Patch Testing?

A patch test is a diagnostic method used to determine which specific substances cause allergic inflammation of a patient’s skin. Patch testing helps identify which substances may be causing a delayed-type allergic reaction in a patient, and may identify allergens not identified by blood testing or skin prick testing.

Not just sensitive skin types, everyone should patch test new skin care products to save ourselves from future headaches, and a whole lot of medical bills!

Repeat after us: Thou shalt always, always patch test new skin care before slathering. Here’s why: Even if you don’t have sensitive skin, certain formulations or ingredients (natural or otherwise), can irritate even normal skin types. This can result in red and angry rashes, or dry, itchy and flaky skin. Not only irritated skin, products with thick and heavy emollients like coconut oil can also cause unwanted breakout-related reactions like clogging and acne.

Patch testing for irritation/ allergic reactions

To do an allergy patch test, simply apply a small amount of the product to a small area of your face that’s easily covered—such as the underside of your jaw, a corner of your forehead, behind your ear or the side of your neck. There should be no other products on the skin so that you can properly test this product. Wait around 48 hours to see if you have a reaction.

If you got a little excited and have already rubbed the new serum all over your face, don’t worry. When you feel or see any redness, itching or discomfort, just wash your skin with a gentle cleanser, then follow up with your go-to moisturiser. You can also treat the area with a soothing product, such as aloe vera.

Patch testing for breakouts

To see if a product makes you breakout, you should apply the product directly on a small part of your face, such as the cheek, chin or anywhere else that’s prone to blemishes. Apply the product daily (or as recommended) to the same area for a week or so to determine whether your skin will react. However, keep in mind that breakouts can be an intended reaction for some skin care products, especially acne medications.

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