Skincare: Ingredients To Avoid & The Ones To Try For Sensitive Skin!

Jourdan Dunn

First things first: so what, exactly, creates irritation? It turns out, the answer is incredibly simple. The majority of the time, it’s the person’s use of harsh products that causes irritation. And the solution? Simply put, avoid using irritating ingredients and your skin will be less irritated! Which ones should you avoid? And which should you embrace?

Ingredient Bad For Sensitive Skin

The number one ingredient is weeding out of your routine? Alcohol. Many toners and creams have alcohol, which delivers a quick-dry finish, but can also sap your skin’s moisture levels, leading to irritation, itchy, uncomfortable skin.

It’s also important to avoid synthetic fragrance. Scented lotions and creams can react with skin, causing inflammation and weakening the inner layers of skin. Luckily, there isn’t really a need for perfume in skincare, so opt for fragrance-free formulas.

There are countless reports questioning the safety of sulfates, the ingredients that create lather in everything from face wash to toothpaste such as ammonium lauryl sulfate and sodium lauryl sulfate. The jury is still out, but we do know they cause irritation. It won’t be easy, but try avoiding them for a few weeks and you may end up with healthier skin. Start by swapping an oil or cream cleanser into your routine!

The tiny granules in your favorite natural scrub? Their irregular shape makes them too harsh for sensitive skin. Keep using them on your feet, elbows, and knees, but opt for a gentle, gommage scrub for your face instead.

Chemical Sunscreen
There are two main types of sunscreen: chemical and physical. The former uses hard-to-pronounce chemical ingredients (like avobenzone, octinoxate, andoxybenzone) to reflect UV rays which is fine for normal skin! But can cause problems for sensitive skin.

Ingredient Good For Your Skin

Now it’s time to find products that will soothe and nourish your sensitive skin. Look for calming ingredients and lipid-rich, barrier-repairing oils, which can reduce redness, calm inflammation, and reduce symptoms of sensitivity.

Green Tea
You already know that sipping green tea has many health benefits, but it’s also great when used topically. The natural formula is rich in antioxidants and helps with skin circulation and shouldn’t cause irritation!

White Tea
Like green tea, white tea is also great for skin when used topically, since it’s gentle and natural antioxidant with anti-inflammatory benefits.

Sunflower Oil
Have easily irritated, dry skin? Sunflower oil is high in vitamin E and helps to repair moisture your skin’s moisture barrier.

Chamomile Tea
Similar to how chamomile tea calms an upset stomach, it also soothes skin!

Plant Extract
The plant extract has soothing and anti-inflammatory benefits when applied to skin, and is often found in serums and moisturizers.


Credits: Renee Rouleau via |

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