What is sensitive skin?
Does your skin react to exposure to cold, sun and wind? Do you have to be careful about the products you use on your skin? Do you suffer from frequent acne breakouts or skin rashes?
Sensitive skin can be defined as skin that is “more reactive than usual”, triggered by the elements or topical products. There are varying degrees of severity, ranging from naturally sensitive skin (caused by underlying conditions like rosacea and eczema), to reactive skin that becomes red and inflamed, and thinning skin (caused by age or medications).
Skincare can be a minefield for those with sensitive skin, but we’re here to help! We’ve rounded up the best products created with sensitive skin in mind, to guide you to a calm, soothed complexion.
Before we dive into the products, let’s talk about the importance and impact of a targeted and consistent skincare routine.
Consistency is KEY
A skincare regimen consistently carried out over a few weeks gives your skin time to balance oil production, bring moisture back into your cells, and keep your complexion in happy equilibrium.
Remember, it takes time for products to work their magic. Jumping from one product to another can confuse your skin and lead to a ton of frustration, and you may never figure out what actually works.
You should also tailor your routine according to the season. Just like how we dress light in the summer and layer clothes to keep warm in the winter we should take a similar approach with our skincare!
Our clean beauty recommendations:
FOR THE MORNING
Cleanser: Live Botanical Gentle Cleansing Gel
This Gentle Cleansing Gel uses mild astringents like aloe and green tea that help tighten pores while balancing oil production. The hydrating milky gel (which is oil- and soap -free!) supports the skin’s inflammatory response to help reduce breakouts and prevent scarring. Live Botanical’s founder Carolyn McRory recommends this gentle, essential-oil free formula to support a healthy acid mantle and reduce overall sensitivity.
Toner: Wabi-Sabi Botanicals The Offering Probiotic Orange Blossom Frankincense Toner
A soothing, essential oil-free facial mist enriched with botanical actives for healthy, balanced and hydrated skin. Created with brightening blood orange, skin-clearing green tea extracts, and soothing adaptogenic mushrooms. Botanical Ferulic Acid boosts the benefits of the other steps in your routine. Created to heal founder Elysse Crabtree’s own sensitive skin, The Offering is a mist you will reach for again and again.
Moisturizer: Indie Lee Active Oil-Free Moisturizer
This nourishing, skin-perfecting moisturizer helps clarify, balance and hydrate. Daisy and vitamin C-rich mandarin extracts help improve the complexion while milk thistle and pomegranate provide antioxidant benefits. Jasmine, great burdock and immortel flowers offer lightweight hydration for happy, calm skin.
Sunscreen: VIVAIODAYS Turmeric UVA-UVB-IR Sunscreen
A water-resistant sunscreen containing 20% uncoated Zinc Oxide (a super-safe and effective physical blocker). Organic Turmeric oil provides antioxidant protection from long-term UV exposure. With Broad Spectrum SPF30 protection, it is safe for sensitive skin (even babies!) and goes on easily without leaving a white cast.
FOR THE EVENING
Cleanser: Creation Skin VALIDUS Polyphenol & Rosehip Cleansing Balm
A versatile gel-to-milk balm blended with nourishing rose-hip seed, green tea, jojoba and cranberry seed oils. Vital omegas, vitamin, C and E and regenerative plant extracts deeply cleanse, decongest, soothe, and restore moisture levels. The silky balm is formulated with plant-based saponins to gently lift away pore-blocking impurities and maintain a healthy balance of the skin’s acid mantle.
Moisturizer: Live Botanical Sanctuary Barrier Balm
Filled with nutrient-dense raw butters and oils, plant-based waxes, sterols, and phospholipids, the essential-oil free Barrier Balm creates a protective barrier similar to the skin and delivers sustained moisture. Each ingredient works in harmony to provide sanctuary for dry, sensitive skin. It is best applied on damp skin to improve moisture function, and works best as the final step of your routine. You can also apply a thicker layer for a restorative night mask!
Targeting fine lines: Live Botanical Overnight Resurfacing Oil
Gentle fruit enzymes and nourishing seed oils resurface skin to reveal a smooth and healthy complexion overnight. 10% pineapple enzymes help with cellular turnover and soothe skin with anti-inflammatory effects without irritating even sensitive skin. Cranberry, strawberry, and raspberry fruit seed oils help brighten and restore a lackluster complexion.
Mask: Laurel Gentle Mask Hydrating Recovery
If your skin is feeling particularly inflamed and irritated, turn to Laurel’s Gentle Mask for intense hydration and instant soothing relief. Restoring nutrients for healthy skin functioning, it will leave your skin calm, plump and glowy. You can expect to see reduced puffiness and redness after just one use! Founder Laurel Shaffer shared “the total percentage of essential oils in our Gentle Mask is 0.25%)… considered a ‘micro-dose’ and cannot have a negative impact on the skin’s barrier or the microbiome.”
Spot Treatment: Wabi-Sabi Botanicals Blemish Correct Soothing Serum & Spot Treatment
A potent 2-in-1 calming facial oil and clarifying blemish treatment enriched with botanical actives to reduce breakouts and redness. The essential-oil free blend is formulated with skin-clearing green tea, inflammation-soothing Japanese turmeric, natural terpene-rich copaiba resin to support your skin’s natural ability to heal.
You are beautiful
Finally? Look into your mirror and think about how your skin supports you throughout various activities during the day as you perform your daily skincare ritual and remind yourself of how beautiful you are. Next step – blissful sleep!
Note: Because every complexion is different, keeping a log of skin reactions can help you to figure out what ingredients are problematic for you. You should always perform a patch test of any new skincare product on a small part of your face or body before introducing it into your routine.