Luckily I don’t suffer from sensitive skin, but I do have a friend who does. After seeing what she goes through I’m very grateful for having hardy skin. If you have sensitive skin you may experience any number of problems including itchy, flaky, red or irritated skin. This can be due many factors including food allergies, ingredients in beauty products and sun exposure.
Why can Skin be Sensitive?
One of the major causes of sensitive skin has to be a reaction to product ingredients. Think about your daily skin care regime, specifically the number of products you use. Soaps, cleansers, toners, blemish reducers, lipstick, foundation, blush, facial masks, perfume – the list never ends! Also, chances are all your products are manufactured by different brands. Although you might think you’re doing your skin good, the opposite may be true!
Causes of Sensitive Skin
The problem with trying to identify the causes of you irritation is that it can take days for your body to show the signs of sensitivity. After going through each beauty product you may find that the problem lays elsewhere. Potential culprits include: sun exposure, detergents, fabric softeners, perfume, hair spray, shampoo and air fresheners. Also food allergies and some plants can cause symptoms of an allergic reaction as well
Healthy skin is less sensitive because it’s able to act as an effective barrier. Sunburned skin, skin that’s excessively dry and skin that is otherwise damaged tends to be more sensitive. That’s one reason why people who don’t normally have sensitive skin develop skin sensitivity during winter months when dry, cold air strips skin of its protective moisture.
8 Ways to Deal with Sensitive Skin
#1 Dermatologist: If you go to a dermatologist they’ll be able to advise you if you in fact you have a skin condition such as psoriasis, rosacea or eczema.
#2 Food Allergy Testing: As mentioned before, an intolerance to certain foods may be the root of your problem, so by identifying problem foods you can cut them out of your diet. Don’t worry, you may be able to reintroduce them later.
3# Read Product Labels: Start reading product labels – the fewer ingredients, the better. Avoid products containing alcohol, fragrances, botanicals, antibacterial, ethanol and propylene glycol.
4# Patch Test: Before using any product on a large area, test on a patch of skin first. If you’re applying a product on your face, apply a few dabs behind ears for 5 days, and if there’s no reaction, apply beside eyes for another 5 days. If all goes well, full facial coverage likely will be safe.
5# Balanced Diet including EFAs: Eat a balanced diet to ensure skin gets the nutrients it needs to remain healthy. Essential fatty acids (EFAs) such as Cod Liver Oil and Evening Primrose Oil will help immensely, most people don’t eat enough of these.
6# Natural Fabrics: Look out for natural fabrics such as cotton and silk as they are less likely to cause a reaction than synthetic materials. This is especially important for bed linen. When removing makeup use real cotton balls instead of one which are actually synthetic.
7# Sun Protection: Always use sunscreen with a high factor (eg 30). Wearing white clothes will also help reflect light away. My friend found this helped immensely – much better than sun block on its own.
8# Gently clean skin: Avoid harsh products like scrubbing mitts, excessively hot water and abrasive exfoliating products.
Does any one know of any other ways to deal with sensitive skin? If so, feel free to leave a comment.