In stock and shipped within 24 hours. FREE shipping $100+ or $9. SHOP NOW

View All News

Best skin care for sensitive red skin

Are you looking to find the best skin care for sensitive red skin? Not sure how to tackle your sensitivity or redness? You’ve come to the right place.

In this blog article, I’m going to look at the different types of sensitive skin and what causes redness. Sensitive skin and redness can be caused by different factors, and you need to get to the bottom of this to develop the right skin care routine and find the right skin care products that are going to help your skin.

Remember that your skin is unique. And what causes issues for one person may not be the same for another. This is why a skin analysis and a personalised skin care plan prepared by the right professional is the fastest way to fix your skin and save yourself money.

If you have sensitive red skin, here are three things not to do:

  1. ask for random advice from people on social media – you’ll get hundreds of different views that are likely wrong and could damage your skin
  2. take recommendations from beauty ‘influencers’ – most of whom are doing affiliate marketing
  3. buy skin care products, even from professionals, without carefully looking at the ingredient list

With that out of the way, let’s get on with the show.

I’ll cover only the main causes of sensitivity and redness. But keep in mind this may not be what’s going on with your skin. The only way to really find out is to have a skin consultation with a professional.

Before you can find the best skin care for sensitive red skin, you need to work out what type of sensitive skin you have and what type of redness.

What is sensitive skin?

Sensitive skin is skin that is overly reactive to a wide range of factors, including sun exposure, pollution, cold weather, hot water, hormonal changes, alcohol and caffeine, as well as chemicals, fragrance and essential oils found in skin care products.

The sensation of sensitivity is triggered by nerve endings in the top layer of skin becoming irritated. This typically happens when the skin’s barrier function is disrupted and becomes weakened.

People with sensitive skin are born with skin that is predisposed to sensitivity, and usually have thinner, paler and drier skin.

While some have more occasional reactions, others experience sensitivity on a daily basi. Those with ongoing sensitivity may have tightness, dryness, flakiness, redness and visible capillaries.

More people think they have sensitive skin than really do. About half of all people report they have sensitive skin. Simply because you react to certain ingredients does not mean you have sensitive skin – even those with normal skin can react to certain ingredients.

What is sensitised skin?

Sensitised skin is slightly different to sensitive skin. People with sensitised skin were not born with sensitive skin, but developed it at some point in their life.

Sensitised skin is usually caused by using inappropriate skin care products, being aggressive with your skin, overusing actives or failing to properly care for your skin, particularly in harsh environments. It‘s usually associated with damage to the all-important skin barrier, preventing it from dong its essential task of protecting the skin, maintaining its balance, keeping irritants out and moisture in.

Sensitised skin commonly develops in those who are using strong actives to treat acne, which are usually used to remove oil and exfoliate the skin. It’s also seen in those who overuse anti-ageing actives. In the short-term, the skin may cope and so you keep using these products, not realising that you’re doing damage, little bit by little bit. Then, one day, you discover your skin has become intolerant and can’t cope with anything but the mildest skin care products.

Some clinical skin treatments can make the skin more sensitive and reactive, but with the right care afterwards the skin typically returns to normal in time.

In some other cases, sensitised skin is due to certain medications, but again this is temporary. Once you finish the course of medication, your skin should go back to its usual type.

What causes sensitive skin?

Three possible causes have been identified.

Barrier function

Compared with normal skin, sensitive skin is thought to have a weaker outer protective layer, known as the stratum corneum. This layer is typically thinner, weaker and more easily injured, making their skin more vulnerable. As a result, irritants absorb more deeply and moisture is lost more easily.

Additionally, many people with sensitive skin also have fewer oils to defend their skin. Overly dry or damaged skin cannot properly protect the nerve endings and so sensations of burning, tingling, tightness or prickling may result.

Neurobiological factors

Sensitive skin may be due to a dysfunction in the nerves in the skin. It has been identified that those with sensitive skin have a greater amount of nerves in the stratum corneum and this may be linked to functional changes in the central nervous system. But this is not well understood and research is limited.

Inflammatory response

Sensitive skin isn’t able to properly defend itself against external factors, such as chemicals, allergens, irritants, pollution and UV. This makes the skin more likely to react by way of inflammation. This inflammation can cause further damage to the skin barrier and nerve endings.

Reducing inflammation and repairing the barrier function is critical in managing sensitive skin. Otherwise sensitive skin issues become part of a perpetuating cycle as. An impaired barrier function means more irritants are able to penetrate. Once irritants penetrate, they cause the immune system to respond with inflammation. And this inflammation may eventually cause peripheral nerve damage. The end result is more sensitivity and even allergic reactions.

Skin disorders such as eczema, contact dermatitis and rosacea also result in increased uncomfortable sensations and make the skin more reactive. It’s always important to identify exactly what is going on in your skin.

What causes redness?

Redness can be caused by a number of different factors. It’s therefore important to find out what is happening with your individual skin so that you can find the right treatment or skin care products to improve your skin. The wrong treatments and products can make your skin worse.

Here are some causes of redness on the face:

  1. thinner skin that makes underlying capillaries more visible
  2. visible broken capillaries
  3. inflammation due to irritation
  4. inflammation due to clogged pores and bacteria
  5. red bumps due to rosacea
  6. excessive dryness
  7. rash due to contact dermatitis or eczema

What to avoid with sensitive red skin

Finding the best skin care for sensitive red skin isn’t just about the products you use; it’s also about the products you need to avoid.

First, you need to identify and eliminate those those things that trigger a reaction. This can be internal or external factors, as well as skin care products.

Unprotected sun exposure, strong winds, extremes in temperature, overheating, strenuous exercise, hot showers and baths, alcohol, spicy food, caffeine, stress and a poor diet can all affect sensitive skin. It may also be helpful to keep a diary to try to identify other potential factors.

Topical irritants also need to be avoided.

I find it incredibly frustrating that so many skin care companies use known irritants in their ranges for sensitive skin. Many brands, beauty stores and even clinics recommend products with ingredients that can cause redness or sensitise the skin!

Brands often use essential oils, claiming they’re beneficial for sensitive skin. Essential oils are volatile essences that contain up to 60 substances. While they may have some beneficial properties, such as antioxidants and antimicrobials, they also contain problematic fragrance ingredients, such as limonene, citronellol, eugenol and linalool. These can cause obvious and immediate reactions or they can cause longer term but less obvious inflammation in the deeper layers of the skin in those who are less sensitive. Some can even be phototoxic and cause redness, blistering, rashes and hyperpigmentation. You can read more about this under Essential Oil in Skin Care.

Essential oils aren’t the only culprits. Fragrance, alcohol, witch hazel, harsh surfactants, dyes, certain preservatives, some chemical sunscreen filters and even lanolin can cause skin issues in those with sensitive skin. Physical scrubs, astringent toners, L’Ascorbic Acid and retinoids also may be too much for some sensitive skin types.

Most people with sensitive skin find that keeping their skin care routine simple works best, both in terms of the number of products used and the number of ingredients in the products. The fewer the ingredients and ingredient components, the less likely there’ll be something in the product that will irritate your skin. This is yet another problem with essential oils and fragrance. Their many components make it near impossible to work out exactly which one triggered the reaction.

Using skin care products with fewer ingredients helps you to not only avoid reactions, but over time work out which ingredients work well for you and which ones to avoid.

Keep in mind that sometimes your skin will do just fine using certain products but then suddenly react. By continually exposing your skin mild irritation and activating inflammation, your skin is more likely to become sensitised. Eventually your skin cries out for you to stop by sending signals by way of redness, inflammation, rash or even more sensitivity.

People with true sensitive skin will have it for life. Ongoing care that recognises the higher susceptibility of this skin is essential.

Medical treatments for skin redness 

Sensitive skin isn’t classified as a medical condition, however the inflammatory skin condition rosacea is.

Always make sure you have your skin condition is correctly diagnosed and any systemic or underlying conditions are addressed. Some people with sensitive skin may have early signs of rosacea.

There are no specific medical treatments for sensitive skin. Because of this, you must pay special attention to your skin care routine and the products you apply to your skin. This will help alleviate the symptoms of sensitivity and redness.

However if you’re concerned about redness and visible capillaries, vascular lasers or IPL can seal them and diminish their appearance.

More diffuse redness may be helped by LED green light therapy, but requires many sessions to be effective.

What to do about skin sensitivity?

Both sensitive skin and sensitised skin can be improved with at-home skin care. Those with sensitised skin can usually return their skin to normal. However those who have naturally sensitive skin will need to follow a skin care routine that respects the more delicate nature of their skin.

There’s much you can do to alleviate and improve your sensitive skin. You’ll need to eliminate as many of the causes of your sensitivity as possible, take additional measures to soothe and protect your skin, increase moisturisation and strengthen the skin barrier function.

Unfortunately, most people are unaware that they’re incorrectly caring for their skin or using products that are actually adding to the redness.

The biggest problem for those with sensitive skin is finding products that do more than just prevent reactions. If you have sensitive or sensitised skin you want to be replenishing, rebuilding and strengthening the skin. But this can only be done with the right ingredients.

Skin Clinica has curated its products based on the right actives, real results, clean ingredient lists and minimal potential irritants. Of course, we always also select products that are lovely to use.

So what’s the best skin care for sensitive red skin?

Below please find some of the products we love for sensitive skin and for redness. We hope you like them as much as we do:

Best skin care for sensitive red skin


Comfort Zone Remedy Cream to Oil Cleanser

The Comfort Zone Remedy Cream to Oil Cleanser is very elegant cleanser that turns from a lovely cream into a silky oil. It removes makeup and pollutants without any harsh surfactants or irritating ingredients. It’s like doing a double cleanse without the double cleanse. Skin is left feeling soft, smooth, soothed and hydrated.

Like all the products in the Remedy range, this cleanser is gentle and calming. It contains skin replenishing and repairing Marula Oil, which is rich in fatty acids. Even Cosmetic Expert Paula from Paula’s Choice classifies this ingredient as one of the best there is.

What you won’t find is harsh surfactants, fragrance, essential oils and unnecessary ingredients. That’s just the way we like it for sensitive skin.

Best for sensitive, sensitised or rosacea skin that is on the dry to normal side.

Comfort Zone Remedy Toner

I didn’t care too much for toners until I met the Comfort Zone Remedy Toner.

This toner comes in a spray bottle, so there is no dragging across the skin. You can also use it to top hydration during the day or to cool the skin whenever you’re feeling any heat or tightness.

The Remedy toner soothes, calms, hydrates and reduces redness. It creates a lovely sensation on the skin and adds hydration — unlike thermal waters, which cause increased water loss. The Remedy Toner contains the Marvel of Peru, an ancient botanical that relieves redness and uncomfortable feelings in the skin.  This toner has been developed to support the skin microbiome and skin barrier through the addition of a prebiotic, Alpha Glucan Oligosaccharide. Glycerin also has been added to maintain moisture, strengthen the water barrier, increase resilience and protect skin from environmental sources of irritation.

You won’t find fragrance, essential oils, alcohol, colorants, parabens or silicones.

Best for all types of sensitive, sensitised or rosacea skin. Also great for dry, dehydrated and normal skin.

Comfort Zone Remedy Serum

The Comfort Zone Remedy Serum has the highest levels of actives to calm feelings of sensitivity and reduce the look of redness in the skin.

It comes in a lovely opaque glass pump bottle to preserve its goodness. This gentle serum smooths across the skin and gets straight to work to improve sensitivity and redness.

It contains Babassu Oil, Alpha Glucan Oligosaccharide, Marula Oil, Marvel of Peru, Mexican Hyssop, Magnolia Bark and Vitamin E. These ingredients were heavily researched by Comfort Zone to provide the greatest relief for sensitivity and redness, with the lowest possibility for reactions. Babassu Oil melts into the skin and provides a cooling effect, while also being an antioxidant. Mexican Hyssop reduces stress in the skin, which is what causes vasodilation. It also relieves irritation, strengthens the skin barrier and has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory benefits. Magnolia Bark reduces redness and bacteria, as well as delivering anti-ageing results.

This is serum has a light cream consistency and is a serum come true for those who tried other sensitive skin care products and found they did nothing for their skin.

You won’t find fragrance, essential oils, alcohol, colorants, parabens or silicones.

Best for sensitive, sensitised or rosacea skin that isn’t oily.

Comfort Zone Remedy Cream

Like the other products in the Remedy range, the Comfort Zone Remedy Cream has been scientifically formulated to provide immediate relief as well as strengthen the skin. All the Remedy products are designed to be layered and work synergistically together. They leave the skin feeling comfortable, hydrated and protected, without any feeling of heaviness or greasiness. The products work together to tackle irritation, inflammation and redness from multiple perspectives. And this is why this range works so well.

The Remedy cream uses Shea Butter, Marula Oil, Alpha Glucan Oligosaccharide, Babassu Oil, Magnolia Bark and Marvel of Peru as it star ingredients, but in lower strengths than you’ll find in the serum. These signature ingredients have been carefully selected for their scientifically proven benefits for sensitive, sensitised and rosacea skin.

You won’t find fragrance, essential oils, alcohol, colorants, parabens or silicones.

Best for sensitive, sensitised or rosacea skin that isn’t oily.

Serum Factory Red rescue Supercharged Serum for Sensitive Red Skin

Serum Factory Red Rescue

Serum Factory Red Rescue is a supercharged serum using clinically proven plant actives that have been encapsulated in a liposome structure. Liposomes allow for deeper delivery into the skin, which brings about faster and more sustained results.

Red Rescue targets sensitivity and redness, helping to put out the fire you feel in your skin.

It uses the latest technology advanced ingredients, including:

You’ll also old-school goodies such as Allantoin and Bisabolol for their soothing and healing properties.

This serum comes in a shade of green to help camouflage redness. The colouring is derived from earth minerals so you don’t have to worry about reacting to synthetic colourants.

What’s more, these power-packed bottles are filled with organic ingredients, giving your sensitive or trouble skin even more to celebrate. All in a glass dropper bottle.

Best for all types of sensitive, sensitised or rosacea skin.

Krave Beauty Great Barrier Relief

The Krave Beauty Great Barrier Relief serum is an icon for those with sensitised skin due to having overused actives, been too aggressive or neglected their skin. If that’s you, Great Barrier Relief is here to rescue your skin.

It was developed by Liah Yoo to calm your skin, reduce inflammation, fight irritation and repair the skin barrier. The serum adds an invisible shield to the skin and ‘glues’ together micro tears on the surface to keep all that’s good in and all that’s bad out. It also includes ingredients that help prevent discolouration and breakouts.

In time, the skin will rebuild itself and become more resilient so that you won’t be troubled by sensitivity. You’ll have your old (new) skin back. We can’t promise you’ll feel amazing, although you might, but your skin will feel calmer and look clearer.

Your skin can now find its relief.

This repairing goodness comes in an airless pump bottle, as it should.

Best for sensitised skin that is combination or oily.

Krave Beauty Oat So Simple Water Cream

If you have sensitive, sensitised or rosacea skin that reacts or stings no matter what you apply, then consider the Krave Beauty Oat So Simple Water Cream.

This is a light gel cream that was specifically created for skin that’s intolerant and doesn’t respond well to actives. The water cream has been made with only nine of the gentlest ingredients. Nothing unnecessary has been used so that you get soothing hydration, and nothing to further make your skin feel uncomfortable.

Many people with sensitive, sensitised or rosacea skin that’s prone to oiliness often skip moisturisation because they don’t want to make their skin oilier. But this can damage the skin’s own protective mechanisms and lead it to be more vulnerable to environmental aggressors and breakouts. The Oat So simple adds necessary hydration without adding any oils. It soothes, comforts and strengthens the skin’s defences without adding what you don’t want.

Best for sensitive, sensitised or rosacea skin that is combination to oily.

Suitable also for those with normal to dry skin wanting a hydration burst, but layer with a more occlusive product.

Dr.G R.E.D Blemish Clear Soothing Cream

The Dr.G R.E.D Blemish Clear Soothing Cream is Dr.G’s hero skin care product. It contains 5-Cica Complex to quickly calm irritated skin. 5-Cica Complex comprises Centella Asiatica and its scientifically proven active components: Madecassoside, Madecassic Acid, Asiaticoside and Asiatic Acid.

This is a quick-absorbing gel cream that soothes and hydrates sensitive, sensitised and rosacea skin, using only the gentlest ingredients. It also supports skin recovery through the addition of Niacinamide, Panthenol, Beta Glucan, EGCG and Liquorice.

These ingredients are gentle but highly effective in tackling irritation, inflammation and redness. Niacinamide, EGCG and Liquorice support repair, strengthen the skin barrier and reduce hyperpigmentation. They’re also great antioxidants and anti-agers, so your skin isn’t missing out on the benefits delivered by more irritating actives – the ones that typically get most of the attention.

No fragrance, essential oils, alcohol, colorants, parabens or malassezia triggers have been added.

Best for sensitive, sensitised or rosacea skin that is combination or oily and prone to breakouts.

Award-winning Skin Juice Green Juice Organic Skin Saving Balm-Best Skin Care for Sensitive Red Skin

Skin Juice Green Juice Organic Skin Saving Balm

Every home needs a multipurpose protective balm that can calm irritation, tone down redness and provide a protective barrier to allow healing

When the skin is compromised by way of a skin condition, irritation or damage, finding the right balm can be tricky. Given compromised skin is more reactive and more at risk of potentially allowing chemicals to enter the bloodstream, it’s best to stick with products that have no irritants, chemicals, essential oils or fragrance.

A good balm should be emollient and occlusive, but not too occlusive that it feels ‘suffocating’ on the skin.

This is why we like the Skin Juice Organic Skin Saving Balm. This is a great multitasker that can be used to soothe, nourish and repair. You can apply it on skin reactions, eczema, psoriasis or anything that needs a balm, such as chapped lips, extra dry skin, wayward elbows or even grazed knees.

The balm melts into the skin and gets to work to help with sensitivity, irritation, inflammation and dryness. It has a very light natural scent, reminiscent or fresh-cut cucumber and coconut.

The balm is organic and uses only Sunflower Seed Oil. Coconut Oil, Beeswax, Shea Butter, Vitamin E, Alfalfa Grass Extract, Blueberry Seed Oil, Pomegranate Seed Oil. Raspberry Seed Oil, Rosehip Fruit Oil, Cranberry Seed Oil and Cucumber Seed Oil.

Sunflower Seed Oil is a great source of Vitamin E, an antioxidant, and combats inflammation, irritation and general redness. It’s emollient and helps skin retain moisture. Alfalfa Grass Extract promotes skin revitalisation and regeneration, with the bonus that it’s also anti-ageing. The other oils provide a host of other benefits.

Best for sensitive, sensitised or irritated skin that is not oily.

Still not sure

Still can’t decide what the best skin care is for sensitive red skin or which products to choose?  You can contact us so that we can give you free advice to help you further.

Otherwise you can download a more detailed  Skin Care Essentials information pack for sensitive, rosacea or acne skin. These contain much more information on your skin type, identify which ingredients to avoid/use and provide a skin care routine.

Or you can also book in for a skin analysis and personalised skin care plan for your specific skin type and skin concern. You can find more information on Skin Care Packages page.

Yours truly in better skin

Anna Marie from Skin Clinica - The Skin Experts


Skip to toolbar