Sunday, 11 September 2016

Beauty Myths No. 19 - 'Pat dry'


This may seem like a strange one, so the context is important. I am always asked about routines and the order of using products. 
There are some things that make it onto packaging purely because NPD and marketing departments regurgitate the same advice time and time again, simply because it's what they've done before.

Obviously the main culprit is on cleanser packaging, or in cleansing routines when it says that after cleansing, you 'rinse off, then pat dry'. 
If you're soaking wet after a shower, you may want to lightly dry your face, mainly so you can see, but here's the thing: in an ideal world, you want a damp face. 
If you use your flannels and follow my routines, your skin will be damp once you've cleansed, you go from there straight to the next stage. Whether that's acids or spritzs, no need to pat dry. A damp skin is a great skin to work on. Seal in the moisture with your following products. 

There is one big exception: vitamin A.

Retinols, especially prescription strength ones, are applied to a dry skin after cleansing. I cleanse, remove it with a flannel, and leave my skin to air for a few minutes (usually enough time to make tea, not hours) before I apply the retinoid. Then I use whatever else I'm using on top. 

Patting the skin dry is not necessary. Damp dry is good.

Go straight in.



22 comments:

  1. Thanks Caroline - I've always wondered about this. One question - will the water on the skin affect the pH of the exfoliating toner I apply afterwards? I understand toners have to be within a certain pH range to exfoliate effectively - your thoughts?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Ooh, that's new - it never occurred to me not to dry my face. Will be following this advice from tomorrow morning, as always. Thanks Mrs H!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I've always thought the purpose of saying PAT dry is to let us know not to RUB dry...instructing to be gentle as opposed to telling me to be bone dry.

    ReplyDelete
  4. So I'm accidental right in cleansing, exfoliating thrn brushing my teeth before putting Retinol on! Too lazy to cross the bathroom for a clean face towel!!

    ReplyDelete
  5. oh man another question I've had for ages answered!

    ReplyDelete
  6. You reminded me I need to dry my skin properly before the retinol. Thanks. All your advice is spot on, Mrs Hirons.

    Can I mention that I find baby washers are much softer and kinder to the skin than a normal washer/flannel. Where I am you can buy a pack of 10 for next to nothing. They're smaller of course.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I've taken to keeping my serums and moisturisers in the fridge. Am I mad?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've heard of other people doing this as well, is there a reason for it?

      Delete
  8. So simple, but I always dry my face. Giving it a go tomorrow.

    ReplyDelete
  9. What about using P50? I read that one should waiting til the face is completely dry...

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hi Caroline, this might seem silly but will any face cloths work? I'm in the US, went to Target and bought 8 white wash cloths for around $5. But they were so rough I don't like using it for my sensitive rosacea prone skin. I found this flannel from the body shop and it seems to have good reviews. Do you think it's worth it to invest in face cloths or the cheap ones from target are fine?

    http://m.thebodyshop-usa.com/mt/www.thebodyshop-usa.com/shop-by-line/shop-accessories/luxury-flannel-facial-washcloth.aspx?un_jtt_v_pdp=yes&un_jtt_redirect

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I bought baby ones at Babies R Us. They were cheap and are very soft.

      Delete
  11. I always dry my face. I've been told that leaving the skin wet results in loss of moisture via the evaporation process, which is the last thing that you want when your skin is as dry as mine. I would love to know your thoughts on this, Caroline. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Can you please explain WHY you have to dry your fave before applying retinols?

    ReplyDelete
  13. What about sunscreen? Can I use it on damp face or water will dilute the spf?

    ReplyDelete
  14. Hi Caroline,

    In a previous post you say that people with sensitive skin must dry skin completely before applying retinol but that you apply after spritzing when skin is still slightly damp. Can those of us who are used to retinols apply it to slightly damp skin after spray toning? Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes I was going to say this! I have been deliberately applying my retinol to damp (i.e. spritzed) skin! Isn't this contradicting your post on retinols Caroline?

      Delete
  15. Skin is more open to products when wet. As you Apply your retinoid a more open skin also results in more irritation.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Is it ok to skip the spray tone step in the morning? I follow all the steps in your cheat sheets for am and pm routine including acid tone and I don't use a facial oil. My skin gets a bit shiny in summer and if I skip the spray tone my skin looks a lot better - if I spray tone it tends to look like an oil slick! I only found this out by accident when I forgot to spray tone after using acids the other day.

    I had been using serozonic or January labs

    ReplyDelete
  17. Yes, I'm confused. Most products say apply to a clean dry face.

    ReplyDelete

Follow this blog with bloglovin

Follow on Bloglovin
Related Posts with Thumbnails