Sensitive skin

Sensitive skin is a term mainly used in the cosmetics industry rather than a dermatological term. There is no clear dermatological definition, but it generally refers to skin that reacts more sensitively to external irritants, allergic substances, or environmental changes than normal skin, causing irritation or dermatitis. 50% of people with sensitive skin only complain of subjective discomfort without external skin changes, and most of them complain of unbearable stinging, itchiness, and burning when using cosmetics. The remaining 50% may also show externally observed dead skin cells, erythema, and inflammatory reactions.

What are the internal and external causes of sensitive skin?

The causes of sensitive skin are complex, and the distinction between causative factors and aggravating factors is unclear. Internal factors include overwork, stress, lack of sleep, and menstruation, which can worsen inflammation. External factors include various environmental and chemical substances that irritate the skin, such as cosmetics, detergents, climate, seasonal changes, sunlight, and pollution. You can think about it.

Charactersitics of sensitive skin

an image of sensitive skin

⦿ Make-up does not come off easily and lasts for a long time.

⦿ Since the blood secretion function is normal, the skin surface is shiny and smooth.

⦿ Blood circulation is good, complexion is good, and skin resistance is good.

⦿ Skin condition may change depending on the season and health condition.

⦿ Skin trouble does not occur easily.

⦿ Almost no redness on the face.

Causes of Sensitive Skin

Genetic cause

Genetically, if the skin tissue undergoes a rapid keratinization process, it peels off every 4 weeks, but premature peeling occurs before that, causing the stratum corneum to become thinner and the still young cell layer to be exposed to the skin surface, showing a sensitive response to external stimuli. Simply, this means that the skin lacks the ability to further defend itself from external stimuli because the dead skin cells that protect the skin fall off quickly.

Acquired factors

1. Chemical stimulation

When strong chemicals such as strong alkalis, strong acids, heavy metals, and cosmetics come into contact with the skin, for example, when alkaline soap is used too frequently, the skin's protective film changes, which reduces its defense ability and causes moisture to escape from the skin. As time goes by, the skin becomes sensitive. If you have sensitive skin, please use mildly acidic foam cleansing to protect your skin.

2. Physical stimulation

Light, including cold, heat, friction, and ultraviolet rays, are irritating factors that make the skin sensitive, and rays can develop into photosensitivity skin disease.

3. Bacterial infection

When the skin is infected with bacteria, skin resistance is reduced, so prolonged dermatitis symptoms such as severe acne simultaneously make the skin sensitive.

4. Mental stress

Sensitive skin can be said to be influenced by peripheral nerves. Therefore, mental stress increases the sensitivity of the skin by stimulating the peripheral nerves.

5. Specific disease

The administration of corticosteroids to treat diseases such as diabetes, thyroid dysfunction, long-term acne, and skin diseases increases sensitivity by thinning the keratinocyte layer. In other words, it becomes easier for irritants to penetrate and increases sensitivity. In the case of hyperhidrosis, the acidity of the skin protective film is unbalanced due to an increase in sweat production due to a pathological condition, which weakens the epidermis and loses its ability to defend against harmful substances.

6. Environmental impact

Excessive heating or cooling, pollutants, harmful gases, etc. irritate and sensitize the skin, making it sensitive.

7. Nutrient deficiency and non-eating

Due to lack of vitamins, calcium, and magnesium, the autonomic nervous system becomes unstable and blood vessel movement increases. Excessive consumption of alcohol, cigarettes, and artificial sweeteners changes the constitution.

Sensitive skin care

There is no special care method for sensitive skin. General skin care principles such as gentle cleansing, appropriate moisturizing, and sufficient photoprotection (use of sunscreen) are important. When managing sensitive skin, the priority is to avoid internal and external aggravating factors such as overwork, stress, and lack of sleep. If symptoms are severe, it is recommended to use a type of moisturizer that can restore the skin barrier.

1) Cleansing

A good cleansing method that minimizes skin irritation is removing contaminants with a hypoallergenic cleanser and rinsing with water. Excessive scrubbing is a definite no-no, especially if your skin is sensitive. Frequent scrubbing is a shortcut to sensitive skin.

2) Moisturizing

If you have sensitive skin, you need to choose a moisturizer that is less irritating to the skin, and it is better to choose a moisturizer that restores the skin's original barrier function. This is usually the case with moisturizers exclusively for atopic dermatitis patients.

3) Photoprotection

Since skin sensitivity to sunlight often worsens, the use of sunscreen is also important. On the other hand, if a particular sunscreen irritates you, it is important to avoid it and choose a sunscreen that was less irritating when you used it.

Facemasks that suits with sensitive skin:

• Blueberry facemask

• Natural flour facemask

• Avocado & banana facemask

>>Skin structure