The American Academy of Dermatology says that millions of people have sensitive skin. That means it’s prone to redness, acne, burning and stinging, eczema, psoriasis, or other issues.
Those with sensitive skin know that the slightest thing can set it off. Use the wrong product and you could be dealing with breakouts or flushed cheeks for a week.
That can make you nervous about trying new products, especially masks. But masks can be very beneficial, even for sensitive skin, if you know what to use.
If you’d like to learn more about sensitive skin, see our other posts on the topic. Then try our mask tips below to help your skin look it’s best this summer.
1. Avoid harsh chemicals.
Sensitive skin is especially sensitive to synthetic chemicals. Even fragrances can cause allergic reactions or a rosacea flare-up. In addition to looking for fragrance-free products, make sure you avoid other problematic ingredients like formaldehyde, urea, parabens, petrochemicals, and our other Ingredients to Avoid.
2. Avoid harsh scrubbing agents.
Sensitive skin quickly reacts to anything harsh. Many masking products out there contain scratchy agents that are meant to cleanse skin, but can actually cause micro-tears in it, increasing risk of inflammation and breakouts.
You can still enjoy an exfoliating mask once a week to help slough off the old, dead skin cells without suffering from adverse reactions. Just look for products that have gentler ingredients. Here are some good options:
- Gentle acids: These acids get rid of old dead skin cells without scratching or scrubbing. Look for glycolic, malic, citric, and lactic acids in your mask formula.
- Peel-off masks: These types of masks you leave on the skin and then peel off are typically some of the more moisturizing masks out there. They also don’t require any scrubbing-a plus for sensitive skin.
- Homemade options: You may make out even better with your own exfoliating masks than with those you can buy. Use ingredients like mashed strawberries, natural yogurt, finely crushed oatmeal, honey, water, and lemon juice.
3. Choose the right clay mask.
If you struggle with acne, a clay mask can be very helpful. Clay contains a number of natural minerals that are good to your skin, and it also helps absorb excess skin oil to help keep pores clear.
What you have to be careful of is that you don’t get one that is too drying. If the product dries and cakes on your skin, you risk overdrying, which can cause more acne, and may also lead to redness and inflammation.
There are a number of things you can do to enjoy the benefits of a clay mask without risking more problems:
- Use your favorite clay mask but for only a limited time-don’t let it dry completely before you rinse it off.
- Allow the clay mask to remain on your face as long as you like, but keep replenishing moisture with a skin spray. We recommend our Rescue + Relief Spray as it helps keep the mask moist while delivering other good-for-your-skin ingredients that will enhance the results. Continue to spray about once every 2-3 minutes.
- Choose a moisturizing clay mask that doesn’t dry hard. There are new ones out there that are made for more sensitive skins that stay creamy while you wear them. Look for those with a watery, creamy texture, or those enriched with mineralizing water or other moisturizing ingredients.
4. Find a Good Moisturizing Mask
These are often the best types of masks for sensitive skin, because they are gentle, and they provide deep moisture, which sensitive skin needs, particularly if you struggle with ultra dry patches. If you struggle with acne, though, you have to be careful that you don’t overdo it and end up with more breakouts.
To make sure your moisturizing mask delivers only benefits, try these tips:
- Use our Calming Moisture. It’s deeply moisturizing, and it’s also made for sensitive skin. It includes turmeric, which is a natural anti-inflammatory ingredient that also helps kill bacteria and other microorganisms on the skin. Aloe vera soothes and calms sensitive skin, and oat extract helps reduce redness and itch. Apply at night and leave on.
- Try an organic moisturizing mask that contains plant-based ingredients that won’t exacerbate inflammation. Look for ingredients like aloe, natural oils, antioxidants, and natural extracts.
- Use only on your cheeks-avoid the T-zone. If you have dry cheeks but an oily nose, forehead, and chin, us the moisturizing mask only where it’s needed.
- Look for moisturizing masks with gentle fruit acids in them-these masks hydrate and plump skin while also sloughing off dead skin cells, which can help you avoid future breakouts.
What’s your favorite mask for sensitive skin?