If you have sensitive skin, you will know that it can be much more difficult to care for it come up with an effective beauty regime, than it can for people who have normal skin.
But fear not! I’m here to share some tried-and-true beauty tips specifically tailored for those of us with sensitive skin. So, grab a cup of tea, get comfy, and let’s dive into the wonderful world of gentle skincare!
1. Know your triggers
First things first – It’s essential to know what causes your skin to freak out. Common culprits include fragrances, synthetic dyes, harsh chemicals, and even certain natural ingredients.
Keep a skin diary to track what you’re using and how your skin reacts, so you can pinpoint your specific triggers and avoid them like the plague.
Once you know what causes your eczema on hands or dry, burning patches on your face, you can switch to products that are more suitable, or do away with them completely depending on what the issue is, and you will instantly start to look and feel better.
2. Keep it simple
When you have sensitive skin, it is fair to say that less is definitely more. Stick to a simple, streamlined skincare routine with gentle, fragrance-free products. Look for hypoallergenic formulas and minimal ingredient lists to minimize the risk of irritation.
It may also be a good idea to look for more natural formulations rather than those products that have a lot of chemicals, although you should be aware that, just because something is natural does not mean that it cannot cause a reaction to sensitive skin, so as always, proceed with caution.
3. Patch test, patch test, patch test!
Before trying any new product, always perform a patch test. Apply a small amount of the product to the inside of your wrist or behind your ear, and wait 24-48 hours.
If you don’t experience any redness, itching, or irritation, you’re good to go. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.
4. Embrace gentle cleansers
Harsh cleansers can strip the natural oils that your skin needs to be moist and glowing, away in no time at all, so it is a good idea to opt for a gentle, sulfate-free cleanser that will remove dirt and impurities without leaving your skin feeling tight or dry.
Ingredients like aloe vera, chamomile, and calendula are known for their soothing properties and are perfect for sensitive skin. But, again, just because they’re natural does not mean they are universally safe, so do your due diligence.
5. Don’t overdo the exfoliation
We are always told how important it is to exfoliate in order to buff away all of those dead skin cells that can make our complexion look dull, flaky, and unattractive, and exfoliation is undeniably important.
But you should not do it too often or it can end up removing healthy skin too and leaving you with an angry red, patch, flaky complexion that will probably end up causing your sensitive skin more pain too.
It’s probably a good idea, if you have sensitive skin, to exfoliate no more than once every week, and if that leaves your skin sore, then you may need to do it even less than that.
6. Love your moisuturiser
Moisturizing is essential for maintaining your skin’s protective barrier, especially if you have sensitive skin.
So, it is important that you do not stop moisturising when you have sensitive skin, but you may need to find a more gentle cleanser instead.
Some people find that natural products like coconut oil and hemp oil are a good option, whereas others are fine with commercially bought hypoallergenic and fragrance-free moisturising products, so again, a bit of trial and error may be needed to find the optimum product for your skin.
7. Sun protection is a must
Sensitive skin is often more prone to sun damage, so slathering on a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30 is non-negotiable.
Opt for a mineral-based sunscreen with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide, as they tend to be less irritating than chemical sunscreens. And remember, reapply every two hours or after swimming or sweating!
8. Be mindful of your makeup
Makeup can be a tricky territory for sensitive skin, but that doesn’t mean you can’t rock a fabulous look! Stick to hypoallergenic, fragrance-free makeup products, and avoid ingredients like bismuth oxychloride, which can cause irritation.
Mineral makeup is often a great option for sensitive skin, as it typically contains fewer irritants.
9. Give your skin some TLC
Treat your sensitive skin to some extra love and care with calming face masks and treatments. Look for masks containing soothing ingredients like colloidal oatmeal, aloe vera, and green tea. Just remember to patch test before slathering it all over your face!
10. Be gentle when removing makeup
Tugging and rubbing your skin while removing makeup can lead to irritation and redness. Instead, opt for a gentle, fragrance-free makeup remover or micellar water.
Use a soft cotton pad or reusable makeup remover cloth, and gently swipe the product over your skin to dissolve and remove makeup.
11. Don’t forget your eye area
The skin around your eyes is more delicate than the rest of your skin, so it is important that you invest in a gentle, fragrance-free eye cream or serum to keep the area hydrated and protected.
Ingredients like caffeine, chamomile, or cucumber can help soothe and de-puff your under-eye area without causing irritation, and they will ensure that your under-eye area looks just as plump and radiant as the skin on the rest of your face.
12. Avoid overheating
Hot water and steam can strip your skin of its natural oils and cause irritation. Keep your showers and baths lukewarm, and avoid exposing your face to direct steam from hot showers or saunas.
When washing your face, use cool or lukewarm water to help keep your skin calm and happy.
13. Mind your laundry detergent
Your laundry detergent might be the last thing you’d think could affect your skin, but it’s actually an important factor to consider.
Choose a fragrance-free detergent that is also hypoallergenic and this should minimise the potential for your skin to be irritated by your clothing, bedding, towels, and other soft furnishings too.
14. Embrace a healthy lifestyle
A healthy lifestyle is essential for maintaining happy, glowing skin. Prioritize a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats.
Don’t forget to stay hydrated, get regular exercise, and practice stress-reduction techniques like meditation or yoga. Your skin will thank you!
15. Be patient
When trying new skincare products or making lifestyle changes, it’s important to remember that results won’t happen overnight.
Be patient and give your skin time to adjust and respond. If you’re consistent and gentle with your skincare routine, you’ll likely see improvements over time.
16. Consult a professional
If you’re struggling with persistent skin issues despite your best efforts, don’t hesitate to consult a dermatologist or licensed esthetician.
They can help pinpoint the cause of your sensitivity and recommend personalised treatment options to improve your skin’s health in a healthy way.
As you can see, even if you have sensitive skin, you can take good care of it and ensure that you glow just as much as the next person, but you may need to modify your beauty regime in a few key ways in order to do so. It will be so worth it, though, when your skin looks young, healthy, and amazing!