Patch Testing Skincare: How To Do It The Right Way?

Patch testing is a critical procedure which everyone should be using to determine the compatibility of a skincare product with their respective skin types. By patch testing you’re minimising the possibility of damaging or irritating your skin, here’s how to do it the right way

We always recommend a patch test when you use a new product, even if you think the ingredients are the same/similar to a product you were using prior. Better safe than sorry.

Step #1: Apply Product To Inconspicuous Area

You’ll want to pick an inconspicuous area of skin just in case you do have an adverse affect to the product. It’s usually recommended that you conduct the patch test on the wrist, inner elbow or neck area.

Apply a small amount of the desired product to the area, which brings us onto step 2;

Step #2: Cover The Area

Not everyone follows this step but it is typically very necessary. Covering the area up prevents the skincare product from coming off the area, and prevents it from smearing into the surrounding area. The goal is to contain the test to a small, defined area as this is proper procedure.

You can cover the area with a bandage or even skin plasters, ensure you cover the entire area where you applied the product.

Step #3: Wait 24-48 Hours

Perhaps the least fun step, it takes a minimum of about 24 hours to determine whether or not the product is good to use. After 24 hours, peel away the bandage and inspect the area.

Usually a small amount of redness is acceptable especially if you used an exfoliating serum (AHA, BHA), but if there are the following symptoms you should discontinue use immediately:

  • Redness, itchiness
  • Small red bumps on skin
  • Skin flaking
  • Skin inflammation

All of the above depict an allergic reaction to whatever is in the product. It’s best to discontinue use if you experience any of the above symptoms.

That’s all there is to an effective patch test, 3 easy steps to ensure your skin stays happy and healthy.