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26 June 2019, 10:36 | Updated: 26 June 2019, 10:38
In a world where retinol and acids are part of our everyday skincare vocabulary, sometimes we have a tendency to over do things a bit. Heart's Beauty Expert Nicola Bonn has found the products to use when your skin needs a break.
A rather full-on facial I had a couple of years ago - which involved micro-needling and various light treatments and a fairly high strength retinol to use at home - resulted in my first ever breakout of facial eczema.
Rather than sporting a beautiful glow for weeks aft the treatments, I was left with a puffy, red, itchy face for the best part of five months.
It had all been too much for my face and without the correct advice (i.e. wait at least a week to use the retinol and build up SLOWLY.
When it comes to the stronger ingredients it's worth proceeding with caution. I never recommend using an acid toner followed by a retinol (even though many people say that is fine) and I ALWAYS recommend buffering your retinol with moisturiser for the first few weeks of use.
If you feel like you've overdone it a bit and your skin needs a break then go back to basics using simple, hydrating, comforting products that will soon have you back to normal.
Here are some of my favourites...
One of the products that really helped with my eczema was the Vitamin E serum from Alpha H. In fact for the entire time that I was having my eczema flare ups, this was the only serum that I used.
I'd pat it on every night followed by a really simple moisturiser. When your skin is unhappy, the simpler and less complicated the ingredients are the better.
Back to the serum though, Vitamin E is a great ingredient for healing and calming irritated skin. The Alpha H one is combined with macademia seed oil which is hydrating and the two ingredients are rich in antioxidants. This is a product I turn to time and time again in times of need.
Alpha H Vitamin E for £29 here
For those days when you want something thick, unctuous and comforting but not too greasy, you need look no further than Votary Super Seed Nutrient Cream.
This moisturiser is brimming with seed oils including chia, rosehip and calendula. It is incredibly moisturising and so soothing. Whenever I use it I feel like I am actually feeding my skin.
Buy Votary Super Seed Nutrient Cream here for £58.50
The thing that I like about this balm is that it is totally fragrance free and really gentle. It is also masterful at removing makeup and making your skin feel comfortable and hydrated. A total must when my skin is feeling a bit unhappy.
Buy Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm here for £20.40
This is a balm that you can either massage into your entire face or use on particularly dry/aggravated areas. It will make your skin feel comfortable and can even help relieve the pain of eczema.
It's like wrapping your skin in a soft cashmere blanket.
Buy La Roche Posay Nutritic Intense here for £12.37