Dear Readers - Many of you write to me on the blog about problems with reactions to skincare products. These reactions are mostly due to the many chemicals used in skincare products. Some of you are also easily irritated by scrubs, acidic products (mostly antioxidants and glycolics), and retinoids (Vitamin A cousins). Here are some well tested ideas. Still not all of you will tolerate all of these, so use your good judgment.
When trying new products, always start one at a time about 3-7 days apart, so if you have a problem, you know which product it is!
Morning: 1) Gentle cleanser - over scrubbing makes pigment worse 2) Gentle antioxidant - they have been proven to decrease inflammation when tolerated 3) Moisturizer for sensitive skin - dry skin is more easily irritated 4) Hypoallergenic sunscreen
Evening: 1) Gentle cleanser 2) A gentle Vit A cousin (retinoid) - most of the prescription versions (Renova, Retin A, tretinoin, etc) irritate sensitive skin. Here is the most gentle version I've found. If you tolerate this well, you may be able to move up to stronger ones. 3) Moisturizer for sensitive skin - use the moisturizer first if retinoids tend to irritate you.
*Remember that cell growth factors, peptides and other heavily marketed products have not been shown to help with sensitive skin and are just marketing.