Do you find that your skin is sensitive and highly reactive to most skincare products on the market? You can’t use trendy skincare that your friends and family use as your skin is ‘easily offended’ by even the mention of some sort of perfume. Does it persistently look flushed with signs of dryness and bumps? If this sounds like you, it’s important that you take a gentler approach to your skincare regime. Let’s take a closer look at what sort of products you should be using in order to keep your sensitive skin happy.
Step 1 – Cleanser
You want to use skincare that is gentle on your skin, and this means that it needs to be sulfate-free. You’ve probably heard that you should be using sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner. The same goes for your skin. Sulfates are harsh and dry out your skin. They are derived from petrochemicals and oleochemicals and should be avoided. Always make sure that you read the back of your packaging. Ingredients such as sulfur trioxide, sodium lauryl sulfate, sulphuric acid, and SLES (sodium laureth sulfate) are all common sulfates that can be found in hair, face, and body products. They are in there because they are effective at removing impurities, but they are overpowering and lead to dryness and itching. When you use vegan skin care products, you are almost guaranteed that this won’t be present. Find a cleanser that is water- or oil-based (rosehip is fantastic) to remove stubborn makeup and other impurities in a way that won’t disrupt the skin barrier. Use room temperature water to wash your face as this won’t aggravate your skin.
Another drying and potentially damaging part of a skincare regime is your toner. Your toner should be gentle and alcohol-free. You need to look for soothing formulations that will be calming to the skin such as chamomile, green tea, white tea, and bisabolol. Bisabolol is essentially a concentrated form of chamomile. We highly suggest that you avoid witch hazel as it can be equally as stripping and irritating to sensitive skin like alcohol. This is a purely optional step in a skincare routine, as your skin might not need additional toning after cleansing.
Step 3 – Moisturiser
Next, we’ll move on to moisturizers. One of the most important parts of your sensitive skincare routine is applying a good moisturizer. You don’t want something that has any fragrance or artificial dyes as these can cause your skin to react. You also don’t want something too thick or too thin. Look for a cream-based moisturizer rather than a gel-based one. There’s nothing wrong with testing out a few products until you find one that works best.
Step 4 – Eye Cream
Eye cream and moisturizer might seem like the same sort of thing, but eye cream can take your skincare routine to the next level. The skin around your eyes is even more sensitive than your cheeks and the rest of your face. This is why it should be treated even more gently. Definitely avoid products with alcohol and perfume around the eyes, even if you don’t find that you have too much of an issue with them elsewhere on your body. Apply eye cream in the morning and at night for the best results.
When searching for eye care products, look for ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, aloe vera, and vitamin E. These will help to hydrate and soothe the delicate skin around your eyes.
Step 5 – The Extras
We are coming to understand that serums, treatments, and additional facial oils are really good for your skin and can elevate your skincare routine. You have probably been told that because your skin is sensitive you need to keep things simple, but you can still have fun and benefit from using a serum in your routine. You can use these to treat a plethora of other skin concerns while still focusing on taking care of your sensitive skin issues in a gentle way. This doesn’t mean going crazy though. Do be cautious with the products you choose to use, as well as their formulations as some can be too strong for your skin, resulting in irritation. Consult with a dermatologist if you have to before trying something new.
Step 6 – Sunscreen
Sunscreen is an important part of every skincare routine. Look for a sunscreen that has zinc oxide as its active ingredient as this is less likely to cause the skin to react or be irritated in any way. You could also look for one that has titanium dioxide as this protects your skin from UVA and UVB radiation.
Having this gentler approach to your skincare is really important. It will keep your skin barrier nourished and more hydrated, protecting you from inflammation and preventing excessive redness.
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