Why You Should Always Conduct a Patch Test Before Using any Skincare Product?

a woman doing a patch test on her skin

Why You Should Always Conduct a Patch Test Before Using any Skincare Product? 

Have you tried a new skincare product? Have you ever had a negative reaction? You're not on your own. Unfortunately, there is no way of knowing whether or not a product will work for your skin 100 per cent of the time. Here's where a patch test comes in handy because it's always better to be safe than sorry! Conducting a patch test should be included in the Holy Bible of skincare routines, much as applying moisturiser and SPF every day, to reduce risk and help you get the most out of your products! 

What Is A Patch Test And How Does It Work? 

A patch test is a simple technique that must be carried out before introducing a new skincare product into your routine. This contains products for both the face and the body. It's a simple but effective way to see if a product is suitable for your skin type and works for you. As we all know, prevention is better than cure, so performing this simple test can help you avoid redness, inflammation, irritation, allergic reactions, breakouts, and a variety of other issues that can harm your skin's barrier. 

While patch testing for new products is important for everyone, it is especially crucial for those of us with extremely sensitive skin, skin problems such as rosacea, eczema, severe acne, or who have previously had a terrible reaction to new products. 

Why Is A Patch Test Important Before Trying A New Product? 

There are three primary components that you test for when conducting a patch test. 

  • Allergic reactions: A product may include a number of allergens that, when in contact with your skin, cause 'allergic contact dermatitis,' or an itchy rash. This can be quite inconvenient because it can cause your skin to become dry, greasy, or even produce ugly outbreaks. 
  • Irritation: If your skin doesn't like a certain ingredient (such as essential oils), it can cause irritation, feelings, flakiness, or even tingling. All of these symptoms indicate that your skin is having trouble adjusting to the product's formulation. 
  • Heavy emollients or creams with a thick consistency, such as Coconut Oil, Shea Butter, Cocoa Butter, and others, can clog your pores and cause angry acne. People who have oily or acne-prone skin should be extra cautious when using these items. 

How To Do A Patch Test? 

It's best to conduct the skin patch test in an area that hasn't been exposed to UV radiation or medicated creams recently. We recommend doing it behind your ear, on an inconspicuous part of your arm like inside your elbow, or behind your knee. Make sure the area is clean, dry, and free of heavy sweat. For more precise results, use only a small amount and avoid soaking the area if at all feasible. 

If you don't get a reaction after 72 hours, it's time to see how the product will work on your face. Choose a tiny portion of your face that may be readily covered, such as the top of your head or the underside of your jaw. If there isn't a reaction there, too, the product is safe to use, and you can slather it away! 

How Long Do I Need To Stop And Look At The Results Of The Patch Test? 

The time varies from person to person and is determined by how receptive your skin is. Acne is contagious in some people, and they break out fairly instantly. Others may take a while to show signs of a reaction. The benefits of a new product are usually noticeable within a 24-hour timeframe, but this can take up to 72 hours in some cases. To be on the safe side, it's advisable to wait at least 72 hours. 

What a patch test's results might reveal?

  • Large responses: The skin can occasionally have major reactions that are extremely severe and conspicuous. Your skin may become irritated, red, blotchy, bumpy, or itching. All of them can be extremely uncomfortable, and you should stop using the product right away. If there has been a severe reaction, apply some Aloe Vera gel or ice to the affected region to help soothe it.
  • Mild reactions: These can occur for one of two reasons: either the substance does not fit your skin and should be avoided, or the product is designed to create a specific reaction. Exfoliating acids like Glycolic Acid, Lactic Acid, and Salicylic Acid, for example, may cause a reaction practically quickly, although it may only last 30-60 minutes. However, if you see that your reaction is getting worse over time, it could be time to say goodbye to this new product! 

What Are All The Products For Which A Patch Test Can Be Used? 

Patch testing should be done for any new product that you introduce into your daily routine. Cleansers, toners, serums, moisturisers, face oils, masks, and even exfoliants are examples of skincare products. If you have ever had a response to a product you use on your body, such as deodorants, body washes, body creams, butter, or oils, you can perform this test to be extra cautious and safe!

Take Away

A little prudence can go a long way toward preventing horrifying responses and issues in the long term. Healthy skin does not come without effort and is not a miracle. Incorporate patch testing a part of your sacred skincare routines, and you'll be able to enjoy your skincare products without any danger, for healthier, happier, and more beautiful skin!