The skin has a very specific purpose: to act as our bodies’ first line of defense against the external environment. It’s constantly bombarded by potentially damaging assaults, both indoors and out, and the skin barrier bears the brunt of it. So it’s practically inevitable that at some point, be it from overzealous exfoliation, professional treatments, or just life, your skin will become aggravated. And since we can’t put our lives on hold while we heal, knowing what to use to that not only allows us to put our best face forward, but also won’t cause any further harm—and maybe even help it heal—is key.
We sat down with Board-certified facial plastic surgeon Dr. Jeanne Eyde of Grand Rapids, Michigan’s Grand Pearl Spa at Plastic Surgery Associates for a lesson on the connection between the skin barrier and compromised skin, and her go-to makeup suggestions that can help soothe the symptoms, replenish the skin’s barrier and improve the complexion’s overall appearance.
According to Dr. Eyde, “The protective function of our skin becomes impaired when our skin barrier is compromised by irritants such as environmental allergens and pollutants, or even changes in diet, travel and weather.” However, skincare and lifestyle habits can have an impact on the skin’s barrier as well. “Over-washing, over-exfoliation, stress and lack of sleep can also lead to a compromised skin barrier,” she explains. In addition, professional resurfacing treatments such as chemical peels and lasers can temporarily compromise the skin’s barrier as well.
There’s a wide range of signs that the skin is compromised. Dr. Eyde says, “Compromised skin can look and feel inflamed. Dryness, itchy skin, tightness and acne can also be indicators of an impaired moisture barrier.” The appropriate skincare approach for compromised skin should be tailored for specific skin symptoms, but all compromised skin can benefit from barrier-reinforcing products that are formulated with ceramides, essential fatty acids and niacinamide—along with broad-spectrum sun protection.
“Happy, healthy-looking skin relies upon ingredients that help restore hydration and prevent the loss of moisture from the skin barrier. Ingredients that help support the skin’s ability to retain moisture include hyaluronic acid, glycerin and panthenol. By keeping hydration in the skin, we give the skin’s natural repair processes time to work and help prevent further damage to the moisture barrier,” Dr. Eyde adds.
Since hydration is key for restoring a compromised skin barrier, Dr. Eyde recommends a gentle cleanser and a daily nourishing cream to start and says it may be necessary to avoid extra exfoliation until inflammation is under control. Finally, protecting the skin from harmful sun exposure is essential, so look for skincare products as well as makeup that provide broad-spectrum protection against both UVA and UVB rays.
On her makeup options when you have compromised skin, Dr. Eyde shares, “My go-to for compromised skin is Dermablend Professional’s Flawless Creator. It has only nine ingredients plus high-performance pigments and is both allergy- and sensitive skin tested. It provides weightless, beautiful coverage in a wide variety of shades without worsening existing mild to severe skin conditions.” She also recommends Dermablend’s Continuous Correction CC Cream with SPF 50+ to help conceal noticeable imperfections while respecting and reinforcing the skin’s barrier—and it provides a high level of broad-spectrum UV protection.
If you’re dealing with compromised skin and don’t know where to start, Dr. Eyde has a few pearls of wisdom. “Consulting with a trusted skincare professional is paramount for achieving healthy, glowing skin. A thorough skin evaluation along with a comprehensive daily skincare regimen that helps nourish and protect the skin is the first step. When followed with Dermablend’s non-comedogenic, buildable coverage that’s backed by the brand’s skin-security standards, the result is confidence and comfort living in your own beautiful skin.”