My sensitive skin diary

Is your beauty routine making your allergies worse?

Increasing numbers of doctors are reporting cases of patients complaining of typical allergic-like skin reactions: itching, burning, scaling, rashes… The possible causes are manifold and only targeted testing can pinpoint the exact culprits. But if skin is the main focus of your symptoms, or if symptoms seem to arise in tandem with cosmetics usage, dropping 5 bad beauty habits is a great start to reducing or even eliminating reactions.

5 bad habits to drop

1) Using allergy-unfriendly cosmetics. What does this mean? Products may contain allergens and irritants, but a good rule of thumb is 0% fragrance, 0% alcohol and 0% unnecessary ingredients. Other potentially irritant or allergenic ingredients to avoid include AHAs (alpha hydroxy acids), urea and essential oils.

2) a) Under-cleansing: If you don’t cleanse at the end of the day, you are leaving allergens and irritants such as pollen and pollution in contact with skin all night long. They can interfere with barrier function  and cause irritation.

b) Over-cleansing! You want to “take the day off your skin,” but if you also take away skin’s precious surface lipids, you are leaving it vulnerable to reactions. Opt for gentle cleansers such as micellar waters that know what to remove and what to leave behind.

3) Not washing your hands before applying any product: You could be transferring allergens and irritants from anything you have touched (just think how harsh many household products there are!) onto your skin. Also remember that many allergens in products make their way into the jar or bottle from the environment. Always opt for a tube over a jar. If you have highly reactive or allergic-type skin, look for airtight packaging that uses a one-way valve to prevent allergens from entering the formula once the tube has been opened. Discover Toleriane Ultra.

b) Not washing make-up brushes, puffs, sponges… Every one of these handy tools is a dust and allergen trap. Wash at least once a week.

4) DIY masks: Fun though it may be, raiding your kitchen cupboards and concocting your very own skin treatments is a recipe for reactions if you have allergic-type skin:

Lemon juice: Its acidic pH can irritate skin and promote reactions
Baking soda: its extreme alkaline pH is totally incompatible with skin’s natural physiology!
Cinnamon is a recognized irritant, as one beauty vlogger found out the hard way.
Oats: Though soothing for some people, they are full of allergens if you are predisposed
Milk: Cleopatra used to bathe in it, but it’s also one of the commonest food allergens

5) Banning skincare outright. A short-sighted measure! Even the most sensitive or allergic-type skin needs proper care to keep it happy. A cooling thermal water mist followed by a safe formula created specifically for allergic-type skin is a great start. Discover Toleriane Ultra.

Check these everyday bad habits too.

Could you 5 a day be affecting your allergies?

Look HERE for basic information about allergies.