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How to look after sensitive skin in the sun

12/07/2018 by Hannah

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skin reactions in the sun

Our skin changes with the seasons and the summer months can be particularly challenging for those with sensitive skin. Eczema, prickly heat and rosacea can all be aggravated by warmer weather and here we share our top tips for looking after sensitive skin in the summer.

The most common causes of sensitive skin in the sun are:

SUN SENSITIVITY: ROSACEA

Did you know that sunlight is the most commonly reported trigger of rosacea[i]? As such, the NHS urges all rosacea sufferers to consider wearing a broad-spectrum sun cream daily, even on cloudy days.[i]

Does your sun cream contain salicylates or benzophenones? These chemicals absorb UV radiation rather than reflect it and avoiding applying them to the skin could help reduce your risk of experiencing a rosacea flare up.

SENSITIVITY SOLUTION: SUN LOTION SPF30 SCENT FREE

To further reduce your risk of experiencing a rosacea flare-up this summer consider switching to a fragrance-free natural sun lotion. Green People’s SPF30 sun lotion  is specifically designed to care for sensitive skin.

The NHS also recommends staying out of direct sun during the hours of 11am and 3pm, when the sun is at its hottest.[i]

SUN SENSITIVITY: ECZEMA

Does your eczema change in the summer? Recent research suggests exposure to sunlight may reduce some types of eczema inflammation[ii] but, according to the National Eczema Society, some people find that their eczema gets worse when their skin is exposed to the sun[iii].

Tempted to take a dip in the pool? Eczema can also be aggravated by chemicals such as chlorine so care should be taken to minimise your risk of experiencing an eczema flare-up when swimming.

SENSITIVITY SOLUTION: SCENT-FREE SKIN CARE

Worried the warmer weather will cause your eczema to flare up? To help keep your skin in balance follow the National Eczema Society’s advice and check your sun cream label for any ingredients known to trigger a reaction before applying it to your skin.

They also recommend avoiding sun care containing fragrance and say that those affected by eczema may experience less irritation if they use sun cream containing a mineral filter, such as Titanium Dioxide[iii]*.

If swimming in chlorinated water dries out your skin, the National Eczema Society suggest applying sun lotion (when swimming outdoors) or an emollient (when swimming indoors) before entering the pool, and thoroughly washing the skin after swimming[iv]. Care should be taken not to aggravate the skin when drying it and if, once the skin is dry, you notice any dry patches applying a scent free body lotion could help.

Made without harsh chemical ingredients or synthetic fragrances Green People’s Scent Free Body Lotion restores moisture to the skin without aggravation and is suitable for skin prone to eczema.

If your eczema is inflamed or infected the advice issued by the National Eczema Society is to stay out of the water[iv].

SUN SENSITIVITY: PRICKLY HEAT

Does your skin break out into itchy, red spots during warm weather? Could it be prickly heat? This common skin complaint typically develops when our sweat ducts are blocked by applying personal care products such as antiperspirants and waterproof sun lotions.

SENSITIVITY SOLUTION: NON-PORE-CLOGGING DEODORANT

To reduce your risk of prickly heat, switch your antiperspirant for a natural deodorant made without pore-clogging aluminium. Designed to restrict the smell of BO without preventing sweat from leaving the body, Green People’s range of deodorants combine natural minerals with plant extracts to create refreshing deodorants that neutralise BO without blocking pores.

Wearing waterproof sun lotions could also heighten your risk of experiencing blocked pores and prickly heat. Instead switch to a water-resistant sun cream  made with natural, non-pore-clogging ingredients.

If you do experience prickly heat, showering in cool water and applying a natural, Aloe Vera-based after sun could help relieve the discomfort.


How do you look after your sensitive skin in the sun? Let us know by using #GreenYourRoutine on social, or leave us a comment below.

*Green People takes great care to manufacture our skin care using natural, organic ingredients that don’t aggravate sensitive skin. However, as sensitive and allergy-prone skin can react to any ingredient, we always advise that, if you have sensitive skin, you can patch test our skin care before applying it using our sachet sample packs.


[i] https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/rosacea/self-help/

[ii] https://mrc.ukri.org/news/browse/scientists-uncover-how-sunlight-on-skin-reduces-eczema-inflammation/

[iii] file:///C:/Users/hannah/Downloads/Eczema%20and%20the%20Sun%20110416.pdf

[iv] file:///C:/Users/hannah/Downloads/Eczema%20and%20swimming%202018%20(1).pdf

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