If you have been applying products to no avail, the root cause of your persisting skin issues can be a damaged skin barrier. By understanding more about the skin barrier, largest organ of the human body composing approximately 16% of total body weight, you will learn how to keep it healthy, and your skin will look great.
What is the Skin Barrier?
Simply put, skin barrier refers to the outermost layer of your skin. It’s called the “barrier” because it’s physiologically designed to protect the skin from epidermal invasion of allergens and bacteria. When healthily functioning, this layers keeps moisture within the skin, stabilizes electrolytes and prevents moisture loss. For that reason, the skin barrier is also known as the permeability barrier or moisture barrier.
Lipid barrier is another name for the skin barrier. That is because omega fatty acids, ceramide, desmoglein, claudin, fillaggrin and other components we label as skin-identical ingredients give structure to the skin barrier. These elements sustain skin’s immunity and control inflammation.
You can’t see these tiny yet significant ingredients floating on top of the skin with your bare eyes. What you can clearly see, is the overall smooth, soft, even-toned and balanced complexion when your skin barrier is healthy; or dryness, dullness, itchiness, rashes, redness, burning sensations, breakouts and other signs of sensitivity when your skin barrier is damaged.
Excessive UV exposure and environmental pollutions belong to the external causes for damaged skin barrier. Internally, poor diet and aggressive intake of alcohol, stress relating to hormones and medical conditions (rosacea, psoriasis, eczema and acute dermatitis) all downgrade the functioning of your skin barrier too.
How to Take Care Your Skin Barrier
Count your blessings if no skin problem is your concern, yet. This article is crucial in helping you to maintain the best skin of your life. If you have been struggling with skin problems, avoid the below culprits and welcome the best skin of your life as well.
1) Don’t use harsh cleansers. The most common, unconscious self-incurred way of breaking the skin barrier has to be the use of harsh, drying cleansers. Unless you often have a face of oil, avoid soap-based cleansers. Not just bar soaps, some cleansers in containers too are alkaline and intensely drying for the skin. Take a look at the first few ingredients on the list of the cleanser, most inexpensive soap-based cleansers often have Myristic Acid, Lauric Acid, Palmitic Acid and/or Stearic Acid on top of the list, together with alkalizing agent Sodium hydroxide, Potassium Hydroxide, Triethanol amine and/or 2-Amino-2-methyl propanol. These cruel surfactants remove oil forcefully. Consistent use guarantees a weakened, damaged skin barrier.
Even most very oily skin survives healthily without using soap-based cleansers. The super tight sensation after cleansing relates nothing to the cleanliness of your skin. Your skin is clean enough with any gentle cleanser that leaves you feeling a little tight.
2) Don’t wash your face with water that is too hot or too cold. The barrier structure changes and gets irritated upon in touch with unusual and extreme temperatures. Cells on your skin thrive being in touch with lukewarm water.
3) Don’t use abrasive scrubs. Physical scrubs cause miro-tears to the skin’s barrier. Your skin seems to feel smooth instantly after scrubbing, but that hoodwinking sensation ends in a while. During the scrub process, you are breaking down the skin structure terribly. The products you apply after scrubbing may not get absorbed too well into the skin because the skin barrier is disorganized, or tear off (so you feel soft because the barrier isn’t there solidly). Consider a gentle AHA or BHA exfoliant, if you want the same smoothing and softening benefits, no tears attached, but more lasting and safe, without harming your skin barrier. Don’t overdo with active, potent ingredients too. Always experiment and look for the best frequency and concentration that upkeep the health of your skin.
4) Don’t use irritating products. And that means products with no fragrance, no high concentration of alcohol, no irritating plant extracts and no other research-proven skin irritants. Be extra careful with paper masks too. Covering your skin with a layer of unbreathable sheet can be terrible for the skin barrier. Each time you put on a paper mask to force ingredients into the skin, you are resisting the nature of your skin barrier to keep unwanted things out. Be sure that all ingredients in your paper masks are what your skin truly needs, not some imaginary essence which in fact is made of destructive ingredients.
Consider masks in cream, lotion or gel instead. All without an extra paper sheet, our WHITENING Mask similarly delivers skin brightening agents into the skin; SKIN BALANCING Oil-Absorbing Mask clears sebum in the pores with soothing agents to comfort the skin surface; SKIN RECOVERY Hydrating Treatment Mask repairs and recovers the skin surface, while charging the inner skin with moisturizing ingredients.
What Products Can You Use to Fix Damaged Barrier?
Unfriendly substances slip into the skin of damaged skin barrier. When these irritating substances go into the epidermis, they initiate a series of responses that eventually lead to inflammation of the skin. Your skin feels uncomfortably itchy and pain. You see redness, rashes and breakouts.
Thus, if you have broken skin barrier, preventing inflammation within the skin and repairing the surface of the skin are two primary focuses when you choose your products.
To reduce inflammation, look for products loaded with anti-inflammatories – ingredients with abundant evidence showing their abilities in calming, soothing and comforting the skin by targeting proinflammatory transcription factors in the skin. Beta-glucan, colloidal oatmeal, sea whip extract, feverfew extract, allantoin, licorice root extract and algae extract are well-known for their effectiveness in relieving skin inflammation. You can find all of these impressive anti-inflammatories in products of our CALM Collection.
To repair and recover the skin surface, so it stays more resilient upon in touch with allergens, nourishing the barrier with skin-identical ingredients will make a dramatic difference. The intercellular lipid matrix in the upper layer of the skin (stratum corneum) is fortified with essential elements like omega fatty acids, ceramides and cholesterol.
Our RESIST Omega+ Complex Serum is formulated with concentrated skin-identical ingredients. This serum is heartily created for all with problematic skin due to impaired skin barrier. The entire idea is giving back the skin what it lacks, or what it craves for in order to stay healthy and good-looking. Just like taking a supplement when your medical report says that certain nutrients are in deficiency for your body, this serum is termed superfoods for the skin, because it sufficiently fills the skin pivotal, necessary substances every healthy skin requires.
We truly feel the pain of going through life with challenging skin. Many of us have been through the tough period, so we choose to devote our precious time dwelling into cosmetic science research and directing what we know to all beauty lovers, so they never walk our previous path, go straight into the right products dedicated for your specific skin type and concern. If you or your friend’s skin is not behaving properly, talk to us. We’ll be happy to help!