Caring for sensitive skin - what you need to know
Gentle is the name of the game when it comes to treating sensitive skin.
We’re using more skincare products than ever before, with some skincare routines containing as many as ten steps, and yet many of us are confused about which ingredients are best, especially for sensitive skin. When your skin is quick to react to something it doesn’t like, but slow to calm down afterwards, stepping into the skincare aisle can feel a bit like Russian roulette. It doesn’t have to be this way, though. By following a few simple steps, you can become confident in your skin again.
How do you know if your skin is sensitive?
There are a few common things you can look for to help determine if you have sensitive skin:
- Reactions: your skin becomes blotchy, itchy or dry after using certain products such as soaps, detergents, skincare products or fragrances.
- Dryness: dry skin can be more sensitive, and it can lead to cracked skin and acne breakouts. You may notice your skin gets drier when exposed to cold weather or wind.
- Redness: you may notice a red rash, bumps, or flushing when exposed to something triggers it, such as a product or when you are run down.
- Sunburn: sensitive skin is more susceptible to sun damage, particularly if it’s irritated already.
- Spots/breakouts: in severe cases, people with sensitive skin may develop breakouts similar to acne
Whether you experience them all year round, or at certain times of year, sensitive skin can cause a lot of discomfort, especially if it’s not treated properly. Knowing how to limit exposure to certain triggers and using the right products can help keep your skin under control.
Five ways to help soothe sensitive skin and get your glow back
- Limit your sun exposure: a dose of sunshine is great for the soul, but too much can be bad news for your skin. The British Association of Dermatologists recommends heading into the shade during the sunniest point of the day (11am – 3pm) and using a high protection sunscreen of at least SPF 30, which also has high UVA protection. Contrary to popular belief, sunscreen isn’t just for the summer – use it all year round for maximum protection. Keep cool and natural: try to protect your skin from extremes of temperature, particularly the sensitive skin on your face. Hot showers may feel good, but they irritate sensitive skin further and strip the skin of essential oils, so keep it lukewarm. Soaps can be drying for sensitive skin, so switch out your usual product for something gentler, like this natural soap. Ditch the wipes: many of us have used make up removal wipes to get rid of stubborn make up, but they could actually be making your skin worse as they’re packed with chemicals that could cause low-grade inflammation – not to mention the fact that they’re bad for the environment. Instead, try a gentle cotton muslin cloth with water or, if you’re feeling fancy, add a few drops of Lyonsleaf Beauty Balm for an added boost. Cleanse: foam cleansers and harsh chemicals are not your friends when you have sensitive skin. To remove make up and any debris built up over the day in a gentle way, try a hot cloth cleanser, which will clean and exfoliate without stripping away the skin’s natural oils. Moisturise: having a good moisturiser is essential when you have sensitive skin as it provides a barrier that keeps out irritants and helps to hydrate and soothe your skin. Most high street creams and lotions contain up to 80% water and petrochemical derived emollients, which sensitive skin can’t handle. For this reason, you need a water-free, natural product like Lyonsleaf Zinc and Calendula Cream, as its unfragranced, gentle and breathable, making it deal for skin prone to breakouts, dermatitis, acne or rosacea.