These days it’s not uncommon to have sensitive skin, mainly because of the environment we live in, the food we consume, the products we use and the normal stresses of everyday life. Not to mention the genes we’ve been ‘blessed’ with. Usually, it’s a combination of some or all of these factors that can cause our skin to break out from even the mildest imbalance. This can be so disheartening for anyone that has experienced sensitive skin issues such as, eczema, rosacea or psoriasis, or just general sensitive or dry skin.
The good news is that because it IS so common, a lot of skin problems CAN be brought under control with a variety of lifestyle changes, and here are some top tips to help you alleviate those problematic skin complaints.
- The ‘wrong’ skincare products: Strong perfumes, artificial colours, preservatives and petrochemicals can all irritate the skin. Organic Surge products are NOT tested on animals and are 100% free of harsh chemicals – no parabens, sodium lauryl sulphate, no artificial fragrances or colourants and no genetically modified ingredients.In addition to this, and following some wonderful feedback from customers, we have put our Lavender Meadow products through clinical testing which has proven them to be suitable for use on eczema prone skin.
- Stay Hydrated: staying hydrated in crucial to our health. Not only that, but it flushes out any toxins in your body, and the benefits of drinking plenty of water will soon reflect in the way your skin looks. Drink at least 1.5 litres of water a day to ensure that your body and your skin are supplied with enough water to function optimally and flush out toxins from your system.
- Baths not showers: While showers may be quick and convenient, or relax you after a long day, a hot shower will also open up your pores and cause delicate skin to flush. The result of this makes sensitive skin even more sensitive and reactive. Showers can also strip the skin of its protective oils. Try to have a bath instead, or if that’s not an option, try turning down the temperature and end your shower with a burst of cool water.
- Using a water softener: If you live in the UK, particularly in Southern England, you will be well aware of the white, flaky deposits of lime scale in your kettle and on your shower screen. This usually means that you live in area of hard water. Hard water contains a higher than normal amount of lime scale, or calcium carbonate (CaCO3). Lime scale is known to interfere with the skin's protective barrier, causing irritation to dry skin. If you notice that your skin reacts to it, you can reduce lime scale by using a water softener. You can find out more here.
- Avoid or reduce Spicy food: Now we don’t want to be the fun police, because, let’s face it, who doesn’t like a nice spicy curry. However, as with most treats, if you do suffer from any form of sensitive skin then just try to reduce your intake of a spicy curry, as spicy food can often trigger or exacerbate it, particularly chilli, horseradish or MSG foods.
- Steer clear of processed foods: What we eat has a huge impact on our well-being, including your skin. Avoid eating heavily processed foods, which often contain additives. Eating a more plant-based, organic diet, rich in fresh fruit, vegetables, nuts and beans, will provide your body with beneficial vitamins, minerals and nutrients, which will improve your health and well being and revitalise your skin.
- Cut out cigarettes and alcohol: It sounds like a no-brainer, yet we still do it. Alcohol consumption causes dehydration, skin spots and permanent changes in the quality and elasticity of your skin. Try giving up smoking and consuming alcohol in moderation. By setting yourself realistic goals you’re more likely to stick to them.
- Carefully manage your sun exposure: getting the balance of sun exposure is incredibly important – too much can aggravate sensitive skin, not to mention accelerate the effects of ageing and increase your risk of developing skin cancer. Too little sun is detrimental to sufferers of eczema and psoriasis. Vitamin D is crucial for the balance of the immune system and healthy bones, and also our skin.
- Staying calm: Stress and anxiety are known triggers for a number of mental and physical ailments but did you know that they can also affect the skin? Try a simple meditation for 5 minutes a day, just by sitting still with your eyes closed and focus on your breathing. If meditation doesn’t float your boat, then relax in a way that suits you – exercise, long bath or listening to your favourite tunes.
- Catch some Zzzzs! Sensitive skin can be a symptom of lack of sleep. Sleep deprivation affects the skin’s natural barrier function which can lead to dryness, irritation and increased skin sensitivity. The epidermis is less likely to be able to protect itself from chemicals and pollutants in the environment, so having an early night is more important than you think!.
Living with sensitive skin can be so disheartening. Organic Surge’s founder Alan MacKenzie started Organic Surge because of his own issues with sensitive skin, and wanted to create an affordable organic skincare range. With a combination of the right lifestyle choices and the right products for you, your skin can regain its healthiness.
As always, please let us know how you get on!