Friday 20 April 2018

Sensitive souls - top five sensitive products

Stop over-reacting, says our expert, with these five top sensitive suggestions

Uriage Xemose Lipid-Replenishing Anti-Irritation Cerat
Uriage Xemose Lipid-Replenishing Anti-Irritation Cerat
Guinot Red Logic Face Cream
Bioderma Atoderm Gentle Shower Gel
Trilogy Very Gentle Restoring Oil

Sarah Caden

Those with truly sensitive skin can be irritated by the way everyone wants in on their affliction these days. But then, they are easily irritated. There is an upside to the muscling-in, though, as demand has led to an upsurge in supply.

Irish skin is particularly prone to redness, roughness and general irritability. It's a thin skin, which is done no favours by the cold weather, central heating and winter winds that would take the face off you.

There is an abundance of products to soothe, but look for those that also bolster skin defences. And don't imagine that active, anti-ageing ingredients are to be avoided. The beauty business wants your sensitive custom and has adapted many classic formulas to suit - they still work their magic, but without maddening your skin. It's a thing of beauty, this sensitivity lark.

Best Overall

Uriage Xemose Lipid-Replenishing Anti-Irritation Cerat, €19.50, selected pharmacies nationwide

The Xemose range is aimed at sufferers of eczema, but if you have skin that is dry and itchy in the extreme, it is worth checking out. This rich cream is suitable for face and body; it relieves itching and reinforces the skin's barrier to irritation. As with all Uriage products, it's packed with thermal spring water, and the mineral content is very calming. "This is massively, immediately soothing." said a panellist. "With ongoing use, I got relief from scaly, dry skin."

Best Inflamation Agent

Guinot Red Logic Face Cream, €62, selected salons nationwide, or see

This is a treatment product, designed for use on areas of inflammation, redness and aggravation. You dab it on affected areas and then apply your regular cream on top. It contains hydrating aloe vera, as well as soothing arnica, horse chestnut and calendula. And, finally, there's an ingredient called Veinoderm, which promises to reduce and improve the appearance of inflamed veins, which can be a real problem for Celtic skin. "This made an impact on my red cheeks, which worsen as the weather turns," said one panellist.

Best Urgent Oil

Trilogy Very Gentle Restoring Oil, €38.95, selected pharmacies and health stores, or see

This brand's existing oils are nicely gentle, but this new product will work for even the most delicate skin. Certified organic, it has apricot and maqui berry oils to lightly moisturise, but it also has sea buckthorn oil, which is long recognised as helpful for rosacea and other skin inflammation. "This feels light, and seems to create a soothing boost to my day or night creams," said one panellist. "It's a lovely addition to my routine."

Best Refined Refiner

Chanel Le Weekend de Chanel Edition Douce, €90.50, Chanel counters nationwide

This is the sensitive sister to Le Weekend De Chanel; it's designed to do the same work, without risk of any irritation. In common with the original, its key ingredient remains glycolic acid - which gobbles dead skin cells and leaves new ones extra-receptive to holding on to skin-plumping hydration. However, in this formulation, it is high-tolerance glycolic, along with calming rosewater. "I love the texture, which Chanel describes as 'powdery'," said one panellist. "It feels soft and petal-like. A winner that doesn't irritate."

Best Shower Saviour

Bioderma Atoderm Gentle Shower Gel, €7.50, pharmacies nationwide

Sensitivity can make itself felt post-shower, when the skin gets tight and itchy, and super-sudsy shower products don't help. This soap-free wash foams up in a satisfying way, but it rinses off thoroughly and doesn't strip the skin. It has an ingredient called PEA, which is designed to stop itching, and moisturises the skin to prevent further irritation. "I get a creeping itching after a shower, and this stopped it completely," one panellist said. "It also left a clean feeling."

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