I received an email recently from a woman asking about our products. She mentioned that her skin was distressed despite her 9-step routine and access to various skincare products. She grappled with multiple issues, including redness, breakouts, and eczema.

In her pursuit of a solution, she asked me about our products, and which might help with her skin issues. I explained that the key was not adding more products but simplifying her routine.

She just spent years using poorly formulated products and using far too many of them, which is like years and years of eating too much junk food.

By narrowing it down to just our cleanser and moisturizer, she witnessed a remarkable transformation within a few weeks.

Ask aestheticians and dermatologists what problem they’re seeing; often, the answer is a broken-down skin barrier.

A broken barrier — symptoms include inflammation and patchy, flaky skin — can eventually lead to other problems since it means the skin’s defences are compromised. Besides sensitive skin, barrier dysfunction is also partly responsible for rosacea, eczema, psoriasis and acne, all of which are on the rise, according to epidemiological studies.


What’s to blame for the mass barrier malfunction?
Using too many products.

Dermatologists and aestheticians are beginning to echo this sentiment. Despite using many high-end products, their clients often struggle with skin conditions. The problem is the overwhelming stress on the skin from overuse of skincare products.

Experts point out that our skin's natural barrier is its defence against environmental aggressors. Overburdening it with many products can compromise this barrier, leading to dryness, redness, and breakouts. It can also cause flare-ups of underlying skin conditions like acne, rosacea, eczema and psoriasis.

Applying too much product trains your skin to rely on these products, and it gets lazy and forgets how to help itself - it gets bombarded with all kinds of things thrown at it before it even has time to react to the last thing that came along. This perpetuates many skin problems. 

Many skincare ingredients can also be stressors. Every ingredient applied to your skin is another potential threat for your skin to address. The more products you use, the harder it can be for your skin to find that healthy balance, increasing the likelihood of more problems.

Avoiding harsh ingredients like sodium lauryl sulphate and opting for a gentle, pH-balanced cleanser can make a significant difference. Moisturizers with ingredients known to nurture the skin barrier, such as squalane niacinamide and hyaluronic acid, should be prioritized in moisturizers.

We've embraced complex routines in our quest for perfect skin, often leading to the opposite of the desired effect. The solution? The consensus among dermatologists is clear: a return to basics.


It’s possible to de-stress your skin.

Begin by eliminating harsh actives like retinoids, benzoyl peroxide and lactic acid.

They’re often revered for addressing wrinkles or evening skin tone, but these so-called ‘impressive results’ can have some undesirable consequences.

You should also forgo any face cleanser that makes your skin feel tight or itchy, as both are signs of a compromised skin barrier. This is especially true of cleansers that feature surfactants like sodium lauryl sulphate, as this class of ingredients can cause dryness, irritation and eczema.

Avoid products with alcohol, essential oils and fragrances since these are also likely to irritate.


What should your routine look like instead?

While your skin is healing and learning how to fend for itself again, the experts all recommended sticking to the basics: a cleanser and moisturizer - that’s it. The idea here is to treat the skin, not the skin condition.

Use a gentle, non-foaming, pH-balanced cleanser. You don’t have to wash your face twice daily -skipping it in the morning and rinsing it with water is perfectly fine.


schaf facial cleanser

Look for a moisturizer with calming, soothing, nourishing properties and apply it to damp skin morning and night. Use formulas containing ingredients that support the skin barrier, like squalane, jojoba oil, sunflower seed oil, grape seed oil, vitamin E and niacinamide.


schaf mousturizer


Proper skin health doesn't come from a bottle of the latest trending ingredient. It comes from understanding and respecting your skin's natural needs, using products that nourish and protect without overwhelming. By embracing this philosophy, you're not just caring for your skin today but investing in its long-term health and radiance.


Our minimalist philosophy is about taking a few steps back, using fewer but better products, harnessing the power of multitasking, and ultimately committing to a simpler, cleaner skincare routine to achieve better skin health.


Consistency and quality are your allies to healthier, more radiant skin. It can take up to four weeks for your skin to clear up, so stick to the new routine. It is essential to be patient while the skin repairs itself.