Is the make-up you use causing your skin condition?
IS MAKE-UP bad for our skin?
While in most cases makeup is harmless, certain products may cause problems for some individuals. It’s important to use make-up and cosmetics suitable for your skin type or skin condition.
Some skin problems caused by cosmetics include:
Acne cosmetica, a form of acne triggered by the use of certain cosmetic products. It is linked to certain ingredients that cause comedone formation (a blockage in the pore) and typically presents as small rash-like bumpy pimples.
Irritant dermatitis, which accounts for the majority of reactions to make-up and other cosmetic products. It can occur in anyone but is more likely in those with pre-existing sensitive skin or in those with underlying barrier disruption caused by a condition like eczema or rosacea. It typically causes an itchy, scaly red rash but can even blister or weep. Symptoms can occur immediately but may take weeks or even months to develop with weaker irritants, making it difficult to identify the cause.
Allergic contact dermatitis, which occurs when a person has become sensitised to an ingredient that has been applied to the skin. A red, itchy rash sometimes associated with swelling or blisters develops 12–48 hours after exposure, and may become chronic with ongoing use. The allergen can be very difficult to identify because in some cases the product is used for months or years before sensitisation occurs.
Fragrances and preservatives are the most common cause of contact allergy resulting from cosmetics.
There are more than 5000 different fragrances used in skin care products, many of which are natural plant extracts and essential oils.
Other common allergens include preservatives, lanolin, coconut diethanolamide (a foaming agent) and sunscreen agents.
Looking for hypoallergenic, fragrance-free and non-comedogenic products is wise.
Those with an oily skin type or a history of acne should also limit oil-based cosmetics.
Those with a sensitive or dry skin type, an underlying inflammatory skin condition or history of contact allergy should try to avoid irritants and potential allergens.