January 10, 2021
Is your skin Sensitive or Sensitised?
There is a very big difference when it comes down to it.
Sensitive skin is not a skin type!
“Sensitive” skin is generally something you were born with. It’s extremely rare and is an actual skin condition.
“Sensitized” skin is almost entirely caused by the things you are putting ON your skin! Gasp!!!!!!
You might say you’ve had sensitive skin every since you were a baby. But have a think about the products your Mum may have been using on your skin? Thinking she was doing all the right things, some or all of these products may have actually been triggering your innate immune system to go into overdrive and leave you with a sensitized skin. Then throughout life, this just became compounded by the things we tried to fix it.
During a 6 week department store skin trial, I was using a product that was “hypo-allergenic”, “dermatologist tested”, “gentle” “for sensitive skin” and deemed safe by the powers that be. I was sold this because the sales lady was unsure of my skin type so the safest bet would be the sensitive range right???…
Almost immediately my skin was getting irritated, felt sensitive and reacted to the slightest touch.
My skin would have a slight “burny/tingly” feel all through the day, my eyes were always sore and tight, my face was a little itchy and my skin just felt uncomfortable to be in.
My skin is not a sensitive skin, yes it reacts to some products, but it’s not my skin that is the problem here… I went on a little investigation and WOW… were my eyes opened (or should I say puffy, itchy and burning!!)
Every time you use skin care product containing Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS) or its derivatives, Emulsifiers, Amines, Silicones, Fragrances, and some Preservative’s, your skin’s barrier instantly becomes impaired.
These ingredients break down your skin, causing the layers to separate and it breaks down the fluid between your skin cells.
Instantly, your skin goes into an immune response to try to repair the “roof” (or barrier) and expel the invasion of foreign ingredients. This causes your skin to become stressed and go into “fix the roof overdrive”.
When skin layers separate and intercellular fluid is broken down, ingredients disguised in your “sensitive” skin care, that aren’t designed to penetrate, get straight through the front door!
This could present in your skin as redness, itching, tingling, burning, swelling, dry eyes, tightness, soreness… I could go on…
Unfortunately, almost every product you have put on your skin from the “gentle, hypo-allergenic, dermatologist tested”, from cheap to the expensive “miracle in a bottle cream” is likely to have contained one or some or all of these ingredients.
Grrrrrr!!! This is my BIGGEST point of contention with the “beauty” industry and it makes me Maaaaaaaddd!!!
These ingredients are cheap, mass-produced and when used in “small quantities” are deemed safe by the powers that be.
We are told by governing bodies that yes, whilst some particular preservatives release formaldehyde, or some binding agents are toxic to our mucous membranes, or some fragrances are known to highly irritate… its ok, its not really enough to cause any problems…. Really? How much is too much?
FYI- My BS reader is off the chart right now!!!
Think… How many things have touched your skin while you got ready this morning?
Pre-Cleanser? (Can someone explain this to me??)
Blush and Lip stick?
… Are you catching my drift? These ingredients are everywhere!!! Even my expensive department store, “sensitive” moisturiser contained Sodium Hydroxide… read caustic soda! In a moisturiser?? I’m not using it to clean my drain!!!!!! What The??
If you do nothing more once you’ve read this post… I urge you to take 20 minutes to google the ingredients listed on your moisturier. I can assure you, you will be shocked at what’s hiding in there. I nearly fell off my chair when I realised what I had been putting on my face, every day, twice a day, as the “expert at the department store” told me I should.
Couldn’t find “emulsifiers”, “sulphates”, “fragrances” and “binding agents” in your products? That’s because they aren’t always labelled as simply as this this…so get your google on!!
Sure you might find one or two ingredients that seem ok, but when it is in such a teeny, tiny amount, mixed up in a jar of unsavoury ingredients, its not doing anything for your skin in a positive way!
So you might actually find that your “sensitive” skin, may not actually be sensitive skin!
It could really be a case of stealthy sabotage from your skin care products, that whilst say they are gentle, calming, hypo-allergenic, dermatologist tested, natural etc… they are really hiding some very skin sensitizing ingredients!
Sensitized skin can certainly be reversible and once you are onto the right skin care, that respects the barrier function of your skin, you will be able stop putting yourself in the “sensitive skin” category.
Now you don’t have to go all hippy and hug trees and give up in your fight to look like a fox at fifty… I’m not saying to give up on skin care and start letting yourself go in the hope that your skin will not be sensitive.
I am just urging you to open your eyes, stop believing what the pretty label says, stop trusting that they are on your side and start making better choices for yourself!!
Its about using a product that respects the barrier function of your skin and doesn’t use ingredients that are like a wrecking ball to a concrete wall- too much collateral damage!!
Your skin is an AMAZING powerhouse of functions and structures that know how to produce healthy skin. It will work around the clock to produce a covering to protect you… BUT if we keep beating it while its down it’s eventually going to start screaming at us in the way of redness, itchiness, rashes, puffiness, burning and tingling.
Has this message hit home? I want you to feel so comfortable in your own skin that you completely forget that you’re even wearing it! That how it should be!
I urge you to go and grab your cleanser and Google the ingredients on the back of the bottle. Then ACT. Your skin deserves so much better!!!
Let me know what you find!!!
Skin Therapist. Skin Lover. BS Hater.