I’ve long suffered from skin issues, like eczema and dermatitis, but over the last five years it’s made a fun appearance on my face. Now, I’m not sure if my angry, red, irritated skin is a hundred percent clinically described as eczema, but it definitely flares up when I’m stressed or the weather changes.
Regardless, I’ve learned (thanks mainly to Reddit’s r/skincareaddiction) that the irritation is the result of my skin barrier being impaired. All the signs point to this – angry, blotchy red skin, itchiness, stinging when product is applied. Anyone who has gone through this knows the hell I mean. Even the most gentle products don’t seem to do shit.
I’ve tried a LOT on my face, and I’ve finally determined the products that a) don’t hurt and b) seem to, over the course of a week, rebalance and repair my skin the most. They may not be for everyone – one thing I absolutely know for sure is that there’s no one-fix for all skin types, but hopefully something from my list helps you out.
DERMAVEEN FACIAL SERUM
This serum has all the reparative skin barrier basics in it – collodial oatmeal, beta-glucan and pro-vitamin B5. It’s hydrating, kind on irritated skin and genuinely seems to have made a difference to the dehydration level of my skin when layered under creams.
LA ROCHE-POSAY CICAPLAST BAUME
This thick white cream seems to strengthen my skin barrier over the course of a few days. I particularly like that it has anti-bacterial agents – one of the reasons impaired skin can get itchy and stingy is because it’s vulnerable to bacteria.
CERAVE MOISTURISING LOTION
When my face goes nuts my body usually follows, with dry scaly eczema patches (cute!). This moisturiser is the best of the best, to me. I’ll put it down to those 3 essential ceramides – ceramides are like the building blocks for repairing the skin.
QV FLARE UP WASH
Look normally I wouldnt’ be like WOOO a foaming cleanser for irritated skin! But whatever is in this seems to calm my skin at the end of the day, if it’s been particularly stingy/itchy. Best after getting makeup off.
This cleansing balm is amazing at getting all traces of makeup off without further irritating your skin. Yes, I wear makeup (sometimes) when my skin is being insane. The beeswax can be a bit tricky to entirely remove, but that’s also part of the charm – the product is designed to protect your skin even after you’ve removed it, by leaving a bit of residue.
NEOSPORIN ECZEMA ESSENTIALS DAILY MOISTURISING CREAM
I’ll put this in at the end because (sad) you can’t get it in Australia, but if you venture overseas – get it. It’s so good. It genuinely calms itchiness, feels super hydrating and seems to make a real difference for my skin.
CERAVE HEALING OINTMENT
Another one that’s not available in Oz (although watch this space since CeraVe just launched here!) – this ointment for irritated skin is great to layer on top of your skincare at the end, if you suffer from the morning “tight” skin thing. I can’t speak for everyone but it doesn’t make me break out – then again, not much does. I wouldn’t use it if you are prone to pore-clogging, but sometimes I even just put it on patches that need the barrier protection.