A Note on Allergic Reactions

As a beauty blogger with a haphazard attitude to most things in life, I have experienced my fair share of allergic reactions to various cosmetic items. If I am entirely honest most reactions could have been prevented, if I had spent a little time reading the ingredient list; rather than merrily slapping on a thick layer of whatever lotion, cream or potion that promised glorious results. I know my allergy triggers and therefore should know better.

I won't name the brand (nor is the photos in this post a clue to the product nor brand) that resulted in my worst allergic reaction to date, I know many others who have since tried said eye cream that caused my skin to panic, free from incident. The problem with naming is, that alone can result in a boycott and if there is no safety issue, it seems a little wrong to point the finger; especially since the it is medically believed that the reaction was due to my then over sensitised skin (antibiotics).

So yes, last Summer I began trailing a new eye cream - a cooling, dream to apply eye cream that was delivering all it promised. I was suitably pleased and thought all was well until approximately 72 hours into the trial. I applied the eye cream in the AM as I did the days before, then my make up as usual free from incident. Fast forward an hour or so and I was ready to claw the skin off of my own face. Weirdly my entire face (nope not just the eye area) felt like it was on fire and ridiculously itchy. Luckily I was at home and had the means to not only remove my make up, slap on Aloe Vera Gel (every bathroom should have a bottle) but of course pop an anti-histamine (every medicine cabinet should have a box).

A Note on Allergic Reactions

On removal of my make up, I greeted with a red, inflamed complexion and lots of tiny white headed blemishes all around my eye area. Like most I didn't panic, I've suffered allergic reactions in the past and this didn't seem all that extreme; I assumed at most it would be a case of waiting it out and relying on a heavy duty concealer the next day, if needs must. Oh how wrong I was. In a matter of what seemed like moments, an abundance of more white heads popped up all over my face and down my neck, my eyes began to swell shut and where there wasn't white heads, there was small skin blisters. It was a sight to behold and had it been Halloween I wouldn't have needed a mask - it was that bad. To cut a long story short I ended up in A&E, clutching a damp facial cloth and praying it would end quickly - the rash that is

Telling others about such eventful skin care experiment often poses the question - why didn't you contact the brand and often conversations in regards to compensation. Let's address both: first of all, my skin was already sensitised and wrote clearly on the packaging in bold lettering, it stresses that it should not be applied to broken skin and due to the active ingredients a patch test was recommended. I ignored both pieces of advice, my allergic reaction was my own fault - simple.  If you do however follow all application advice and know for certain that the product is either faulty or simply not up to par, by all means contact the brand.

Compensation is a tricky area within this industry full stop (there are cases in which the brand is accountable) but as I was completely at fault, the brand should not be held responsible; the ingredient list was as good as skin care comes and I was left with no scarring nor visible reminders. Again even if I was, I chose to ignore any application advice so all fingers point at me.

Thanks to the eye opening event (or should that be closing?) I have learnt to not only patch test all skin care items (better safe than sorry huh?) and not only read any application advice but to at least glare over the ingredient list too and perhaps hold off from new skin care when my skin is already stressed. Will it happen again? Probably but hopefully next time around I can be smug in the knowledge that it was unavoidable on my part.

So tell me what is the worst allergic reaction to a beauty product you have experienced and was it due to negligence on your part or not?