Our last edit on fake claims covers the label “hypoallergenic”. This label is really important to understand as it has a number of limitations that could be detrimental for sensitive skin, especially for those with eczema, rosacea, psoriasis conditions.
So, what does it mean? A product that is labelled “hypoallergenic” means that it has been designed in a way to minimise allergic reactions by excluding “allergenic” compounds from formulation.
In Europe, this claim “can only be used in cases where the cosmetic product has been designed to minimise its allergenic potential”. In addition, the EU cosmetics regulation states that those claiming to be hypoallergenic will not contain known allergens or allergens precursors. However, since we all have a very unique skin reacting its own way, this shouldn't be a valid argument when purchasing skincare products.
A study conducted by Dr. Steve Xu, dermatologist at Northwestern's Feinberg School of Medicine, analysed ingredients of the best selling moisturisers sold by Amazon, Target and Walmart. The study found that 45% of the products that claimed to be “fragrance-free” actually contained fragrances and 83% of “hypoallergenic” products contained allergenic chemicals.
Therefore, it is essential to understand that this claim does not exclude a risk of reactions, especially for those with sensitive skin. Let’s not forget that any type of chemical compound could be irritating for the skin. Conclusion? It is impossible for any product to be truly “hypoallergenic”!
SO, WHAT DO I DO IF MY SKIN IS REACTIVE AND SENSITIVE?
Know your skin. We know we keep repeating ourselves, but this is truly the best way to know what products are good and bad for your skin. You need to be able to answer the question “Why is my skin sensitive?” Is it simply the nature of your skin? Is it an underlying skin condition that you have such as rosacea, eczema? This will help to filter through the different products available and find the ones tailored to your needs.
“ I always have had sensitive skin”
If you always have had sensitive skin, you should probably already know what is triggering it (if not, we are here for that). Always look for clean formulation that don’t contain any “known” irritants such as essential oils, drying alcohols synthetic perfumes.
“I have eczema”
Go to the most reliable resource: The National Eczema Association. They have a list of products that are “approved”. However, those looking for more “natural” products will rarely find foolproof options. We would recommend searching for eczema friendly products on Content Beauty; they might not be approved by the National Eczema Association, but some of the brands were created by people suffering from eczema. Always patch test.
“I have Rosacea”
Those with rosacea like Megan need to know their triggers. Diet has a major impact on rosacea, so make sure you are paying attention to how skin reacts to food you eat. With skincare, always stay away from products that contain high amounts of essential oils and fragrance. Low amounts of fragrance is sometimes ok, but it will depend on your skin. If a product makes your skin flare up, then stop using it immediately in order to avoid further compromising the barrier of your skin. In our opinion, natural products are not the best option for this skin type, as even if they don’t have “added” fragrance they can still have fruit extracts that irritate this type of skin condition.
Want to learn what’s right for your unique skin? Book your Holistic Skin Session now.Find out how Lion/ne can help you overhaul your skincare regime booking your FREE 10 minute Discovery Call in which we’ll explain all the key benefits of our game-changing service.
SOURCES Hypoallergenic' Labels May Not Be Accurate - Medscape - Nov 21, 2014.