Sensitive skin has a lower resistance to irritants. If you’re prone to sensitive skin, you know that it can be unpredictable and challenging to identify exactly what is irritating your skin. While some people are predisposed to having sensitive skin, many external factors, including climate, UV exposure, hot water and harsh chemicals can make any skin more sensitive. Today 50–60% of the U.S. population reports having sensitive skin.
Fragrances are a frequent irritant to sensitive skin, which can be found in many skin and hair care products, as well as in detergents and soaps. Allergens are another class of skin irritants that can cause inflammation and rashes for those who have allergic contact dermatitis. Common allergens include nickel (found in many eyeglass frames) and latex, which can cause allergic skin reactions.
Sensitive skin tends to show redness, swelling and scaling when irritated. It may also prickle or burn, feel tight or itch. However, establishing a good daily skincare regimen will help to minimize sensitive skin reactions. Start by washing skin with warm (not hot) water and using mild soap and fragrance-free cleansers. Avoid harsh, grainy scrubs and stiff, scratchy loofahs, which can also irritate your skin.
When choosing a moisturizer, look for one that’s formulated for sensitive skin and fragrance-free. Be wary of “botanical” ingredients, too; some essential oils can irritate sensitive skin. Heat and sun exposure can also be an irritant to sensitive skin, so always remember the sunscreen. And unless you’re using a line of products designed to work together, don’t layer too many different products on your skin. If you do have a reaction, this can make it difficult to identify which product caused the problem.
If your conditions persist or appear to worsen, your dermatologist may prescribe a treatment to help manage sensitive skin flare-ups.
The information provided herein is not intended to be medical advice. Nor is it intended to treat the underlying skin disease or condition. The information is provided solely to:
1. Moisturize, soften and smooth dry skin
2. Improve the appearance of the skin
3. Achieve healthier-looking skin