The Gentle Yet Effective 3-Step Routine I Use When My Sensitive Skin Freaks Out

amanda cummerfordamanda cummerford


It's been almost two years since I was diagnosed with post-partum perioral dermatitis, and I can safely say I'm now officially obsessed with skin care.

Maybe... a little too obsessed? Possibly. But after not being able to wear makeup or use any active skincare products for six months to manage my sensitised skin condition, my face and I had a whole new lease on life.

I even started an Instagram page to share my perioral dermatitis experiences and connect with others going through the same thing. And to talk about beauty products with people who are just as into beauty as I am.

After getting the OK from my dermatologist to start slowly introducing new products into my routine, I got a bit excited. I went skincare shopping…. and I never stopped! Condolences to my credit card.

A few weeks later, I was feeling confident and decided to use a potent vitamin C serum AND vitamin B serum every day for a week (which would be fine for most, but not me). Cue skin freak out, also known as an impaired skin barrier.

Thus, I had to find an SOS back-to-basics sensitive skin routine. Enter, Bioderma.

bioderma sensitive skin routinebioderma sensitive skin routine

I first heard about French pharmacy brand Bioderma when I saw them in my local chemist while shopping for sensitive skin supplies. Then I started noticing my fellow Instagram beauty bloggers talking about how they used Bioderma products whenever they'd impaired their skin barriers from using too many actives at once like I'd done.

So, I decided to give it a go for myself. Spoiler: This story has a happy ending. After a few days of use, I found a calming and restorative routine I can go back to the next time I inevitably get over-excited by fancy new skin care. (Because we all know there'll definitely be a next time.)

Here are the three Bioderma products that worked best for me and my skin.

1. Bioderma Sensibio H2O Micelle Solution.

Bioderma Sensibio H2O Micelle SolutionBioderma Sensibio H2O Micelle Solution

Fast facts: 

  • Bioderma Sensibio H2O Micelle Solution cleanses impurities and removes makeup while respecting the skin's natural balance.

  • A thin, moisturising water consistency made specifically for reactive and sensitive skin, and free from fragrances.

  • Made of micelles that stick to oils like dirt, makeup and sunscreen to dissolve them in water (this means you can cleanse without stripping the skin of its essential oils too).

  • Use as the first step in your skincare routine by applying the solution directly onto a makeup remover pad and swiping all over your face.

Why my skin loves it:

Apparently, people used to bring this cult product back into the country from France before it became available here in Australia. And I get why. This micellar water is incredibly gentle, yet manages to take off all of my makeup – even mascara! I love how you don't need to rinse it off either, so this one is sensitive skin and travel-friendly.

2. Bioderma Sensibio Foaming Gel.

Bioderma Sensibio Foaming GelBioderma Sensibio Foaming Gel

Fast facts: 

  • Bioderma Sensibio Foaming Gel is a gentle foaming gel for sensitive to intolerant skin that cleanses skin of excess oils, impurities and pollutants.

  • Free from soaps, fragrances, parabens and colourants, so it's sensitive skin-friendly. 

  • Use this product as the second step in your skincare routine after you've removed your makeup to gently cleanse the skin.

Why my skin loves it:

Don't be scared by the foaming part in the name Sensibio Foaming Gel. I was sceptical because I've always been told to avoid foaming products that might irritate my skin, but this cleanser is different.

The formula effectively cleanses my skin, but also leaves it feeling soft, calm and supple. This is because of the moisturising ingredients Coco-Glucoside and Glyceryl Oleate that get the job done without stripping the skin like traditional foaming cleansers. Also, no eye stinging here! 

3. Bioderma Sensibio Daily Soothing Cream.

Bioderma Sensibio Daily Soothing CreamBioderma Sensibio Daily Soothing Cream

Fast facts: 

Why my skin loves it:

My skin is so dry, but some rich, thick moisturising creams can actually cause my skin to break out or flare up. If that happens to you too, then the light formula may be worth a try! It's such a soothing, comforting moisturiser, yet the consistency is thin and light. Really, anyone can use this moisturiser.

Final thoughts: If things that shouldn't make your skin sting (like, say, water) are giving you that dreaded tingling feeling, it's a sign to go back to basics.

This Bioderma three-step routine is easy, effective and won't break the bank... unlike the products that likely got us into this mess in the first place.

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    Filled with the usual things we know you'll love, and surprises you might not expect, it's real rewards, really simple.