Your ”skin barrier” (aka Acid Mantle) is a very thin layer of tissue acting as a barrier that lies on the surface of the skin. This acidic barrier is a mixture of sweat, sebum, oils, and salt which excrete naturally by our skin. Not only does the acid mantle protect our skin by killing bacteria before it has a chance to get inside, but it’s also crucial in maintaining moisture.
The Acid Mantle is measured by its pH. The pH is measured on a scale of 1-14 in which healthy skin normally has a pH between 4-5.5 and varies depending on the body part. When a client comes to me with an altered skin barrier, I ask a few immediate questions: Are you over exfoliating? What is the pH of the cleanser you are using? Are you washing your skin with soap? Does your skincare contain SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate)? (Extremely common in OTC products) Are you a smoker? Are you sleeping enough? When you take from your skin, do you give back? When your skin’s pH is too high, your skin barrier is being degraded.
You’ll experience moisture loss, premature aging, sensitivity, redness, inflammation, and acne because your skin is not balanced. This is why Home Care is SO important! What you do at home, is 80% of the results you’ll experience, good or bad! It’s like going to the Dentist. You don’t visit the dentist and then go home and neglect to brush, floss, and use mouthwash. Let’s be honest, good skin care can be an investment to some. However, can you imagine, eliminating so many of your skin concerns by SIMPLY CHANGING THE CLEANSER you’re using at home? The proper cleanser for your skin type, alone, can make a significant difference in rebuilding your skin’s barrier.
Choosing the correct facial clearer for your skin isn’t always as obvious as some think. This is where investing in a consultation with a specialist could actually SAVE your wallet AND skin from the side of effects of trial and error. Your safe bet is to ALWAYS be sure your daily cleanser is free of sulfates and loads of bad alcohol.