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Small Changes in Skin Care Can Bring Big Results for Acne and Rosacea Clients

Posted: February 7, 2011

Clients with acne and rosacea are often confused about selecting appropriate skin care products, cosmeceuticals and cosmetics to add into their daily routine. Although they want to continue to see results with the treatment regimen from their dermatologist, they also want to be comfortable using products that address other skin issues, such as wrinkles or that protect their skin, such as sunscreens. They also may want to select skin care products that can help improve the overall appearance and health of the skin during treatment, especially if their medications have left their skin with redness, dryness or inflammation.

Speaking at the 69th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Dermatology (Academy) this past week (Editor's note: Skin Inc. editor in chief Melinda Taschetta-Millane is posting updates on our Facebook page at live from the show), dermatologist Diane S. Berson, MD, FAAD, assistant clinical professor of dermatology at Weill Medical College of Cornell University in New York, NY, discussed how proper skin care and using some of the newly formulated cosmeceuticals can improve the skin of acne and rosacea patients, as well as helping them comply with their treatment regimen.

“When the skin is stripped of lipids, which are part of its protective outer layer, the skin barrier is compromised and can worsen acne and rosacea,” says Berson. “By keeping the skin well hydrated with the proper skin care products, the barrier will stay intact, allowing patients to better tolerate their medications.”

Cleansing 101: Gentle, gentle, gentle

When it comes to cleansing the skin, Berson recommended gentle cleaning and cleansers for skin prone to acne and rosacea. Scrubbing the skin will actually worsen acne, as it can remove skin lipids and can increase irritation. Instead, gently wash with a nonirritating, pH-balanced cleanser to decrease inflammation.

“Harsh cleansers, alkaline bar soaps and alcohol-based products may worsen irritation,” says Berson. “Cleansing products with mild surfactants can remove surface oil and dirt without compromising the skin’s barrier function. It is important to thoroughly rinse cleansers from the skin because the residue can be irritating.”