Skincare for sensitive skin

Sometimes your skin tingles, other times it stings, and sometimes it feels like it’s burning right up. In each case, you are led to believe that there are different kinds of sensitivity and therefore different creams for the right kind of soothing. 

To be sure, a plethora of products exists to care for sensitive skin. Brands by and large have created their own categories for specific sub-types of sensitive skin. Different names exist, and you see things like "sensitive skin", "hypersensitive skin" and "reactive skin" on store shelves. Even "intolerant skin", where you think your skin will refuse all other types of care. Your confusion reigns: "Am I having a sensitive or hypersensitive skin day?" "Will ultrasensitive soothe well enough, or have I reached intolerance?"

But are these categories really all that different? They all seem to be competing descriptions of the same fundamental problem: sensitive skin.

How do people around the world describe their sensitive skin?
Do they make distinctions between "irritable" and "hypersensitive"?

60%1 of the world’s population is affected by sensitive skin. It is so prevalent that many people share their tips, ideas and pain on the internet. Here is a small sample of the ways in which people describe their sensitive skin symptoms on the web, in countries like France, Japan and South Korea.

However severe they are, it’s the same symptoms that are mentioned over and over again. What people describe, using their own words, corresponds to the official definition of sensitive skin: unpleasant sensations that occur in response to stimuli that normally should not provoke such sensations. These include tingling, stinging, itchiness, sometimes a burning sensation and temporary redness.

1 Farage MA. The prevalence of sensitive skin. Front Med 2019; 6:98.
Sensitive skin symptoms
  • Dr Michèle Sayag, allergologist
    Dr. Michèle Sayag, Medical Strategy Director - BIODERMA.

    When looked at objectively, "irritable", "hypersensitive", "ultrasensitive", "intolerant" are all variations on the same theme: they all describe sensitive skin. These are not different types of skin that require specific care. They simply represent different degrees of intensity of the same symptoms. And when your skin reacts, whether it’s minor stinging or feeling fiery, the biological mechanisms behind the reactions are also the same for all sensitive skin.

    Dr. Michèle Sayag, Medical Strategy Director - BIODERMA.

Symptoms are one thing. What is the cause of sensitive skin?

Sensitive skin symptoms are therefore all marks of skin that is inflammed to a greater or lesser degree. Treating symptoms helps, but doesn’t solve the problem. To do that, you need to treat the cause.

So where does sensitive skin come from? It appears in one of two ways. In both cases, it is above all a perception, a feeling in skin that is strong enough to have an impact on a person’s quality of life. You are required to put up with the discomfort every time you experience a reaction.

If you want to learn more, read our article "What is sensitive skin and how do you know if you have it?"

Good to know

Sensitive skin can be natural

You have a natural sensitivity that is also permanent. As a result, you want to manage it to keep it under control as much as possible.


Sensitive skin can be induced

This induced sensitivity is occasional and intermittent but is globally on the rise around the world. Your skin is sensitised by and reacts to external factors such as pollution, cosmetics or stress, among many others. You may not always be aware that something will make your skin react. Here, in general, you want to strengthen the skin.

Sensibio Defensive moisturiser for sensitive skin

When you have sensitive skin, there is already so much discomfort you have to deal with. Your skin to start, plus changing your routine to care for it, juggling products to find the right one that will soothe. You can feel frustrated, as if you have little control over your skin’s well-being.

It’s true, there is a wide range of products out there for sensitive skin. But, placing skin inside a bubble, they overprotect it, instead of helping it adapt to and live in its environment. They go no further than soothing symptoms, instead of addressing the different reasons for sensitivity. If you could go deeper, with active care that treats the cause of your sensitive skin to help it defend itself better, you would feel lastingly soothed, and relieved!

To help you out, Laboratoire BIODERMA has created Sensibio Defensive, an active soothing cream based on NAOS ecobiological principles. By considering skin as an ecosystem, and acting on the origins and causes of sensitive skin within its ecosystem, Laboratoire BIODERMA gives sensitive and sensitised skin the ability to better defend itself. With Sensibio Defensive, your skin receives the boost it needs to become stronger and effectively stand up to irritants and triggers, and live harmoniously within its environment. 

And with Sensibio Defensive, you also have one hydrating moisturiser for your sensitive and sensitised skin, whatever its origin. One cream that simplifies your skincare routine, simplifies your choice in what to apply and simplifies your overall care.

Learn more about our product by reading our article "Sensibio Defensive: Active soothing cream that strengthens skin’s self-defence"