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Sensitive Skin: Strengthen and Protect

Did you know that a whooping 60-70% of women and 50-60% of men have some degree of sensitive skin? It is also the hardest skin condition for professionals to diagnose and treat. Sensitive skin is defined as the experience of unpleasant sensation such as stinging, burning, itchiness and tingling in response to stimuli that normally should not provoke such reactions.

Key Traits of Sensitive Skin

Some of the more commons signs of highly reactive skin are itchiness, dryness and increase in redness. The redness can be in a form of a red rash, bumps, blushing and flushing that goes away when the irritant is removed. Exposure to sun, cold and wind may trigger the flare ups on the skin as well. Sensitive skin may often exhibit acne breakouts (red bumps and pustules).

How to Manage Sensitive Skin

Managing sensitive skin can be tricky and challenging at times as everyone's skin triggers are unique. First and foremost, is to figure out the ingredients that trigger an inflammatory response in your skin. This may include a lot of trial and error, however, once you've figured out your skin's quirks and sensitivity triggers, you'll be on your way to create a skincare routine that is just right for your skin.

Always do a patch test on the side of the neck, behind your ear or the underside of your jaw when introducing a new product to your skin. Wait for 24 hours to see if you have a reaction to the product. The last thing anyone would want is to wake up to burning, irritated skin first thing in the morning!

When introducing a new product into your routine, always go slow. This means introducing only one product at a time and giving your skin extra time to adjust to the effects of the new product on your skin. It will also make it easier for you to identify any culprit ingredient that may be causing your skin to react.

The key to maintaining a skin routine for Sensitive Skin is simplying your skincare routine. It is easy to fall into the glamour of a ten step skincare routine which could possibly expose your skin to 10 or more potential irritants. The simpler your routine, the more control you have to avoid triggering a cascade of sensitive skin reactions.

Ingredients Spotlight for Sensitive Skin

Aloe Vera. Centella Asiatica. Chamomile. Calendula. Hyaluronic Acid. Green Tea, Glycerin. Ceramide. Niacinamide.

Cleanser

Tips on how to choose the right cleanser for your skin:

1. Avoid chemical ingredients which can be irritating to your skin such as Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS), Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES), Phthalates, Fragrance and Paraben

2. Double check the pH of your cleanser. Our skin's natural acidity is around pH5.5. We recommend cleanser under pH6.0. A quick litmus paper test will be able to help you determine the pH of your cleanser.

Toner

Tips for choosing a toner for Sensitive Skin:

1. Choose a gentle toner that is free from aclohol and fragrance.

2. Hydrating toner ingredients: Hyaluronic Acid, Cica, Wild Yam Extract, Beta Glucan, Glycerin

3. For mildly Sensitive Skin that would like to use chemical exfoliants, Polyhydroxy Acids (PHA) tend to be more gentle alternatives: Gluconolactone, Galactose and Lactobionic Acid

Essence/Serum/Ampoule/Mask/ Eye Cream

The focus of Sensitive Skin treatments include four different areas: soothing, calming, strengthening and restoring. We suggest choosing one from each category of ingredients below to start.

1. Ingredients that soothe and calm the skin: Centella Asiatica Extract, Reishi Mushroom Extract, Hottuynia Cordata Extract and Probiotics

2. Ingredients that strengthen and restore the skin barrier: Hyaluronic Acid, Allantoin, Madecassosicde, Bisabolol

Moisturizer

Keep it as simple as possible.

1. Choose ingredients that are helpful in suppporting the skin barrier: Ceramides, Cholesterol, Fatty acid. Humectants such as Glycerin and Hyaluronic Acid help draw in water content into the skin layers. Emollients such as dimethicone, grape seed, jojoba oil and shea butters are great to soften the skin.

2. It is also a good idea to include a soothing ingredient in your moisturizer selection: Centella Asiatica, German Chamomile, Milk Thistle, Green Tea, Peptides.

Sunscreen

Sunlight can be a natural trigger for those with sensitive skin. Therefore, making sure that you apply sunscreen during the day is of utmost importance. Although the new generation of chemical filters are tested to be hypoallergenic, those with ultra-sensitive skin may find that mineral sunscreens are a better option for sun protection.