What causes skin sensitivity?

There are many things that can cause sensitive skin. Read on to discover what could be affecting yours; some of them may surprise you! 
The environment – outside and in

Changes in the weather don’t just affect your wardrobe; they affect your skin too, especially when it’s colder. In winter, the cooler air combined with central heating (and moving between the two) can cause skin to become dehydrated and potentially more sensitive. This is why your lips tend to become sorer in winter. It’s not only the cold -the effects of the sun’s rays can damage your skin Barrier, causing skin sensitivity as well.

Dirt and pollution 

Dirt and pollution – things like exhaust fumes, smoke and dust – these can leave your skin feeling irritated and dirty and are pretty hard to avoid. Throughout the course of the day pollution in the air sticks to your skin and is absorbed by the skin’s natural Barrier. Over time, it can irritate and weaken the skin’s natural Barrier, which means it can no longer do its job properly and leaves your skin feeling more sensitive.

Hard water  

Hard water contains high levels of minerals like iron, magnesium and calcium, and is highly alkaline. You often see the signs of hard water around taps, sinks and in kettles in the form of lime scale. Fancy that on your skin? No, neither do we! Washing in hard water can actually make skin feel more irritated.


It’s true! Excessive cleansing with the wrong products can cause skin to become irritated and sore. Treat skin with care. Avoid over cleansing and avoid harsh ingredients. If you choose the right products for your skin type, cleansing can actually help improve the function of your skin Barrier and reduce sensitivity. It’s about choosing the right product.


Your lifestyle plays a big part in skin health. Late nights, lack of sleep, working in an air conditioned office and smoking can all impact your skin. Other things such as the chlorine in swimming pools and air travel can also impact skin. 



This particularly affects women and it’s almost always around the time of your period. Fluctuating hormonal activity can not only cause the characteristic monthly break-outs but can also increase skins sensitivity overall. You will also notice the impact of hormones during pregnancy and your teen years.


Stress can be caused by many things such as problems at work or home, lack of sleep, bad diet or being poorly. The hormones that are affected by stress can cause your skin to slow down. If this continues for long enough your skin will not maintain and repair your Barrier as quickly it should. This could lead to your skin becoming sensitive.

Diet and hydration 

Skin sensitivity is not just a matter of what we put on our skin. Skin irritants can be ingested in the food we eat too. Give your skin the best chance of natural health by eating a balanced diet and drinking plenty of water. 
Ingredients in skincare products 

Artificial perfume, dyes and harsh chemicals are all known to irritate skin. Which is why you’ll never find them in any of our products - they are unnecessary, so why risk them upsetting your skin? Two other skin care ingredients that are known to irritate are retinol and glycolic acid, these can be found in anti-aging products.  At Simple®, we prefer to use only skin-loving ingredients that will be kind to your skin.


In high doses, preservatives can sometimes aggravate the skin, however all skincare products require preservatives to keep the formulations stable. Simple®skincare products contain the right amount of preservative to ensure the product remains effective but most importantly, is still safe to use. 

Clothes and jewelry 
It’s not just the skincare products you use on your skin which can upset it. It may surprise you to know that irritants which exist in clothing and jewelry such as nickel can cause skin sensitivity too. If your skin is particularly sensitive, think about the washing detergent and conditioner you are using too.   
Household cleaners 

Finally, avoid using household cleaning products without wearing gloves on your hands. These products contain harsh chemicals which can not only be dangerous, but upset your skins delicate balance.