If you have sensitive skin, then you will be able to relate to these skincare complaints and fear of your face going beet red.
Each skin type has its own issues, but if you have sensitive skin, your face has its own unique challenges. You don’t just slap on any face product you have at hand, and you never ever use that bar of soap on your face just because it’s in the shower and you’re out of your regular cleanser. If you have sensitive skin, it can sometimes feel like your face has its own personality, and more times than not, your face is very grumpy and irritated.
(Related: 12 Tried-And-True Face Cleansers That Won’t Irritate Your Sensitive Skin)
Here are 14 things you’ll definitely understand if you have sensitive skin:
1. That patch tests are absolutely essential
You’ve learned your lesson on multiple occasions. If you are buying a new skincare product, you slowly test it out on your jawline and gradually spread it out more, provided your face doesn’t react badly. Your skin is like your grandpa. It doesn’t like trying new things, no matter how trendy or supposedly good for you they are.
2. The confusion of why they would decide to add fragrance to a perfectly good moisturizer
It passed the ingredients test. It said for “very sensitive skin” in big, bold letters, and it wasn’t expensive, so why did they ruin it by adding some random scent? Why do you even need your face to smell like peppermint and daisies anyways?
3. Accepting that there may not be a product in existence that won’t inflame your cheeks
You’ve found a cleanser and moisturizer that don’t make 65% of your face break out in a rash, but your cheeks are another matter. You’ve pretty much excepted the fact that there is not a product you can put on your cheeks that won’t make them turn bright red. Almost.
4. How annoying it is that if your skin gets inflamed, you can’t cover it up with foundation
Foundation is supposed to cover skin issues, but if you cover your irritated face, you’re only going to make the problem that much worse. You could walk around with a mask on, but that would probably make things worse, too–unless it was a special cotton muslin mask.
5. The thrill of buying a new product for sensitive skin, then realizing it still isn’t sensitive enough for your face
What gives?! You tested the little sample they gave you, and everything was fine. Why is there a problem now that you paid $20 for the full-size product? This has to be some kind of sick skin joke.
6. Being very dubious about any kind of facial
When it comes to facials, you stay well away. They don’t even need to utter the word “extraction.” Just thinking about all that touching and rubbing with new products has your skin turning pink and itchy.
7. Scanning the ingredients list like a detective looking for a murder clue
You do not just scan a package and look for the “suitable for sensitive skin” line. That is just the beginning. You read every ingredient list, trying to look for any potential triggers. You’ve read so many packages you could probably rewrite them from memory.
8. The disappointment when your favorite moisturizer gets discontinued
When a product gets discontinued, you can hear the collective cry of those with sensitive skin. The second worse thing is when you see your old tried-and-true skincare product with a “new, improve formula” sticker.
9. The annoying fact that even water can irritate your sensitive face
Seriously, how is it that water can irritate our skin? Our bodies are mostly water. It doesn’t make sense.
10. How much you sympathized with Samantha from Sex And The City when she had that bad chemical peel
You have never, and you will never, ever get a chemical peel, but when you looked at Samantha Jones‘ painful red face in that Sex And The City episode, you knew exactly how she felt. You might have even had a sympathy-burning sensation on your face.
11. You still want to try every new product and ingredient, even though you know you’re just asking for trouble
You can’t help it. You have heard so many people talking about coconut oil and activated charcoal and how great they are, and you want to try them too. Who knows, they could be the solution to your sensitive skin.
12. Explaining to someone that you don’t have a sunburn for the millionth time, you just used a new cleanser
You hate when people point out your sunburn, but you hate it, even more, when someone mistakes your inflamed face for a sunburn. You messed up and put too much cream on; you don’t need to be reminded of it, okay?
13. Skincare gadgets were invented just to tease you
There are all of these wonderful new face scrub brushes that are raved about because they vibrate at a zillion times a second and scrub away dirt and oil. A washcloth can upset your face, so you can only imagine what that oscillating brush would do.
14. That sinking feeling when you wake up, and you can already tell you put something bad on your face last night
Even when you’re half-awake, you are alert enough to recognize that all too familiar feeling of an inflamed face. You immediately go through a mental list of all the things you put on your face to try and figure out the cause of the burning.