Everyone's skin can feel sensitive or intolerant at times. And for some, this can present a daily challenge. Here are some tips to help you recognise the sources of sensitivity and respond with the right skincare.
When you’re feeling sensitive or intolerant emotionally, you may want to feel comforted, and stick to what you know. The same approach should apply to your skin.
So what are the causes of sensitivity that are specific to your skin? Your unique triggers may be as simple as a change in the seasons, central heating, air conditioning, pollution or a stressful day. Although you can do little to escape these well-known catalysts, you can keep a note of how they affect you and have the right skincare products at the ready.
Some people find that certain products work well for them at particular times. For example, the moisturiser you choose during a breakout might not be one you use all the time, and you may revert to another product when your skin is clear.
Your genes or your stage of life may also play a part in your skin’s sensitivity. Maybe your mother’s skin is similar to yours. Find out which factors cause her sensitivity. And if you’re approaching or going through the menopause, be aware that such hormonal changes can affect your skin.
It may even be helpful to keep a note of your skin’s behaviour, either jotting it in your diary or adding something to your smartphone calendar. This can help you predict when your skin is likely to change, and can help you piece together the causes and effects of differences in lifestyle, climate, daily routine and stress on your skin.
Getting to know which skincare products and ingredients are currently on the market can be a great investment of time. Once you know what’s out there you can make informed decisions about which products you choose. It can even save you money in the long-term as there’s less need for trial and error. Knowledge is power.
The good news is that although the skin on the face is often thought to be more sensitive, it is also the area where a wealth of skincare research and development is focused.
Whether you opt for a simple routine or want to involve several steps including special products for eyes, lips and other sensitive areas, there is plenty of choice available. This diversity of skincare is invaluable if you find your skin has changed over time, your current products no longer suit you, or you simply fancy a change or a treat.
Whatever you choose, always check a product is labelled as suitable for sensitive skin.
Finally, it’s worth thinking about how you apply skincare products. Rubbing your face when applying moisturiser and make-up remover can be aggressive to sensitive skins as can too much exfoliation.
Use a gentle touch and pay careful attention to how your skin feels before, during and after your skincare ritual morning and evening. This is quality time you’re spending with your skin, so make it count, and over time your skin will thank you for it.