When you have sensitive skin, your skin rapidly reacts to various elements, such as skincare products with harsh ingredients, temperature changes and other environmental factors, injury, and lack of moisture protection.
These reactions can range from itching, redness, and stinging to burning, rashes, and breakouts.
These symptoms are not only uncomfortable; they can also make you feel insecure even if you did your best to cover these blemishes.
Using the best skincare products for sensitive skin can help you minimize the irritation and inflammation you can get from taking care of your skin.
Skincare products formulated for sensitive skin are free of alcohol, sulfates, fragrances, and other ingredients that irritate your skin. As such, they are safer to use.
And even if you use skincare products with natural, gentler, and fewer ingredients, you can still renew and refresh your skin and keep blemishes and the signs of aging at bay. Also, you can protect your face from harmful environmental elements, including UVA and UVB rays and pollution.
Skincare Habits That Harm Your Sensitive Skin
Using the right skincare products for sensitive skin is a great start to help you reduce the breakouts, itchiness, and other symptoms you can easily get from having this type of skin.
However, some skincare habits included in your daily routine can also aggravate your sensitive skin.
Although you have the best intentions for having these skincare habits, you may be unknowingly harming your skin and making it more prone to irritation.
Below are some of the common skincare mistakes you might be making that are doing more harm than good to your sensitive skin:
1. Following the wrong face washing steps.
Having the right cleansing habits is crucial for keeping your skin free from makeup and other substances that can make it dull and unhealthy. However, going about the process incorrectly can cause you more problems.
For starters, if you are washing your face more than twice a day, stop this habit immediately. If you don’t, you will end up drying your skin and make it even more prone to irritants.
A good rule of thumb to follow if you have sensitive skin is to wash your face only in the morning and night. Also, avoid using soap and foaming or gel cleansers. These products often have harsh ingredients that strip your skin’s natural oils and water content.
If you have extra sensitive skin, consider washing your face with water or micellar water only in the morning and cleanse your face with a sulfate-free or milk cleanser at night.
2. Using the wrong sun protection product.
Applying sunscreen on your face and all over your body is an important part of a daily skincare routine. Making it a habit helps protect your skin from sunburn, premature aging, and cancer.
As such, you shouldn’t only be using sunscreen when you are going to the beach or spending time outdoors when the sun is at its hottest.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, the best product to use is a water-resistant and broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher.
Sunscreens are categorized into types: chemical, which protects the skin by absorbing the UV rays, and physical, which provides protection by deflecting the sun rays.
Physical sunscreens are often recommended for people with sensitive skin since they do not contain oxybenzone and avobenzone, ingredients in chemical sunblock which can cause burning, stinging, and red, itchy bumps.
Physical sunscreens’ most active ingredients are usually zinc or titanium dioxide, substances that do not cause any irritation. Additionally, they do not contain fragrances, oils, and other ingredients that can inflame sensitive skin.
And to ensure you get the most benefits from using sunscreen, always apply the brand’s recommended amount of cream or lotion to your face and neck every day.
3. Using too many skincare products.
A typical skincare regimen consists of using different products. However, if you have sensitive skin, you have to scale back a bit.
The more products you apply to your face, the more substances your face will absorb. This, in turn, increases the chances of irritating your skin.
Since you have sensitive skin, it is best to limit your skincare routine to only the basics – a cleanser, moisturizer, and sunscreen. You can also add a toner and serum; however, make sure you use only the gentlest products you can find.
If you want to exfoliate your skin, again, use only a mild exfoliator and do it only once a week. And if you see any signs of over-exfoliation, stop using the product immediately.
4. Switching products too quickly.
With numerous brands being introduced into the market promising different results, it can be tempting to try all of them.
Unfortunately, if you have sensitive skin, trying out all of these products and switching from one product to another can cause irritation and affect your skin’s natural balance.
If you want to try a new skincare product, study it first. Research its ingredients and read reviews about it online.
Once you are sure the product does not have any ingredients that can inflame your skin, introduce it slowly in your daily routine. Also, try to avoid adding two or more products at once because if any irritation occurs, you will have a harder time identifying which caused it.
Additionally, if you are trying a new skincare product, don’t stop using it after only a few days if you don’t see any result.
Most skincare products need consistent use of at least four to six weeks before you can see any result. If you switch quickly, you’re only slowing the product’s progress and wasting money on the ones you purchased.
5. Not performing a patch test before using a new product.
Even if you bought a hypoallergenic product, if it’s your first time to use it, conduct a patch test before including it in your skincare routine.
To conduct a patch test, apply a small amount of the cream, gel, oil, or liquid on an obscure area of your skin, such as the back of your neck. Keep an eye on it for at least 24 hours to see if your skin agrees with the product or not.
Skip the product if the area becomes irritated or inflamed.
If there is no negative reaction, you will do well to conduct another patch test on a different part of your body, such as on an area near or under your ears.
If the area remains blemish-free, add the new product to your skincare routine.
If you are making these skincare mistakes and have sensitive skin, correct them immediately to avoid aggravating your condition further and have clearer, healthier skin you can be proud of.