Steam, heat, active ingredients

Hi Randy &/ Perry, 

I work in a Spa.. to be quiet frank it's not in the best of conditions and minus 3 of the rooms, the place feels like we're working IN a Sauna and not just near one. I have Hyper-Hydrosis and turn a Beetroot shade of red during Cardio but the heat really is affecting everyone. Not only that but we're moved to different rooms all the time.. so if we're not stuck in a hot room for most the time.. we're going from hot to cold (the aircon rooms are cold) and back again.

I never had sensitive skin before..My skin type is Combination and currently it looks and feels normal however it now stings when I apply most of my products including my Paula's Choice mineral SPF!! Which never happened before.

I did add Retinol and 3 products with Niacinamide over the last 2/3 months however I haven't been diligent with my routine at all and even so I started off using the Retinol once a week and slowly, built up to maybe 3 nights a week. In the past I've used a Moisturiser with Niacinamide in it AM and PM with no problems and a trial sized Retinol, a few times with no probs. 

"Does steam/heat (over long periods of time - 5-10 hr shifts) sensitize skin?" 

"Does going from hot to cold and back (no aircon room, no ventilation and it's Summer here in Australia > cold room) sensitize skin?"

"Do you think my products have anything to do with the stinging despite the frequency of use?" 

Kind regards


  • Continued exposure to steam and high temperatures could certainly make your skin more permeable (and more sensitive) to certain ingredients. The cycling of hot to cold could also stress the skin, theoretically, but that sounds like less of an issue to me. 

    Both retinol and niacin amide can cause stinging. 
  • Thanks very much Randy :) 
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