Do you have tight, red or itchy skin?
Do you react easily (and quickly) to most products you use?
It sounds like you have sensitive skin. Most of us have experienced some or all of these symptoms at some stage. This is because skin can become sensitised to all sorts of things including the environment, beauty ingredients and our own hormones to name a few. When bumps and redness is your norm however, your skin is more than sensitised - its sensitive. So you’re super careful what you put on it right!
It’s important to understand what is needed to manage sensitive skin problems and the first step is knowing what your skin doesn’t need. Because irritation is your skin’s worst enemy.
1. Stay away from all artificial fragrance and acidic essential oils in products.
Research has shown fragrance is one of the most common causes of irritation. Synthetic fragrances are the worst offenders but some essential oils are also too harsh for sensitive skin. Mint oils and citrus oils like peppermint, lemon, orange and tangerine are too acidic for sensitive skin.
2. Use products with less ingredients.
The key to managing sensitive skin is finding out what sets it off. That’s hard to do when you use products with 25 ingredients (that you can’t pronounce!) The fewer ingredients, the less likely to be a reaction. We even recommend going back to the absolute basics in some cases like a single oil as a cleanser. Brands with fewer ingredients are usually doing so deliberately; to make the product safe for all skin types. The sad truth is that adding in fillers cheapens products and this is the dirty little secret of the skincare industry.
3. Create a barrier.
Skin balms, salves, barrier creams have all got the same goal in mind – to protect sensitive skin. This is especially important in winter when the air is biting outside and the central heating is pumping inside. Balms and barrier creams work by forming a protective layer over the surface of your skin. They lock in vital moisture and act as a shield against irritants, creating the ideal environment for damaged skin to heal underneath.
4. Treat your skin as gently as possible.
Don't use scrubs, loofahs, microdermabrasion crystals, walnut shells or products containing alcohol or witch hazel. These may appear to smooth out you skin immediately after use but underneath they are stripping your skin of vital oils and it won’t be long before the reaction surfaces.
So, it’s time to put away irritating products and use a gentler skin care routine.