Sensitive skin: the good, the bad and the ugly

A Nationwide Concern
If you feel you have sensitive skin, do not worry because you are not alone. There is more than 50% of Americans that are affected with this prevailing condition. Skin sensitivity is now growing faster due to the lack of  non-irritative products and access to relevant information.
However, there is still hope! 
As they say; “Knowledge is power”, the same can be said when battling sensitive skin. The understanding of how your skin works and using the correct skin care products will result in long term benefits and healthier skin.
Why must you care so much about your skin?
Did you know that the skin is the body’s largest organ?

There is a total surface area of 2 square meters or 22 square feet of skin on an average person.

It is a living functioning layer that protects our body from the environment. This intelligent barrier, organized like a brick & mortar wall with living microorganisms keeps away toxins and infections. 
Whenever this ecosystem doesn’t function effectively, it causes two main problems:
  1. Moisture escapes causing sensitive or dry skin. 
  2. Toxins enter causing breakouts or reactive skin.
This dysfunctionality of our skin barrier is what causes people to experience sensitive skin.

How do you know if you have sensitive skin?

 

The most common signs are dry skin and breakouts.
Others include but are not limited to skin flushing (redness), skin itchiness, red bumps or rashes from mild skin reactions.
However, if your symptoms are more severe, it is best to see a dermatologist or a skin specialist to make sure it is not eczema, rosacea, allergies or other medical conditions.

Causes & triggers:


There are many reasons why someone can experience skin sensitivity. A few examples include:
  • Exposure to harsh ingredients 
  • Environmental conditions
  • Certain medications
  • Mental health such as stress
  • Hormonal changes including menopause for women
  • Fatty foods that inflame your skin such as red meats 
Exposure to these are very common in day-to-day life and anyone can have sensitive skin even without the family genetics for it.
This condition becomes more common as people age, change environments or diets, or overuse harsh cosmetics. 

Tips to calm your sensitive skin: 

Sensitive skin is more common on the face causing an important need to maintain a proper skincare routine. 
Tip 1:   Watch what you put on your skin!
The ingredients present in the product that you buy should be compatible with your skin type. Avoid for examples alcohols & essential oils that can cause irritation
Tip 2:   Moisturize! Moisturize! Moisturize!
Use a product which suits your skin with minimal ingredients.
Tip 3:   48 hour patch test!
If using a new product, apply it on your hand and check for reactions upto 2 days before adding it to your skincare routine.

Curious Fact:


Another myth to debunk is that it is mostly women that suffer from sensitive skin. Men are as likely to be affected from sensitive skin as women. However, as women are more likely to use a lot of facial products than men, women tend to have sensitive skin more often.
Summary:
To summarize, sensitive skin is very common and may occur at any point in your life. 
The key is understanding your skin type and what trigger these reactions. It is important to select carefully the correct skincare product for your skin to address your type of skin sensitivity. 

What is next?
At Dr. Elsa Jungman we help millions of people who suffer like us from sensitive skin.

To ensure your skin stays hydrated and non-reactive, please take a look at our "Start Over" Moisturizing Serum that is clinically tested, non-irritating and made especially for your sensitive skin needs. It will help your skin stay hydrated while keeping your skin healthy and safe.
Give a try to our Skin Reset Heroes, the perfect combo for a healthy skin for life.
Shop now!

By Lakshika Ruwanpathirana, Chemical Engineering graduate (UC Berkeley). 
References

CongXiu Ye, Jian Chen et al., 2019 

Skin sensitivity evaluation: What could impact the assessment results?

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31498557

 

Katlein França, Torello Lotti, 2019

Advances in Integrative Dermatology

https://books.google.com/books?id=UyyFDwAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false

 

L. Misery et al., 2018

Sensitive skin in France: a study on prevalence, relationship with age and skin type and impact on quality of life

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/jdv.14837

 

A Pons-Guiraud, 2004

Sensitive skin: a complex and multifactorial syndrome

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17134429

 

L. Misery et al., 2018

Development and validation of a new tool to assess the Burden of Sensitive Skin (BoSS)

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/jdv.15186

 

Maibach et al., 2017

The Sensitive Skin Syndrome (Second Edition)

https://www.crcpress.com/Sensitive-Skin-Syndrome/Honari-Andersen-Maibach/p/book/9781498737340

 

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