For anyone with sensitive skin, these simple steps from Tatcha are a holistic approach to begin reducing the possibility of a reaction and helping the skin heal.
1. Keep a skin diary to track any skin reactions to new foods, skincare or cosmetics. Because there can be more than one cause for a skin reaction, a written account can help you go back and identify potential irritants.
2. Avoid foaming cleansers. PEG (polyethylene glycol) surfactants, which cause the foaming action in many facial cleansers, strip the skin of its natural oils, causing dryness and unbalancing the skin’s barrier function.
To cleanse skin without stripping it, look for cleansers that use non-comedogenic oils (oils that don’t clog pores) as an alternative. Cleansing oils remove impurities without disturbing the skin’s essential moisture.
3. Avoid alcohol-based skincare and cosmetic products. Not every product with alcohol is problematic for skin, but products with a high percentage of isopropyl or SD Alcohol 40 can dehydrate and harm the skin’s barrier function. Alcohol-based and astringent toners, in particular, can aggravate sensitive skin.
Instead, try hydrating toners with moisturizing ingredients to replenish your skin if you feel that a toner is necessary in your skincare regimen.
4. Be cautious when using aggressive skincare treatments. Many anti-aging treatments contain harsh ingredients to remove the top layers of skin. This includes retinols, beta hydroxyl acids, alpha hydroxy acids, salicylic acids and some physical exfoliators. Physical exfoliators made of ground-up nuts, sugars or sand have sharp edges that can cause micro-tears to the delicate skin on your face and neck. When your skin’s barrier function isn’t working at its best, these can further damage and erode it.
If you do wish to use chemical exfoliators, be sure to let your dermatologist or aesthetician know about your sensitive skin before any treatments or facials. Or, try enzymatic exfoliators that are gentle but still give many of the same benefits.
5. Consider the effect your hair products may be having on your skin, too. Shampoo, conditioner, and hair coloring agents can irritate skin when they come into contact with it. In the shower while you’re rinsing your hair, the chemical residue may cause irritation on your shoulders and back.
If you have very sensitive skin, look for allergen-free shampoos or make your own. Colloidal Oatmeal, a scientifically-proven skin protectant and soother is a great base for an at-home shampoo.
6. Avoid touching your face throughout the day. Even with regular hand-washing, our hands come into contact with all types of potential irritants and bacteria. Touch your face only in the morning and evenings when cleansing it applying makeup. Be sure to wash any makeup brushes you use with a gentle brush cleaner. Depending on the brushes you use, you may be able to use your favorite facial cleanser to wash them as well.
7. Consider having a full-panel allergy test to ensure you’re not reacting to any common allergens in the environment or food allergies. Keep the results on hand in case you need to show a doctor or aesthetician the exact name of the substances you’re allergic to.
8. Manage stress and establish a healthy sleep schedule. Stress and sleep are significant lifestyle factors that affect skin’s health. One clinical studies shows that sleep deprivation and stress disrupts skin barrier function in healthy women. Skin’s recovery is also slowed by a lack of sleep and the body’s stress response.
A brilliant product for sensitive skin is one of our best selling serums. Guinot Serum Hydra Sensitive — Face Serum is an in-depth desensitising treatment for sensitive, intolerant skin.
- Soothes the manifestations of skin intolerance.
- Emergency treatment for “skin, which flares up at a moment’s notice”.
- Lymphokinine®: Lymphokine improves skin tolerance by combining an immediate soothing action to reduce irritation with a protecting action, which reinforces the skin’s natural defences.