Sensitive & Reactive Skin
What is sensitive skin?
With the stressors of modern living, environmental harshness and changes in the climate, skin sensitivities have become a growing concern for many people. Sensitive skin can be of any skin type, even oily or combination. It tends to be fine textured and delicate. The skin is prone to flushing from temperature changes, both cold and heat. Sunburn and windburn happens easily. Those with sensitive skin are prone to allergic reactions. And irritation usually results in red and blotchy skin.
What causes / triggers sensitive skin?
The causes of sensitive skin are varied. It may be heredity, especially for those with conditions such as allergies, eczema and psoriasis. Environment can play a part, if you are exposed to harsh conditions. Chemical exposures can also contribute. Once you have sensitive skin, you may find the simplest things can cause irritation. So, the products you use on your face and body need to be gentle and designed specifically for sensitive skin.
Tips to help manage sensitive skin naturally:
- It is vital to keep the skin and the correct pH i.e. is slightly acidic. When the pH is off balance the skin becomes vulnerable to infections and sensitivities. As most soap is highly alkaline and strips the natural oils form the skin, it is left dry and vulnerable. So the number one rule is don’t use soap (unless it is specifically pH neutral and certainly never on the face).
- It is important to treat sensitive skin gently. Avoid harsh abrasive exfoliants or peels. Harsh environments and extreme temperatures, (including hot showers), can be aggravating to sensitive skin.
- Minimise the use of make-up and check the ingredients of what you are using. Look for hypo-allergenic products with simple, natural ingredients. If you must wear make-up, remove it as soon as you get home and try to have at least one make-up free day a week.
- Supplements can be very helpful for sensitive skin. Essential Fatty Acids are the number one skin supplement, in the form of fish oil or evening primrose oil. This will help your body to restore the natural oils in the skin and assist with healing. As always, it is so important to drink plenty of water.
- Keep your skin regime simple. You just need a mild cleanser and some moisturising and nourishing treatment. You don’t need a lot of products and it is always advisable to use just one brand of products, as they are made to be compatible with each other. Mixing and matching can lead to further irritations.
- For all skin types it is important to use products that only use natural ingredients that are biocompatible with the skin. Plant based ingredients are healing and care for the skin. They allow the skin to breathe naturally. Natural plant oils such as Olive Squalene and Jojoba are biocompatible with the skin, and heal and nourish as they moisturise. Herbal extracts, such as Calendula and Chamomile are healing and soothing to the skin.
- Keep away from products with synthetic fragrances and colours. Some natural essential oils can be irritating, so choose products with a minimum of fragrance.
- Take advantage of in-store testers,patch test the product on a small area of the inside of your arm. If you have no reaction, come back the next day to make your purchase.
Recommended 3 step skincare routine for sensitive skin:
- Cleanse with Olive Soothing Cream Cleanser twice a day (will also remove lightweight makeup)
- Treat with Soothing Facial Mist followed by Olive Skin Serum (this combination helps the serum to absorb). This is particularly healing and nourishing and very suitable for even the most sensitive of skins. If someone is particularly sensitive, such as after chemotherapy or surgery, it is recommended to use only the Soothing Facial Mist and Olive Skin Serum, on the face, for a period of a month, before a regular regime is commenced. This combination can be used to cleanse, moisturise and heal.
- Hydrate with and Olive Repair Cream which is designed specifically deeply moisturise and heal the most sensitive skin.
- For the body – use Olive Cleansing Bar (which is pH neutral) on the body (or hair!) followed by the Olive Hand and Body Cream to hydrate and repair.