Everything You Need To Know About Skin Purging


The term ‘skin purging’ may bring up images of grime and gunk being extracted from your pores, as seen on a number of Instagram videos that feature massive blackheads being pushed from pores. However, skin purging, is not nearly that gruesome. Rather, a skin purge refers to the reaction some skin types have to certain products, namely acids and retinol. These specific ingredients are known as chemical exfoliants. They slough off dead skin cells which is why new ones are generated sooner than they would on their own. This can bring blockages to the surface causing irritation and breakouts.

The good thing about purging is that the reaction is temporary and the side effects are shorter than your average breakout, and it’s ultimately the sign that the products you added to your skincare regimen are working. 

What Is Skin Purging?

Skin purging refers to the way your skin reacts to a certain active ingredient such as retinol and acids. The usage of said ingredients causes your skin to exfoliate which then triggers cell turnover leading to congestion to the surface.

What Causes Skin Purging?

As a skin purge basically signals a speed up in the skin exfoliation process, often, you might notice minor acne symptoms. The active ingredients that lead to skin purging promote skin cell renewal by exfoliating. As per the research, the skin renews itself approximately every 28 days, but acid peels and retinoids speed up the process, which can result in breakouts. 

How To Treat Skin Purging?

When it comes to treating your skin during a purge, the best thing to do is actually the least satisfying answer anyone really wants to hear - you just have to wait for it to subside. Depending on how intense the reaction is - your skin purge can last for two to three weeks.

Here are a few tips you can take to make the effects of a purge less irritating, which are similar to treating your skin the same way you would a regular breakout. Always keep your skin hydrated, avoid picking and popping any inflammation because most purge-causing ingredients make the skin more sensitive to sun damage, limit exposure and wear protection when you are outside. Here, we’re hoping to help you listing down the best skin routine for when you’re trouble with skin purging.

Step 1: Cleanse

This might be a no-brainer, but every stellar routine starts with cleansing. Even if you did a thorough cleanse the night before, at least a mild cleanse will be needed in the morning to remove any residual product or debris from the skin to prepare it for your morning skincare routine.

MyGlamm Recommends: Glow Iridescent Brightening Foam Cleanser

Give your skin barrier some love with this uber-hydrating toner. It’s like a tall glass of water for parched-AF skin. It quickly sinks into the skin leaving it fresh and plump. The essence is suitable for all skin types, thanks to its water-light texture and fast absorption. Add this to your skincare routine.

Step 3: Treat 

Next come treatments like serums. Serums are usually smaller molecules and are meant to absorb into deeper layers of the skin, while moisturisers and creams are heavier. They hydrate the upper layers of skin. If you are applying skincare products in an incorrect order, you are wasting the products and not reaping the maximum benefits of each product. A potent antioxidant serum like this one is the best way to go!  

MyGlamm 15% Vitamin C Brightening Serum

You don’t need to switch up your entire skincare regimen to get radiant, youthful-looking skin. Enter this face serum that offers extra skin-brightening benefits without breaking your bank account. It will not only face away scars but also help in minimising enlarged pores. MyGlamm has managed to combine the 4 power-house including vitamin C and hyaluronic acid to create a product that offers infinite skin benefits.

Step 4: Apply Your Eye Cream

If you want to perk up those peepers, then it’s probably time to wear eye cream. Although the internet was set ablaze by the revelation that eye cream should actually be applied before moisturiser, it’s now a widely accepted truth. 

YOUTHfull Hydrating Eye Cream

For folks looking for an under-eye cream that goes the extra mile to fight fine lines, puffs, and dark circles - you are legit going to fall in love with this rejuvenating under-eye mask. This innovative formula with water Bank Technology will leave your under-eyes look less dried and skeletal and dewier, brighter and plumper instead. Wins all-around!

Step 5: Moisturise


After allowing your serums to absorb a bit, you can move on to applying your go-to moisturiser like this one. For daytime, a lightweight moisturiser can work well under makeup and as a precursor to the final daytime step, SPF. 

Glow Iridescent Brightening Moisturising Cream

This moisturiser is like a generous hug for your face and can brighten even the dullest complexions. This rosehip oil and vitamin-rich treat is an instant thirst quencher for parched skin. The best bits? It is one of the best face creams for winters. Not to forget, it also fights the signs of aging and will give your skin a subtle iridescent glow.

Step 6: Apply SPF

We have said it a thousand times but it bears repeating: SPF all the time, no matter what. Plus, going once in the morning and forgetting about it for the rest of the day isn’t great. especially if you’ll be spending time outside. We recommend applying it every three to four hours. 

Manish Malhotra Sandalwood SPF 25 Gel

If the weather is leaving your sensitive skin dry and flaky skin, this haldi and sandalwood-infused formula is great to call on. It’s a go-to for skincare obsessed for good reasons, the powerful ingredients not only instantly hydrate and plump up the skin but also smooths the look of lines over time, It’s no surprise that it’s an all-time classic loved by people with all skin types. 

Difference Between Skin Purging vs Breakout

When you add a new product to your skincare routine, its important to keep in mind that not all reactions are technically a skin purge. There are times when a product you’re using might be irritating your skin for a different reason, like clogging your pores, which can trigger an allergic reaction, leade to acne which may result in irritation. An acne of the skin might be a sign of skin purge, but there are a couple of thing you should know to spot the difference between skin purging and breakout.

Skin Purging

Acne Breakout


Lasts less than 4 weeks

Lasts more than 4 to 6 weeks


Occus in areas with frequent breakouts

Occurs in new areas

Ingredient Check

Chemical exfoliants like retinol and hydroxy acids

Don’t contain active ingredients


Don’t leave behind marks and blemishes

Tends to leave scars


How to Prevent Skin Purging

Imagine you have added a new product to your skincare regimen, but you don’t want to deal with the skin purge aftermath that comes with it. Can we do anything to prevent skin purge? Unfortunately, not really. We recommend slowly introducing a new product in your skincare regimen to give your skin some time to adjust. For instance, if you are incorporating retinol into your beauty routine, try using the product once in the first week, twice in the second week, three times in the third week, and so on until you’re using the product every day.

And before you introduce a new product, always take a good look at the ingredients and compare notes with other products that haven’t worked so well for you in the past - your skin might be sensitive with a certain chemical or component.


What does skin purging look like?

Skin purging typically looks like tiny red bumps on the skin that are painful to touch. They are often accompanied by blackheads and whiteheads. It can also make your skin look flaky.

How long does skin purging last?

Skin purging should be over within four to six week of starting a new skin care regimen. If you purge for longer than that, consult your dermat.

Does purging leave marks?

Purging pimples do not leave marks or blemishes on your skin. It actually heals the skin to form fresher skin cells.

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