Does your skin redden easily? Do you have visible capillaries or do you get rashes? Have you ever reacted to natural foods, medications or skincare products? In this article, I will talk about the two major types of sensitive skin, what causes it and the best way to manage and improve the skin condition. There are essentially three different sensitive skin conditions: couperose, sensitive and damaged skin.
COUPEROSE - “BROKEN CAPILLARIES”Couperose is a skin condition where you can see visible capillaries on the surface, often present on the cheeks, chin, neck and decolletage. People with couperose tend to flush easily but do develop rashes or irritations such as stinging, burning or itching. Couperose is caused by sun damage. Years of exposure to UV has lead to the capillary damage which makes them more pronounced on the surface. Exertional, heat, alcohol, spicy food and other stimulants can aggravate this condition.
TIPS FOR MANAGING COUPEROSEBecause couperose is caused by UV damage, the first thing you need to start using is a sunscreen with a minimum SPF30+. Choose skin care that helps to improve circulation and strengthen capillaries. Vitamin B3 (niacinamide) and vitamin C are excellent choices, both being antioxidants and anti-inflammatory ingredients to help reduce redness. Vitamin C helps boost collagen which will help strengthen capillaries. Professional treatments that are very effective to reduce the appearance of couperose include laser and IPL. Avoid excessive sun exposure, hot showers, exposing your skin to extremes of hot and cold, and stimulants such as spicy food and alcohol whenever you need to keep your skin extra calm.
SENSITIVE, DELICATE SKINA very small population of people are born with sensitive skin. This usually has a genetic root so other members of a family may also experience sensitive skin. These people need to be very gentle with their skin, and careful with the products they use. They may suffer from other autoimmune diseases and disorders and often develop allergies to certain foods and/or chemicals.
TIPS FOR MANAGING SENSITIVE, DELICATE SKINThe best way to manage a sensitive, delicate skin is by using skincare formulated especially for a sensitive skin, free of common allergens, artificial colors and fragrances. Sensitive skin responds very well to calming, soothing and hydrating ingredients such as allantoin, chamomile, panthenol (provitamin vitamin B5), hyaluronic acid, cornflower, cranberry extract, oats, honey, licorice and soy phospholipids to protect the delicate skin. People with sensitive skin should avoid strong active ingredients such as retinol, glycolic acid, and salicylic acid; highly fragranced products, products high in alcohol and using too many products all at once. Interestingly, naturally formulated products are not necessarily safe as people with allergies often will react to natural ingredients. Choose products that have been tested and formulated especially for sensitive skin. Read my article: 4 Products You Should NEVER Use On Your Face
SENSITIZED, DAMAGED SKINA sensitized skin, on the other hand, is the result of environmental, lifestyle and diet related factors. Sensitized skin can become red, hot, swollen, flaking, itching, burning or stinging. Often rashes can appear, or the skin can develop inflammatory skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, and dermatitis. Sensitized skin conditions are often the result of a variety of factors including incorrect skincare, harsh products, repeated intensive skin treatments, over treating the skin, excessive heat or cold, infections, allergens, immune system disorders and certain medications.
TIPS FOR MANAGING AND HEALING A DAMAGED SKINSensitized skin needs a time out. Its immunity has been compromised and the barrier has been broken down, allowing substances to pass through that would otherwise be kept out. Impaired barrier causes excessive moisture loss from the skin, irritation, inflammation and rashes. Sensitized skin needs gentle, anti-inflammatory products and a healing recovery professional treatment to help the skin recover. A desensitizing program that promotes healing and repair will work best. Besides gentle, calming and soothing products, a sensitized skin needs ingredients to improve the barrier and to strengthen skin immunity. Choose products developed to repair the barrier and heal the skin. Look for ingredients such as essential fatty acids (omegas 3,6,7,9) phospholipids, cholesterol, ceramides, hyaluronic acid, amino acids, polysaccharides, mucopolysaccharides, phytosterols, squalene, jojoba oil, sea buckthorn oil and flaxseed oil. Ingredients that stimulate epidermal growth factors are an excellent and potent way to repair damaged skin fast. People with damaged, sensitized skin need to avoid skin care that is highly active such as retinol serum and any products that contain AHAs such a glycolic, mandelic, lactic and salicylic acids. Avoid treatments that generate inflammation in the skin such as microdermabrasion, AHA or BHA peels, enzyme peels, micro dermal needling, laser or IPL. Opt for healing and strengthening facial treatments and soon you will be rewarded with a healthy strong skin once again. Read my article: Are You Considering Skin Peels? Having a sensitive, damaged or red skin does not stop you from using products or having treatments. In fact, professional treatments and the right products can greatly help manage and improve these skin conditions. Talk to you beauty therapist about the best skincare and treatment options for your skin.
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