How to deal with sensitive facial skin
Dealing with sensitive facial skin can be pretty challenging, especially when you aim for flawless, but breakouts, rashes, and dryness won’t let up. That’s why some are tempted to go for an easy fix that doesn’t give lasting benefits. The better option would be to get to the bottom of it, but it isn’t just time-consuming. It entails more – energy, money, and commitment. Think about the rewards, though.
What if going through the trouble of patiently peeling away at layers of symptoms to get to the root cause is the way to promising results? Would you rather keep on trying just about every quick-fix there is in the market just because they give you a clear face temporarily?
There is just no substitute for due diligence and the long-term benefits to be had. Obviously, this isn’t for everyone, but if you are one of the few who are ready to take the road less travelled, here are five things you need to consider in effectively dealing with sensitive facial skin.
HAVE A HEALTH CHECK
The skin is one of the body’s largest organ, and its function is more than aesthetics. Our skin, aside from acting as a protective barrier against irritants and allergens, has special cells that are designed to alert our body of possible harmful intrusion by causing an “allergic response.”
If you’ve put up far too long with short-lived solutions to skin reactions that mimic skin sensitivity such as rashes, bumps, flushing, dryness, flaking, itching, breakouts, etcetera, that visit to your GP or pharmacist could be the missing piece to your puzzling problem. Who knows, your skin might be trying to tell you a different story.
USE THE BEST SKINCARE PRODUCTS FOR SENSITIVE FACIAL SKIN
Sensitive skin is typically dry, which means that it’s vulnerable to attack, so you need to keep it always moisturized. Steer clear of products loaded with ingredients you are not familiar with. More often than not, these products are loaded with irritants. The best way to deal with sensitive facial skin is to moisturize your skin often and with calming ingredients that will hydrate and soothe your face. Pamper your skin with these Avène products, specially designed for very sensitive skin:
Free from parabens, fragrance and colouring agents, these products were developed with a minimum of ingredients, all selected for their gentleness. Leave your sensitive skin perfectly clean, comfortable and nourished with Avene Cleanse with Extremely Gentle Cleanser and Avene Skin Recovery Cream Moisturizer.
PAY ATTENTION TO WHAT YOU EAT
The next best place to look at is your diet if you want to be thorough in dealing with sensitive skin on your face. Food sensitivities aren’t uncommon. However, it may not be easily detected. In cases where a person has a high tolerance and presents non-life-threatening symptoms, the same can be brushed aside as mere skin sensitivity issues and not food-related ones. If it hasn’t crossed your mind yet, it won’t hurt to check with your family to see if you’re genetically predisposed to food allergies.
Another way to ascertain if a food allergy is a culprit is by going on a food elimination diet. It takes about five to six weeks, and the goal is to identify and eliminate food your body cannot tolerate well. There are two phases to this diet, the Elimination Phase and the Reintroduction Phase.
During the first phase, you stay away from the food you suspect as triggers for about three weeks. If your skin clears up during this phase, yours might not be a case of sensitive facial skin at all.
The final phase deals with reintroducing food. Put at least a 3-day space between reintroducing each food item, observing for symptoms as you do. Move on only when there are no presenting symptoms.
If you do experience one, then you have successfully caught a food trigger and should eliminate that from your diet. Admittedly, this diet is done best with the support of an allergist or a registered dietician to be more effective.
This could also be the perfect time to put together a healthier diet that your body is sure to thrive on. What about adding healthy fats into the mix? It’s good to have them fueling the body aside from carbs. Healthy fats pitching in would mean sustained energy as they are known to fuel the body longer. Cutting down on carbs slash sugar, particularly refined carbs, would do your body wonders. Sugar can overstimulate the body’s allergic reactions, and It’s at the top of the list for foods that cause inflammation, along with sweetened beverages, red meat, processed meats, dairy, and fried food.
Studies reveal inflammation to be at the root of most medical conditions, including sensitive skin. Inflammation, simply put, is the body’s way of alerting us that there is a “dis-ease” happening inside and it needs help. The excellent news is that vitamin-rich fibrous food and those loaded with phytonutrients like flavonoids, carotenoids, and resveratrol are known to help the body reduce if not reversing inflammation, especially in its acute stage.
Here is a list of top anti-inflammatory foods to help you with your new meal plan:
- Healthy grains - brown rice and whole wheat
- Dark-coloured fruits and vegetables - blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, apples, spinach, and kale
- Plant-based protein – Nuts and beans
- Phytonutrient-rich spices – Turmeric, garlic, onions, ginger, and peppers
- Healthy Fats
- Medium-chain fatty acids – Virgin coconut oil
- Mono-unsaturated fatty acids – Olive oil
- Omega 3 fatty acids – Salmon and mackerel
With a bit of sacrifice and commitment to a meal plan that is focused on vegetables, fruits, nuts, whole grains, healthy fats or oils, and fish, a turnaround in the body’s system can be achieved. Consume meat sparingly to allow the body to rest easy. Digesting meat takes more work, which means higher acidity for the body. Note that the food considered anti-inflammatory also promote alkalinity. No less than the Father of Medicine espoused: food being one’s medicine and one’s medicine being one’s food, so you’re in good company.
NOTHING BEATS THE ESSENTIALS
Our fourth stop – going back to the essentials. Clean water and air, a healthy diet, sunlight, exercise, and rest, are essential for the body to be in top shape.
Water helps rid the body of toxins and give the skin a healthy glow. Dryness, bumps, itching, and a host of facial skin woes can be prevented simply by keeping hydrated.
Make sure the air you breathe is pure. Mould spores, house dust, and dust mites are the most common causes of allergies. Regular cleaning, airing out your home, and bringing plenty of sunshine will significantly help keep common allergens like them at bay.
Enough has been said about the sun causing woeful skin reactions like rashes, redness, dryness, etc. But you can’t hide from it forever. Everything in moderation, right? When you go out for a walk, of course, with your natural sunscreen on and not in mid-day, even for just 10 minutes, you help your body make Vitamin D. Natural vitamin D is every skin’s best friend.
Regular exercise is a great way to detox from stressors both in and out. For the body, it means improved circulation. When the body, including the skin, is efficiently supplied with the essential nutrients and oxygen, it flourishes. The skin, for one, enjoys renewed elasticity, as the body can produce collagen efficiently.
Sweating it out also helps you tune out from stress-related thoughts while the body releases adrenaline and cortisol, thereby reducing stress. The brain treats this as a reach out and produces endorphins—the reason why you feel a natural high after hitting the gym.
Exercise will surely do wonders for your skin if coupled with a good before and after gym regimen. Avoid wearing make-up even if it’s comedogenic. Sweat and make-up are not a good combo. Cleanse your face before and after. Don’t forget to moisturize after a post-gym facial cleanse.
LET THE BODY REST AND HEAL ITSELF
One final thing you should consider is the importance of rest.
Do you feel wonderment whenever you see even a tiny evidence of the fact that the body can heal itself? It’s incredible to see how a blood clot from a wound turns into a scab, then after some time, a scar. Through rest and sleep, the body can recuperate and rejuvenate.
The same thing is true for the skin. While you sleep at night, the magic of skin repair and renewal happens, and it’s proven by how radiant you look the next day. That’s why a night of good quality sleep is a must. Deprive your skin of sleep and what follows are dark circles, unsightly blemishes, fine lines, you get the picture.
HOW TO DEAL WITH SENSITIVE FACIAL SKIN - CONCLUSION
According to most medical practitioners, lifestyle change would be the next big revolution in medicine, and rightly so. After all, wellness doesn’t depend entirely on breakthrough cures and healing diets. One’s total well-being hinges on the willingness to do the difficult thing called change, from one day to another. The recommendations above are hard, but each one has what it takes to make quality decisions daily. You may fail time and again, but never fail to get up each time. When you do, the sacrifice will be well worth it. You are your greatest ally in dealing with sensitive facial skin.