Ingredients to Watch Out for If You Have Sensitive Skin

Sensitive skin can put a total damper on your beauty routine. Testing new products can be a nightmare because you never know what’s going to cause a major flare-up.

But just because you’re sensitive doesn’t mean your skin can’t look healthy. You just have to know which ingredients are most likely to cause trouble. So, here is a list of no-no ingredients you may want to avoid.

  1. Preservatives

Preservatives are necessary for keeping any product fresh and stable. Some preservatives, like parabens, cause an allergic reaction in certain people. Parabens are more likely to irritate those who already have skin issues like eczema, psoriasis, and contact dermatitis. Another preservative to look for in your cosmetics and skin products is methylisothiazolinone, which is a high-hazard allergen according to the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep database.

  1. Sulphates

Sulphates are cleansing agents that help create a rich, foaming lather. They can prove too harsh for some, drying out skin and hair and contributing to rashes and blemishes. Try sulphate free products.

  1. Dyes

If you have sensitive skin, you may want to talk to your hairdresser before booking your next dye appointment. Paraphenylenediamine (PPD) is a common ingredient found in permanent hair dyes that can cause an allergic reaction. The result is a rash at the hairline, nape, and around the ears.

  1. Harsh exfoliants

Yes, you can use exfoliating products if you have sensitive skin, but the key here is moderation. It’s important to avoid using products that are too strong. If you prefer to use a product with glycolic or salicylic acid, start off with a very low percentage and slowly work your way up. There are also plenty of DIY recipes online using oats and honey that work great for sensitive skin.

While this list is a good starting point, never skip the patch test when you incorporate a new product into your routine. You want to apply a small amount to your neck or wrist first. Then, wait 24 hours to see if there is a reaction. If there isn’t any redness or itching, it’s OK to use on your face or body.