Tag Archives: Sensitive Skin

Try The “Tissue Test” To Determine Your Skin Type

If you’re trying to choose the best skin care treatment for your skin, whether it be cleansing, moisturizing, or toning, the first step is always the same: determining your skin type. Which should be easy, right? How far off the mark can you be? But truthfully, we’re all a little unsure, and if you’re reluctant to admit confusion, you’re not alone.

You see, as it turns out, determining your skin type can be more difficult than you might think. That’s because skin type changes as you age. Acne-prone teens can grow into adults with dry sensitive skin and clear skinned twenty-somethings can develop breakouts later in life. Heaters, air conditioning, changes in weather and other external factors can also affect skin behavior. If you’re among the many who are not sure which skin type category your fall under, you may want to try the “tissue test” for an accurate read.

Woman smiling

The Tissue Test

  1. Cleanse your face. Use a gentle cleanser to wash your face and pat dry. Remove all traces of makeup. This will clear away the daily accumulation of oil and dirt, leaving your skin in the best shape for the test. Be careful to avoid over washing.
  2. Wait an hour. This will give your skin time to return to its most natural state, restoring pH balance after cleansing. Try to avoid touching your face during this time.
  3. Dab your face with tissue.
  4. Pay most attention to your “T-zone,’ the area including the nose and forehead.


Normal Skin
If you have normal skin, your skin will show no oil and no flaking skin, and feel smooth and supple. If you have this, congratulations, this is the most desirable type.

Oily Skin
A greasy tissue means greasy skin. Oily skin is also characterized by large pores and a shiny complexion.

Dry Skin
If your skin feels taut or shows dead skin flakes it means you have dry skin. It is also common for people with this skin types to have small pores. Moisturize, moisturize!

If your skin shows all three traits of the above type, join the crowd. Combination skin is the most common skin type. Usually, this means the skin in the T-zone is oily, while other parts are normals or dry.

Woman smiling

Skin Problems
In addition to having a “type,” there are two common “problem” categories that your skin can fall under.

Sensitive skin
If your skin reacts easily to regular facial products, developing redness, itchiness, or rashes, your skin is sensitive.

Teenager of not, if you see spots, you’ve got acne-prone skin. Look for a good product with benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid on the market, or visit a dermatologist for advice.

Did you do the tissue test? Did it work for you? Let us know, and tell us what works best on your skin type.


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Four Causes of Hyperpigmentation

The bad news is, hyperpigmentation is very common. Hyperpigmentation is a skin disorder caused by an increase in melanin, the substance in our body that is responsible for the color of our skin, and can result in dark spots and discoloration. It can stem from exposure to sunlight, use of drugs and medication, or certain health conditions.

The good news is, hyperpigmentation is very common. This means that it is being acknowledged and addressed. Celebrities Brooke Burke and Kerry Washington have both openly acknowledged their experiences with the condition and have provided graceful and glamorous examples for those in similar situations. In addition, research, motivated by widespread concern, is revealing new findings and treatments with surprising frequency. Here are some types of the condition, and some of the newest treatment breakthroughs.

Woman checking face

Types of Pigmentation
Drug Induced Hyperpigmentation (DIH)
DIH is pigmentation caused by illness and reaction to drugs and certain medications. The resulting skin pattern is typically diffuse and characterized by specific hues.

Otherwise known as age spots, lentigines are spots with a well-defined edge and, while not directly caused by aging, tend to become more prevalent with age. Lentigines are a result of UV exposure and are found on 90% of light skinned people over 60.

Melasma is a result of hormonal irregularities and is associated with pregnancy, thyroid dysfunction, birth control pills, and hormone replacement therapy.

Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH)
PIH results from injuries, friction, acne, even certain skin treatments, such as chemical peels and extractions. It is generally the most treatable form of hyperpigmentation and usually resolves itself with skin regeneration.

When it comes to choosing brightening treatments, the intensity of the exfoliation must align with the sensitivity of the subject’s skin. The mildest treatments include papaya and pumpkin enzyme, sugar cane and lactic acid, and are generally suited to all skin types.

Those with higher tolerance may want to use trichloroacetic acid (TCA) or salicylic acid to increase cell turnover.

Woman in mirror

Brightening Treatments
There are several recommend brightening treatments for hyperpigmentation. Glucosamine is a commonly recommended brightening treatment which interrupts UV-triggered chemical signals that lead to production of melanin. Hydrolyzed pearl powder is a tyrosinase inhibitor and increases skin radiance. Licorice root extract is an antioxidant known to fight free radical damage. Niacinamide decreases color deposits and reduces inflammation and pigmentation. Vitamin C is another antioxidant known to prevent tyrosinase production.

Peptides are the latest ground breaking found to be effective in the treatment of hyperpigmentation.

Azelaic Acid
This natural fatty acid developed for acne treatment has proven an effective ingredient in the treatment of hyperpigmentation, especially in the case of PIH caused by acne. Studies found azelaic acid to provide results similar to four percent hydroquinone without harmful side effects.

Kojic Acid
Another breakthrough option, kojic acid inhibits production of tyrosinase and can be used in combination with skin lighteners as a hydroquinone alternative. Drawbacks include the occurrence contact dermatitis in certain individuals.

Retinoids work as tyrosinase inhibitors and interrupters of the synthesis of melanin. Prescription tretinoin, while known to be effective in pigmentation reduction, may require up to 24 weeks of treatment before noticeable improvement occurs. Because pigmentation issues can take anywhere from two weeks to a year to resolve it is important that users have reasonable expectations and not expect “overnight results.”

How do you deal with hyperpigmentation? Let us know what works for you!

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Best Makeup for Sensitive Skin

Cosmetics are meant to enhance your beauty, express your creativity and they can give you a major confidence boost. However, if you have sensitive skin, cosmetics can also be a major source of frustration and disappointment. Investing time and money into products only to have them irritate your skin is a major bummer, so we’ve rounded up some makeup products for sensitive skin that will leave your skin gorgeous and calm.

Woman applying foundation

Foundation is one of the most misunderstood and misused beauty products. It’s tempting to use the fullest coverage foundation you can find to cover any and all areas of redness or imperfection, but doing so often results in a very heavy, cakey looking face. In addition, using tons and tons of product can aggravate sensitive skin so take advice from the professionals and just use foundation to even out your complexion. Mineral foundations are often recommended for those with sensitive skin and one of the absolute best is bareMinerals original formula foundation. This foundation is easy to apply and is free from any preservatives, fragrances and other known irritants. If you are not a fan of mineral makeup, look to liquid formulations by Clinique or Physician’s Formula. Both companies focus on providing only the highest quality allergen and irritant free makeup that is both gentle and effective. When it comes to the application of liquids and sensitive skin, a makeup sponge like the BeautyBlender tends to be your best bet to avoid irritation or inflammation.

Blush and Bronzer
If you suffer from sensitive and dry skin, you may find that your complexion is a bit dull and flat. To fix this, use a blush for a natural glow and bronzer to warm up your face. Some experts suggest using cream blushes and bronzers on sensitive skin, but if you find that you are tugging at the skin when applying these products, stick to powder. Josie Maran makes a hybrid of a cheek stain and a cream blush with her nourishing Coconut Water Cheek Gelee made without parabens, sulfates or irritants and with coconut water and vitamin E. These blushes are great for beginners to cream products because they are super easy to blend and you can begin with a sheer application of color then build to more opaque color.

Bronzer may seem intimidating at first, but it’s really nothing to be scared of. If you’re new to bronzer, skip the intense contouring and just sweep bronzer across your face in areas where the sun would hit naturally like your forehead, cheeks and lightly on your nose. This helps add warmth to your face and give it more dimension. Physician’s Formula is most famous for their bronzers and they come in an endless variety from shimmer to matte to bronzers with skin-boosting benefits.

Woman applying lipstick.

Sensitive skin doesn’t end on your cheeks or forehead, you can also have sensitive skin on your lips. It’s especially important to care for sensitive lips because the skin on your lips is already thinner and more delicate than elsewhere. Before applying your lip products, especially if you love a matte lip, be sure that you hydrate and protect your lips. Blistex makes a lip treatment made exclusively for sensitive skin that contains only six ingredients one of which is ultra moisturizing vitamin E.

Makeup for sensitive skin doesn’t have to be frustrating and confusing. Many cosmetic brands today are looking towards more natural and more gentle ingredients for their products so they can be enjoyed by people with all types of skin. Brands that are particularly beneficial for sensitive skin include bareMinerals, Clinique, Physician’s Formula and Josie Maran. Look and feel your best with these makeup products and tips for sensitive skin.

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