‘Excessive’ make-up can be a ‘breeding ground’ for bacteria – expert

Skin expert Paul Banwell discusses skin care in 2019

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The cosmetics industry in the UK is huge, generating billions of pounds every year. Many people use products as a way to protect, nourish or enhance their skin. However, one expert has warned how certain products can come with hidden risks.

Diane Ackers, beauty expert for Doctors Formula Cosmeceuticals, spoke with Express.co.uk to explain more.

She said: “Chemicals, added sunscreens and some ingredients or preservatives may cause your skin to be reactive by disrupting the microbiome (the invisible protective shield of the skin which protects us from daily pathogen attack).

“All of these reactions can fall under the condition of irritant contact dermatitis, allergic contact dermatitis or cosmetic induced pimples (acne breakouts).”

She specifically warned about excessive use of make-up.

“We frequently see issues with skin conditions caused by excessive wearing of make-up, poor cleansing habits or make-up being used which is not suitable for a particular skin type,” she said.

“Take an oil based foundation on an oily rather than a dry skin type as an example; too hydrating, doesn’t sit well with skin producing excessive natural sebum.

“Add into the mix that the skin’s cellular renewal may be more rapid than a normal skin type, and you end up with layers of oil, dirt, debris trapped – an ideal bacteria breeding ground.

“Vice versa – a matte finish foundation on a super dry and dehydrated skin, can simply dehydrate the skin tissue even further, causing excessive dehydration, fine lines, and ultimately more rapid ageing of the skin if not treated.

“Add into the mix a fragrance, ingredient or chemical which your skin reacts to, and you can see the daily battle your skin now faces.”

Symptoms to be wary of

Ms Ackers shared some of the warning signs of dermatitis – skin irritation.

She said: “Irritant contact dermatitis is the more common type of dermatitis, with signs of irritation such as redness, a rash, tingling or itchy skin.

“In more severe cases of allergic contact dermatitis it can have similar effects to that of irritant contact dermatitis, but also swelling, a burning sensation, and flaking of the skin – which after time may shed.

“Last but not least tiny, blister like spots, severely blocked pores, an influx of blackheads and milia is usually linked to cosmetic induced pimples (acne breakouts).”

What to do if you are suffering from dermatitis

Ms Ackers advised: “First of all stop using the products, the longer you use the make-up, the more severe the skin condition can be.

“Seek medical advice from your GP, pharmacist or dermatologist who will likely recommend a histamine and steroid combination.

“They may also recommend patch testing to try and discover what caused the flare up in the first place, so you know what cosmetic ingredients you need to avoid in the future.

“Keep skin clean, hydrated and start to rebuild your barrier function.

“Strengthening your skin’s natural microbiome, with great probiotic skincare is one way in which to build skin resilience and rebalance the microbiome.

“Probiotics also helps to replenish natural ceramides, essential fatty acids, and rehydrate the skin tissue.

“Your prescription will take care of the symptoms and side effects, however probiotics will rebalance the skin’s health and help to repair.”

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