New: A treatment designed for rosacea-prone skin

New: A treatment designed for rosacea-prone skin

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Une peau sensible est-elle toujours synonyme de peau sèche ?

Does sensitive skin always equate to dry skin?

This question is quite common. It is true that dry skin is often sensitive, but sensitive skin is not necessarily dry. We explain why.

What is sensitive skin?

Sensitive skin, also referred to as reactive skin, is a condition, not a type. As a reminder, there are 4 skin types (normal, dry, oily or combination), but any of these can be sensitive or allergic.

Sensitive skin is not diseased skin, it is intolerant or fragile due to a deficiency in the barrier function that makes it vulnerable to external aggressions. This lowering of the skin's tolerance threshold can be temporary or permanent.

Several factors are responsible for heightened skin sensitivity: heredity, ageing, diet, hormonal imbalance, stress, pollution, certain medical treatments (such as radiotherapy), and UV rays...

Sensitive skin can lead to tingling sensations. Skin discomfort can also manifest as feelings of tightness, burning sensations, or prickling. The face may also display red patches.

What causes skin dryness?

Adry skinis characterised by a disruption in cellular cohesion, a deficiency in natural moisturising factors (NMF), and a shortfall in the production of fatty substances. This lack of hydrolipidic film exposes the epidermis to external aggressions and causes a loss of water. It is identified by feelings of tightness, a tight skin texture, sensations of discomfort, a "crocodile skin" effect, flaking, tingling, a lack of suppleness, redness, irritations, cracking, a dull appearance, and a thin and rough skin.

The causes can be internal (heredity, certain skin conditions and general diseases such as eczema, nutritional deficiencies, psoriasis, etc...) and external (climate changes, overly aggressive care, certain medical treatments...).

Be careful not to confusedry skin with dehydrated skin! Dry skin lacks lipids, while dehydrated skin, as the name suggests, lacks water.

So, does sensitive skin equate to dry skin and vice versa?

It can be challenging to distinguish between dry skin and sensitive skin, as these conditions often coexist. Dry skin is particularly prone to sensitivity, and sensitive skin is often dry. Therefore, it can be difficult to identify the underlying cause and provide appropriate treatment.

Nevertheless, it is necessary to refer to the initial causes of these skin conditions.

  • If you have sensitive skin due to hereditary factors, you are certainly at risk of also having dry skin. Moreover, sensitive and dry skin is often associated with light phototypes, even with redheads presenting freckles.

  • However, if you have sensitive skin due to environmental factors or because ofthe use of unsuitable cosmetics that are too abrasive, it is possible that you may develop skin sensitivity even though your skin type is normal or even combination to oily.

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