As seen on TikTok, Skin cycling is essentially a four-night skin care regimen that you repeatedly cycle through to simplify your routine and potentially reduce inflammation from active ingredients. Skin cycling involves alternating between exfoliating acids, retinol, and a simple moisturizer for skin that is smoother and clearer. In 2023, though, ‘advanced skin cycling’ will take over.

Advanced skin cycling is one way to personalize your skin cycling routine if your skin can tolerate retinoids and exfoliating acids more frequently than 2 times a week, as recommended in a classic skin cycling method. Changing your basic skin cycling routine to a more advance treatment can include a ‘recovery’ night where you use a plain, simple moisturizer and add in another retinol night, as an example. It’s all about changing up the active ingredients in your products if your skin is strong enough to do so.


In SOMATOLOGY / HEALTH AND SKINCARE / BEAUTY AND NAIL TECHNOLOGY / AESTHETICS / COSMETOLOGY ‘Gentle skin cycling’ is predicted to reign supreme in 2023. This process involves layering a soothing, nourishing moisturizer on top of your exfoliating serum or retinol to rebalance your skin’s natural microbiome and repair your skin barrier based on your skin’s needs and your skin’s goals.


What does a Skin Cycling routine look like?

The routine, as recommended in SOMATOLOGY / HEALTH AND SKINCARE / BEAUTY AND NAIL TECHNOLOGY / AESTHETICS / COSMETOLOGY treatment plans include:

  • Night one is exfoliation
  • Night two is for retinoids (AHAs and BHAs)
  • Nights three and four are recovery nights, where you focus on hydration and barrier repair.
  • Once you finish the cycle, you repeat the process.


Retinoids specifically have often been cycled as many people cannot tolerate them nightly. It has been reported that you should wait an hour after applying exfoliating acids like AHAs and BHAs before putting in retinol. Now, if you’re doing your routine before bed and including both exfoliating acids and retinol, you don’t always have the time to wait. By applying one product per night, you are skin cycling.

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