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Do I have sensitive skin?

Itching, redness, flakes: all kinds of signs of sensitive skin. But do you have sensitive skin or sensitive skin? With the description 'sensitive skin' you can distinguish between sensitive skin and skin that has become sensitive. Sensitive skin (skin type) is genetically determined and mainly occurs in people with a light skin color. Genetically sensitive skin is thinner than normal skin, making it more sensitive to external influences. Anyone can get sensitive skin (skin condition) and does not depend on race or skin color. There are various factors that can make the skin sensitive, such as climate, an underlying skin condition, incorrect product use, stress and/or lifestyle. 

1. Sensitive skin due to environmental factors

Extreme temperature fluctuations due to heat or cold and too low humidity in your (work) environment can cause the skin to dry out and therefore become  more sensitive  . Factors such as air pollution and chemicals can also make the skin more sensitive.

2. Wrong product use

Misuse of cosmetics can cause your skin to become irritated. Artificial additives such as perfume and synthetic dyes can also be triggers for inflammatory reactions. Dermalogica's products do not contain irritating, artificial ingredients, such as perfume and synthetic dyes. 

3. Lifestyle

Stress, but also factors such as smoking and excessive exposure to  UV rays , cause an excess of free radicals to be released. Free radicals attack the connective tissue, causing the skin to become less elastic and the skin barrier to become unbalanced. This increases the risk of skin irritation.

4. Dehydration

Dehydrated skin is often the precursor to  sensitive  skin. Because the barrier function of dehydrated skin is out of balance,  harmful  external influences are less well blocked. This can cause skin irritations such as itching and redness.

5. Skin Conditions

Redness, itching and scaling can indicate an inflammatory reaction of the skin due to an underlying skin condition. Examples of such conditions are  rosacea  and eczema.The three most common symptoms of sensitive skin are:  redness,  irritation and  dehydration.


Regardless of whether someone always has sensitive skin or only experiences sensitivity for a certain period of time: sensitivity manifests itself in many people in redness (red bumps, red spots, a red face). The causes vary, but common triggers include over-exfoliation, excessive sun exposure, allergies, irritation from certain ingredients in cosmetics, and spices/spicy foods.

You don't have to learn to live with redness! If you know what is causing the redness, you can prevent triggers. It is advisable to use mild cleansers and exfoliants, and always use a moisturizer with spf (sun protection factor). If you suffer from hot flashes, use products specifically formulated to target redness, hydrate and strengthen the skin barrier.


Sensitive skin can hurt! It is common for people to experience itching, stinging and/or a burning sensation. As with redness, causes of skin irritation vary from person to person, but the most common cause is a deteriorated barrier lipid layer. When this barrier is healthy, it protects the skin from moisture loss and from irritating, external factors. Certain factors can affect the lipid layer, resulting in skin irritation. Factors that can disrupt the lipid layer include irritating ingredients (such as SD alcohol), artificial fragrances, perfume, excessive exfoliation, and airborne allergens. There are a number of things you can do to treat and prevent skin irritation. Firstly, use skin care products that strengthen and protect the skin barrier – and use these products regularly. Secondly, don't wash your face with hot water, it strips the natural barrier lipid layer. Rather use lukewarm water.


Tight or rough skin, fine lines, flakes: dry skin can manifest itself in different ways, but the main cause is always dehydration. When the skin barrier is damaged, the skin is not only more sensitive, but it also has difficulty retaining moisture. To prevent dehydration, it is first important to drink sufficient water! In addition, it is important to use a good moisturizer, preferably one that is specially formulated for sensitive skin and without artificial fragrances and SD alcohol. In addition, make sure to wash your skin in a mild way.