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ADVICE:
Do you have sensitive skin?


If you have sensitive skin, you may think you’re doomed to a life of rashes, irritations and allergic reactions. But is your skin really as sensitive as you think it is? Perhaps not.

Many of the problems we attribute to sensitive skin are actually caused by the misuse of skin care products. For instance, many of us, in our haste to achieve better results faster, simply use too many products at once. This typically results in the kinds of symptoms -- irritation, redness, inflammation -- that lead us to believe our skin is sensitive when, in actuality, it’s merely overwhelmed.

Simply put, you should always abide by the general rule that more is not necessarily better. This is especially true in the case of stronger products such as retinoids, glycolic products and vitamin-C products.

Getting your skin back to normal

If you are currently experiencing irritation, begin by discontinuing all products that may be causing or contributing to the irritation until the redness goes away. Switch to a mild cleanser such as All-in-One Cleanser with Toner by MD Skincare or Cetaphil.

For a quick relief from red and irritated skin, try Ole Henriksen Pick Me Up Face Tonic. To reduce inflammation, apply cold milk compresses to your face for five to ten minutes 2 to 3 times a day.

If you try all of the above and the irritation does not subside within a few days consult your dermatologist.

Getting the most from your products

Once your skin is back to normal, follow the rules below to ensure that you get the best results from your skin care products:

  • Address one concern at a time. In other words, treat your acne, before you treat your wrinkles. Once you’ve solved one concern, you can move on to the next.

  • If necessary, adjust the frequency of applications. Although directions on product labels work for most people most of the time, you can always play it safe by starting off slowly and gradually increasing to the recommended frequency.

  • Don’t use more product than indicated. Before you slather on that eye cream, remember: not only are you asking for problems, you’re also wasting product.

  • Change with the seasons. When it’s cold or windy, lessen the use of stronger products, and moisturize more.

  • Avoid known skin irritants. Be on the lookout for artificial fragrances, SD alcohol, PABA, harsh scrubs as well as high concentrations of benzoyl peroxide and glycolic acid.