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3 beauty rules for women with sensitive skin

Is your skin prone to product-related freakouts? Don't just slather on new stuff.
sensitive skin

By Rebecca Bailey for

I have sensitive skin. What does that mean to me? I react to all kinds of things, from synthetic scents, to old-style preservatives like parabens and phenoxyethanol, to the purest essential oils.

There’s often no telling what I’ll react to, or exactly what will happen.  It might be a burning or itching, with or without visible inflammation.  It might look like acne, or a rash.  The reaction may happen within moments of using a product, or take a few days of consistent use to appear.

How do I deal?  I look for the cleanest, simplest products I can, and typically prefer fragrance-free, mild formulas, especially for things that go on my face.  I follow my nose, which is to say that if I don’t like the way something smells, there’s an increased chance I’ll react to it poorly.  Add to all this I’m struggling with hormones, and “mature” skin that tends toward dry.

So why would I be testing products that, when I first examined the ingredients, scared the crap out of me?  Well, it’s partly the sexy reviews here and here, partly the trust developed in another product from one line, and mostly that I was having some unexplained and unpleasant skin issues in spite of the care I take with products.

I’m not going to suggest that you sensitive types immediately start using essential oils or strong smelling, warming herbs.  If you are sensitive and completely satisfied with using few and mild products for your skin, stick with that!  But if you aren’t satisfied, you can fairly safely try some new things.  The results may surprise you.

Keep reading for tips and products to try….

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