more blemishes.
The skin's moisture barrier is also essential to keeping hydration and water in your skin, so damage to your skin barrier will result in water loss. This leaves your skin looking and feeling dehydrated, so it overproduces oil (sebum) to compensate for a lack of hydration. The inability to keep your skin hydrated and moisturised means it’s more prone to signs of ageing like fine lines, dullness, and wrinkles.
How can I tell if my skin barrier is damaged?
Not only does skin not look its best, you’ll be able to tell your moisture barrier has been damaged by how it feels to the touch. Damaged skin is red and sensitive. You might even find that your usual skincare products start to sting or feel uncomfortable, even if you’ve invested in nourishing products.
As a result of COVID lockdowns, most of us had more time to think about our skincare, but some people were drawn to acids and retinols that promised clearer, younger skin. It's fair to say that some got a bit obsessed with them and this has left a lot of people with sensitive skin that is prone to breakouts. This led us to create the 4-Step Kit skincare line based on boosting your skin’s barrier.
What should I do to protect my skin barrier?
1. Use a gentle double cleansing system
Did any of you use a rough scrub or harsh astringents on their face in their teenage years? Hopefully we've learnt from our mistakes! But using cleansers that are too harsh will strip moisture from your skin, in turn damaging the skin's barrier. Modern facial cleansers are powerful enough to deeply cleanse your skin but are also creamy and hydrating to keep your moisture barrier intact. Use the 4-Step Kit which replenishes the skin with the right natural ingredients to keep it moisturised and hydrated.
2. Reduce exposure to heat and UV rays
Does your skin ever feel dry, tight, or sensitive after washing it with hot water? Using hot water to wash skin is not a good idea! While it can be tempting to use hot water to wash our faces because it feels good at the time, make sure you stick to lukewarm water. Hot water can further dry out our skin and leave it feeling tight. It's also crucial to wear SPF every day – yes, even in the winter when there is a lack of sun. The sun’s rays are the biggest cause of skin ageing and damage. And this damage applies to your moisture barrier too.
3. Keep your skin moisturised
Our simplified 4-Step Kit skincare routine is best for cell barrier moisture. You can incorporate the four steps, which includes a toner and serum, which acts as a deeply hydrating moisturiser (such as Sustain (oil cleansing protection)) which comes as part of the 4-Step Kit is essential. The added bonus here is that Sustain works even for dry skin as it works to balance. Oily skin also benefits from our Sustain moisturiser as it hydrates without overwhelming the skin. Build your routine around the 4-Step Kit to target specific concerns like blackheads.
There's no such thing as perfect skin, wo don't go overboard with multiple actives that can lead to an compromised skin barrier. If the cell barrier is damaged, we can expect red, sensitive skin that is dry, acne-prone, and rough. So it's important to prioritise your moisture barrier in your skincare routine, for clear, hydrated skin.