|Treating Aging, Sensitive Skin
People with sensitive skin react to ingredients in some skin care
products. Susan Taylor, M.D., Dermatologist with Society Hill
Dermatology in Philadelphia, PA, says when a product with the offending
ingredient is applied to the face, the skin becomes red, irritated and,
often, itchy. While the exact incidence of sensitive skin isn't known,
the American Academy of Dermatology estimates, the problem may be seen
in up to 50 percent of patients in some dermatology practices.
Taylor says one of the key anti-aging ingredients is tretinoin, or
Retin-A, a topical form of vitamin A. Studies show Retin-A is very
effective in reducing fine lines and wrinkles, improving the texture of
the skin and reducing age-related discolorations. However, in people
with sensitive skin, Retin-A can cause significant irritation.
Calming Cranky Skin
For her sensitive skin patients, Taylor recommends an alternative
ingredient, retinol, which is a derivative of Vitamin A. She says it's
also effective for improving the texture of the skin and for reducing
the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and some discolorations. However,
retinol is less likely to cause skin irritation, redness and dryness.
Taylor cautions that only a pea-sized amount is needed to cover the
face, so don't overdo it.
Taylor says a good skin care program should be followed every day.
Start in the morning with a mild, exfoliating cleanser. If you can't
tolerate products with alpha hydroxy acid, try one with salicylic acid.
Follow that with a moisturizer, preferably one with a sunscreen
containing an SPF of at least 30 (or use a separate sunscreen). She also
recommends using a moisturizer with soy, which helps improve skin
discolorations. Another key ingredient for the face is Vitamin C. Taylor
says Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps reduce skin damage caused
by free radicals. It should be applied after the sunscreen. At night,
cleanse the skin to remove make-up and dirt. Then apply a
Taylor says you don't need to spend a lot of money to care for your
face, even if you have sensitive skin. She recommends checking out the
products for sale at your local drug store. Just remember to look for
key ingredients. If you are starting your skin care regimen from
scratch, it can take six months before you start to see a noticeable
difference in your skin.
Research compiled and edited by Barbara J. Fister
AUDIENCE INQUIRYIf you have any specific
questions about your skin care, speak with a dermatologist. For general
information: American Academy of Dermatology, http://www.aad.org
BIBLIOGRAPHYIf you need a list of the research titles supporting this story, please contact Barbara Fister at (610) 395-1300 ext. 238.
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