If you’ve got sensitive skin, you already know that skin care can be a challenge. There are so many factors that can come into play. Which products you should use? What ingredients should you avoid? Just a lot of info in general! To simplify this, we’re giving you 5 do’s and 5 don’ts to follow if you have sensitive skin.
- Be gentle and patient – Sensitive skin needs extra care, so with every step you take, use a gentle touch. Use a mild cleanser for sensitive skin, and rub just hard enough to get the job done, but not more than that as it could increase redness.
- Patch test products – Before you introduce any new product into your regimen, take a tiny amount and apply it to the thin skin on the inner forearm near the crook of the elbow. If you notice any redness or inflammation, you know to discontinue that product and find something else. Also, don’t apply product with your fingers! Use a spatula or specially designed stainless steel wand.
- Seek out soap alternatives – There are plenty of ways to get your skin clean without having to resort to cleaners with harsh surfactants. Foaming cleansers that don’t contain soap are increasing in number daily, and here’s a little secret: You don’t need the suds to get clean! Yes we like to see the foam because it makes us think it is “working better”, but there are many cleansing clays that don’t foam but cleanse just as well.
- Limit environmental exposure – Sensitive skin can be damaged very easily. Protect yourself from the environment. Not just UV rays, but wind, pollution, low humidity, extreme temperatures. Use a mineral-based environmental protection cream that leaves skin smooth and soft.
- Visit an esthetician – Even though you may learn many of the tricks to properly care for your sensitive skin, nothing beats visiting an expert. An esthetician is trained to properly inspect and care for your skin, can perform facial treatments to help reduce the appearance of redness, and has the added benefit of giving you recommendations for a custom-tailored product routine including skin care for sensitive skin.
- Use fragrance heavy products – Fragrance-laden products can tend to be irritating to those with sensitive skin. Usually cleansers with heavy fragrances are made up of harsh detergent chemicals. And beware of masking fragrances! Some manufacturers actually put in fragrances to mask fragrance, and then claim to be fragrance-free!
- Wear irritating fabrics – When it comes to what causes sensitive skin, irritated skin is a main factor. Stick to natural, breathable fabrics. The two least irritating fabrics to skin are cotton and silk. Wear cotton when you want to stay cool and silk to keep in some of the heat.
- Use products containing alcohol – Alcohol tends to dry the skin out. If you’ve ever gotten rubbing alcohol on your fingers and had it dry off, you know just how extremely drying it can be. Drying out already damaged skin only creates more chances for the epidermis to get damaged more easily.
- Use waterproof cosmetics – The stronger your cosmetics last on your skin, the harder they will be to take off. Avoid waterproof and other long-wear cosmetics because they require stronger cleansers to remove, which may not be right for already sensitive skin.
- Rely on antibacterial/hypoallergenic products – The two words may seem similar but they’re two different kinds of products. You’ll want to stay away from antimicrobial products because they often contain harsh chemicals, possibly including some that are particularly nasty to your body, so you’ll want to just stay clear of these. Hypoallergenic products may sound good for sensitive skin, but the term hypoallergenic is not regulated, so anyone can put it on their products and it can mean whatever they want it to mean. As stated above, patch test your products before using them for prolonged periods of time and if in doubt, as your esthetician or dermatologist.
*This blog is for informational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice, treatment or diagnosis. Always seek the advice of your doctor or health provider with any questions or concerns you may have about a medical condition.