Can one product really tackle the inflammation that hypersensitivity causes?

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Sensitive skins  need an extra shield come winter, and though it's been unseasonably mild my face has definitely seen better days (namely, autumn). Which is why along with my usual moisturiser - currently  Avene's Tolerance Extreme  - I've been trialing Tolerance Plus from the Bioderma Sensibio range.

First things first - I’m not sure about the claim on the front of the packaging. It’s incredibly bold, hailing it ‘Skin care for neutralising hypersensitivity’. That term, ‘neutralising’ is oh-so tempting, and usually something that would ring alarm bells if I were browsing the beauty shelves as it sounds so impressively permanent (imagine that!) and therefore far too good to be true.

And yet; the short and sweet ingredients list makes up the Neurocontrol® complex, which Bioderma says treats the inflammation caused by the two main triggers within the skin (keratinocyte and TRPV-1), which act up when you’re hypersensitive. So far, so scientific, but the proof is in the performance - so how did it match up?

A light, watery lotion, it's somewhere between a cream and a serum (think lighter than Cetaphil, thicker than Hydraluron) yet acts as a calming, soothing primer. Makeup glides onto it as if airbrushed, yet underneath I can feel it helping to settle any irritation while hydrating my skin back to its best; the ingredients include emollient cocoglycerides and barrier-supporting glycerin , and it’s free from the three Ps - parabens, perfumes and preservatives.

Since using it I’ve had less of that ‘prickly’ feeling that comes with general sensitivity, though I wouldn’t say it’s made my skin less reactive; in the time that I’ve tested it I had some faint red patches appear one evening, potentially from a mixture of central heating and something I’d eaten, so it doesn’t put a stop to it but it certainly helps to calm it quickly. Still, anything that could change my skin type overnight would be nothing short of a miracle, so I shan’t hold that against it; rather, it’s refreshing to have something of an everyday soother to reach for rather than my standard emergency reaction kit.

Fragrance free, it does have a rather synthetic scent to it due to the ingredients, but as always I'd rather that than a rash from unnecessary perfumes. It leaves no tacky residue even when I layer it with my richer moisturiser (which you won’t need to do if your skin isn’t very dry) and instead leaves skin feeling comfortable, which is hard to achieve when you’re being hit with harsh weather and the dry, hot air indoors. Permanent results? Perhaps not, but it’s earned a permanent spot in my routine.

Bioderma Sensibio Tolerance Plus, £15.10, available here

Ingredients: Aqua/water/eau, Cocoglycerides, Glycerin, Silica, Glyceryl Stearate, Sodium Citrate, Capryloyl Glycine, Mannitol, Xylitol, Rhamnose, Sodium PCA, Acetyl Tetrapeptide-15, Undecylenoyl Glycine, Sclerotium Gum, Sodium Hydroxide.

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