You might know that your skin is sensitive, OR even crazy sensitive to certain skincare ingredients. Did you know hypersensitivity IS a ‘thing’, that’s right lovely, your skin might not just be playing up (!) it might actually be asking for a little extra help, not silently mind you *wink wink*, it’s MOST probably caught your attention by now! Just remember, you ARE absolutely beautiful with and without the effects of hypersensitive skin, this is about getting your skin back to its most awesome self AND that also means comfortable! I got you lovely, lets chat hypersensitive skin and HOW to deal with it, oh and I have a couple of product recco’s for ya too!
WHAT IS HYPERSENSITIVE SKIN?
You might be wondering, well, I have sensitive skin, but I never wondered if it was HYPER sensitive. Then there might be some of you reading this who suffer from sensitive skin conditions like Rosacea and you’re all like HELL yes do I know about this hypersensitive skin malarkey. So what is it? What is it that makes your skin hypersensitive?
Think of sensitive skin like a baby who is crying because they are crazy hungry (even if they ate 2 hours ago, they are still crazy hungry again!). This is sensitive skin. You can think of hyper-sensitive skin like a baby who cries even though they’ve just been fed, even though they’ve just been bathed and EVEN though your hugging them with all the love in the world! This is hypersensitive skin. Hypersensitive skin has a VERY low tolerance threshold #Impatient, and gets over-excited VERY quickly.
It feels hard to tell WHAT triggers that baby to cry, and that is the thing about sensitive skin #Snap. Don’t worry lovely, there is a reason, it’s just hard to pin-point because it could be a combination of reasons!
- Environment. Sun is a KEY culprit of creating hypersensitive skin. All those rays are pretty irritating to skin and when skin feels it’s being attacked, ya know, naturally it gets a bit over sensitive, I mean why me? It could also be as simple as temperature changes, maybe even the pollutants in the air – ever blown your nose after a trip on the underground? Just think what gets on your skin!
- Skincare Ingredients. There are not many skincare solutions out there for hypersensitive skin (I have one for you though, just wait!). That means it’s easy to pick up skincare with ‘sensitising’ ingredients in the bottle, YES you read that right, some skincare ingredients WILL actually make your skin MORE sensitive! Fragrance and Essential oils are common culprits. Also just because your skin ‘gets away’ with it one day, doesn’t mean it always will, your sensitivity barrier slowly gets worn away, and suddenly BAM something that one day worked for you now gets your skin all angry. What happened? Get a read of this, ‘Why you should treat your skin as SENSITIVE even if it’s not’.
- Stress. Skincare is outside in and inside out. What you put on your skin and what you eat both make a HUGE difference. If your body is stressed, then things just don’t happen as efficiently for it. Your powerhouse body is still awesome, it’s just sinking below its normally outstanding performance. That has an effect on skin, it tends to exaggerate stuff that already existed, so if your skin is sensitive, stress might make give you hypersensitive skin. This is YOUR excuse for spa day lovely!
- Exfoliation… and even accidental exfoliation, like when you kiss your partner who has 3, 4, 5 day stubble, or even just pulling a thick knit jumper over your skin. Anything that ‘plays’ with your skin gives hypersensitive skin an attack alarm bell. That causes stuff to go rushing around that gives you redness, swelling, pain etc. etc.
THE 3 CHANGES HYPERSENSITIVE SKIN HAS VS. NORMAL SKIN
All skin is UNIQUE, so when you read this next bit, you might go, YES that’s me, but other parts might be all ‘nope not me’, and that is absolutely ok!
- Dry Skin is a BIG trigger for hypersensitivity. Imagine your skin is like a raincoat to the world, it keeps nasty’s out, but it’s breathable too! Your skin gets to decide what comes in and what goes out. Skin doesn’t just have anyone around for tea ya know *wink wink*. When skin is dry, it has holes in its raincoat. That means things it would normally keep out, get in. Usually what skin keeps out, it’s keeping out for a reason. When it gets in, that sneaky visitor can cause hypersensitive skin.
- Your skin’s nerves are actually, measurably MORE reactive. Think of your skin as being SUPER emotionally intelligent, it just ‘senses’ things that others don’t. It gets it. If it even senses a small amount of skin danger (like sensitisers in your skincare) then it’s so ‘in-tune’/sensitive, it almost knows before you’ve used it! & boy it’s gonna tell you about it!
- Inflammation. This can be redness or swelling or heat, there can even be pain. If any of these happen pretty easily to your skin, then you fit into a hypersensitive skin type.
HERE IS A FIND FOR HYPERSENSITVE SKIN
Hypersensitive skin is all about what ISN’T in the bottle and a little about some other carefully selected ingredients with BIG benefits for hypersensitive skin. Some key product criteria for Hypersensitive skin…
- Fragrance and Essential oil free. This chucks out allergens and sensitisers.
- No alcohol. Alcohol causes your skin to dry and makes more holes in skins protective raincoat.
- No un-necessary ingredients like colours. Simples. if there is no skin benefit, why risk it being a skin enemy?
- Preservative free OR with a more natural and sensitive skin friendly preservative. Preservatives kill off nasty’s like bacteria, so they are designed to be a bit nasty themselves. For most skin types that is ok, as there is only a small, small amount. For hypersensitive skin, you might need to avoid!
NOW, onto the hypersensitive skincare find! Eucerin! Eucerin have a WHOLE range of hypersensitive skin loving products, look for the ‘Ultra sensitive’ range. They tick ALL of the boxes for hypersensitive skin AND work to turn back those 3 changes that hypersensitive skin has vs. normal skin. ‘Winner-winner-chicken-dinner’.
A big stand out for me is their ultra-sensitive moisturiser for hypersensitive skin. Simple ingredients with NO preservatives AND it is super hydrating. (Normally you need preservative in a moisturiser, as there’s water in there BUT this one comes in an air-tight pump container thingy. It’s all fancy, but works REALLY simply, cut out air and nothing can grow. That means there is no chance of preservatives causing your skin to do its hypersensitive thing).
There is NO alcohol. There are NO preservatives, NO colorants, NO fragrance. A lot of NO’s that give a HUGE YES to hypersensitive skin.
The TOP 4 ingredients (that means there is most of them in there) are water, glycerin (that guy is a magnet for water), Shea butter (crazy skin loving and conditioning) and Panthenol (not only a skin soother but also helps to regenerate healthy skin). There is also the added AND patented ingredient nicknamed SymSitive. SymSitive says NO to that over-reactivity of hypersensitive skin nerves. This ingredient is like the spa day your over-excited skin was asking for, you are giving it what it needs so it stops being all shouty.
The SymSitive ingredient is TRIED AND TESTED, there is science behind this lovelies. So, I bet you wanna know more, interesting right! When this was tested, skin had to be MADE hypersensitive to ‘test’ what happened with and without this ingredient. Do you know what they tested with? Capsicum pepper!! Ever gotten that in the wrong places? It stings right! It makes skin AND eyes (I know THAT from experience!) crazy hypersensitive. So… skin was sensitised with capsicum pepper, and then half of the testers got SymSitive. What did they find? Not only did it work IMMEDIATLY, how awesome is that (!) it also reduced symptoms by up to 4.5 TIMES! That means it went from something that was bothering, to something you almost couldn’t perceive. Double awesome.
Is your skin Hypersensitive? What is your KEY hypersensitive skin concern?
Cheryl Woodman is a scientist & award winning skincare formulator who’s more friend next door than bow tie wearing professor. As creator of Honesty For Your Skin her aim is to help you care for your skin in the best ways possible. She’s founder of the natural & fragrance free skincare brand Honesty while also hosting 1 to 1 skincare coaching to help you get your best skin yet. Find out more here.