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Moisturizer is one of the top 3 skincare products that you should use regularly to have healthy skin. It is important to moisturize your skin to keep your skin barrier strong, keep your skin healthy and reduce dryness. While moisturizer is a crucial step in anyone’s skin care routine, sometimes it can cause burning sensations. Have you ever applied your favorite moisturizer only to have it immediately start burning your skin? Why does moisturizer burn your skin? It’s a frustrating experience, to say the least. But don’t worry – you’re not alone. In this blog post, we’ll explore some of the common causes of moisturizer burning, what it might mean, and what you can do about it.
Is Moisturizer Supposed To Burn?
No, your moisturizer should never burn, even if it has exfoliating ingredients. It’s a common myth that if it tingles or burns, that means the product is working, but that’s actually not true and you could be damaging your skin. If your moisturizer is burning, your skin is trying to tell you something is wrong.
Related post: Is Toner Supposed To Burn?
What Causes Moisturizer To Burn?
Have you ever applied your favorite moisturizer only to have it immediately start burning? It’s a frustrating experience, to say the least. And you’re probably left wondering why does my moisturizer burn my skin? There are several reasons why your moisturizer is causing a burning sensation when applying. Let’s dive in to all the possibilities.
Your Skin Barrier Is Compromised
The first reason why your moisturizer might be burning is that your skin barrier is compromised. Your skin barrier is the outermost layer of your skin and its main job is to protect your skin from environmental aggressors like pollution, UV rays, and bacteria.
When your skin barrier is damaged, it can no longer do its job properly and this can lead to all sorts of skin problems like dryness, redness, and sensitivity.
One of the biggest symptoms of a compromised skin barrier is a burning sensation when you apply skincare products. If you notice any kind of stinging or burning when you apply any kind of product (cleanser, toner, serum, etc). its likely your skin barrier is damaged.
Irritated Or Dry Skin
Another reason why your moisturizer might be burning is that your skin is either irritated or dry. If you have irritated skin, it means that your skin is inflamed and this can happen for a variety of reasons like using harsh skincare products or using products that are not formulated for your skin type.
For example, if you have dry, sensitive skin and you’re using a moisturizer formulated for oily skin that’s designed to balance oil production, your skin will not be happy! The moisturizer will only make the dryness worse and lead to irritation and a burning sensation when applying moisturizer.
If you have sensitive skin, you’re more likely to experience a burning sensation when applying moisturizer (or any other skincare product for that matter). This is because your skin is already inflamed and any type of product (even the most gentle ones) can irritate your skin and cause a burning sensation.
Sensitive skin is more likely to experience a reaction like burning or stinging from skincare products. This can happen with a particular product or even a particular ingredient.
If you have sensitive skin, it’s extremely important to pick a moisturizer that’s formulated for sensitive skin. This way you can avoid harsh ingredients and potential irritants in your products and prevent your moisturizer burning in the first place.
Additionally, certain skin conditions like rosacea or eczema can make skin more sensitive and more susceptible to reactions like burning or stinging.
Another reason your moisturizer might be burning is that you’re having a reaction to a product or ingredient. This is most likely to happen if you have sensitive skin, but it’s possible for anyone to have a reaction to a particular product or ingredient.
A reaction can be an allergic reaction or just a reaction to the product or ingredient that just didn’t agree with your skin.
If you think you’re having a reaction to a product, it’s important to stop using the product immediately.
There are a lot of skincare products on the market that contain harsh chemicals and artificial fragrances. These ingredients can irritate your skin and cause a burning sensation when you apply the product, even if you don’t have sensitive skin.
If you want to avoid this, it’s important to pick a well-formulated moisturizer with no harsh ingredients.
Common ingredients to avoid are:
- Essential oils
Certain ingredients like preservatives or parabens can also cause a burning sensation. Although preservatives are necessary to keep bacteria from growing in your product, they can cause issues for certain people.
If you’ve been exfoliating your skin a lot lately (either with physical exfoliants or chemical exfoliants), it’s possible that you’ve overexfoliated your skin. This means you’ve removed too many dead skin cells from the surface of your skin and this can lead to all sorts of problems like dryness, redness, a damaged skin barrier and more.
One of the symptoms of overexfoliation is a burning sensation when you apply skincare products. If you think you’ve overexfoliated your skin, it’s important to take a break from exfoliating and give your skin time to recover.
What To Do If Your Moisturizer Burns Your Skin
Stop Using The Product
If your moisturizer is burning your skin, the first thing you should do is stop using it immediately. This is especially important if you think you’re having a reaction to a product or ingredient.
It’s important to wash off the product as soon as you experience any burning sensation. Washing the product off quickly will avoid further irritation and damage. Be sure to use a gentle cleanser, lukewarm water and gently pat skin dry.
The next step is to use soothing ingredients, but keep your products minimal. Meaning, don’t go using 10 different serums and 3 moisturizers.
When skin is sensitive or irritated, less is more.
The goal is to soothe and calm the skin, not irritate it further.
Some soothing ingredients you can try are:
- colloidal oatmeal
- centella asiatica
Avoid Harsh Ingredients
As we mentioned before, one of the reasons your moisturizer might be burning is because it contains harsh ingredients. If this is the case, you should avoid any products with these kinds of ingredients:
- essential oils
Instead, look for products that are specifically formulated for sensitive skin and free from potential irritants.
Give Your Skin A Break
If you regularly use chemical or physical exfoliants, it’s a good idea to skip those products for the time being while you work on healing your skin. This is especially important if you have a damaged skin barrier or have over-exfoliated your skin.
Continuing to use exfoliants can only cause more damage. When you skin barrier is damaged enough, it may be months or even years before you can safely introduce exfoliants into your routine again.
Try skipping the exfoliation for a few nights and see how your skin reacts. You may need to take a longer break, depending on how irritated or damaged your skin is.
Should I Stop Using Moisturizer If It Burns?
In short, yes, if your moisturizer is burning your skin, you should stop using it immediately. Moisturizer should not burn your skin, and if it does, it’s a sign that it just does not work for your skin or that something is wrong.
How Should Skin Feel After Moisturizing
After you’ve applied your moisturizer and given it a few minutes to sink in, your skin should feel hydrated and comfortable but not greasy, heavy, tight or dry. If your skin doesn’t feel comfortable after moisturizing, it means you are using the wrong moisturizer.
For example, if you have oily skin and your moisturizer leaves your skin looking shiny and it feels heavy, it’s not the right product. And if you have dry skin and your skin is left feeling tight, itchy and uncomfortable, it’s not the right product.
Why Does Moisturizer Burn Wrap Up
When you moisturize your skin, it should not burn. If it does, it means that the product is either not compatible with your skin or contains harsh ingredients that are damaging your skin. In either case, stop using the product immediately and get your skin back on track. It can be a frustrating experience when your moisturizer burns your skin all of a sudden, but it’s important to stop using it to avoid damaging your skin barrier. Additionally, it’s equally as important to find a good moisturizer that doesn’t burn and leaves your skin feeling comfortable.
If you’re looking for a good moisturizer to use, I love the Cerave Moisturizing Lotion or Cream. They’re both great for sensitive skin and work to repair the skin barrier.