Many people claim to have sensitive skin. In reality, a fair amount of the redness, dullness, breakouts and dryness that person experiences could be a byproduct of their skin care routine. If you experience irritation when the weather changes, or when you are out in the sun, you may, in fact, have sensitive skin. Blotchiness, itching, and other frustrations, though, are often well within our control.
What is the cause of irritation?
The best way to reveal the cause of skin irritation is to obtain a thorough examination from your board-certified dermatologist. Manhattan dermatologist Dr. Quintana is familiar with the nuances of the various condition that affect the skin. A consultation and evaluation of your skin could help you understand where irritation originates. In some cases, there is an actual dermatologic condition at play, such as rosacea or eczema. Quite often, the culprit is the care.
First, do no harm
There are so many ways that we may inadvertently hurt our skin. The first way is to neglect appropriate washing, exfoliating, and moisturizing. On the other hand, overdoing it with any of these three crucial elements can also create problems. The skin should not be scrubbed. It should not be exposed to overly-hot water, or to products that have irritating ingredients, such as vitamin A, too frequently. And, of course, we have to throw sun exposure in there as one of the mistakes we make with our skin.
What your skin needs
To know exactly what your skin needs, regarding products, care, and treatments, talk with your dermatologist. Then, instill good habits, such as:
- Recognize that your dermatologic needs will change. Stay up to date with routine skin exams.
- Pay attention to what your skin responds to. Does your skin become red or itchy after using that new facial cleanser or moisturizer? It may be time for a change!
- Expect a certain amount of redness or irritation after using known irritants that are meant to exfoliate more deeply. Temporary side effects should diminish within 30 minutes.
- Patch test behind an ear before slathering a new product over your entire face. Check the test area 24 hours after initial use. If irritation is present, introduce that product into your routine more gradually, like twice a week.
Do you have questions about sensitive skin? Call (212) 391-8600 to schedule your consultation.