What is sensitive skin?
Sensitive skin is a skin condition, not a disease. Sensitive skin reacts to different factors like skincare products and environmental conditions. It creates redness, flakiness, and unpleasant itchiness. The redness will be located not only on the nose and cheeks, but also on the forehead and sometimes on the chin. The number of people with sensitive skin has drastically increased in recent years (up to 65% of clients, mostly women).
How do I know if the customer has sensitive skin?
You can find out if your client has sensitive skin by asking questions and doing an in-depth skin analysis. Additionally, you will see that sensitive skin will be very different to the touch. The skin will have a very fine texture, large pores, redness and sometimes, very thin texture. Your customers will also likely tell you that they feel a tingling, burning sensation, and skin tightness.
What causes sensitive skin?
Factors that affect sensitive skin: genetic disposition, stress, climate, environmental conditions, cosmetic products, medications, psychological issues, and hormones. Hormones can really change the skin and make your skin more sensitive.
What is the skin barrier?
A healthy skin barrier layer has your hydro lipid film on the top. If you have a healthy barrier layer, it will prevent the skin from dehydration.
Sensitive skin has an unstable barrier layer. It’s like a wall with holes in it. Organisms will go through the skin barrier and attack the healthy cells.
The result of a disturbed skin barrier is that allergens and microorganisms penetrate into the walls and disturb the lipid layers, reducing hydration. This will create infection, which is going to show on the skin like inflammation. It will look like the skin is dehydrated and dry, with major water loss.
In order to fix a damaged skin barrier, you need to look at the impact of the pH balance on sensitive skin. We all know that a neutral pH is around seven. If your skin is a little bit acidic, you’re going to have an oily skin. If your skin has a base or alkaline pH, it’s going to be your dry skin. The best pH for healthy skin is around 5.5, which is a little bit acidic, but very good because it’s going to be able to fight infection and to maintain hydration. The lower the pH, the skin is going to be able to repair itself and be stronger to defend itself from microorganism and allergens.
You can use products with a lower pH, such HA products with very mild HA (3%), but which has a lower pH like 3.2.
What are some skin issues associated with sensitive skin?
Some examples of skin issues that comes along with sensitive skin: atopic dermatitis, acute or chronic contact dermatitis, ingredient sensitivity, and rosacea.
Rosacea, a skin disorder, will bring erythema (redness) to the skin. It will be located on the nose, cheek, chin, and forehead. Some people call it the butterfly on the skin. Triggers for rosacea are both internal and external. Some types of alcohol (like red wines), spicy food, hot beverages, mental stress, and chemical substances may all exacerbate rosacea.
There are stages of Rosacea.
- Stage 1: Redness and heat. Usually due to stress. You can definitely help this customer by recommending the right products for that skin type and also using the right products in your facial (see recommended products below).
- Stage 2: A more advanced stage with redness and pustules. You can, as an esthetician help this customer with the right products (see recommended products below).
- Stage 3: A more severe stage. The skin is thicker with increased connective tissue. You have increase of sebaceous gland, and it looks like acne. The treatment will be a very cooling treatment with anti-inflammatory products. And again, you will be able to help this customer by recommending the right products and also by doing regular treatments in the facial room (see recommended products below.)
How can you deal with sensitive skin in your facial room?
Dealing with sensitive skin and even Rosacea is often not very easy. Due to the negative experience of customers with sensitive skin they may have a hard time trusting you.
Start with a very thorough skin analysis, including your customer’s medical history. Then choose the right products during your facial and your massage techniques as well (we will discuss that a little bit later). You will need to provide your customers with steps and rules to use at home.
Some questions to ask your clients:
- How do you notice sensitivity on your skin?
- What triggers the sensitivity or the redness?
- Are you taking any type of medication on a regular basis?
- Since when has the skin shown this type of reaction?
Questions to ask yourself:
- What treatment is going to be effective for this customer?
- What preventative measures can be taken by your customer?
All of your treatments will need to be cooling. Do not use any heat or steam on rosacea customers. You know, the warm towel, so nice and comfortable, you need to stay away from that. Massage is going to be more your manual lymphatic drainage or pressure point massage. Do not use regular scrubs, which will be too irritating.
Goal of treatment goal: protect, repair and maintain a healthy skin barrier function by reducing inflammation and itchiness.
What products should estheticians use/recommend for sensitive skin?
Dr. med. Schrammek skincare was developed by dermatologist and allergist, Dr. Schrammek, and it is a line of products suitable for vegans, utilizing plant-based ingredients. These products are medically inspired and extremely effective for sensitive skin.
- Sensiderm Cleansing Solution. Three products in one ~ toner, cleanser and eye make-up remover. Very healing and soothing, with Allatonin. Without irritation, will remove makeup, remove any type of oil and debris and cleans with micell technology.
- Super Self-Cleanser. A very gentle, effective milky cleaner for dry sensitive skin. Also suitable for eye make-up removal.
- Herbal Care Lotion. Our number one toner that we sell the most. It is a natural toner for any skin type. It has Panthenol, Allatonin, Extract and Marigold Extract. Very soothing and healing. You can use this toner in your facial room on eye compresses.
- Sensiderm Stress Protect Cream. A very rich cream that is for day and night on any irritated skin that is very dry. Reduces dryness, sensitivity, and itchiness. It’s free of paraben, dye, fragrances, and mineral oil. Anti-inflammatory and reduces redness. Contains aloe vera, squalene, Grape seed oil and vitamin E. This is a fantastic day and night rich cream.
- Rosacalm Cream. This is a very specific cream for red, sensitive skin. This cream is actually green in order to neutralize redness in the skin. Very calming, anti-inflammatory and reduces redness. No mineral oil, peg derivative, paraben, or fragrances. Contains a vassal active plant cocktail, licorice, and horse chestnut. Also has zinc oxide with the titanium dioxide and vitamin C.
- Sensiderm Mask. Very soothing cream mask for sensitive skin. Reduces irritation and redness. Free from parabens, mineral oil, and fragrances. Ingredients include zinc, barley, panthenol and macadamia nut oil.
- Aloe Calm Gel Mask. Very high concentrated aloe vera gel mask. Soothes any type of irritation and inflammation. You can use it also after waxing, after any type of appellation, such as threading, micro-needling, micro-dermabrasion, HA peel, and BHA peels.
- Sensicalm Ampoule. We call our ampoules “tequila shots” for the skin. They are pure active ingredient serums. Sensicalm Ampoule is an antihistamine ampoule. It has aloe vera, anti-cooper rose extract, ramrose and panthenol. Has a strong calming effect.
- Algo Vital Mask. Applied in the facial room. Professional Only.
- Sensiderm SOS Balm. Very light consistency that can be used morning and night. It’s an instant calming balm.
- Pro Biosense. Calms and reduces redness. Also great for rosacea, acne and other inflammatory skin conditions. Supports skin’s microflora. It’s your skin’s shot of “super good bacteria”
For more information on treating sensitive skin, feel free to call Biokosmetik of Texas (800) 729-1242.
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