A Sensitive Issue

Here in the Midwest, summer has arrived, which brings with it not only the sensation of sweet, icy cold popsicles, the smacking sound of flip-flops and coconut-scented breezes on the beach, but also, unfortunately, the occasional inflamed sunburn and itchy mosquito bite or poison ivy rash. Of course, your skin’s sensitivity will determine how it reacts to these outdoor threats. For instance, my skin can react to poison ivy if I merely touch an unwashed jacket that came into contact with it a year ago, whereas my husband seems impervious to it.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, sensitive skin affects millions of people but the exact definition will vary depending on who you ask. Dermatologist Leslie Baumann, MD, describes the four distinct types of sensitive skin as acne; rosacea; burning/stinging; and contact dermatitis, including allergies and irritants; and these skin types all have one characteristic in common: inflammation.*

This issue of Cosmetics & Toiletries magazine covers aspects of formulating for sensitive skin types, specifically addressing acne products. For instance, Fevola profiles salicylic acid and its uses while, Chaudhuri and Marchio evaluate bakuchiol as a novel ingredient to manage acne. Sun and Sun review the solubility of benzoyl peroxide, and Alikhan, Alikhan and Maibach explore an in vivo approach to determine the keratolytic activity of benzoyl peroxide, retinoic acid and salicylic acid.

In relation, to reduce the potential skin irritation, Krüger et al. describe a fast and portable test method developed to evaluate henna-based, non-permanent tattoo color mixtures for the skin irritant para- phenylenediamine. Finally, considering a specialized subgroup of sensitive skin types, Abrutyn explains how to formulate baby care products.

Oh, Baby

This last topic holds a very special place in my heart because, as many of you know, my husband and I are expecting our first child this month. Thus, for the next few issues, starting with August, I welcome the fresh, new voice of our associate editor Katie (Schaefer) Anderson to this “Compass” page. Thank you for following Cosmetics & Toiletries in print and online; I leave you in capable hands and will return soon. Wish me luck!

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