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Cleansing the skin thoroughly is an integral step in most skincare routines, but if you’ve been cursed with eczema or super sensitive skin, it can be a major challenge to get a good deep clean without leaving the skin chapped, irritated, dry and as red as a ripe tomato. Finding the best cleanser for eczema and sensitive skin is no easy feat, and if you suffer from either skin condition, you already know that it can be a downright painful game of trial and error (and plenty of irritation, to be sure) before finding the one. Fortunately, there are plenty of affordable, over-the-counter face washes approved by dermatologists that are gentle enough for highly-reactive and extra-dry skin types. These hydrating formulas are free of some of the most common triggers for eczema flare-ups and overall inflammation, including a slew of chemicals, harsh preservatives, and irritating fragrances, like lanolin, parabens, synthetic dyes and yes, even formaldehyde (sadly, some skincare products actually really do contain the toxic stuff).
In addition to being gentle enough to not cause a reaction, these nourishing cleansers are also infused with a slew of calming ingredients that can actually help soothe irritation, calm redness and restore proper pH and moisture levels in the skin rather than leaving you dry, tight and flaky. Stripping your skin when you wash your face at night — whether you have eczema or not — is one of the easiest ways to cause dryness, flakes and the formation of premature fine lines, so it’s important to choose a formula that isn’t harsh and laden with things you can’t even begin to pronounce.
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1. VaniCream Gentle Facial Cleanser
This no-frills face wash is known for being one of the most gentle and universally acceptable face washes on the market. It’s free of all of the common eczema-triggering ingredients and preservatives, including lanolin, parabens, fragrance, and formaldehyde.
2. HoneySkin Face & Body Cleanser
This hydrating cleanser gives your skin a deep clean without causing irritation or a flare up. In fact, it can actually help calm redness and restore a proper pH balance while helping remove dead skin and impurities. It’s based with Aloe Vera Barbadensis to soothe inflammation and redness and It’s infused with Manuka honey, which has been long used a natural remedy for eczema and dehydrated skin.
3. Neutrogena Gentle Hydrating Facial Cleanser
This creamy cleanser gently removes dirt, grime, oil and light makeup without over-drying or leaving the skin red and stripped. It’s gentle enough to use over your eyes and fragrance-free, so it’s safe for those with eczema, dermatitis, and ultra sensitive skin.