Skin irritation and inflammation are very common, especially if you’re fond of trying new skincare products -- the mere reason why patch testing and slow introduction are very important. Red, blotchy, and dry-looking skin are the most common signs of sensitized skin which can be treated and resolved by nursing your skin back to its normal state and allowing it to heal properly. Some of you might still be clueless as to how to restore your skin’s disrupted barrier so we collated these relief measures that you can try at home.
Oatmeal Wash. Oatmeal is an antioxidant and is widely known for its anti-inflammatory properties that can help soothe the skin and protect and strengthen the skin barrier. This is our go-to, tried and tested relief measure. You may do this by getting plain oatmeal that’s available in the pantry and then soaking 1-2 tablespoons of oatmeal in 1-2 cups of clean cool or tap water. Drain the oatmeal and use the water where you soaked the oatmeal for rinsing your face. The oatmeal will bind to the skin and will provide a protective barrier against irritants. It will act as a buffering agent that can help maintain the skin's normal pH by sealing in moisture, therefore, helping relieve dryness and itching.
Cold Compress. This is one of the easiest and fastest ways to provide relief as it is readily available at home. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, applying a cold compress to the affected area for 5-10 minutes can help reduce skin inflammation and irritation. You may also try to put your moisturizing creams and lotions in the refrigerator and then apply them to the affected area to ensure a direct cooling effect to the skin. It’s double purpose too!
Moisturize. Moisturizers help hydrate the skin and lock in moisture making it a good candidate in relieving dryness and itching. Make sure to apply moisturizer on damp skin to maximize its effect by preventing transepidermal water loss and don’t forget to stay away from moisturizers that contain active ingredients as this may aggravate your skin further.
Aloe Vera. Aloe vera is known for its anti-inflammatory properties that help soothe skin irritation and antimicrobial properties that may help prevent infections. It’s also considered a good moisturizer that can help relieve redness and dryness. You may use fresh aloe vera leaves and extract the gel (this is the best) or buy over-the-counter aloe vera gel products.
Honey. According to Dr. Shamban, “Honey is one of Mother Nature’s power players”. It's not only antibacterial and anti-inflammatory, it's also anti-viral and anti-fungal, which means it can fight inflammation and speed the skin's healing process. Because of its flavonoids, it can also be beneficial for acne or blemish-prone skin. You may use honey as a mask and apply it to your face for 15-20 minutes as needed.
Milk. Who would have known that milk is not just for food consumption but can also be used in the skin? The proteins in milk are considered anti-inflammatory and it also contains Vitamins A, D, and lactic acid that is commonly used in skincare products. You may add ⅔ cup of milk to your warm bath and soak for at least 10 minutes or use it directly on your face for rinsing. Before doing this, make sure that you do not have lactose sensitivity otherwise, it could aggravate your skin more.
These relief measures can be done at the comfort of your home however, you should also observe for signs and know when to see a doctor to receive proper medical treatment. When your skin is irritated or inflamed, remember to stick to the basics and stay away from active ingredients to allow your skin to heal without further aggravating it. Wildleaf’s Aloe Herb Face Wash can be your go-to facial cleanser as it is suitable for all skin types, does not contain harmful chemicals, and is blended with powerful antioxidants and skin-nourishing herbs that will leave your skin feeling soft and nourished. It’s pH 5.6 which is very close to our normal skin’s pH so it does its job without drying the skin.
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