Be careful here. Just because a cleanser labels itself "mild" or "gentle" doesn't mean it is. Dermatologists tend to consider a commercial cleanser mild if it's liquid, doesn't lather and has no fragrance [source: Tofte].
Three cleansers fall in that category: Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser, CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser and Aquanil Cleanser [source: Tofte]. They're strong enough to take off your mascara. You just squirt a little into your hands, rub the liquid onto your face and rinse.
When you read Cetaphil's ingredients list though, you may protest. The cleanser contains three alcohols and a detergent (sodium lauryl sulfate). Didn't we say to avoid those? We did. These cleansers are fine for most people's sensitive skin because the concentrations of the irritating ingredients are low.
We know this can be confusing. For other beauty products that are mild enough for sensitive skin, head over to the National Eczema Association's list. The organization has considered the concentrations of any potentially irritating ingredients. When in doubt, close your Internet browser and ask a doctor.
For more information on sensitive skin and how to take care of it, visit the links below.
- Can a cream really work as well as a face-lift?
- Does worrying cause wrinkles?
- Could I be allergic to makeup?
- How to Brighten a Dull Complexion
- Is mineral makeup really natural?
- How to Determine Your Skin Tone
- How to Even Out Your Skin Tone
- How Botox Works
- How to Make a Face Mask
- Can vitamins protect my skin from the sun?
- Aftergut, Kent. Personal interview. Conducted 9/4/2009.
- Ananthapadmanabhan, K.P. et al. "pH-Induced Alterations in Stratum Corneum Properties." International Journal of Cosmetic Science. Vol. 25. no. 3. June 2003.
- Ananthapadmanabhan, K.P. et al. "Cleansing Without Compromise: The Impact of Cleansers on the Skin Barrier and the Technology of Mild Cleansing." Dermatologic Therapy. Vol. 17. Suppl. 1. 2004.
- Boardman, J. et al. "The Olive in the Mediterranean: Its Culture and Use." Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences. Vol. 275. no. 936. July 27, 1976. (9/10/2009) http://www.jstor.org/pss/2418221
- Encyclopedia Britannica. "Acne." Encyclopedia Online. (9/9/2009)
- Encyclopedia Britannica. "Skin Disease." Encyclopedia Britannica Online. (9/9/2009)
- Farage, Miranda et al. "Sensory, Clinical and Physiological Factors in Sensitive Skin: a Review." Contact Dermatitis." Vol. 55. 2006.
- Kuehl, B.L. et al. "Cutaneous Cleansers." Skin Therapy Letters. Vol. 8. No. 3. March 2003.
- Singer, Natasha. "When Beauty Products Make You Burn." Contra Costa Times. November 1, 2005.
- Tofte, Susan. Personal interview. Conducted 9/4/2009.
- Tortura, Gerard and Sandra Reynolds Grabowski. "Principles of Anatomy and Physiology." John Wiley & Sons. 2003.
Are there dangers lurking in your lip color? Find out if lead in lipstick can cause cancer at HowStuffWorks.