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6 ways to reduce facial redness and irritation

Facial redness can be seriously frustrating. While glass skin sounds all well and good, the majority of us experience facial redness at some point in our lives. Whether it’s a short-lived flush or it sets up camp for a little longer, redness and irritation can be attributed to a number of things and there’s no ‘one size fits all’ remedy for the issue. However, treating your symptoms accordingly is a great place to start. 

If your skin is showing up as red or irritated, it’s usually become sensitised. And it’s much easier to treat the concern if you know what’s causing it. 

Basically, sensitised skin is caused by environment or lifestyle factors including pollution, climate, hormones, stress, medication, diet, smoking and even actives in skincare which, much like sensitive skin types, causes the likes of redness, flushing, stinging, dehydration and breakouts. Is your skin feeling tight? This is one quick trick to understand if your skin is sensitised. 

Now... what to do! Let’s get on to calming and soothing your skin down ASAP. Here’s 6 ways to do just that!

1. Get gentle 

Immediately stop using anything harsh. Stop exfoliating, scrubbing, etc... and go simple. Peel back your routine to just a gentle cleanser and a thick, repairing moisturiser. We recommend: 

Your skin takes about 28 days to regenerate so for this period of time be gentle and lay off the actives (e.g. AHAs, BHAs, vitamin C, retinol) so you skin can repair itself!

2. If you’re flaking – hydrate

If you got a little ‘actives happy’ lately - meaning you used all of your skincare actives such as AHAs, BHAs, vitamin C and retinol at once or frequently – then your skin is probably flaking. If it’s not actives – it's probably sunburn! So, your new BFF will be intense hydration. Paint on a soothing mask and load up on your hyaluronic acid infused moisturiser! We recommend: 

3. Put away your actives (for now)

Taking a cue from above, put away the actives (unail the irritation subsides) such as retinol, AHAs, BHAs and vitamin C, as well as physical exfoliants and scrubs too, as these products can further irritate damaged skin by compromising your skin barrier. Some acne products can be drying so it’s worth noting that these should also be used with caution if you have sensitive skin. 

4. Build up the skin barrier 

With a damaged barrier often the result of dehydration, your first real step back to recovery is to replenish that lost hydration with products powered by humectants like hyaluronic acid and glycerin (all of our moisturisers contain these essential ingredients). 

You’ll also want to double up and strengthen the structural integrity of your skin too, so that it can function in a health manner – this can include a mix of ingredients like ceramides (vitamin B5), probiotics, rosehip oil and co-enzyme Q10. We recommend:

Once you’ve replenished lost hydration, it’s a good idea to seal in that delivery of hydration. Assist your skin to retain the moisture you’ve just added back in by creating a nourishing, lipid-like seal with a facial oil rich in plant oils like camellia, macadamia, sea buckthorn, jojoba and rosehip oil. We recommend: 

Look for these ingredients

  • Niacinamide: Vitamin B3 has been shown to improve epidermal barrier function when applied topically, it’s also very soothing for sensitised skin 
  • Probiotics: Probiotics support the natural organisms living on the skin, which are vital for a healthy barrier function 

Check out Luminosity and The Limelight for a start on the above ingredients: 

6. Make lifestyle changes

Sometimes facial redness is attributed to issues that are more than just skin deep. Experiment with your lifestyle habits to see if any are causing your irritation...  

  • Decrease sun exposure 
  • Limit drinking hot beverages 
  • Drink cold water while exercising 
  • Limit alcohol consumption 
  • Consider if smoking is something you can go without 

And there you have it! Simplify your routine, put away your actives, hydrate and build up your skin barrier with the right ingredients... and lastly, take a look at your lifestyle. The skin cycle last for 28 days, so give your skin time to repair itself while you’re making these changes and voila! We hope you feel as good as new.