When you suffer from sensitive skin, many of the things that other people take for granted can become a challenge.
Simple things like which sunscreen and makeup to use and which foods and ingredients to avoid become questions for which only the best answers and solutions will do.
We decided to put this list of some of the best resources and websites for sensitive skin together to help you to navigate those challenges more easily.
What is sensitive skin and what causes it?
This helpful article written by dermatologist Dr Delwyn Dyall-Smith FACD, gives a simple definition of what sensitive skin is and then lists out the recognised medical causes, each with detailed notes and representative images.
‘Sensitive skin is a lay term rather than a medical diagnosis. It is generally used to describe skin with reduced tolerance to the application of cosmetics and personal care products. In surveys, approximately 50% of women and 40% of men may report having sensitive skin.’
The following causes are listed and detailed:
There are a number of recognised medical causes of sensitive skin
- Irritant contact dermatitis
- Allergic contact dermatitis
- Contact urticaria
- Physical urticaria and dermographism
- Aquagenic pruritus
- Dry skin
- Eczema/dermatitis of any type
- Cutaneous mastocytoses
- Carcinoid syndrome
20 common questions about sensitive skin
An easy to read and skim article that answers many of the most common questions about living with sensitive skin such as:
- Are there medical tests for sensitive skin?
- What should I look for in skin care products that will make them less irritating to sensitive skin?
- What are some tips for protecting my sensitive skin in winter and summer?
- When and how do doctors diagnose and treat sensitive skin?
12 worst things for sensitive skin
By Andrew Scoular, a skin care consultant has a YouTube channel called ‘SkinCareTV’
In this easy to watch YouTube video, Andrew talks viewers through things to avoid when you have sensitive skin and why you should avoid them.
Some of the things he suggests to avoid include:
- Hot or warm water
- Detergent cleansers
- Alcohol based products
- Products containing Benzoyl peroxide
How to take care of sensitive skin
By Dr Anurag Tiwari, who hosts a YouTube channel called Skin Diaries
This helpful video covers many tips for how to care for sensitive skin including:
- Choosing a face wash with a neutral PH
- Using a moisturiser that’s fragrance and paraben free
- When to apply sunscreen and how often
- What to avoid in a shampoo
Managing sensitive skin
From beauty blogger ‘From head to toe’
‘As someone who has easily irritated, sensitive skin I wanted to share a bit of my experience, tips, and personal history. Hopefully I can offer up some new information to anyone who may be dealing with these problems as well.’
From Head to Toe shares tips including which ingredients and products to avoid and which products she recommends. Note – some of the products may not be available in Australia.
(tip: fast forward to 1:55)
Home made, natural skin care routine for sensitive skin
By Arpita Nath, a YouTuber with a focus on sensitive skin treatments and products
If you prefer to create your own skincare products from natural ingredients you have at home, you might find this video useful.
Arpita talks you through a routine that includes applying raw milk as a toner and moisturising with a mixture of aloe vera gel and coconut oil. She has quite a unique range of home remedies to suggest.
(We would love to know if you’ve tried any of these remedies. Perhaps you have your own home remedies? If so, we’d love to know what they are.)
Best natural sunscreens for sensitive skin
As you all know, wearing sunscreen is one of the most important factors in caring for all skin types.
In this article, the Sun Doctors review a variety of natural sunscreens, including one of the safest for people with sensitive skin.
They also include tips on what to consider when buying natural sunscreen including:
- Avoid oxybenzone
- Choose SPF 30+ or higher
- Look for a sunscreen with zinc oxide
12 foods to eat to soothe sensitive skin
By Susan Curtis, Tipper Lewis and Fiona Waring
The writers at Get The Gloss have put together a list of many foods known to contain properties that may help to calm your skin from the inside out.
The article includes the key nutrients for each food listed and how to eat them to aid in soothing.
‘Skin that over-reacts may develop pustules, bumps, become inflamed, flush, and have weakened capillaries that cause thread veins. Food intolerances, harsh weather, stress, genetics, eczema, and very dry skin can increase sensitivity. The antioxidant quercetin soothes the gut and essential fatty acids strengthen the gut wall, both of which help reduce food sensitivities, and anti-inflammatory foods calm irritated skin.’
The list includes:
- Red onion
- Olive oil
- Green tea
- Leafy greens
Is there a food that you’ve found really helps to soothe your sensitive skin?
And while we’re on the topic of food – which foods do you avoid? This article may shed some light on what to look out for:
11 foods that are bad for your skin
This helpful article looks at the reasons why diet and foods can affect your skin. The writer then lists out which ones to avoid and why – they also suggest what you can consume as an alternative.
‘Each food you eat has the potential to benefit or harm your skin. For example, fruits and veggies rich in antioxidant vitamins aid in the production of collagen (the protein that keeps skin smooth and supple), and help your liver detoxify more efficiently to prevent breakouts on your skin.’
The list includes:
- Refined carbohydrates
- Fast food
- Processed meats
- Spicy food
So, now that you have some great insights into sensitive skin causes, ways to mange sensitive skin and some foods that may help, what about other products and lifestyle factors?
The best foundation for sensitive skin
Finding makeup that works for your sensitive skin can be pretty challenging. This article from Byrdie engages a dermatologist and a make up artist to discuss and recommend which foundations are best for people with sensitive skin.
‘On our journey to finding the least agitating formulas, we asked dermatologist Dendy Engelman, MD, what to look for in a sensitive-skin foundation, to which she replied, 'Opt for mineral or powder foundations, unless the formula specifies that it is hypoallergenic, non-comedogenic, and designed for sensitive skin.'
The article includes a list of 5 foundations recommended for sensitive skin including powder and liquid formats.
For some people with sensitive skin, laundry detergents and residue left on clothing can cause flare ups. Here’s a great guide to which detergents you could consider using:
Guide to toxin free laundry products
‘If you or your child have ever complained of itchy skin or you’ve started to find just-cleaned clothes irritating, the culprit may be your washing powder, so I put together this guide to the best toxin-free laundry detergents which won't upset your skin.’
Some of the products listed include:
- That Red House Organic Soapberries
- Resparkle Laundry Powder
- Abode Laundry Liquid Zero Sensitive
- Little Innoscents Eco Laundry Liquid
- The article also includes a handy list of fabric softeners.
Best home cleaning products for sensitive skin
Many cleaning products are known to trigger or exacerbate sensitive skin flare ups. Here are two helpful resources where you can find cleaning products that won’t add to your skin problems.
Do it yourself
Some of you might want to make your own products, so here’s a handy list of DIY recipes that you can try at home:
How to make a soap for sensitive skin
DIY shaving cream for sensitive skin
Natural deodorant for sensitive skin
Home made, non-toxic cleaning products
A list of 57 non-toxic cleaning products you can make at home from simple ingredients.
Home made deodorant stick for sensitive skin
10 Blogs and social media accounts that you might want to follow:
Beauty with Caution
Nadia from Beauty with caution suffers from highly sensitive skin and eczema.
You can follow her blog or Instagram account for skincare reviews and lifestyle tips.
“I personally have highly sensitive skin and suffer with eczema which makes my love for all things beauty related sometimes difficult as it can react negatively or positively. I know many struggle with this too so this blog is to share my experiences and reviews while still maintaining the fun, pretty side of the beauty industry! I aim to combine the benefits of targeted skincare with using makeup to express oneself.”
A Brash Attitude
Jodi from A brash attitude shares her thoughts on cruelty free beauty brands and some lifestyle insights.
“I’m a Canadian Beauty Blogger, based in Montreal, Quebec.
I’m passionate about sharing my love for cruelty free beauty and skincare, as well as my experiences with sensitive skin issues.
When I’m not obsessing over make-up and skincare, or typing away on my laptop, I can be found doing yoga, trying out new recipes, curled up on the couch with a cup of tea or glass of wine and a book, or binge-watching something on Netflix with my partner.”
Ruth Holroyd is a freelance copywriter living with allergies and eczema. She shares her thoughts and tips on her blog and twitter account.
No 2 Scratching
Lulu’s mission is that “NO-ONE should tell ANYONE with Eczema to 'Stop scratching'. It's a compulsion not a choice.”
She also runs an eczema support group.
Diary Free Daisy
Daisy suffers from sensitive skin and allergies. She shares her dairy free life on her blog, Twitter and Instagram accounts.
“Changing to a dairy free lifestyle doesn't have to be scary. There are so many delicious alternatives. I'm here to share my dairy free finds, reviews, recipes and travels.”
Itchin’ Since ‘87
Ashley shares her thoughts and tips on living with eczema and sensitive skin conditions.
“I’m Ashley and I have a Ph.D. in Scratching. Yup! You read that correctly, I have a Ph.D. in Scratching. I was accepted into the University of Eczema at the age of two and have been enrolled in it ever since.”
Itchy Little World
“It’s an Itchy Little World provides you with natural remedies for eczema that work based on our family’s experience in battling eczema, allergies, and asthma using an integrative approach. It also features related news and stories from guest bloggers and industry professionals.”
“A Liverpool based blogger with a passion for subscription boxes, beauty and anything that aims to improve your lifestyle! I’ve discovered many new, up and coming brands and developed a love of innovative products. I have rosacea, so will often review related products to combat redness or sensitive skin.”
My Sensitive Skincare
Mashubi started her website because she has suffered from sensitive skin and allergies since childhood.
“My Sensitive Skin Care was inspired and created from my own personal experience, and also my shock at realizing the amount of chemical irritants that I was absorbing from even natural and hypoallergenic skin care products.
I manage this site with a small team of dedicated helpers, and we understand sensitive skin from our own personal experience!
I am not a doctor or a health care practitioner, but I have a lifetime of experience in learning how to listen to my own body and how to help others to do the same.”
We hope you found this post useful!
If you have a favourite sensitive skin website, blog, YouTube channel or social media account that you really love, it would be fabulous if you can send us a link so that we can include it here.
Feel free to share our post with friends who also suffer from sensitive skin.
Disclaimer: This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. If symptoms persist, we recommend that you see your GP or dermatologist.