How to build a skincare routine for sensitive skin
We’ve all been there: After trying that new skincare product your best friend (or, like your Instagram feed) convinced you to buy, you were left with red, irritated, and burning skin. The hard truth? There’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to skincare, and if you’ve got sensitive, easily irritated skin, you need to take extra caution when adding new products to your routine.
What is sensitive skin?
Firstly, it is a condition. It’s not a disease, but a symptom of some underlying health issue that you may or may not be aware of. Sensitive skin occurs when the skin’s natural barrier gets weakened or broken, exposing the top layer of your skin’s nerve endings to things that agitate it and cause an inflammatory reaction.
Everyone’s skin is sensitive to some extent – but some will experience sensitivity more than others. You’ll notice that your skin becomes red and gets irritated very quickly, sometimes leading to small bumps and uneven tone and texture. These flare-ups are often triggered by the littlest thing (even just removing your makeup) but are more common if you’re aggressive with the products you use or how you apply them. Because sensitive skin can also be dry/oily/acne-prone at the same time, it’s important to maintain a consistent and effective routine to keep it calm, clear, and balanced.
What causes sensitive skin?
Sensitive skin is caused by nerve endings in the top layer of skin becoming irritated. This occurs because your skin’s natural barrier function is weakened and has broken down due to a trigger. Common causes of sensitive skin can include:
- Sun exposure
- Exposure to air pollution
- Frequent changes in temperature
- Cold, harsh weather
- Hard water (water with higher mineral content)
- Very hot water
- Lack of sleep
- Hormonal changes during your menstrual cycle or pregnancy
- Stress and late nights
- Chlorine in swimming pools
- Dry skin
Some people don’t even realize that they have sensitive skin type until they suddenly have irritated skin or a flare-up in reaction to something their skin did not like. The only way to discover you have sensitive skin is to really pay attention to the way your skin responds to things it comes in contact with. If the reaction is frequently negative—not just occasionally—then you probably have sensitive skin.
Which products can I use if I have sensitive skin?
Use a daily skincare routine that is suitable for your skin type, formulated especially for sensitive skin. Look for products with relatively few ingredients.
Cleanse every day, moisturise twice a day and wear an SPF of 15+ with UVA protection. Always choose cosmetics that are suitable for sensitive skin, too. Avoid chemically laden cleaning and laundry products, which can also irritate your skin.
Two, many people use creams that they think are moisturisers but really have actives in it like retinol or alpha hydroxy acids. Look for words like ‘retinol,’ ‘retinaldehyde,’ or ‘glycolic, lactic, or mandelic acids. Therefore, it’s possible you’re using two creams packed with anti-ageing ingredients, and the double layer can cause irritation.
What is the Best Skin Care Routine for Sensitive Skin?
When building a sensitive skin, skincare routine, you should probably stick to the old less is more school of thought. Obviously, your skincare routine will need to factor in your skin type as well, but for normal sensitive skin, stick with a basic protocol that you implement both in the morning and at night.
Caring for sensitive skin can be challenging. If your skin is highly reactive, you might not be able to use many facial products. Some people find their skin only reacts to certain things while others might feel as though their skin reacts to literally every skincare product.
Trying new skin care products can be a gamble because you just never know what your skin type might respond negatively to. Here at Skinora, we take the risk away and will source the right products for your skin type. Take the analysis now.
How it works
Take our 3 minute quiz
Start with a skin quiz compiled by our doctors
This assesses many factors to allow us to customise your skincare for a £10 skin analysis fee
Receive your Customised Skin Programme
Our skin experts will determine the best products for YOU according to your profile
Choose your products
Pay only for the products you’d like to keep
Redeem the £10 against anything you purchase
Delivery to Your Door
We will customise your programme each time adjusting to changes in the seasons and lifestyle factors so your skincare is customised for you