Fabrics that irritate sensitive skin may differ from person to person, but there are some that are more likely to cause problems among those with delicate skin. If you struggle with irritation, you’re in luck, because there are several ways to counteract the issue and find relief. Sometimes it’s as easy as choosing different clothing, but other times you may have to see your dermatologist to get to the root of the skin condition you’re suffering from. Check out this list of common fabrics that irritate sensitive skin and you’ll be able to easily get started finding out what’s causing your problems.
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I know that wool is warm and can be really beautiful, but it’s also one of the most common fabrics that irritate sensitive skin. Sometimes wool can be scratchy and rough, so wearing it against your delicate skin can lead to itching and even rashes or hives. If you love your favorite wool garment and can’t stand the thought of giving it up, try layering it over something that provides a barrier between your skin and the wool. For example, try a long sleeved cotton t-shirt under a wool sweater.
Many garments are still made from polyester, even though it often makes people think of the disco era. Other clothing is lined with the fabric. However, synthetic fibers are those most likely to be the culprit when irritating skin. Sometimes polyester is blended with other materials, such as cotton, in clothing. This can sometimes allow you to wear it without a problem. That depends on your level of sensitivity, so just keep an eye out for problems when you wear polyester.
Not only is spandex made from synthetic fibers, but it also sits very close to your skin. That combination spells trouble if you have sensitive skin. Not only can the actual fabric irritate your skin, but the proximity to it can exacerbate the issue. I know that spandex comes in many workout clothes and swimwear, but if it irritates your skin, consider looking into alternatives that can keep you comfortable.
Rayon is a cheaper substitute for silk, but can cause irritation for many people. I know it’s much more affordable than silk garments, but if it causes you problems, it’s a waste of money anyway because you aren’t likely to wear it if you don’t feel comfortable in it. With sensitive skin, you may need to make an investment in more expensive clothing. The good news is that it generally lasts longer and won’t have you itching and scratching all day long.
Acrylic is often combined with other fibers to create imitation wool or for fleece and fake fur. However, it’s unnatural component can really do a number on sensitive skin. You may be able to tolerate it when it’s mixed with other materials, but alone it may not be at all comfortable for you. The trick is to try things out to discover what works and what doesn’t. You may notice that just wearing an item for a couple of minutes will clue you in to its potential to irritate your skin.
Nylon is pretty prevalent in clothing, but again, it’s a synthetic fiber so it might not be your best choice if you suffer from skin irritation. At the same time, it’s often used in combination with other materials so you might be able to get away with some garments that contain the fabric.
Before you leave me an outraged comment that I don’t know what I’m talking about, read on. While cotton itself is one of the best choices for sensitive skin, it is prone to collecting and absorbing laundry detergent and fabric softener particles, both of which can cause issues. If you’re buying secondhand (which is great for the environment and the pocketbook), you may have to wash your clothing a couple of times with your own detergent to make it comfortable to wear.
Organic cotton, silk, cashmere, linen, hemp and bamboo are great natural fibers to look for if you have sensitive skin. They do tend to cost a bit more, but it’s worth it to be comfortable in your clothes, right? Do you have sensitive skin? What kinds of fabrics do you shop for?
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