By Heather Legg
The average person uses about seven skin care products per day. That is a lot, and if you are the low side, think about the people that are bringing the numbers up to seven! I know I use a cleanser in the morning, a moisturizer, sunscreen and a different cleanser and moisturizer at night. That’s five and doesn’t count the actual make up I use or what I use if I am having problems with my skin.
I have trouble skin, meaning I still break out but have those fine lines around my eyes. So I need a moisturizer along with something to help with those breakouts. It’s like I have teenager skin mixed with middle aged. On top of that, my skin is really sensitive. I have a history of red and inflamed skin after using certain products, and after that comes the dry, flaky redness. So what are the best products and regimen for good skin care to take care of the problems and the sensitive skin at the same time?
In Julyne Derrick’s article, the basics of skin care are broken down to a four step routine which includes cleansing, exfoliating, moisturizing and sunscreen. The thing to be careful is that each of these necessary steps has the power to cause an adverse reaction. It is important to find and use the right products, as well as know your own skin.
Skin allergies and sensitive skin are actually two different things, sort of like food intolerance and food allergies. But even though sensitive skin may be more predictable and only happen in certain areas, like the face, it is still something to deal with and avoidance probably does come into play.
There are actually four categories of sensitive skin, and contact dermatitis (which includes allergies along with other irritants) is one of them. The other three types are acne, rosacea, and burning and stinging. That’s the problem in finding the right skin care. Just because something is labeled “For Sensitive Skin,” that doesn’t necessarily mean it is labeled for YOUR sensitive skin.
For me, I think of the burning and stinging category, so I try to stay away from those products that have “acid” in them. All that does is make things worse by not only burning and stinging, but also leaving behind red and flaky skin.
I’ve found that products with fewer ingredients are better for me (sort of like food). Take a look through the labels and ingredients lists and try to find something with a shorter list of ingredients. Stay away from fragrances and added color. Just because something is higher end or more expensive does not mean it’s better. In fact, it can do more damage to your skin. Organic and natural products can be safer on the skin, and remember if you have corn or gluten allergy, these things are often in cosmetics. You don’t think about reading labels for cosmetics, but you may have to. There’s also nothing wrong with using some of the natural products made for babies and young children, like sunscreens and moisturizers, as they are often more gentle. Caryn Tatty lists some good makeup and cosmetics in Finding Green Gluten and Corn-free Cosmetics and Personal Products for those with sensitive, allergic skin.
Unfortunately, it can be a trial and error test to find what is best. And then, who knows, your skin may change and need something different!
For even more information, see http://www.aad.org/media-resources/stats-and-facts/prevention-and-care/sensitive-skin