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7 Sep

The Link Between Skin Sensitivity and Emotions

It’s time to explore the elusive connection between our mind and our skin through the prevalence and causes of sensitive skin. This summer, AVEENO® will release the first-ever State of Sensitivity report back to connect the dots between sensitive skin and the results it has on our mental health and wellbeing.

Sabrina Henry, Aveeno’s Principal Scientist, recently sat down with Beauty and Skincare Expert, Editor and Entrepreneur, Felicia Walker, and Dr. Angela Ford, Chief Program Officer of the Black Women’s Health Imperative (BWHI) who’s a PhD in Social Work to debate how we will tune into our sensitivity and embrace it as a community. And as Sabrina says, “That starts with recognizing and understanding various sensitive skin states.”

Understanding Sensitive Skin
We all know that sensitive skin is real and may have an amazing impact on quality of life—but what exactly is it? Sabrina breaks it down for us, “should you’re liable to rashes and bumps, have dry patches, break out easily, skin feels itchy, and skin reacts to weather changes.” In response to Aveeno’s research, throughout the US, 71% of adults report having sensitive skin. People self-reporting sensitive skin has doubled over the past 20 years. “Skin’s unique level of sensitivity varies greatly from individual to individual, and even from a person’s face to body,” says Sabrina. “While research has shown there may be little difference between ethnic groups when it comes to sensitive skin, there are differences in skin reactivity and certain skin conditions, corresponding to eczema and pimples, affect dark skin more regularly or with more severity.”

The Toll On Black Women’s Mental Health
“Black women are inclined to view their hair, their skin, their clothing as positive expressions of our culture so when there may be skin sensitivity, it might definitely affect self-esteem and our lived experience,” says Angela. Felicia agrees, adding, “I do think that our skin is more prone to showing signs of distress in my experiences and research as a Black woman.”

“Chronic stress results from repeated exposure to situations that result in the discharge of our fight or flight or ‘stress’ hormone, cortisol,” says Angela. “Black women have been shown to provide more cortisol than White women, attributable to chronic stress. And should you’re already living with a chronic health condition, unmanaged stress can simply make it worse. Nevertheless, you can not allow any chronic condition to define who you might be!” Felicia builds on that concept, saying that we’re seeing a shift in the thought of perfection—that skin must look a certain way. “What we give attention to is
caring for our skin and understanding that your skin can still be hydrated, healthy and balanced even when it’s showing signs of distress,” she says. “Having a skincare routine – even when skin will not be perfect – the act itself of caring for yourself could make you’re feeling good about your skin, irrespective of what state it’s in.”

And that’s where AVEENO® is available in. Their commitment to science and research harnesses the facility of nature’s ingredients, like oat and soy, to create formulas that look after sensitive skin—including dry, itchy, and eczematic. As a frontrunner in skin science, Aveeno brings these select ingredients together in combos proven to appease, heal or protect sensitive skin.

Changing the Conversation on Skin Health
And now Aveeno is taking their commitment even further through its work with the Black Women’s Heath Imperative (BWHI). “Working together we’ll create and disseminate culturally tailored messaging related to skin health through our BWHI App and throughout communities of color,” says Angela. “We wish to create impact beyond awareness to make sure
communities receive the education to acknowledge their unique skin health needs while gaining access to experts and the motivation to hunt and receive appropriate care.”

To listen to more of this incredible conversation, click here to observe the video— and to learn more about AVEENO®’s ingredients and commitment to skin sensitivity, simply click here to explore their website.

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