We sep­a­rate fact from fic­tion on widely held be­liefs sur­round­ing sen­si­tive skin

Women's Weekly (Malaysia) - - Beauty -

Myth 1

Don’t wear make-up if you have sen­si­tive skin

It’s un­true that you need to forgo wear­ing make-up – you just need to get in­formed about what ag­gra­vates your skin con­di­tion and pay at­ten­tion to what goes into prod­ucts. Study prod­uct la­bels and steer clear of those that con­tain po­ten­tial ir­ri­tants such as glyc­erin, paraben, ph­tha­lates, PABA and ar­ti­fi­cial fra­grance. Look for “breath­able” for­mu­las and make it a pri­or­ity to thor­oughly re­move make-up with a gen­tle cleanser at the end of the day to pre­vent oil and dirt build-up that may fur­ther ir­ri­tate your skin.

Myth 2

Not drink­ing enough wa­ter causes sud­den skin dry­ness

It is true that hy­dra­tion pro­motes skin health, but not drink­ing enough wa­ter isn’t the main cause of skin dry­ness. The rea­son be­hind a sud­den bout of dry­ness or flare-up is more likely to be caused by in­gre­di­ents con­tained in your skincare, body care and cos­met­ics. For in­stance, sodium lau­ryl sul­fate can strip skin of its nat­u­ral oils while min­eral oil some­times causes clogged pores, thereby ex­ac­er­bat­ing sen­si­tiv­ity.

Myth 3

Never exfoliate sen­si­tive skin

While there is some grain of wis­dom in this, it’s not en­tirely cor­rect. Re­mov­ing dead cells is an in­te­gral part of skin main­te­nance. We sug­gest opt­ing for a gen­tle, nat­u­ral ex­fo­liant like oat­meal or sugar, and gen­tly mas­sag­ing in a cir­cu­lar mo­tion in­stead of scrub­bing. Test on a small patch first and scrub just once a week for a start. Re­mem­ber to slough your legs and feet too as these ar­eas tend to be the dri­est.

Myth 4

You should use only hy­poal­ler­genic prod­ucts

While hy­poal­ler­genic prod­ucts are your safest bet for sen­si­tive skin, not ev­ery skincare, body care or cos­met­ics brand car­ries a hy­poal­ler­genic line. Re­strict­ing your­self to us­ing only hy­poal­ler­genic prod­ucts may vastly limit your op­tions. Other prod­ucts that con­tain no ir­ri­tants may be suit­able for you too; you might need to go through a lit­tle trial and er­ror to dis­cover what works for you. Ask for prod­uct sam­ples where pos­si­ble be­fore pur­chas­ing a full size and al­ways re­mem­ber to do a patch test.

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