Hypersensitive Skin

How to cure hypersensitive skin?

Can hypersensitive skin be cured?  Well- it depends upon what is causing the skin to be hypersensitive.  Below we will discuss the different causes of hypersensitive skin and which hypersensitive skincare products to use to calm skin. In general, the best products for hypersensitive skin will have anti-inflammatory ingredients such as argan oil, green tea, chamomile, bisabolol, and centella asiatica. 

The Best Products For Hypersensitive Skin

The best products for hypersensitive skin depend upon what is causing the skin to react.  Here is some general advice on what to look for, but we recommend that you go to find a dermatologist near youThere are many good skincare products for hypersensitive skin, but in some cases a prescription medication might be needed.

Best Cleanser For Hypersensitive Skin

The best cleanser for hypersensitive skin types should be a creamy or gel-like consistency.  Do not use foaming cleansers on inflamed skin.  The detergents found in these foaming cleansers can injure the skin barrier leading to more inflammation. Some of our favorite soothing cleansers to calm hypersensitive skin are:

Medature Plantract Cleansing Gel, Zerafite Creamy Cleanser, or VMV Red Better Deeply Soothing Cleansing Cream.  Avoid low pH cleansers, glycolic cleansers, and exfoliating scrubs.

Best Moisturizer For Hypersensitive Skin

The best moisturizer for hypersensitive skin should contain soothing ingredients to calm the skin. Anti-inflammatory ingredients such as argan oil (Argania spinosa), grape seed extract, and portulaca oleracea, niacinamide, allantoin and bisabolol are good choices in moisturizers for hypersensitive skin.  Some of the best soothing skincare products for hypersensitive skin are Zerafite Soothing and Calming Moisturizer and PAORR 100% Organic Moroccan Argan Oil.  If you prefer a serum rather than a moisturizer for hypersensitive skin, our favorite soothing serum to calm skin is Skinceuticals Phyto Corrective Gel

What is hypersensitive skin?

Hypersensitive skin is skin that has sensitivity issues that cause discomfort such as skin hypersensitivity to touch. How to cure hypersensitive skin depends upon the cause of skin discomfort. The description of hypersensitive skin includes one or more of the following:

  • Hypersensitive skin to touch

  • Skin pain

  • Skin rash

  • Skin itch

  • Skin hurts to touch or rub

People who suddenly develop hypersensitive sensitive skin usually use these words to describe it:

  • Really sensitive skin all of a sudden

  • Skin painful to touch, no rash

  • Skin sensitive to touch, nothing there

  • Hypersensitive skin, no rash

  • Sudden hypersensitive skin

Hypersensitive skin is not the same as what is known as sensitive skin. To learn more about sensitive skin on the face click here. 

Description of Hypersensitive Skin

If the words above describe the discomfort your skin feels and you have extreme skin sensitivity, you have hypersensitive skin.  If you have mild stinging or burning on the face only, you likely have a Type 3 Sensitive Skin Type as described in the Baumann Skin Typing System. Once you take the skin type quiz, a skin care routine for Type 3 Sensitive Skin on your face will be recommended. Usually, adjusting your skincare and avoiding ingredients that cause hypersensitive skin will resolve the skin stinging and pain on your face.

However, hypersensitive skin that is painful or sensitive skin on the body is a different issue and can be caused by nerves, stress, infections, allergens and underlying skin disorders. Let’s first look at the most common causes of hypersensitive skin.

Hypersensitive Skin Causes

When the skin is suddenly sensitive to touch or has pain, the first thing dermatologists will think of is shingles.  However, there are many different things that can cause hypersensitive skin. It is important to know the cause of hypersensitive skin before we can discuss how to cure hypersensitive skin. Hypersensitive skin treatments may include  prescription medications.

Shingles

Shingles is caused by reactivation of the chicken pox virus that lives in the nerves. When the immune system is down, the virus that causes shingles called Varicella- zoster virus) begins to divide and makes the skin near the affected nerves feel hypersensitive.  Shingles always follows the line of the nerves and occurs along dermatome lines. This is why you may have pain on one side of the face or hypersensitive skin pain that occurs in a line.  Skin pain due to shingles is easily recognized because the pain and rash do not cross the midline. (The rash and pain are on one side of the face or one side of the body only). Shingles may cause sudden itching, tenderness or skin pain that turns into redness and blisters.  Shingles can cause skin painful to touch with no rash for a few days before the blisters occur.  Shingles should be treated as soon as possible with an oral prescription antiviral medication such as Valacyclovir- preferably before it develops skin redness or skin blisters.  The sooner you treat shingles, the less likely you are to have post neuralgia pain that is very painful and can last a long time.

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Eczema

Eczema is a skin disorder caused by an impaired skin barrier. It causes itching rough skin.  Lighter skin types will notice areas of pink skin and darker skin types may develop dark patches in affected areas. One way to diagnose eczema is by looking where on the body eczema occurs.  It is usually in the bend of the arms and leg or on the hands before moving to other areas. (Of course there are always exceptions so see your dermatologists to confirm the diagnosis.) The best eczema treatments are eczema creams that repair the skin barrier. Look for eczema moisturizers with MLE technology or PSL repair technology. Hypersensitive skin types with eczema should follow skincare recommendations for dry skin.

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Psoriasis

Psoriasis is considered hypersensitive skin because it demonstrates the Koebner phenomenon which means that skin develops psoriasis in an area of injury that does not usually get psoriasis.  In contrast to eczema, psoriasis occurs in areas opposite of eczema—on the elbows and knees.  It is also common in the scalp.  There are many wonderful psoriasis treatments so ask your dermatologist about those.  You can care for psoriasis skin by using a soothing cleanser and a barrier repair moisturizer.

 

Contact Dermatitis

Contact dermatitis is hypersensitive skin caused by a skin allergy. It is very important to identify what your skin si allergic to in order to treat this type of hypersensitive skin.  You have two options:

  1. Keep a daily dairy and when you have a reaction, look back at where you went and what you did.  Eventually you will find a pattern.
  2. Talk to your dermatologist about getting patch tested.  Patch testing involves a process where different ingredients are placed on the skin and kept covered with tape for 24-48 hous.  The tape is removed and any reactions are noted.  This is the best way to find the cause of hypersensitive skin if the hypersensitivity is caused by an allergen.  The most common things to eb allergic to are fragrances and preservatives.



What is the difference between sensitive skin and hypersensitive skin? Although people often use the word sensitive skin to describe hypersensitive skin- they are a bit different. In the Baumann Skin Typing System- the term sensitive skin applies to skin on the face that is prone to acne, rosacea, stinging or allergic rashes.  Hypersensitive skin applies to skin issues on the body as discussed above. To learn more about sensitive skin on the face click here. To find out what Baumann Skin Type you have and get a skincare routine for your hypersensitive skin, click here.

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