September 6, 2021 3:00:37 pm
When it comes to skincare, most people desire clean, germ-free, acne-free skin — one which does not have too many pores or blackheads. But, we all know how every skin type is different, and with it, the texture of the skin differs, too.
Dr Saloni Vora Gala, a clinical and aesthetic dermatologist at Dr Sheth’s Skin and Hair Clinic, says any change in the environmental condition, stress, hormonal alterations, chemical irritants, diet, fabric and many other triggers exacerbate skin sensitivities.
But how does one know if they actually have sensitive skin? The dermatologist lists five common signs they can look out for:
1. Reactive; turns red easily
Fragrance, harsh chemicals, a gust of wind, brushing against something, rubbing the skin, exposure to UV rays, exertion, anything tiny can suddenly induce inflammation to the already-weak barrier, making the skin turn red suddenly. Visible blood vessels may also be present.
2. Burning, stinging
Application of any product on skin (even a moisturizer) may cause mild to severe burning or stinging of the skin. One may feel as if nothing suits them.
Weak skin barrier that is prone to frequent inflammation leads to frequent itching even with slightest damage to skin barrier. This specially occurs after using a harsh cleansing agent which strips away moisture from the skin surface.
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4. Dry, flaky, feeling of tightness
Sensitive skin lacks natural moisturizing factors like ceramides, squalene due to a weakened skin barrier. Moisture is lost easily due to the lack of a protective hydration seal. This causes the skin to appear dry. The weak bond between cells leads to faster exfoliation and appearance of flakes which are nothing but dead cells. Skin feels stretchy and tight all the time due to lack of hydration. Dullness and uneven texture lead to a feeling of discomfort.
5. Frequently rashes or breakouts
The dryness of sensitive skin stimulates the underlying oil glands to produce more oil/sebum which get trapped by the dead cells causing breakouts or acne. Strongly fragranced and alcohol-based products may worsen this.
“A thorough evaluation by a dermatologist is a must to tackle sensitive skin. Frequent moisturization with ingredients like ceramides, squalene, glycerin, hyaluronic acid, petrolatum is a must to repair the damaged barrier. Sun protection helps prevent further worsening. Choose products with utmost care; fragrance-free, alcohol-free, gentle formulations are preferred. Always consider a dermatologist’s opinion while choosing products,” the doctor says.
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