What Is Sensitive Skin?
Sensitive skin is one of the most common skin problems that could affect any type of skin. It is more common for your skin to become more sensitive as you grow older.
As we all know, the pathological reason behind a sensitive skin is that the outer layer of the skin becomes thinner along with the expansion of the capillaries which cause redness and an itchy feeling on the surface of the skin.
In relatively dry weather such as in the winter season, it becomes really hard for people with sensitive skin to bare going outside. Furthermore, at this point, even skincare products wouldn’t necessarily help and may, in fact, cause more harm than good.
What Are the Characteristics of Sensitive Skin?
We have gathered the most common characteristics to help you identify whether you have a sensitive skin problem or not.
- You are always undergoing a dry, tight, itchy, and tingly sensation on your face when you apply any skin care product that contains alcohol. If that sensation is easily stimulated by water, wind, cold, or hot weather, then you have sensitive skin and you should be seeking medical attention.
- Your facial skin tends to be very thin and more often than not is red in color. And if that red color is not normally improved by washing it or applying any skincare product on it.
- Your face easily forms a swollen red area such as a constant rash. Especially in the winter season.
- Moisturizing is not effective by all means to hydrate your dry skin.
- The facial skin is sensitive when using non-allergic skincare products.
- The sudden appearance of unusual acne on the face. Even when using an anti-acne product, it does not help getting rid of acne or prevent its sudden formation. When it comes to acne, it is always the case of a poor diet, a hormonal abnormality, and stress. There is a huge misconception about using anti-acne products when the main reason behind the formation is not treating sensitive skin in a timely fashion.
What Causes Sensitive Skin?
The Root Causes of Sensitive Skin Are as Follows:
- When skin cells are damaged, the immunity of the skin is declined dramatically. Resulting in dehydration of the skin and losing its natural moisture, which is something that weakens the barrier function of the skin and its ability to resist external factors that cause the irritation to it. This type of cause is usually due to hormonal reasons.
- Many sensitive skin problems are caused by a genetic factor that is absolutely out of our hands. In this case, you can only work on treating it but you cannot prevent.
How to Take Good Care of Sensitive Skin?
For Damaged Skin Barrier – Relaxing And Using Some Medical Skin Care Products
If you suffer from a damaged skin barrier, you should always work on relaxing and soothing the skin by using and applying certain skincare products that could get that job done.
The amount of oil and moisture of a patient with a sensitive skin problem is significantly lower than that of healthy skin. This is not only caused by external factors but internal as well, both factors lead the skin barrier to be damaged. Therefore, the best way to tackle this issue is by restoring the normal barrier function of the skin.
First of all, you should start by stopping the application of any intolerable cosmetics during the period where your skin is most sensitive so that the skin gets sufficient time to rest and breath. Second, you should start using milder skincare products after the allergic period passes. Just note that, when you start applying a new product on your skin, you should do it gradually.
When it comes to sunscreens, try to choose products that contain zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. And, you should always avoid products that contain alcohol, vitamin A, and salicylic acid. Products with natural formulas are strongly advised as they are specifically designed for sensitive skin. Especially that they have long-lasting characteristics and is very effective when it comes to smoothing and soothing your skin. If you wonder how to choose the most proper products for your condition, please continue reading.
What Is the “Medical Skincare Product”?
Medical skincare products are also known as “Functional skincare products”. This is a special product that combines traditional cosmetics and medicine. It has an efficient therapeutic effect of medicine with the advantage of the new cosmetics technology. It has so many different functions such as cleansing, moisturizing, and soothing. And to be more specific, it is highly effective when it comes to moisturizing, which plays a very important role in repairing and restoring any damaged skin barrier.
Compared With Traditional Cosmetics, What Are the Characteristics of Medical Skincare Products?
- Medical skincare products generally contain natural ingredients such as aloe, purslane, chamomile, licorice extract, tea polyphenols, etc..
- Among the soothing ingredients listed above, aloe is considered to be the most beneficial one of all. It is anti-inflammatory with an effective immune stimulation and a healing effect.
- As for Purslane, it is known to be the “Natural Antibiotic” that has a magical effect on getting rid of bacteria, viruses, and fungus. It can reduce and even eliminate radicals, and alleviate damaged skin cells.
- Medical skincare products do not contain any ingredients that might cause skin allergy. all the ingredients have been strictly screened and tested to be clinically verified. This is why you would mainly find these products sold in pharmacies as they are usually prescribed by dermatologies.
What Extra Attention Should Be Noted?
I- Avoid all irritating skincare products and ingredients such as vinegar and salt
II- Avoid harmful skin care methods such as excessive scrubbing and squeezing of the skin.
III- Use repair products that help in regenerating skin cells and form a healthy skin barrier.
IV- Adjust your diet and avoid greasy and spicy food.
V- Avoid staying up late, make sure you get enough sleep.
For Dry And Desquamative Skin – Moisturizing
Moisturizing forms a layer on the surface of the skin to prevent skin dehydration and ultimately solve the sensitive skin problem. You still need to do the following:
- Reduce or even stop washing your face if it completely irritates you. Do not, under any circumstances, use a cleanser as it will alleviate the burning sensation. However, if you absolutely must, you should choose a mild moisturizer and never use any self-made products or recipes.
- You should use a moisturizer that contains ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, polyalcohol, collagen, and amino acid.
- You should drink more water to keep your skin hydrated. And you should eat more fruits such as pears, sugar cane, citrus. On the other hand, you should avoid drinking strong tea and alcohol, as well as avoiding seafood.
For Itching And Papules – Anti-inflammatory And Anti-allergic Drugs For Oral Or External Use
Extreme itching and inflammation will take place as the main symptoms for skin complications such as acne and dermatitis. Also, these symptoms are, sometimes, caused by certain cosmetics, dust mites, and other allergies. This is why it is absolutely necessary to undergo some anti-inflammatory treatment to protect your skin barrier.
For Facial Rashes, Thin Skin And Redness -Photoelectric Therapy
The so-called photoelectric therapy is the combination of photons and radiofrequency technology. Photons of wavelength 590-700 nm penetrate the blood vessels of the epidermis. This has a very efficient therapeutic effect on a dilated capillaries.
When undergoing a laser operation to remove skin redness and inflammation, you should pay attention to the following points:
- Photoelectric therapies are considered to be very safe and common. The treatment course usually takes anywhere between 3-4 weeks.
- The effect of laser is quite remarkable, but it will cause more of a serious wound when compared to the photoelectric therapy.
- Even after a photoelectric therapy, you should make to moisturize constantly and use sunscreen when you are outdoors more frequently.
To sum up this part, sensitive skin is a very tricky disease to deal with. But, as long as you effectively treat both the symptom and the root cause, it can be easily cured. However, you have to be very patient with a mindset that the treatment process will not be achieved overnight. In fact, some treatments take anywhere between 3-6 months, it all depends on the skin’s self-healing function. Again, you should be very patient and you should be consulting your doctor on a daily basis.
In the Case of Sensitive Skin, What Kind of Cosmetics Should Be Used Carefully?
The essential oil has become a hot selling product in recent years because of its small molecular weight, and its high flow rate. However, you should be cautious when using bad quality products as it causes more harm than good. Make sure you are investing in good quality products with low concentration and do not overuse it.
Acid Products Like AHA, SA And Vitamin A
These kinds of products are frowned upon if you have sensitive skin. It will cause all kinds of allergies to sensitive skin, especially in the spring season. It is highly recommended to consult your dermatologist before using this product so you don’t cause any complications to your skin.
Cosmetics With Drug Ingredients
Beware of any skincare products that contain drugs in its ingredients, especially sunscreen products with high SPF as it may cause severe skin inflammation.
Active Ingredients With A High Concentration
The high concentration of active ingredients will cause excess nutrition to the skin. This will cause the skin to develop pimples, itching, and rash sensation. Remember that overnutrition is a common problem for the skin and has a very negative effect on it.
Preservatives And Spices
In short, preservatives and spices in cosmetics are the main causes of skin allergy. People might think that plant formulas are safer, when in fact, those formulas will bring more irritation to the skin, causing it to be more rough and sensitive. You should always choose products with unscented characteristics and short shelf life. Choose a non-foaming type that is mild. A piece of advice is to choose a product that forms little bubbles when you shake it, and then the bubbles disappear right away afterward.
1- Is allergic skin the same as sensitive skin?
The short answer is no. To distinguish the difference between allergic and sensitive skin, you should know that allergy is a symptom of dermatitis caused by an external reaction. On the other hand, sensitive skin has more thin and fragile characteristics that need special care. The characteristic of sensitive skin can easily become allergic, however, it does not develop any symptoms for allergy whatsoever.
2- What are the main daily precautions that I should keep in mind?
- First things first, you should always work on eliminating dust mites. Start by wrapping your mattresses, pillows, quilts, and coats in mites-proof sets. Also, you should wash your clothes and bedding in significantly hot water, preferably above 70 degrees. You should do that at least once a week and try to keep the indoor humidity below 50%, so as to fully control the breeding and growth of dust mites and mold.
- Only if possible, avoid pets interaction. Hairy pets such as cats and dogs are prone to allergies. This might not be applicable to pet owners. But if you’re suffering from sensitive skin, you should at least keep your pets outdoors and try to minimize interacting with them.
- Constantly clean the environment around you. Cleaning your surroundings and maintaining it can help soothe your irritated skin.
- Clean up blind corners as it is very easy for mold breed and grow in such places. Especially, in a humid environment such as bathrooms and basements. Using air filters is highly advised in humid climates.
- This should go without saying, you should follow a healthy diet and try to avoid any food that may cause any allergy symptoms.