You might be tempted to strip every last bit of oil from your skin, but using an overly drying cleanser can actually make your skin even slicker (along with these 11 surprising reasons your skin is greasy). “If a cleanser is too harsh or pulls too many oils from the skin, this can lead to rebound oil production and can disrupt the natural balance that we need,” says board-certified dermatologist Kally Papantoniou, MD, FAAD. She recommends Neutrogena Rapid Clear Oil-Eliminating Foaming Cleanser, which reduces shine but doesn’t contain harsh ingredients like benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid, which are notorious for drying out acne-prone skin. Don’t miss these other 11 beauty secrets women with oily skin should know.
When your skin is parched, avoid using a face wash that has salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, or glycolic acid, which can all leave your skin drier than ever, says Ivy Lee, MD, a dermatologist based in Pasadena, California, and assistant clinical professor of dermatology at UCLA. Instead, find a gentle cleanser that won’t strip your skin down, suggests Dr. Papantoniou. “Stick with a cleanser specialized to wash off grime without removing oils,” she says. She recommends using Cetaphil Daily Gentle Cleanser or CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser. Find out what the best facial moisturizer for your skin type is.
Tackling dryness and oil at once can be tricky, so look for something gentle that won’t make either problem worse. Dr. Lee recommends Vanicream Gentle Facial Cleanser. “They take off all the makeup and are great in terms of removing dirt, but it doesn’t overly dry out the natural moisture of the skin,” she says. She also likes the Neutrogena Ultra Gentle line because you can choose if you can pick between the foaming formula (which feels better if oil is your big concern) or the creamy version (which leaves dry skin feeling better hydrated). Check out these 9 foundations that can actually improve your skin.