When you start using benzoyl peroxide wash, there’s a more than average chance that you will experience a little irritation. Moreover, it’s also possible that your acne may worsen to begin with. Both of these statements are facts, but they shouldn’t lead to you stopping its use.
Obviously, if the redness or irritation is still not showing any signs of improvement by the 5-6 week point, it’s likely high time you had a chat with your doctor or dermatologist.
Some People Are Allergic to Benzoyl Peroxide Wash
There are some people who experience an allergic reaction to benzoyl peroxide (BP), but it is quite rare – around 1 in every 1,000. It’s for this reason that it’s always a good idea to carry out a patch test and wait a couple of days to see if there’s a reaction.
What do these reactions to benzoyl peroxide wash look like? They include:
- Hives, swelling of the face
- Difficulty breathing
- Throat tightness
- Intense itching
If you’re feeling any of the above, you may be going into anaphylaxis – which is essentially life-threatening, so it doesn’t pay to take any changes with that kind of thing.
Products You Shouldn’t Combine With BP Wash
If you’re lucky enough only to experience the kind of reaction that most people get, then you can continue using it and enjoy all the benefits it brings. That said, you do have to be careful about the skincare products you combine with it. Unless your dermatologist advises you otherwise, you should steer clear of the following:
- Any treatments containing any kind of peeling agent (e.g. sulfur, resorcinol)
- Irritating hair products (e.g. hair removal products)
- Products containing lime that may cause sun sensitivity
- Alcohol-based astringents, lotions or shaving-creams
- Abrasive/dryness-causing cosmetics, cleansers or soaps
If you choose to use these products simultaneously with a BP wash, it may tip your skin over the edge and cause severe irritation. On occasions, retinoic acid may be prescribed by your doctor at the same time as BP products, although it is applied at a different time of the day.
BP washes are typically best used in the morning, whereas retinoic acid is typically used at night, meaning it shouldn’t impact any other products you’re using.
Always Start Cautiously When Using Benzoyl Peroxide Wash
When using BP wash for the first time, you need to give your skin time to get used to its regular application. You see, until you’ve got a firm understanding of how your skin reacts to BP washes, you shouldn’t jump in with both feet. Instead, start low (in terms of concentration) and start slow, so that any reactions you get are kept to a minimum.
Also, don’t be put off by an initial reaction, as most everyone gets one to some degree. Unless you’re getting major problems, you should take any mild side effects you get as a sign that you’re doing the right thing. BP is designed to remove dead skin and it’s basically acid, so it stands to reason that your skin will react in some kind of way.
Millions of people have enjoyed the benefits of BP washes, so don’t give up if you’re not getting immediate results. With a bit of patience and a little trial and error, you’ll find your level and get yourself on the road to great-looking skin.