15 December 2013

10 Days till Christmas: How to relieve sensitive/irritated skin

So lately, my skin has been acting up again. My acne has flared up again so with the constant use of acne medication (both tropical and oral) my skin has become a lot more sensitive and as of today, my skin has come up in red blotches due to the overuse of treatments. Whenever this happens, I automatically change my skincare routine so that it is as gentle on my skin as possible, and I find that my sensitivity and irritation goes away within 3-5 days.

1. Change your products so that all/most are organic or natural as possible. 
 Try just washing your face with water, but if you really need to wash you face with a proper cleanser, find one that uses all organic ingredients that's free of all the bad stuff ESPECIALLY ANY ARTIFICIAL FRAGRANCE and also a dispenser that creates the foam for you. If you don't mind using raw products, try an oatmeal wash. I first heard this method from Bubzbeauty and at first I thought 'man that's alot of effort just to wash your face' as it is quite messy, but every time I use this method, my skin becomes less sensitive, less red, less painful (as sometimes my skin hurts when it's exposed to pretty much anything), and overall a lot smoother (it's also great for those who suffer from medical skin conditions such as eczema). What I do is get enough to cover the palm of my hand, soak in warm water and sort of grind it with my fingers so it turns into a paste, I use half of that to lightly rub it all over the face and the other half to use as sort of a mask; just smooth it all over the face and let it stay on the face for about 2-5 minutes. 

If you do have make-up to remove, I recommend using a cleansing oil and mixing that with a bit of olive oil. It requires minimal rubbing on the face compared to using a wipe or a traditional cleanser. The oil is smooth on the face and its makes the surface of the skin oily so that there's pretty much no harsh rubbing of the skin.

2. Minimise the amount you have physical contact to your skin.
 Don't dry your face with a cloth, don't rub your moisturiser into your skin, don't touch your face, do not exfoliate your skin. For a few years I've never used a towel or cloth to dry my face (if you have dry skin, why would you want to make your skin completely dry if you want moisture in your skin?), instead I use my palms to just pat the water on my face until it's absorbed, but this also means your face has to be 100% clean. If you have any left over dirt or make-up on your skin, that's just going to create pimples!

When applying moisturiser, just smooth a thin layer all over the face and let it dry naturally. If your using the right products, your skin will tell you by your skin just absorbing it without any effort. 

3. Avoid moisturising products that are made to target something (eg. acne, dark spots, wrinkles)
 These products will have an active ingredient which will target that property which will then continue to irritate your already irritated skin, which you don't want! 

4. Avoid going outside
 The sun will make your skin more sensitive, and the wind does the same so try to stay indoors

5. Minimise the amount of products you use on your face.
 As the saying goes 'too much of something can also be bad', so use no more than 3 products your face for moisture.

So to sum it up, here's what I do when I do end up with super irritated skin
- wash my face with water: splashing water on my face several times with cool water
- do an oatmeal wash (SUPER RECOMMENDED) and leave remaining oatmeal on the skin as a mask (I leave it on while I brush my teeth, and remove once I'm done)
- apply a thin layer of aloe vera gel on my face and let that completely dry
- apply a moisturiser, either a gel (for those that have oily skin) or a cream (for dry skin)

That's it. When I do this, in about 3 days my skin improves dramatically and is almost completely healed. Within a week, my skin is back to normal. If your skin is prone to getting sensitive (like me), use the oatmeal wash at least once a week. I really hope these tips have helped, and if you have any other tips, leave them in the comments below. 

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