The number one rule when it comes to repairing and resetting irritated skin is to streamline your skincare routine. We live in an age of so many products, so little time. It can be fun and exciting to keep trying new things but it’s not always the best for your skin. It’s a part of my job to trial and switch up the products I use often in order to make the best recommendations. I’m always super grateful for this opportunity but it can also take its toll on my skin.
Perhaps you’re like me, trying the new and noteworthy beauty buys or maybe you have pinpointed another source for your skin’s current irritation. Either way, the first step is to quit your usual skincare routine. You need to replace it with very few products that are as bland and as neutral as possible. This means:
- NO fragrance (even natural fragrances)
- NO essential oils (these can be super irritating to your skin)
- NO soap (also known as “sulphates”)
- NO acids (Glycolic acid is the most irritating because of its small molecular size but I’d recommend stopping them all for now)
- NO retinoids (These are well known for causing dryness and irritation)
- NO cleansing tools (put away the cleansing brushes or mechanical tools and stick to using your hands. Your skin doesn’t need the extra friction)
- Alcohol – this ingredient can be quite drying. If you know your skin is sensitive to this then leave it out also. However, there are non-drying alcohols. These are fatty alcohols such as cetearyl. You definitely want to see this on a product’s ingredient list as it’s nourishing for the skin.
You’re essentially putting your skin on an ingredient diet.
Your streamlined routine should embrace fewer products and ingredients. It means there’s less potential to further irritate your skin giving it time to repair itself.
Next steps? Set yourself a calming skincare routine.
If you need recommendations check out my effective skincare routine to calm irritated skin. I feature some of my long-standing skincare favourites that I always go back to when my skin is in trouble.