Sensitive skin is when you have a reaction to a skin care or cosmetic product. Not to be confused with skin conditions such as psoriasis, rosacea, eczema, folliculitis (an inflammation of the hair follicle), and reactions to food cause irritated, swollen, red, itchy, flaky or rashes of the skin.
There are so many different ways in which you may have sensitive skin. Even with sensitivities, it’s still so important to have a complete routine that ensures your skin is nourished, hydrated and protected.
While it’s impossible to account for all skin sensitivities, there are some common ingredients that can act as a trigger to your skin. Every skin is different, so just because something doesn’t work for you doesn’t mean it’s not someone else’s saviour.
Sensitive skin can lead to outcomes such as swelling, itchiness, scaly skin amongst other things. It’s also important to check the products that you’re currently using – some products are too harsh to be used all over the face. Some products in particular are only to be used once every second night, usually products that contain actives such as retinol or glycolic acid.
Another common skincare oversight include the belief that natural products can’t irritate the skin – of course, they can be just as active as more refined products! You may want to consider checking your products for essential oils or fragrance, both of which can be irritants.
It is so important to avoid harsh soaps and detergents, so try a gentle milky cleanser that locks in moisture. Be sure to use cool or lukewarm water, as hot water can damage the skin’s barrier. Do not use a rough cloth for cleansing – we recommend a soft microfiber cloth if you feel your hands aren’t doing the job.
If cleansing is too much for your skin, try using a micellar cleanser. Best used on a high-quality cotton pad to remove makeup and the day’s impurities, this nifty product tones and cleanses all in one. Don’t rub, instead but press the pad against your skin before gently wiping.
And, don’t forget the sunscreen! Unprotected sun exposure makes everyone’s skin worse, especially those with sensitive skin and even those with rosacea. Sunscreen products whose only active ingredients are titanium dioxide and/or zinc oxide are incredibly gentle and the least likely to cause sensitivity.