Background/purpose: Sensitive skin is characterized by uncomfortable sensations in response to multiple factors that do not normally have irritant properties. We used an epidemiological approach to evaluate the prevalence and characteristics of sensitive skin in a Korean population, and compared the results with those of populations from other countries.
Methods: A representative nationwide sample of 1000 Koreans aged ≥15 years was selected. The methodology used in this study (questionnaires) was the same as that used in similar studies conducted in other countries.
Results: Sensitive skin was present in 56.8% of the Koreans. The prevalence of sensitive skin was highest among countries such as the USA (44.6%), Europe (38.4%), Russia (39.7%), Brazil (34.2%), and Japan (54.5%). Participants with sensitive skin were more likely to accompany skin disorders than those with non-sensitive skin (72.3% vs 38.0%; P < .001). Sensitive skin group were 2-3 times more reactive to climatic and environmental factors, cosmetics, and food items than non-sensitive skin group.
Conclusion: The prevalence of sensitive skin in Korea is the highest among countries in which such investigation has been conducted. The sensitive skin group appears more likely to experience dermatological reactions to unexpected factors than the non-sensitive skin group.
Keywords: Korea; epidemiology; prevalence; questionnaires; sensitive skin.
© 2017 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.