Derms tell us if ‘For All Skin Types’ products are too good to be true

March 09, 2020 at 08:00PM by CWC

Skin-care routines have reached peak customization. With companies like The Ordinary and The Inkey List releasing pure active ingredient serums, it’s now easier than ever to play beauty chemist and curate your own regimen. But there are still tons of all-skin-type products. Are they legit?

Marisa Garshick, MD, a board-certified dermatologist in Manhattan, says yes.

“Products that are designated for all skin types are typically made up of ingredients that are gentle enough for sensitive skin but yet effective to be used by majority of people who use it,” says. Dr. Garshick. “Although it is always good to consider your individual skin type, there are various products that can be tolerated by all skin types.”

If you have any particular skin issues, Rebecca Baxt, MD, a board-certified dermatologist in New Jersey, says your better off using products that are a bit more targeted. For example, “if you are acne- or rosacea-prone, an all-skin-type products might make it worse. It’s best to stick to oil-free, noncomedogenic, fragrance-free products for those skin types generally speaking. It can be different for each individual patient,” she says.

Dr. Garshick says some products are better than others to buy in an all-skin-types formula. “Often gentle cleansers are a great option for all skin types,” she says.  She likes the Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser ($10) and Dove White Beauty Bar ($4). “Even those with oily skin can benefit from a gentle cleanser as part of their regimen, as you never want to dry out the skin too much.”

When it comes to moisturizer, however, it’s best to choose one targeted for your specific skin type.

“Everyone needs moisture, even those with oily skin, but the extent to which we want to add moisture back to the skin may vary in those with very dry skin versus those with oily skin versus those who are acne-prone,” says Dr. Garshick. “In those who are acne-prone, it can be important to find moisturizers that are oil-free or noncomedogenic.”

Bottom line: a customized approach to skin care is never a bad idea.


“It is important to remember that what works for your friend may not work best for you. It is always best to consider your skin type before trying out different products,” says Dr. Garshick. If you’re noticing any issues with a product, consult your dermatologist and consider switching it up.

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Author Kara Jillian Brown | Well and Good
Selected by CWC


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