Sensitive skin is a term to describe skin conditions that are easily irritated due to overreacting to various factors, such as air or chemicals in skin care products or cleansers. To prevent, sensitive skin owners need to take good care of the skin and be extra careful.

People who have sensitive skin often feel complaints on the skin, such as rashes, itching, dryness, rashes, to burning or stinging sensations on the skin. These complaints generally appear after the skin is exposed to certain substances, or the air is dry and cold.

Characteristics of sensitive skin that need to be recognized
1.     Reactive skin

You may notice that you are experiencing symptoms in response to certain triggers. Common triggers include soaps, detergents, fragrances, perfumes, skin care products, and household products. In addition, exposure to cold air, sun, and wind can trigger flares, namely the sudden onset of symptoms with severe conditions.

2.     Reddish skin

This can be a red rash, red bumps, blushing and flushing, or even dilated red blood vessels. Usually, the redness will go away after removing the irritant or with mild treatment.

3.     Itchy skin

The skin often feels itchy and tight, especially after cleaning with products that are too harsh. Using hot water on the skin can make things worse. You may feel itchy especially when the air is cold and dry.

4.     The skin feels sore and burning

Your skin may sting and burn when you cleanse with or use "too strong" products. This is common with products with alcohol, and many acne or anti-aging products. If something is causing your skin to sting or burn, remove the trigger as quickly as possible and rinse with cold water.

5.     Dry skin

Having very dry skin can also be a cause of sensitivity, as very dry skin doesn't protect the nerve endings in the skin well. will most likely have more problems with dry skin in cold, dry weather and when exposed to the wind. Using a moisturizer that is gentle and protects the skin from the elements can help fight it.

6.     Frequent rashes

Sensitive skin may react with a red, dry, scaly, or bumpy rash when exposed to a trigger. This is especially true for products that are left on the skin, such as face creams. You may develop a rash very quickly after contact with the product. The rash can be uncomfortable, unsightly, and stubborn.

7.     Vulnerable to natural breakouts

If you have sensitive skin, you may be prone to breakouts that look like pimples with red bumps and pustules. If you have sensitive skin and acne, you need the help of a doctor to find the right products to keep your skin clean without causing irritation.

8.     Skin easily exfoliates

Especially if you have dry skin, you may experience a lot of skin exfoliation. This condition can affect appearance or self-confidence. If the peeling is deep or if you intentionally peel this skin, it can cause open sores and pain that can lead to infection and even scarring.

9.     Skin is prone to sunburn

Your sensitive skin is more susceptible to the harmful effects of the sun. If your skin is already irritated or peeling, you are at a higher risk of exposure to the harmful effects of the sun. You should always wear sunscreen when outside, especially on your face.

Trigger Factors for Sensitive Skin Complaints

Triggers for sensitive skin reactions vary from person to person. Some of the factors that could trigger it are:

·       Skin disorders, such as eczema, rosacea and contact dermatitis.

·       Pollution, such as dust and vehicle fumes.

·       Environmental factors, eg sun exposure and cold or hot temperatures.

·       Frequently changing cosmetic products or skin care products.

·       Hormonal changes, such as before menstruation and menopause.

·       Side effects of certain drugs.

·       Excessive stress and anxiety.

In addition, this condition is also genetic. Owners of sensitive skin usually also have parents or siblings with sensitive skin.

Proper Care for Sensitive Skin

Here are some tips that you can apply in treating sensitive skin:

1.     Choose skin-friendly products

Owners of sensitive skin need to be more careful in choosing skin care products. Use products specifically for sensitive skin which generally contain fewer chemicals, are gentle on the skin, and are fragrance-free. Usually these products are labeled "hypoallergenic".

2.     Stay away from irritating materials

Because it is easy to react, sensitive skin owners need to avoid using products that contain irritating ingredients, such as detergents, benzoyl peroxide, sulfur, glycolic acid, alcohol, and retinoids.

3.     Frequent use of moisturizer

Sensitive skin is prone to dryness and cracking. To prevent dry skin, be diligent in applying moisturizer after bathing. Generally, moisturizers containing petrolatum, mineral oil, linoleic acid, dimethicone, or glycerin are safe for sensitive skin.

4.     Limit bath time

Bathing for too long can make the skin easily damaged. Therefore, people with sensitive skin need to limit bath time, just 10 to 15 minutes. In addition, it is also recommended to take a bath with soap for sensitive skin and not use water that is too cold or hot, but warm water.

5.     Limit sun exposure and use sunscreen

If your skin is sensitive to sun exposure or hot temperatures, avoid prolonged exposure to direct sunlight. If you have to go outside during the day, wear closed clothes, a wide hat, and sunglasses. In addition, use a special sunscreen for sensitive skin with SPF 30 or more, it is recommended to wear comfortable and cotton clothes.

Skincare for sensitive skin so it's not easily irritated

Owners of this skin type also need to be extra careful when starting a series of skin care. Before using the product regularly, it is recommended that you do a sensitivity test with the following steps.

Apply a small amount of product behind the ear and leave it on for 24 hours. You can also apply it on other body parts such as your arms or elbows. If the skin shows no signs of irritation, repeat the first step, but this time around the eyes. If after 24 hours there are still no signs of irritation, now you can start using it on your face.

Skin care routine for sensitive skin

1.     Choose a gentle facial wash

To prevent irritation, we recommend using soap with little or no chemical additives. Look for a soap that's specially formulated for sensitive skin, but isn't too gentle because it's harder to remove dirt.

If possible, you should choose a face wash with less than ten ingredients. The more formula in the soap, the higher the chance of skin irritation. Avoid soaps that contain antibacterial ingredients, fragrances, and deodorants.

2.     Use a hydrating toner

Types of toner are generally divided into exfoliating toner and hydrating toner. People with sensitive skin are advised to use a hydrating toner because its main function is to moisturize the skin, not exfoliate dead skin cells like exfoliating toners.

After washing your face, apply a hydrating toner containing 2% hyaluronic acid on a damp face. Drop the toner onto a clean cotton swab, then gently wipe over the face, avoiding the eye and mouth area.

3.     Using a serum with moisturizing agents

Serum plays an important role in the skincare series for sensitive skin because the ingredients in it are able to penetrate the skin well. In addition, the serum also moisturizes the deeper layers of the skin so that the skin becomes healthier.

Owners of sensitive skin should use a serum containing moisturizing substances such as hyaluronic acid, ceramide, and squalene. Natural ingredients such as Centella asiatica or minerals such as zinc and selenium can also nourish your skin

4.     Use a thick moisturizer

The best moisturizers for sensitive skin are ones that contain shea butter, hyaluronic acid, lanolin, ceramides, stearic acid, or glycerin. These ingredients can attract water, lock in moisture, and maintain fluid balance in the skin. However, if you want to use a moisturizer in the morning, you should use a moisturizer with a light consistency in the form of a gel.

5.     Don't skip sunscreen

Exposure to direct sunlight can exacerbate sensitive skin problems. Therefore, you must always complete your skincare routine by using sunscreen in the form of sunscreen or sunblock.

Ingredients that must be in sunscreen for sensitive skin include titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, ecamsule, avobenzone, and oxybenzone. These ingredients are more friendly to sensitive skin and are not easily irritated.

Skin care ingredients for sensitive skin that need to be avoided
1.     Methylisothiazolinone

Methylisothiazolinone (MI) is the most common trigger of allergic contact dermatitis. about 10% of sensitive skin owners also have allergies to ingredients that are often found in this moisturizer.

2.     Essential oil

Skincare products containing essential oils are not necessarily safe for sensitive skin. The reason is, natural ingredients are difficult to be tested for medical safety. The acidic pH levels of some plant extracts even tend to cause irritation and redness.

3.     Perfume or fragrance

Avoid cosmetic or skincare products that contain any type of fragrance or perfume. Chemical and natural ingredients used as fragrances can cause skin irritation in sensitive people.

4.     Alcohol

Alcohol is a very common ingredient in skincare products, but it can draw water away from the skin so it's not recommended for sensitive skin. Instead, choose products with water-based ingredients.

5.     Petrochemicals and synthetic thickeners

Chemical thickeners such as liquid paraffin and mineral oil in certain moisturizers, lotions, and skin creams can trigger excess skin oil production. As a result, sensitive skin is more easily irritated and becomes dull due to clogged pores.

Owners of sensitive skin must carefully choose skincare products for their skin. Although not easy, the risk of skin problems can be reduced by doing a sensitivity test. If an ingredient proves to cause a negative reaction, stop using it immediately and switch to a safer product.

If you have trouble dealing with and treating sensitive skin or deciding which products are suitable for use, you should consult a dermatologist for advice and appropriate treatment.