When you have an inflamed skin condition, it is important to avoid certain in-clinic skin treatments that may further irritate or worsen the inflammation. Before you book in to get the latest skin healing laser or newest radio frequency needling, pause and use caution. Although there are many skin benefits for these treatments you should consider consulting with your health professional first if you suffer from skin conditions or sensitivities.
For people with normal skin types, getting a facial or treatment done can be a soothing and relaxing way to address common skin concerns. But if you suffer from conditions like acne, dermatitis, or eczema you can be diving deeper into more damaged skin woes.
Treatments to Avoid by Skin Concern
There are many in-clinic skin procedures available to help treat acne. However, when treating active acne or severe acne scars the following procedures can be more harmful than helpful. These include:
- Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) - Although IPL has been touted to help hyperpigmentation and redness associated with acne, the long-term efficacy is still under debate. Some studies suggest that while IPL may temporarily improve the appearance of acne, it may not provide significant or long-lasting results, and there is a risk of adverse effects such as skin irritation and discoloration. IPL therapy can treat discolouration from acne but may not be an effective long-term treatment for acne-prone skin.
- High-Powered Chemical Peels - Deep chemical peels involving high concentrations of exfoliating chemicals like phenol can be too aggressive to treat acne skin. These peels can cause skin damage, prolong healing time, and increased risk of complications. Mild or moderate chemical peels with appropriate concentrations may be more suitable for treating acne.
- Microdermabrasion - It is important to avoid microdermabrasion treatments while experiencing acne breakouts. While microdermabrasion is brilliant at exfoliating and removing dead skin cells from the surface of the skin, it can aggravate active acne leading to further inflammation and potential scarring.
- Micro-needling - While the treatment can be effective for acne scars, it may not be suitable for active acne as it can risk spreading bacteria and worsening inflammation. If you have active acne, consult with a dermatologist to determine if micro-needling is appropriate.
- Laser Therapy - Certain laser treatments, such as laser resurfacing or hair removal, can be too aggressive for sensitive skin. Laser therapy is a popular treatment for acne scars, but it can cause redness, swelling, and potential scarring.
If you have acne prone skin, it is imperative to follow a few general skincare rules at home to help combat further breakouts.
- Avoid skincare ingredients that can clog your pores or irritate your skin. Some examples are essential oils, lanolin and isopropyl myristate.
- Avoid irritating products like synthetic perfumes, strong soaps, harsh physical exfoliants and alcohol-based astringent toners.
- Avoid extraction of pimples or pore strips.
If you have perioral dermatitis, it is best to avoid or be cautious with medical skin procedures that can further exacerbate and inflame your impaired skin barrier.
- Facial treatments - Such as scrubs, masks, or extractions as they are too abrasive and irritating to the skin. It is important to avoid such treatments until the flared stage of your perioral dermatitis is under control.
- Chemical peels - Chemical peels are treatments that use acids or enzymes to exfoliate the top layer of the skin and reveal a smoother and brighter complexion. They can also however damage the skin's protective barrier and increase sensitivity, causing dryness, burning, and peeling of the skin making perioral dermatitis worse and increasing the risk of prolonged flares.
- Microdermabrasion - Microdermabrasion treatments can be too harsh for skin with perioral dermatitis, causing irritation and further inflammation. It is best to avoid microdermabrasion if you have active perioral dermatitis as it can ultimately delay your skin to heal.
- Facial waxing: A big no no! Facial waxing can cause irritation, inflammation, and breakouts of the skin, which can make perioral dermatitis worse and more noticeable.
If you are prone to perioral dermatitis flares it is important to steer, clear of this skin’s conditions known triggers.
- Fluorinated toothpaste can contribute to perioral dermatitis. It is advisable to switch to a fluoride-free toothpaste to reduce the risk of flares.
- Fragranced products containing artificial fragrances, including perfumes and scented lotions, can be irritating to the skin and may trigger or worsen perioral dermatitis. Choose fragrance-free skincare products to minimize the risk of irritation.
- Retinoids such as Vitamin A serums, should be avoided as they can be irritating to the skin and potentially worsen perioral dermatitis.
- Topical steroids is often considered to be a common cause of perioral dermatitis. When it comes to perioral dermatitis, it is generally recommended to avoid the use of topical steroids.
Eczema is a skin condition that causes dryness, itching, redness, and inflammation of the skin. It can be triggered or worsened by various factors, such as allergens, irritants, stress, or infections.
These are the procedures that may aggravate flare ups and you should avoid if you have eczema:
- Chemical/Facial peels - The strong chemicals used in these peels can potentially irritate and inflame the skin, triggering or worsening eczema symptoms. Chemical or facial peels can be too harsh for sensitive skin causing irritation and further disrupt the skins barrier, worsening eczema.
- Dermabrasion - Dermabrasion is a more aggressive procedure than microdermabrasion, involving the removal of deeper layers of skin. Given the potential for skin trauma and prolonged healing time, individuals with eczema are generally advised to avoid dermabrasion.
- Laser treatments - Such as laser resurfacing, use high-intensity light to target specific skin concerns. However, the heat generated during the procedure can potentially trigger eczema flare-ups. Therefore, laser treatments should be approached with caution and personalized advice from your dermatologist.
Unfortunately there is no cure for eczema and sufferers must be diligent at caring for their skin at home to ease, calm and lesson symptoms.
- Keeping skin moisturised throughout the day, avoiding long exposure to hot water in baths or showers.
- Irritants like fragrance, dyes and chlorinated pools can irritate your skin and trigger flares.
- Stress can worsen eczema by affecting your immune system and your skin barrier. You can reduce stress by finding ways to relax, such as yoga, meditation, or walking.
- Sweating during exercise can cause your skin to itch, it is important to wear loose-fitting and breathable fabrics when working out and showering straight afterwards.
Rosacea is a skin condition that causes redness, flushing, bumps, and visible blood vessels on the face. It can be triggered by various factors, such as sun exposure, stress, spicy foods, alcohol, or certain skin care products. If you suffer from rosacea, it is important to take proper care of your skin and be cautious about certain skin procedures that may trigger or worsen your symptoms.
Consulting with your dermatologist is highly recommended before trying any in-clinic skin treatments first.
The treatments you should use caution with include:
- Microdermabrasion - This intense exfoliating treatment can be too abrasive for rosacea skin, causing irritation and exacerbating inflamed symptoms.
- IPL - Certain laser treatments, such as intense pulsed light (IPL), can be effective for treating various skin conditions. However, they can also trigger rosacea flare-ups due to the heat generated by the laser.
- Physical Exfoliation - Avoid using harsh physical exfoliators, such as scrubs or brushes, as they can damage the delicate skin and aggravate rosacea.
For ongoing management of rosacea at home you should:
- Avoid spending extended amounts of time in extreme temperatures (i.e., saunas, hot showers etc).
- Avoid your known triggers.
- Use a gentle skincare routine and avoid harsh or fragranced ingredients.
If you have psoriasis, it is important to be cautious with certain beauty procedures and products to avoid triggering flare-ups or worsening the condition. Here are some beauty procedures to avoid if you have psoriasis:
- Harsh Hair Treatments - including chemical straightening, perms, or hair dyes can be too harsh on the scalp and may trigger psoriasis flare-ups. Hair dye can also cause allergic reactions or infections which can worsen psoriasis or cause new lesions to form. Hair dye can also stain your skin or hairline, which can be difficult to remove if you have psoriasis. It is best to opt for gentle hair care products and avoid aggressive styling techniques that can irritate the scalp.
- Abrasive Exfoliation - Avoid using rough or aggressive exfoliators that can cause friction and exacerbate psoriasis plaques. Instead, opt for gentle exfoliating techniques like using a soft washcloth or a mild exfoliating scrub specifically formulated for sensitive skin.
- Fragranced Products - such as moisturisers, perfumes, and soaps can potentially irritate the skin and trigger psoriasis flare-ups. It is advisable to choose fragrance-free or hypoallergenic products to minimize the risk of irritation.
- Laser Resurfacing - can cause swelling, redness, itching and scabbing that can exacerbate psoriasis and potentially lead to scarring or changes in skin pigmentation.
Here are some at-home tips you should follow if you suffer from psoriasis:
- Avoid prolonged exposure to hot water as it can dehydrate your skin and exacerbate dryness and itching.
- Opt for gentle everyday products that are fragrance-free and non-irritating. Ingredients such as salicylic acid or oatmeal are great at helping reduce psoriasis symptoms.
- Wear sunscreen every single day.
This common skin condition can be sensitive to certain beauty treatments, these include:
- Hair removal - Waxing, shaving, or using hair removal creams on the affected areas can cause more inflammation and irritation to your skin, which can worsen keratosis pilaris or cause more bumps to form.
- Chemical peels - The acids or enzymes used to remove the skins top layer can dry out, burn, or peel your skin, aggravating keratosis pilaris and increase the risk of infection.
- Microdermabrasion - can cause more irritation, inflammation, or sensitivity to keratosis pilaris prone skin.
Keratosis Pilaris are small, rough bumps (similar to chicken skin) and although non-contagious can cause worry or embarrassment for people suffering from this condition.
- Follow a gentle skincare regime without using fragranced products.
- Keep your skin well moisturised. Use ingredients such as urea and alpha/beta hydroxy acids.
Everyone’s skin concern and how their skin reacts to certain products or treatments will vary. If in doubt or unsure how to best help your skin always seek advice from a dermatologist.
Before going ahead with any in-clinic skin treatment be sure to research thoroughly and ask the therapist as many questions as possible. Find out what products, if any, will be used on your skin during the treatment and also what your aftercare looks like.
Communication and information is key. Let your facialist/clinician know of your sensitivities. Also informing them of your current skincare routine and lifestyle.
And lastly, do not do too many treatments all at once. Slow and steady when it comes to sensitive skin is the aim of the skin game.