Skin damage caused by a single specific stimulus has been extensively studied. However, many additional mild skin irritants are experienced every day before obvious irritant contact dermatitis (ICD) appears. The effect that these previously experienced mild irritations have on the incidence and severity of sequential ICD remains undefined. The purpose of this work was to explore whether the effects of skin barrier damage induced by either the open patch test with 1% sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), tape stripping test (TAP) (10×), or irradiation with 0.75 median erythemal dose UVB (MED) will affect the severity of sequential irritant dermatitis induced by a 0.5% SLS occlusive patch test (PT). Nine treatments were applied to nine different locations of the ventral forearm of each subject at random. The nine treatment types were as follows: open patch test with 1% SLS; 10× TAP; UVB irradiation with 0.75 MED; open patch test with 1% SLS + PT with 0.5% SLS (SLSPT); 10× TAP + PT with 0.5% SLS (TAPPT); UVB irradiation with 0.75 MED + PT with 0.5% SLS (UVPT); PT with distilled water (DISPT); PT with 0.5% SLS (PT); and the CONTROL (no treatment). After 5 days of subclinical irritation, the PT was applied on day 6. Transepidermal water loss (TEWL), capacitance (CAP), and skin color (a*) were measured at baseline and on days 6, 7, and 8. After the PT, indices of irritancy of PT, UVPT, SLSPT, and TAPPT were 60, 80, 87 and 100%, respectively. The index of irritancy of TAPPT and SLSPT were significantly higher than that of PT (p < 0.05). Clinical scores of SLSPT and TAPPT were also significantly higher than PT (p < 0.05). After 5 days of irritation, TEWL of SLS, TAP, SLSPT, and TAPPT were increased significantly compared to that of baseline. After the PT, D-value of TEWL between day 8 and day 6 ((≥6-8)TEWL) of SLSPT and TAPPT were greater than that of PT, and D-value of TEWL between day 8 and day 7 ((≥7-8)TEWL) of SLSPT and TAPPT were less than that of PT values. After the PT, a* values of SLSPT, TAPPT and PT all increased. The D-value of a* between day 8 and day 6 ((≥6-8)a*) of SLSPT and TAPPT were significantly greater than that of PT. After the PT, D-value of CAP between day 8 and day 6 ((≥6-8)CAP) of SLSPT was significantly different as compared to PT. The open patch test with 1% SLS and 10× TAP destroys the skin barrier and is able to significantly increase the irritancy and severity of sequential ICD by 0.5% SLS PT, and therefore influences the recovery speed of inflammation. The open patch test with 1% SLS, 10× TAP, and UVB irradiation with 0.75 MED affects the skin barrier to different degrees. TEWL is a sensitive biophysical parameter that can reflect mild damage to the skin barrier induced by subclinical irritation.