When I returned from a trip to Portugal, my skin was in catastrophic condition. I had problems with an outbreak of acne that, after proper care at home, partially subsided. Still, I had a lot of small closed comedones all over my cheeks and sides of my chin, and the texture of the skin was not exactly at its peak. For this reason, I decided to go for a deep-skincare treatment in a salon, which I have visited many times and always left satisfied. However, this time I left the salon with a burn on my cheek.
How did the skincare look?
This time, a new beautician took over my skincare. Already when cleansing makeup of my skin, she was rough. We proceeded with 10% BHA acid exfoliation, which was left on the face for about 10 min in order to open the pores. At the same time, beta hydroxy acids penetrate deeper into the skin and inside the pimples and open them. As always next step was the opening of pores with hot steam. In this way, the skin is softened, the pores are opened to make the pressing process easier.
We continued with squeezing pimples. I had the most problems in the area of cheeks and chin. I’ve already had severe acne outbreaks in the same area of my face, but the process has never hurt me as much as it did now. If you find the pain unrealistic or intolerable, something is wrong and you should tell your beautician to stop. It is also important not to visit a cosmetologist when you have acne, as acne should not be squeezed! Only closed comedones and blackheads can be squeezed, but not acne! If the beautician goes into acne compression, it is a sign that she is not aware of this fact and can cause serious problems.
A burn on the face due to improper use of a device that is supposed to actually benefit the skin?
The last step in the care process was high frequency therapy. High frequency therapy is used mainly because it has antiseptic, anti-inflammatory effect to narrow the pores and speed up the healing process of the skin. Gauze is applied to the face and the device should not have direct skin contact. According to beauticians, the device should be kept moving at all times. You should not feel the treatment with this device, so if you are hurting or scaffolding, ask to stop the procedure. The problem with the procedure that the beautician performed on me was that the device was in contact with the gauze and, consequently, with the skin, and the fact that it was in one place for too long, causing the burn.
Did I know immediately that my beautician had damaged my skin?
When I left the salon, my skin looked normal, just like after every deep care. Minimal redness was present on the face. At the time, I thought that maybe I was just sensitive. Well, that’s what I thought until I got home after an hour and saw my skin in the mirror. Erythema was present on both left and right cheek, and they were very painful. They were so very painful that for two days I couldn’t sleep on either side of my face. After a few days, everything turned into a big burn in the middle of the cheek.
Fortunately, thanks to my education, I quickly found myself knowing how to remedy the problem, so that a few days after home care, the final version of the injury – a burn – appeared to me. The damaged area was very sensitive and did not tolerate the application of any products.
How did I repair my skin injury?
Of course, it is not necessary that damage to your skin can only be done by visiting the salon. Even home-based ‘butchering’ of pimples can quickly lead to eczema. Also, excessive use of acidic or regular scrubs can lead to burns or eczema. So that the chances of skin damage also exist at home. Firstly, it is important to eliminate inflammation and erythema / eczema, and then work on how to deal with the scar that results from this type of injury.
I cleansed the wound properly
The most important thing is proper skin cleansing to remove impurities from the wound. I cleaned my skin every night with a gentle water-based cleanser and rinsed it with lukewarm water as the skin did not tolerate hot water. When washing your face, only gently tap the affected areas with a towel, never drag the towel over your skin.
Disinfection of an open wound is a must!
If the wound is open, you must take extra care to properly disinfect the wound and to heal it up to the stage, when the scab is produced. Of course, we should be aware that disinfecting does not mean applying alcohol, because it can only make the skin more irritated.
I resorted to Betadine dermal solution for disinfection. It is an iodized povidone, which is also recommended after various skin surgeries. Betadine contains a complex of iodine and povidone. Povidone enables iodine transfer and water solubility. After contact with skin or mucous membranes, iodine is slowly released from the complex, which is an effective non-selective substance that destroys microorganisms (bacteria, viruses, fungi and primers) on the skin and mucous membranes or prevents their reproduction. I applied the Betadine in the morning and evening on a cotton pad and tapped the wound and allowed it to dry.
The next step in healing was soothing the inflammation. At the time the wound was opened and did not tolerate any cosmetic products. Anything I applied gave me an burning feeling on the wound. The only product that didn’t irritate skin was Paula’s Choice Calm Repairing Serum, which contains a combination of ceramides, amino acids and herbal extracts to soothe inflammation in the skin.
The last stage in skincare was the application of Bepanthen ointment. Bepanthen ointment promotes healing of wounds. It contains the active substance dexpanthenol (a precursor to vitamin B5) in the ointment base. After application, dexpanthenol transitions rapidly into the skin. In skin cells, it is converted to pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), which significantly affects the formation and renewal of skin epithelium, accelerates wound healing and suppresses inflammation. Bepanthen ointment is extremely oily and therefore prevents contact of the treated surface with water after application.
Due to the grease of Bepanthen Ointment, I used Skinfairytale AtopicCream or Protectbalm in the morning because it is a lighter formulation which, due to its ingredients, effectively prevents inflammation and protects the wound from external influences.
What to do or not to do with open wounds / burns?
Do not apply any powders or concealers to the skin at the time of such damage, as this will further introduce bacteria and irritate the skin. The wound needs to dry, so it is advisable not to stick patches or bandages over it.
Things to do or not to do with open wounds / burns:
- Do not touch the wound with your fingers or if you touch it, make sure you have cleaned your hands beforehand
- When the scab begins to peel, do not forcefully remove it, let it go off on its own
- Do not apply any actives, especially acids, to accelerate the peeling process, as this only increases inflammation in the skin
- Apply only the most essential products – that is, a disinfectant and a protection product
- Do not expose the wound to the sun – I wanted to take advantage of the nice days and go for walks, but the skin on that part of the sun cream did not tolerate, so I applied a patch before the walk
Scar repair is a lengthy process and depends on the depth of skin damage
Once the wound has healed and the scab has peeled off, it is time to repair the scar. Whether it will remain very nasty or a very small scar depends on several factors. The first factor is how deep the injury was, so whether it is only a superficial injury or the injury already extends to the dermis. Another factor is how quickly your skin recovers, which of course depends on the ability of your skin barrier to repair the damage and on the collagen involved in repairing the skin damage. You will most effectively remove the scar with proper home care.
I myself began to repair the scar in a similar way I treated the burn. I still go for proper cleansing, I use anti-inflammatory ingredients, and I also added ingredients that enhance the skin’s barrier function and lighten scars and hyperpigmentation. After improving the condition of the burn, I added a niacinamide serum that enhances barrier function and has a luminous effect and Add Actives C20 Tetraforce Activator, which has a luminous effect and reduces the oxidative stress in the skin caused by the injury.