After our insightful investigation into the prevalence of sensitive skin last week, I have put together my three most important tips to avoid reactions and keep your skin calm and under control.
1. Understand common irritants
Knowledge is Power! If skin reactions are a common complaint, you should avoid them as much as possible. Do your homework too.
There are hundreds of different irritants and there is always the possibility that your skin will be particularly sensitive to an ingredient that is not particularly hard.
In general, however, there are three main culprits who are responsible for the majority of skin reactions. You are:
detergent – e.g. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS), Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES), Cocamidopropyl Betaine (CAPB). More about the most common detergents here.
Perservatives – e.g. Alcohol, methylisothiazolinone (MI) or formaldehyde percursors such as sodium hydroxymethylglycinate.
fragrance – e.g. artificial fragrance or "perfume"
2. Main ingredient lists
Reading your ingredient lists is the most important thing you can do for your sensitive skin.
Learn or name the most common irritants so you can easily remember them.
When you are in the natural products market, always look for natural and organic certification marks so you don't get scammed – read more here.
3. Keep a product diary
If you regularly respond to products and can't figure out why, make a list of each product and its ingredients in a product diary. Over time, you will be able to choose the ingredients that keep popping up and know exactly what to avoid.
It's a simple but effective method, and that's how I found out my main allergy triggers years ago.
Do you have any good tips on how to recognize your personal triggers or irritants?