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I got an allergic reaction on my face: The request could not be satisfied


Irritant & Allergic Contact Dermatitis: Symptoms, Diagnosis & Causes


What is contact dermatitis?

Dermatitis is the medical term for skin inflammation (irritation). Contact dermatitis is an allergic or irritant reaction that causes a painful or itchy skin rash. As the name suggests, you get contact dermatitis from coming into contact with an allergen (like poison ivy) or an irritant (like a chemical).

How common is contact dermatitis?

The condition is common. We are surrounded by irritants and potential allergens. You might experience contact dermatitis more often if you have sensitive skin or other chronic skin problems like atopic dermatitis.

Who might get contact dermatitis?

Irritant reactions can occur after a single exposure or after repeated exposures over time, whereas it takes multiple exposures to the same chemical to develop an allergy. People who work in certain professions have a higher risk of developing contact dermatitis. You might repeatedly encounter irritating chemicals or allergens in these professions:

  • Construction workers.
  • Florists.
  • Food handlers.
  • Hairstylists.
  • Healthcare providers.
  • Janitors and plumbers.
  • Mechanics.
  • Artists.

What are the types of contact dermatitis?

The two main types of contact dermatitis are:

Allergic contact dermatitis: Your body has an allergic reaction to a substance (allergen) that it doesn’t like. Common allergens include jewelry metals (like nickel), cosmetic products, fragrances and preservatives. It can take several days after exposure for an itchy, red rash to develop.

Irritant contact dermatitis: This painful rash tends to come on quickly in response to an irritating substance. Common irritants include detergents, soap, cleaners and acid.

Symptoms and Causes

What causes allergic contact dermatitis?

Every time your skin comes into contact with an allergen that it doesn’t like, your body’s immune system responds. White blood cells are recruited into the skin, releasing chemical mediators of inflammation. This response causes the itchy rash. The rash may appear minutes, hours or several days after exposure.

Poison ivy is a top cause of allergic contact dermatitis. Other causes include:

  • Fragrances.
  • Metals, such as nickel.
  • Botanicals.
  • Medications, including antibiotics.
  • Preservatives.

What causes irritant contact dermatitis?

Irritant contact dermatitis occurs more often than allergic contact dermatitis. You develop a rash when a chemical substance irritates the skin’s outer layers. The rash is more painful than itchy.

Common causes of irritant contact dermatitis include:

  • Acids.
  • Alkalis like drain cleaners.
  • Body fluids, including urine and saliva.
  • Certain plants, such as poinsettias and peppers.
  • Hair dyes.
  • Nail polish remover or other solvents.
  • Paints and varnishes.
  • Harsh soaps or detergents.
  • Resins, plastics and epoxies.

What are the symptoms of contact dermatitis?

Signs of contact dermatitis include a skin rash that is:

What should I do if I develop contact dermatitis on the job?

If you’re regularly exposed to irritating chemicals or allergens at work and develop contact dermatitis, ask your employer for a chemical Safety Data Sheet. You can take this information to your healthcare provider to help determine what’s causing the rash.

Diagnosis and Tests

How is contact dermatitis diagnosed?

Clinical examination can reveal clues to the underlying diagnosis of irritant or allergic contact dermatitis. A careful history can uncover clues as to the offending agent.

With either type of contact dermatitis, you can avoid the substance for a while to see if the rash goes away. If avoidance is not possible or not sustainable, further diagnostic testing may be indicated.

For suspected cases of allergic contact dermatitis, a series of tests called patch testing can identify the underlying cause of allergic contact dermatitis.

With a patch test, you wear adhesive patches on your skin. The patches contain chemicals known to commonly trigger allergic reactions. After 48 hours, your healthcare provider checks your skin for reactions. You’ll see your provider again in another 48-96 hours for one last skin check.

There isn’t a test for irritant contact dermatitis. Your healthcare provider may be able to determine what’s causing the rash based on the types of irritants or chemicals you’re exposed to regularly.

Management and Treatment

How is contact dermatitis managed or treated?

Treatment for both types of contact dermatitis is the same. Even with treatment, it can take several weeks for the rash to go away. Treatments include:

  • Avoidance: If you can figure out what’s causing the rash, take steps to avoid it or minimize exposure.
  • Anti-itch creams: Corticosteroid creams can ease inflammation and itching.
  • Oral steroids: Prednisone, a type of steroid, can relieve rash symptoms that don’t respond to antihistamines or other treatments.
  • Immunosuppressive medications: In severe cases, where repeated bouts of oral steroids are needed.

What are the complications of contact dermatitis?

Allergic contact dermatitis is a Type IV hypersensitivity reaction, caused by a different immunologic mechanism than hives, angioedema, or anaphylaxis. However, very rarely, patients may have immunologic dysfunction which results in multiple types of concurrent hypersensitivity reactions. Thus, it is possible that people with contact dermatitis can develop hives (urticaria) and swelling (angioedema) after coming into contact with an allergen. Hives are red, raised, itchy skin welts. Angioedema is swelling deep under the skin.

Extremely rare, allergic contact dermatitis can overlap with a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis that can swell airways and close them. If you think you are experiencing anaphylaxis, call 911. You’ll need an immediate epinephrine injection to counteract this allergic response. People with known allergies can carry an EpiPen®, a brand of injectable epinephrine.


How can I prevent contact dermatitis?

Avoiding known allergens and irritants is the best way to prevent contact dermatitis. But you can’t always stay away from every possible irritant. These steps can help:

  • Choose fragrance-free moisturizers.
  • Use mild, fragrance and dye-free soaps and cleansers.
  • Wash immediately after coming into contact with a known allergen or irritant.

Outlook / Prognosis

What is the prognosis (outlook) for people with contact dermatitis?

If you’ve reacted to an allergen or irritant, you will continue to do so every time you’re exposed to it again. You can prevent flare-ups by avoiding that substance.

Most people who have occupational contact dermatitis can find ways to reduce exposure so they can continue their work without breaking out in a rash.

Living With

When should I call the doctor?

You should call your healthcare provider if the skin rash:

  • Blisters.
  • Goes away for a while and then returns.
  • Looks infected (red, warm or swollen).
  • Hurts.
  • Itches constantly.
  • Doesn’t go away in a week with treatment.

What questions should I ask my doctor?

If you’re experiencing signs of contact dermatitis, talk to your healthcare provider. You may want to ask:

  • Why do I have a skin rash (contact dermatitis)?
  • Should I get an allergy test?
  • What steps can I take to prevent contact dermatitis?
  • What are the best treatments for contact dermatitis?
  • What are the best treatments for a painful or itchy skin rash?
  • What over-the-counter cleansers and moisturizers do you recommend?
  • What signs of complications should I look out for?

Contact dermatitis is uncomfortable and can be painful or itchy. Talk to your healthcare provider about how you can find out what’s causing it, reduce your exposure and prevent reactions. You might develop contact dermatitis from working with irritants or chemicals. Ask your employer about how you can minimize rashes while remaining on the job.

Allergic to Touch – The Atlantic

Ariana Page Russell/Skin Tome

“They knew that their skin did something weird, but they didn’t know what it was.”

People who reach out to Ariana Page Russell, an artist in Brooklyn, often see their own skin in hers. Many have epidermal reactions like Russell’s, furrowing into palpable welts at the provocation of even a light scratch of the neck or rub of the eye.

“It’s fascinating the way people respond,” Russell told me. “People email me from all over. China, Colombia, Brazil, Turkey—I have a ton of people emailing me from Turkey.” For many who find her photography online, Russell says, a once alienating condition becomes a point of solidarity.

“They see the photos and say, ‘Hey, my skin does that, too.’ I didn’t know it was a thing with a name,” Russell said. “They feel better having a name for it, and knowing they’re not alone.”

“I just thought my skin was really sensitive, and then I started photographing the drawings and people were like, ‘What is this?’”

That name is dermatographia urticaria, usually just called dermatographia or dermographism (literally “writing on the skin”). It’s a type of “trauma-induced urticaria,” but the trauma in this case can be almost nothing—basically an allergic reaction to minimal physical stimulation. Scratching, stroking, rubbing, or slapping the skin makes cells release inflammatory chemicals like histamine, and that results in fluid leakage from superficial blood vessels.

Of course, slap or scratch anyone and it will inflame their skin. In dermatographia the reaction is distinctly more severe. There is puffiness and extensive redness (in fair skin). Everyday things like wearing a belt or scratching an itch can make a person appear to have endured significant injury. If Russell scratches her face, it swells. “It looks like I have a black eye or something,” she said. “I have to be careful and not rub my eyes. I definitely have had people ask, ‘Whaaat happened to you!?’”

Ariana Page Russell/Skin Tome

The reaction can also be brought on by cold weather, strong emotions, hot water, or exercise. The finding is usually incidental and requires no treatment, but some people with severe or especially itchy versions take antihistamines to minimize the allergic-type symptoms, which can then spread to parts of the skin that were not stimulated. Russell doesn’t take medication. Her treatment has consisted of owning her skin and turning the condition into something positive.

“Thank you for making what we have an art form and giving me a way to explain to people it’s perfectly normal and beautiful,” a reader from Belgium wrote to Russell recently. “I have lived with it for years trying to hide it and now I can say it’s my art.”

Russell realized that she had dermatographia in an understated fashion. “I just thought my skin was really sensitive, and then I started photographing the drawings and people were like, ‘What is this?’” Russell was in graduate school at the time and went to a University of Washington physician who gave her the diagnosis. “It was like, here you go, congratulations. Everything else I kind of learned on my own.”

Skin Tome

Russell started taking the photos in 2003. She later began a website with some of her skin-writing photos and in 2008, without telling Russell, a friend submitted one of the images to a site called “It’s Nice That.” They published it, and her site “started going crazy.”

“And then I got this email with the subject line, ‘Hello from Kelsey at ABC News,’ and I thought, is this spam?” It wasn’t. It led to a 20/20 segment. Since then, she has become a modern face of the condition. Also the body and voice.

“I’ve become this unofficial expert on dermatographia since there’s not a whole lot out there about it. People will just write me and ask for my opinion on how they should treat it. Sometimes they send me photographs of their own skin, even without me asking them to, which I love receiving.”

“Some people write their name or my name on their arm,” Russell said. “Other people do elaborate drawings and have a friend photograph it.”

Those responses led Russel to start a site called Skin Tome, where she is forming a dermatographia community predicated on sharing and lack of shame. She is also collecting information about dermatographia to help those with the condition, about which there aren’t many mainstream resources. Most doctors have little to offer on the subject, and as diseases go, addressing it is usually a relatively low priority. But the effects can be insidious. Skin conditions also manifest well inside of the skin.

“Most of the people who write me are embarrassed by their skin, they feel shame and try to hide the condition from other people,” Russell said. She sees consequence in her work. “I’ve had people say they’re afraid to be intimate. I also get a lot of teenagers who reach out to me. It’s so hard to be a teenager anyway, especially if you’re ashamed of how you look.”

That’s typified by the story of Jes Blackwell, who keeps in touch with Russell over their shared skin sensitivities. Blackwell writes, “Being an awkward, dorky, queer outcast in high school in Wisconsin was enough of an ordeal that I had to live with, but every time I had a tiny little itch on my face and I wasn’t thinking… BLAM!! A gigantic welt would appear on my already hormonally confused face. Needless to say, I did not date.”

But it’s not entirely lament; there’s good in most of the confessionals. Blackwell goes on to write about being a child playing tic tac toe on her legs during long car rides, and leveraging her propensity for looking victimized to get her sister in trouble.

Ariana Page Russell/Skin Tome

“A lot of people don’t know they have it, and I think my images have played a big part in spreading the word about it,” Russell said. They might think they have blotchy or irritable skin. They try scratching their skin, realize it’s a condition with a name and a community, and that is therapy.

“There’s this statistic out there that five percent of people have it,” Russell said. “But I think it might be more common than that.”

#SkinWriting is an active hashtag among people with dermatographia on Twitter; and the Facebook page, “I’m a Skin Writer, I Have Dermatographism,” which Likes Russell’s work, has an active community of over 2,400 people. Many post skin-writing photos. Their skin is a responsive, living canvas that ages and changes; a barrier to the world that’s also connection to it. They share art and stories and triggers and treatments. Russell, for one, feels like her symptoms have become less noticeable since improving her diet and general health. “I drink a ton of water, go easy on alcohol and sugar, and eat whole foods, lots of fruits and vegetables.”

“When I first started photographing my dermatographic drawings I thought nobody would be interested in them,” she wrote recently on her site, “or even worse, people would find them totally gross.”

What to Do After an Allergic Reaction to Makeup

Beauty products can help you feel good on the outside, but they can also cause an allergic reaction or irritated skin. Allergies occur when your body’s natural immune system sees a specific substance (allergen) as dangerous to your body. When this happens, it causes an allergic reaction. Allergies come from a variety of sources: food, drugs, mold, insects, pollen, pet, latex, and yes…makeup.

Allergies occur when your body’s natural immune system sees a specific substance (allergen) as dangerous to your body.

There are two basic types of negative skin reactions to makeup allergies. Allergic contact dermatitis involves your immune system. Symptoms from this type of reaction include hives, itching, swelling, and redness. Another type of reaction is known as irritant contact dermatitis that causes damage to your skin in the area where you used the product. These symptoms include itching, stinging, burning, or even blisters at the site

Allergens can enter your body in many ways.

1. Ingestion
Allergens, such as food or drugs, can be ingested through your mouth.

2. Absorption
Allergens can be absorbed through your skin. This includes, but not limited to, plants, latex, metals, and ingredients in beauty products.

3. Inhalation
Some allergens are small enough to float through the air and enter your body by inhalation. Some examples include dust, pollen, and pet dander.

4. Injection
Certain types of allergens are injected through the skin, including medicines administered through needles.

Is it possible to be allergic to makeup?

It’s a startling question, isn’t it? We’re all quite aware of the allergies that come in food or seasonal form, but can your makeup be making you sick? If you love wearing beauty products, it can be a major killjoy when you realize that you’re actually allergic to the great, new product that everyone’s gushing over. This post is for those of you who suspect you may have a makeup allergy but aren’t sure yet. It’s for those of you who’ve ever wondered if a certain food was the cause of your breakouts. And it’s also for those of you thought your skin irritation was in response to old, expired makeup.

What are the symptoms of an allergy?

Depending on the severity of symptoms, an allergic reaction can be short-term, long-term, and even life-threatening. Allergens can affect your body in several
ways. Sinusitis, an inflammation of the sinuses, can cause painful pressure in the head, swelling of the nose, and a mucus discharge from the nose. Skin allergies occur when your skin comes in contact with an allergen that your skin is sensitive to. One of the most common type of allergies are eye allergies. Indoor and outdoor allergens can get into your eyes, causing redness, swelling, itchiness, and tearing of the eyes. Lastly, nasal allergies (rhinitis) is literally an inflammation of the nose. With this type of allergy, the allergen can cause a higher or thicker production of mucus. This can lead to an irritation at the back of the throat causing coughing or congestion.

Here are some common allergic reactions:

  • Itchy/Watery Eyes
  • Cough
  • Tongue Swelling
  • Wheezing
  • Itchy/Runny nose
  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Vomiting
  • Rash/Hives
  • Sneezing
  • Redness
  • Diarrhea
  • How do you know if you’re allergic to makeup?

    A makeup allergy can show up in a variety of ways. The most common type of allergic reaction is known as contact dermatitis. There
    are two types of contact dermatitis: irritant and allergic. Irritant contact dermatitis is caused by a product that, once applied, directly damages your skin. Your skin may respond with redness, itchiness or a burning sensation. This is a clear indicator that your skin is not comfortable with the ingredients present in the cosmetics product.

    Allergic contact dermatitis can show up as hives, swelling, redness or dry patches on your skin. This, too, is a dead giveaway that something isn’t right in your makeup.

    Redness isn’t the only skin coloration to be on the lookout for. Some allergic reactions can create darkened skin and blackheads.

    Let’s take a closer look at the main culprits in cosmetics that are responsible for breakouts, redness, irritation, inflammation, dry patches and so much more. Check out the common allergens that could be hiding in your cosmetics case.

    What are the most common culprits of cosmetics allergies?

    Synthetic fragrance – The top offender is most definitely synthetic fragrance. As it turns out, fragrance is not just harmful to your skin, it can also lead to a host of other issues, such as respiratory irritation and damage your reproductive system. Yikes.

    Fragrance is one of the most ubiquitous ingredients in cosmetics. From chapsticks to facial cleansers, you’ll find artificial fragrance high up on the ingredients list.

    You’ll need to scout for products that explicitly say “fragrance-free.” So-called “unscented” products can still contain a neutralizing fragrance that is used to mask the smell of other chemicals in the products. Even if it seems unscented, it could still trigger an unpleasant reaction.

    Preservatives — Preservatives can also trigger allergies. Many cosmetic products are loaded with preservatives to keep them shelf-safe for months (or even years!) in all manner of inhospitable environments (such as trans-pacific shipping containers and sweltering hot warehouses). In order to keep their products usable for a long period of time, cosmetics companies turn to preservatives like parabens. Parabens prevent the growth of bacteria and mold, which sounds good in theory, but researchers have also found a link between this preservative and skin irritation.

    Parabens are one of the most widely used preservatives in cosmetics because not everyone has a reaction to them. This is why you’ll commonly see parabens in foundations, powders, eyeliners, eyeshadows, lipstick, and blushes. They’re even in makeup removers, toothpastes, and sunscreens. However, if you’re one of the millions who is affected by parabens, you’ll want to avoid any product that contains this unholy preservative.

    Low-grade ingredients — Last but certainly not least on the list of known skin irritants are cheap, low-grade ingredients. A lot of big-name cosmetic companies simply go for the cheapest ingredients possible. As long as these ingredients don’t present an issue with the majority of their customer base, these companies will opt for the cheapest (and therefore, lowest quality) products available.

    Preservatives can also trigger allergies. Many cosmetic products are loaded with preservatives to keep them shelf-safe for months (or even years!)

    The problem with this is that some of their customers will experience an allergic reaction– and it stinks when that person is you. If you have an autoimmune disease or a sensitivity to certain chemicals, you’re can never be too careful with what you wear because the slightest imbalance can leave you with irritated skin for days.

    But let’s not overlook the glaring fact that, even if you don’t have an intense allergic reaction to these harmful ingredients, it doesn’t redeem them. These ingredients are still not worthy of putting on your skin, and certainly won’t nourish or protect it.

    This is a fact that you’ll likely confront more and more as you get older. When you’re younger, your body can more readily fight off foreign invaders, such as the toxic ingredients that found in many cosmetics products. However, as you get older, your body doesn’t want to fight. It simply wants to expel. This is why you may feel like your skin is becoming more sensitive as you age. You’ve been blaming a change in the product’s formula, but it’s more than likely a change in the way that your immune system handles foreign threats.

    You may be allergic to a product but not see a reaction until hours, weeks or even years later. How can that be? It’s all about how the immune system responds to the offending foreign agent. Most of the time, you’ll see a negative reaction within hours of application. However, it’s also possible for the immune system to develop a strong negative reaction to products that you’ve loved for years.

    How do you treat an allergic reaction on your face?

    Beauty products such as makeup can cause allergic reactions to your face that lead to redness, swelling, and itchiness. The skin on your face makes it more susceptible to allergic reactions from ingredients in beauty products. If you have a makeup allergy, there are a few ways to treat the reaction depending on the location, type, and severity of the symptoms. Common treatments include moisturizers, corticosteroids, and antihistamines.

    The skin on your face makes it more susceptible to allergic reactions from ingredients in beauty products.

    How do you treat an allergic reaction to makeup?

    Just as any allergic reaction to your face, treatments to your makeup allergy include antihistamines to reduce the redness, itchiness, and swelling. Specialized moisturizers can help moisturize your skin and
    reduce the itching caused by the ingredients in your makeup. For a quick relief, you can even apply a cold compress to reduce inflammation and relieve itchiness. In addition, corticosteroids can help with breathing difficulties as well as reduce inflammation. Mild corticosteroids are
    available online or over the counter. However, oral steroids and stronger creams require a prescription.

    Surprisingly, there are quite a few high-end cosmetics companies that still do business as drugstore brands. In a blind test where you simply compare ingredients, you’ll notice that the ingredients found in the luxury brands are identical to those in the drugstore brands. A lot of times, you simply pay for reputation, and not much else.

    Specialized moisturizers can help moisturize your skin and reduce the itching caused by the ingredients in your makeup.

    Here’s how Red Apple Lipstick is different from those guys:

    All of our products are handmade in small batches. Our products simply cannot sit on
    the shelf for five years (and counting). However, most big box cosmetic companies
    create “unmeltable” products that can be sustained in a hot docking warehouse and your hot car. For example, big box lipsticks contain phthalates, which are a type of plasticizer. Phthalates, esters of phthalic acid, have a negative impact on your health. These chemicals are found in everything from cosmetics and fragrances to household cleaners and food packaging. Researchers
    have even linked phthalates to such health issues as autism, behavioral issues, obesity, breast cancer, ADHD, and obesity.

    Plasticizers are used to keep lipstick soft and not brittle over the course of many years and under brutal conditions. No wonder these harsh chemicals lead to skin irritation! Here at Red Apple, we don’t use plasticizers or toxic preservatives. We believe in creating cosmetics that enhance your beauty while nourishing your skin at the same time.

    Final Thoughts

    It’s a pity that a product, which is designed to enhance your natural beauty, can actually destroy your skin. From redness to rashes, allergies are no joke and can leave you feeling hopeless. The good news is that you don’t have to fear what’s lurking in all beauty products. All of our products are free of preservatives, gluten, lead, petroleum and other toxic chemicals. For allergy-free makeup, check out our store right now.

Study explains why some creams and cosmetics may cause a skin rash — ScienceDaily

Allergic reactions in the skin can be caused by many different chemical compounds found in creams, cosmetics, and other topical consumer products, but how they trigger the reaction has remained somewhat mysterious.

A new study suggests the way some chemicals displace natural fat-like molecules (called lipids) in skin cells may explain how many common ingredients trigger allergic contact dermatitis, and encouragingly, suggests a new way to treat the condition.

The study was led by researchers at Columbia University Irving Medical Center, the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Monash University and published online today in Science Immunology.

Why some chemicals trigger dermatitis is a mystery

Poison ivy is a commonly known trigger for allergic contact dermatitis, an itchy skin rash. But many ingredients found in nonprescription topical products can trigger a similar type of rash.

An allergic reaction begins when the immune system’s T cells recognize a chemical as foreign. T cells do not directly recognize small chemicals, and research suggests that these compounds need to undergo a chemical reaction with larger proteins in order to make themselves visible to T cells.

“However, many small compounds in skincare products that trigger allergic contact dermatitis lack the chemical groups needed for this reaction to occur,” says study co-leader Annemieke de Jong, PhD, assistant professor of dermatology at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons.

“These small chemicals should be invisible to T cells, but they’re not.”

Skin cells unmask allergy-inducing chemicals

De Jong and her colleagues suspected that CD1a, a molecule that’s abundant on Langerhans cells (immune cells in the skin’s outer layer), might be responsible for making these chemicals visible to T cells.

In the current study, conducted with human cells in tissue culture, the researchers found that several common chemicals known to trigger allergic contact dermatitis were able to bind to CD1a molecules on the surface of Langerhans cells and activate T cells.

These chemicals included Balsam of Peru and farnesol, which are found in many personal care products, such as skin creams, toothpaste, and fragrances. Within Balsam of Peru, the researchers identified benzyl benzoate and benzyl cinnamate as the chemicals responsible for the reaction, and overall they identified more than a dozen small chemicals that activated T cells through CD1a.

“Our work shows how these chemicals can activate T cells in tissue culture, but we have to be cautious about claiming that this is definitively how it works in allergic patients,” de Jong says. “The study does pave the way for follow up studies to confirm the mechanism in allergic patients and design inhibitors of the response.”

New Ideas for Treatment

CD1a molecules normally bind the skin’s own naturally occurring lipids in its tunnel-like interior. These lipids protrude from the tunnel, creating a physical barrier that prevents CD1a from interacting with T cells.

Structural work done at Monash University showed that farnesol, one of the allergens identified in this study, can hide inside the tunnel of CD1a, displacing the natural lipids that normally protrude from the CD1a molecule. “This displacement makes the CD1a surface visible to the T cells, causing an immune reaction,” de Jong says.

This discovery raises the possibility that allergic contact dermatitis could be stopped by applying competing lipids to the skin to displace those triggering the immune reaction. “From previous studies, we know the identity of several lipids that can bind to CD1a but won’t activate T cells,” she says.

Currently, the only way to stop allergic contact dermatitis is to identify and avoid contact with the offending chemical. Topical ointments can help sooth the rashes, which usually clear up in less than a month. In severe cases, physicians may prescribe oral corticosteroids, anti-inflammatory agents that suppress the immune system, increasing the risk of infections and other side effects.

My Client Had An Allergic Reaction To A Skin Treatment. Now What?

It’s the moment every beauty pro dreads: getting a call from your client after they’ve left your salon or spa to tell you something is wrong. This is when you go into detective mode to find out what happened. How do you handle it?

How To Prevent An Allergic Reaction

You can prevent many unfortunate reactions with your initial consultation. You need a thorough medical history, including medications and allergies along with a careful skin analysis. Here are some other things you need to know:

  • What skin care products is your client using at home?
  • When was the last time they had a treatment that affected their skin barrier response?
  • Are they particularly sensitive and have had reactions to skin care treatments or products in the past?

Handling Your Client’s Allergic Reaction To A Skin Treatment

When a client calls about an unusual reaction, a cell phone picture is nice, but a live check-in is better. Persuade them that you need to see them in person to get the best understanding of what has happened to their skin and to interview them about the reaction.

When the client comes in, you need to determine a few details. For example, if a chemical peel was done, what was the pre-peel degreaser? How was the peel applied?With a cotton pad, brush, rough or smooth gauze? What were the peel ingredients? How many layers were applied? How long was it left on? What did the client do at home? Do they have pets? Did pet dander affect the acid –mantle balance? Did they apply post-treatment care with clean hands? Have they been around heavy fragrances that can cause irritation to already compromised skin? This may seem like a lot of questions but getting specific is the only way to know the true cause of the reaction.

If it’s a reaction from a facial, what steps were used to perform the facial treatment? Was steam used? What ingredients were in each of the products? Some ingredients can’t be combined. Did you know tea tree oil cannot be combined with lavender? Don’t mix salicylic and retinols. It will strip away too much of the stratum corneum. Benzoyl peroxide and retinols should not be mixed unless they are in prescription formulations. The benzoyl peroxide will cancel out the retinol in a chemical reaction and cause unusual skin irritation.

A visual assessment is critical. If the skin is photosensitive, tender with touch, it could be an allergic reaction. Swelling, hives with itching or stinging is usually an allergy. Clear blistering that is painful could indicate herpes or a staph infection. Pustules, scabbing, crusting and weeping usually means infection. If a reaction begins to spread beyond the area that you provided treatment, like swelling that is moving down the neck, when you only treated the face, its time for a medical professional to step in. If the reaction is continuing beyond the period of time when the client’s skin should be healing, you can not diagnose. An evaluation from a medical professional is reasonable.

These are specific questions for specific treatments. If your client had a different service, you’ll have to ask different questions accordingly. When in doubt, consult the ingredients in the products used during the service as well as the home-care products (or products your client used without your consultation at home) to see if these could be causing their reaction. And if their symptoms don’t appear to be caused by the service you gave them? Always refer them to see a medical professional. 

What To Do In The Future

After a client has an allergic reaction and you find the cause, make sure to update their medical form ASAP. Make note of their reaction in your client notes and list any products you used as well as the name of the service. This way, future reactions can be prevented. Additionally, you should always brush up on the ingredients you’re using in your treatment products with a Skin Care Ingredients Dictionary and compare them to your medical forms before a treatment.

Additionally, when the client starts on new home care, have them start gradually. Add one or two new products at a time. Begin with three times a week. Then progress to every other day. Then every day. Check in after three to five days to see how they are adjusting to the products and then again at three weeks. This lets you tweak the plan of care rather than deal with a bigger problem down the road.

No matter the reason, communication with your client is essential when they have an allergic reaction to a skin treatment. Close follow-up after a new treatment or recommending a new home skin care regimen will show your client that you truly care about giving them the best results for their skin. 

Photo: Shutterstock | LittleDogKorat

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How To Ask For A Raise

Here’s What to Do If You Have an Allergic Reaction to a Grooming Product

Sensitive skin is the mother of all grooming annoyances, right up there with ingrown hairs and acne. Use a new cleanser, try a different laundry detergent, or visit a place with entirely different tap water situation and you could be dealing with irritation. When that happens it’s unflattering, inconvenient and more than a little bit itchy. Also, the word “rash” is never a turn-on, so you’ll likely be suffering in silence. Here’s how to deal.

Just like a person with reoccurring acne or a propensity to get ingrown hairs, you should own the fact that you have sensitive skin and product-up accordingly. Opt for hypoallergenic and fragrance-free products or look in the baby aisle (not joking) for ultra-mild formulations. Be careful of expired products and things with harsh chemicals (i.e. everything in your medicine cabinet).

Some rashes are caused by allergies and some are caused by contact irritation (which you’re prone to if your skin is very dry), the former tends to be itchier while the latter tends to sting a bit more. Either way, the first thing you want to do is figure out what the culprit was and avoid it like the plague. If you don’t know what caused the rash, give everything the side eye and use only your wimpiest products. Aloe Vera has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, and is a good fallback if you don’t know who you can trust.

Wash the area with cool water and mild soap, apply a cool compress or take an oatmeal bath to get things under control a bit. Basically, the longer the irritant sits on your skin, the worse your situation is going to get so it’s best to reset as soon as you know something’s up. If the situation calls for it, and if you’re pretty sure you’ve got a rash caused by an allergy, take an over-the-counter oral antihistamine. Calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream also works if you don’t want to deal with pills.

The rest is common sense. Go see a doctor if it doesn’t go away. Swear off the offending product for life. And be thankful that your grooming woes aren’t more complicated.

7 Skin-Care Ingredients You Might Be Allergic To

Ever used a new scrub or moisturizer—only to be left with red, itchy skin? The ingredients in your products could be to blame. “Most ingredients that exfoliate, cleanse, or strip the skin can be potentially irritating,” says Ron Robinson, a cosmetic chemist and the founder of BeautyStat.com.

What’s more, some people are much more sensitive to certain allergy-inducing ingredients than others, says Dendy Engelman, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist in New York City. “It’s nothing the patient is doing wrong,” she says.  “Most often it’s genetics or what they were exposed to—or not exposed to—during their childhood.”

Before you try a new skin-care product, be aware of these common irritants.


1. Salicylic Acid
“[This] acid is the same active ingredient in aspirin,” explains Engelman. “And three to five percent of the population is sensitive to aspirin, too.” Salicylic acid is usually used to treat blemishes, but it’s possible to experience hives or inflammation from using it. Engelman recommends benzoyl peroxide to target acne control instead if salicylic acid irritates you. Arithmetic Acne Control Complex ($30, arithmeticproducts.com) provides a low dose of benzoyl so it’s perfect for sensitive skin.

RELATED: How to Exfoliate Every Single Body Part—the Right Way

2. Aluminum
Aluminum is commonly found in deodorant and antiperspirant because it helps reduce sweating, says Engelman. But because it’s a salt, it can cause redness, itching, and even swelling. “Another alternative is magnesium oil, which uses ninasium chloride to prevent sweating, or aluminum-free deodorants.” We like Ancient Minerals Magnesium Oil ($20, amazon.com) or Desert Essence Natural Roll-On Deodorant ($5.75, desertessence.com).

3. Glycolic Acid
“This acid is so small that it’s very good at penetrating into the skin,” says David Bank, M.D., a dermatologist in Mount Kisco, New York. “On the efficacy side, it’s great. But that rapid entry can make it more irritating.” The result is mild side effects—redness and drying. “[A better option for sensitive skin] is lactic acid, [which is] physically larger so it releases more gradually over time.” Try Philosophy Miracle Worker Miraculous Anti-Aging Lactic Acid Cleanser & Mask ($35, ulta.com). 


4. Sulfates
“When people use the word sulfates, they’re particularly referring to sodium lauryl sulfate,” says Bank. “These detergents are found in cleansers and shampoos and cause redness and dryness on sensitive, eczema-prone skin.” For a gentler treatment, he recommends sulfate-free products, like Aveeno Sulfate-Free Shampoo ($6.49, aveeno.com) or any shampoo containing sodium laureth sulfate instead. 

5. Retinol
“Retinol still remains the gold standard for anti-aging, reversing sun damage, and stimulating collagen,” says Bank. “The major drawback is that it can be on the drying and irritating side.” However, he adds that there are rarely toxic reactions, but you may experience uncomfortable irritation. Lancer Younger: Pure Youth Serum ($275, lancerskincare.com) is a gentler anti-aging alternative.

RELATED: How to Spot (and Treat) Eczema


6. Preservatives
“[These] are going to be in almost any product that contains water,” says Engelman. The most common ones to look for on the label are parabens, imidazolidinyl urea, Quaternium-15, DMDM hydantoin, phenoxyethanoil, methylchloroisothiazolinone, and formaldehyde. These ingredients, of course, prevent bacteria buildup (making products last longer), but they can cause an allergic reaction—swelling or hives—in a small percentage of the population. If you find yourself allergic, opt for all-natural brands like John Masters Organics and Tata Harper.

7. Fragrances
“Fragrances are the number one cause of allergies on the skin,” says Bank. “Fragrance” doesn’t actually refer to perfume, but chemical compounds that make products smell better. “Fragrances are in so many things nowadays,” says Engelman. “Even if it says ‘unscented,’ they are included to mask the smell of the formulation.” Those who are allergic may suffer from skin swelling, itching, and in severe cases, your eyes can even swell shut. Robinson recommends fragrance-free alternatives that not only promise ‘no smell’ but say on the label that they have no added fragrances. 

How to Treat a Reaction
First off, play it safe. “If you think your skin is sensitive, apply a patch test to the back of your arm before using a new product on your face or body,” says Robinson. “If no rash or redness appears after 24 hours, use the product as intended.” 

If you still experience irritation, Engelman recommends mild topical steroids like cortisone, or oral anti-histamines, like Allegra or Zyrtec, to reduce swelling, redness, and itching. “If the reaction is more severe, oral steroids may be required to reduce the allergic response,” she says. And if you ever experience any swelling of the lips, tongue, or throat, difficulty breathing, or hives, seek immediate medical attention.  

RELATED: Does Drinking Water Really Give You Glowing Skin?

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90,000 Food allergy – symptoms in adults, list of food allergens, treatments

Promotion! 20% discount on the initial doctor’s appointment for new patients of the clinic with the promo code “FIRST20”.

Food allergy is a type of hypersensitivity to food. In addition to food allergies, there is also food intolerance and pseudo-allergies, which are much more common than true food allergies and in their manifestations are very similar to that, but fundamentally differ from food allergies in the mechanisms of occurrence.

Food allergy is characterized by the ingestion of allergic substances into the body through the digestive tract, after which an allergic reaction develops within a few minutes to several hours. Sometimes the smell of the food is enough to cause allergy symptoms.

According to the strength of allergenic activity, products can be divided into three groups:

Foods with high allergenic activity, for example: milk, eggs, wheat, fish, nuts, honey, mushrooms, chicken, beef, red berries, chocolate, coffee, cocoa, mustard, tomatoes, carrots, beets, celery.

Products with moderate allergenic activity, for example: peaches, apricots, rice, corn, buckwheat, green peppers, potatoes, peas, pork, turkey, rabbit.

Products with low allergenic activity, for example: squash, squash, turnip, pumpkin (light tones), sweet and sour apples, white currants, gooseberries, prunes, plums, watermelon, lettuce, horse meat, lamb.

Food intolerance can develop in relation to any food, but most often it is caused by the so-called histaminoliberator foods.These include citrus fruits, chocolate and chocolate products, coffee, smoked meats, vinegar, mustard, mayonnaise and other spices, horseradish, radish, radish, tomatoes, eggplant, strawberries, strawberries, melon, pineapple, any alcohol.

Pseudo-allergic reactions are caused not by the food product itself, but by various food additives: dyes, flavorings, emulsifiers or preservatives. The most allergenic food additives are listed below:

  • Preservatives: sulfites and their derivatives (E220-227), nitrites (E249-252), benzoic acid and its derivatives (E210-219).
  • Antioxidants: butyl hydroxyanisole (E321), butyl hydroxytoluene (E321).
  • Dyes: tartrazine (E102), yellow-orange S (E110), azorubin (E122), amaranth (E123), red cochineal (E124), erythrosine (E127), diamond black BN (E151).
  • Flavor enhancers: glutamates (B550-553).

Food allergies, intolerances and pseudo-allergies have many common manifestations. Itching in the mouth and throat after eating, abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting, and loose stools may be disturbing.Disturbances from the respiratory system may also occur: nasal congestion, sneezing, light discharge from the nose, dry paroxysmal cough, shortness of breath and choking. Often there are itchy rashes on the skin. Some patients develop conjunctivitis, which manifests itself as redness, itching in the eyes, and watery eyes. At the same time, there are features that distinguish food allergies from food intolerances and pseudo-allergies.


Food allergy


Dependence of the reaction intensity on the amount of allergen (product) ingested Practically no dependence (a very small amount of product is enough, sometimes food smell) There is an addiction (complaints arise only when eating in an amount exceeding a certain threshold)
Reaction time From several minutes to several hours May develop later
Reaction is observed Every time you eat an allergen (product) Optional with every meal of the product
Product response lasts for life Characteristic Not typical
Presence of antibodies to the product in blood Antibodies are detected Antibodies are not detected

Allergy symptoms are a great reason to pay attention to the food you eat.Some can be dangerous and cause irreparable harm to health. The same product can cause different allergic reactions in two different people.

Small foci of redness on the skin and itching should inform about the insignificant effect of the allergen. In this case, a person needs to limit the use of the product and seek help from a specialist. Symptoms in moderate to severe forms make it difficult to breathe, cause spasms, nausea, swelling, and over time can provoke anaphylactic shock.

The risk of death in anaphylaxis is 10-20%.

If symptoms of moderate to severe severity are manifested, an ambulance must be urgently called and no self-medication attempts must be made.

To find out if any foods are allergens to your body, make an appointment with us. An experienced allergist-immunologist will conduct tests, advise on the reaction of your body to various foods and food additives.

Food allergy develops due to a malfunction of the immune system, as a result of which aggressive molecules – antibodies – begin to be produced against the substances contained in the product.These antibodies mediate the development of an allergic reaction.

The causes of food intolerance can vary. Most often, this is a manifestation of “trouble” in the digestive system (for example, a violation of the composition of microflora, inflammatory processes), diseases of the endocrine system, parasitic infections.

Food allergy diagnosis:

  • Specific IgE to products.
  • Skin testing for food allergens.

In our clinic, experienced allergists will perform the necessary tests to identify symptoms and signs of allergies.They will also conduct a comprehensive diagnosis of food intolerances. The latter includes taking a blood test and a protein antibody test for nearly 200 types of food. The easiest way to find out about your body’s response to food irritants is through skin testing with food allergens at our clinic.

Make an appointment with us to see an allergist, and a qualified specialist will use tests to determine the level of food tolerance. You will receive detailed explanations on keeping a food diary and tips on how to avoid known allergen triggers.

The content of this article has been checked and confirmed for compliance with medical standards by an allergist-immunologist Evgeny Vladimirovich Semin.




Appointment (examination, consultation) of an allergist-immunologist, primary 2 200 ₽
Appointment (examination, consultation) of an allergist-immunologist repeated 1 900 ₽

Publication checked by:

90,000 How to deal with facial allergies

Allergy on the face can appear for various reasons, as well as its manifestations can be varied.An allergic reaction on the face can appear quite suddenly, at a time when you do not expect it at all. And if you have not yet had time to see a doctor and determine the cause of the allergic reaction, then there are several ways how to alleviate the course of the allergy.

Skin Cleansing

If you have an allergic reaction on your face, you need to properly cleanse your skin. This procedure must be done using 2-3 cotton swabs, previously soaked in sour milk, kefir or sour cream diluted with water, while the sour cream should not be very acidic.

Wash your face with a cotton swab, abundantly wetting your face with distilled or boiled, slightly lukewarm water. However, experts do not recommend using soap and other cleansers or emollients.

Compress on the affected area

After your skin is cleansed, lightly wipe the skin with a squeezed cotton swab and put a damp gauze moistened with a weak solution of boric acid on the affected areas of the skin. In order to prepare the solution, it is necessary to dissolve half a teaspoon of boric acid in a glass of distilled water.

A damp gauze cloth can be moistened with chamomile, string or sage infusion. A solution of these herbs should be of medium strength. If these funds are not at hand, then a weak tea solution can be used.

The gauze is changed after 2-3 minutes, each time wetting and squeezing again. The compress should be done within 10-20 minutes.

Dry your face

After the affected skin has been cleansed and a compress is made, dry your face. This procedure can be done by applying a linen towel.

When the skin is completely dry, use a rice or potato starch powder. The powder has a calming effect, and it is necessary to apply it to the affected area within an hour several times with light movements.

Antiallergic ointments

In pharmacies there is a large selection of ointments that have an anti-allergic effect. Such ointments should be used very carefully, and, if possible, on the recommendation of a doctor.

Antiallergic ointments must be applied at least twice a day.Lubricate gently with light movements, rubbing without pressing or combing the affected area.

When using antiallergic ointments, it is not recommended to use other ointments, lotions, soaps and other cleansing and nourishing agents.


With proper care of the skin affected by an allergic reaction, it will be useful to take calcium supplements in the form of tablets or solution. A good effect will be achieved if you supplement the treatment of allergies with suprostin, diphenhydramine or other antihistamines.

Chamomile cream

If the skin is characterized by increased sensitivity, then a natural chamomile cream, which contains a highly effective natural extract of azulene, shows good results. Azulene has anti-inflammatory and disinfectant properties. Such a cream is able to reduce skin inflammation, even in the case of sunburn and other minor burns.

As soon as possible, you should contact a dermatologist and allergist, who will prescribe a more detailed treatment.At the first stage of the onset of allergies, it is important not to aggravate the situation and properly treat the affected skin area.

90,000 reasons, procedures, La Roche-Posay products from La Roche-Posay


Unlike skin allergies that cause rashes, sensitive skin often does not show visible signs of irritation. . People with sensitive skin experience tightness, tingling, heat and burning sensation constantly or as a reaction to external or internal triggers that are not specific allergens.

What are the trigger factors for sensitive skin?

Symptoms of sensitive skin can be caused by the following:
1) External factors – polluted environment, temperature changes, changes in skin pH levels, exposure to ultraviolet rays, use of unsuitable cosmetics.
2) Internal factors – stress, strong emotions, hormonal changes.

What is the root cause of skin sensitivity?

More than half of the world’s population has sensitive skin 1 , however, this condition remains partly a mystery to medicine.Skin sensitivity is thought to be related to heightened sensitivity of nerve endings that send pain signals in response to harmless stimuli.

Are there skin sensitivity tests?

The skin sensitivity test is performed using the Exception Differential Test Method . In other words, skin conditions such as allergies, atopic dermatitis (eczema) and psoriasis are excluded. A dermatologist performs a skin sensitivity test by applying capsaicin or lactic acid to determine if tingling, tightness, and burning are in response.

If you think your skin is reacting to certain triggers, you may have reactive skin.

90,000 Why allergies occur: psychosomatics as the cause of allergic reactions

  1. Does the temperature rise with allergic rhinitis? In some cases, with an excessive release of histamine, the body temperature may rise to subfebrile values. Monitor the thermometer readings.

  2. During the flowering season, do not go out, if possible, without glasses and a medical mask.By covering the mucous membranes of your eyes, nose and mouth, you will significantly reduce the risk of pollen entering the body.

  3. Get used to frequent wet cleaning. It will not be difficult for an allergen to enter your room through open windows. Wipe the surfaces with soapy water.

  4. Less stress and more joyful emotions in everyday life. When you concentrate on the bad, the disease begins to attack you with greater force. Side effects of psychosomatics, as we talked about earlier.

Therefore, make it a rule to start the day with a smile and not dramatize the events. Being a happy person is a choice, and therefore healthy too. Leave no chance of seasonal allergies!

And you can also learn literally everything about seasonal allergies (hay fever) , get a vital memo for an allergy sufferer and familiarize yourself with the calendar of flowering of allergenic plants in Ukraine in order to always be fully armed.

Recall that earlier we disclosed the current topic of panic caused by the coronavirus pandemic.We advise you to familiarize yourself with the checklist , how to avoid a nervous breakdown in self-isolation.

apteka24.ua conducts a large-scale educational project “Women’s self-education” , within the framework of which we will meet with highly qualified doctors on women’s health issues and will ask them the most uncomfortable and awkward, the most important and decisive questions about women’s health that hesitate to ask women themselves at antenatal clinic. We will meet with an obstetrician-gynecologist, gynecologist-oncologist and mammologist.Already now you can read an interview about 5 of the most uncomfortable questions for a gynecologist that worries all women, but it is a shame to ask . This is important for everyone!

apteka24.ua is the first online pharmacy you can trust.


What are the main symptoms? / MOZ

Cross food allergy / Kiev City Allergo Center

Psychosomatics. Allergy. / MyPsychologist

Seasonal Allergy / Health.gow.il

Allergies Health Center / WebMD


apteka24.ua provides comprehensive and reliable information on medicine, health and well-being, however, only your doctor can make a diagnosis and choose a treatment method! Self-medication can be unsafe for your health. apteka24.ua is not responsible for possible negative consequences arising from the use of apteka24 by users.ua information posted on the site.

90,000 Unusual skin reactions to familiar cosmetics – what to do

The first option is when you use any product for a long time. You begin to notice that its effectiveness has gradually faded away. This is usually attributed to the notorious addictive effect.

The theory that the cream must be changed has existed for several years. Most often, users themselves say this.However, cosmetologists with a lack of knowledge and experience often repeat this delusion.

You can’t get used to the cream. In principle, the skin cannot get used to something.

The well-known dermatovenerologist Alexander Prokofiev categorically denies the possibility of reducing the sensitivity of the skin to the effects of cosmetics as a result of the emergence of resistance. In his opinion, the reasons for the decrease in the level of exposure lie in something completely different.

Natural process of cell death

The skin is constantly renewed.The upper cells die off, creating a kind of keratinized layer. The skin is not able to completely remove them on its own. Over time, the dead layer grows, creating a barrier for external influence.

If you avoid exfoliation or do it too rarely, dead cells will reliably block the access of the cream. The pores of the skin are closed, and the product simply cannot penetrate through the formed barrier. Accordingly, all the cream applied to the surface is not absorbed, but after the allotted time it is removed with a sponge.

To make a difference, you don’t have to go to the expensive facials at the salon. It is enough to familiarize yourself with the rules for selecting a peeling for home use and regularly perform the procedure yourself.

Skin condition

In our body, nothing remains unchanged. Including the condition of the skin of the face. Its type can change several times during life by itself. Or it can become completely different under the influence of hormones (treatment, menopause).

In this case, the skin turns from oily to dry and vice versa. And out of habit, you will use an old remedy that will no longer be useful, and may even aggravate the situation.

It is also important to remember seasonal changes. In winter, due to the large number of heaters, the skin dries quickly and requires other care. Intensive hydration must be added to the diet, otherwise your nourishing cream will not work fully.

Cosmetics with peptides

Means containing active ingredients are designed for a course admission.They work to restore and start the regeneration process. The first time the effect after applying the cream is noticeable immediately. However, over time, active substances begin to accumulate in cells. This creates a kind of stock.

When the skin has recovered and the mechanism of cell renewal has been adjusted, the effect of using the product becomes less noticeable. It seems to you that the cream has stopped working. In fact, all of its components just did their job.