Sensitive skin is more reactive than normal skin, so a variety of seemingly minor factors can cause significant discomfort.
If you think you have sensitive skin, the fastest route to understanding the cause is a conversation with a dermatologist. If you prefer to self-diagnose, consider keeping a log of your skincare routine, reactions, and environmental factors—such as weather and dietary changes—to point you towards a solution.
Sensitive skin isn't a medical diagnosis. It's merely a symptom. A range of issues can contribute to sensitivity, and some cases are little more than the inevitable result of using the wrong skincare products. Read on to learn about more the common culprits behind your skin sensitivity and find out what products we recommend that will be sure to leave your skin feeling less irritated.
Here are some of our hot tips on what might be causing your sensitive skin to be reacting.
Too Many Products
It's tempting to slather your skin in 'miracle' products, but excessive use of skincare products actually does more harm than good. Using multiple cleansers alongside toners, spot treatments, and other harsh products can dry and irritate even the healthiest skin. Unless directed otherwise by a doctor or dermatologist, limit yourself to no more than three or four skincare products each day.
Even when you use high-quality products, your skin can take a downhill turn if you don't use them correctly. Some common errors include:
Using multiple products with the same active ingredient. Doubling up on retinol products, for example, only compounds the sensitivity that this ingredient can cause.
Using too much of a product. Ingredients that dry the skin, such as benzoyl peroxide, increase sensitivity in high doses.
Using two products that should not be used together. For example, retinol plus AHAs equals a surefire skin disaster.
Spending too much time in the sun. Some skincare products, such as retinol, increase sun sensitivity.
Intensely scrubbing your face. Facial scrubs are designed to do the work on their own without extra pressure.
Using a dirty washcloth. Please, for the love of the skincare gods, never ever do this.
If you do have sensitive skin, we recommend using the asap gentle cleansing gel.