Perioral dermatitis can leave you looking like you have acne well after your teenage years, and leave you feeling just as embarrassed as you did back then.
And though a cure isn’t yet on the cards - we do have some solutions to reduce the redness, lumps, itching and flaking around the mouth and nose area.
We have done our research and found some sufficiently gentle and hydrating face washes for perioral dermatitis.
We would like to present our Top 5 products and we also have a brief buying guide for you and some answers to your most frequently asked questions.
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- Best Face Wash For Perioral Dermatitis - Comparison Table
- Best Face Wash For Perioral Dermatitis - Reviews
- Best Face Wash For Perioral Dermatitis - Buyers Guide
- Frequently Asked Questions
- How do you get rid of perioral dermatitis?
- How do I determine if I should see a doctor?
- Is perioral dermatitis a form of rosacea?
- Can toothpaste bring about perioral dermatitis?
- Can I wear makeup if I have perioral dermatitis?
- Can I exfoliate if I have perioral dermatitis?
- Can I wear sunscreen if I have perioral dermatitis?
- How do I determine if a skin care product is safe for me to use?
Best Face Wash For Perioral Dermatitis - Comparison Table
Buy on Amazon
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Best Face Wash For Perioral Dermatitis - Reviews
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Our Top Pick
Since perioral dermatitis has been linked to both bacterial and fungal infections, a face was that has both antibacterial and antifungal properties is ideal - that’s why we simply had to make this soap our Number 1!
It’s perfect for sensitive skin, and it’s active ingredient, 2% Pyrithione Zinc can provide real relief for all the itching, redness, irritation, scaling and flaking associated with perioral dermatitis.
It’s completely free of all the nasty chemicals you need to avoid, and is nice and gentle for your sensitive skin - gentle enough to use every day, and all over the body.
Although it mentions tackling seborrheic dermatitis specifically, you can be confident that it will help clear up perioral dermatitis as well.
Even after 1000 ratings on Amazon, it still has a 4.5 star rating - customers love it!
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Although its title is “seborrheic dermatitis wash” this wash actually addresses all types of dermatitis. And again it’s both antifungal and antibacterial, thanks to its inclusion of medical grade manuka honey.
What we love about the pHat 5.5 brand is their special attention to pH balance. As the name suggests, they make sure all of their products have a pH at 5.5. This matches the natural pH level of your skin, therefore maintaining the acid mantle, the skin’s protective layer.
It’s fragrance free, sulfate free and paraben free with no harsh chemicals or preservatives present to speak of. Instead it has some great, all natural and organic skin loving ingredients, including aloe vera, which has anti inflammatory and antioxidant properties to promote healing and soothe skin irritation.
It also has coconut oil, which is a natural antiseptic and protects skin from the sun’s harmful rays. And as if that’s not enough, it also has Cehami, to give your skin some much needed moisture.
It has anti-inflammatory properties designed to soothe and relieve the symptoms of your dermatitis. It soothes dry itchy skin, all the while reducing all your redness and swelling.
We love how fast acting and long lasting it is - not only that but it can prevent flare ups too!
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Here’s another great skin wash for perioral dermatitis.
It’s star ingredient is aloe vera to calm skin irritation and reduce the appearance of your nasty rash.
It also has calendula, which has potent flavonoids which give it great antiseptic properties that can calm skin rashes like perioral dermatitis and help to control inflammation and soothe irritated skin.
It’s free of irritants and harsh chemicals, and is even hypoallergenic, able to remove dirt and excess oil whilst causing no irritation whatsoever.
We love how you can use it on absolutely any skin type, including combination skin!
It uses the provitamin of B5, which is called panthenol to act as an emollient, so rather than dry out your skin like some cosmetics and face washes do, it instead provides deep hydration and lubrication.
It’s absolutely perfect for professionals who have to wash their hands constantly throughout their day.
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Honeyskin is a fantastic brand - it uses all natural organic ingredients, It’s all fragrance free, paraben free, and alcohol free with none of the nasty stuff like the harsh chemicals you can find in other products.
Not only that but it’s hypoallergenic to boot - just what you need for your perioral dermatitis.
Again this is a wash that has manuka honey, which means it combats a variety of bacteria and fungi, repairs and protects against sun damage, and lucky for you, reduces pain and inflammation. You couldn’t ask for more!
There’s a load of other skin loving ingredients too! These include aloe vera which has vitamin E and vitamin C, hydrating hyaluronic acid to deeply penetrate the skin, Cehami which is an anti inflammatory that calms and soothes the skin, and coconut oil which is a rich antioxidant, designed to fight the signs of ageing such as scarring and wrinkles.
We also love how it’s pH balanced at exactly 5.5 to rebuild and maintain your skin’s protective acid mantle layer.
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After reviewing a face wash designed for dry skin, it’s only fair we show one for oily skin as well. And we simply had to pick this one - it comes from the leading dermatologist recommended skincare brand!
It’s fragrance free, non-drying and won’t irritate your sensitive skin. It’s also non comedogenic which means it won’t clog your skin’s pores, despite its lovely rich texture.
It has a totally unique formula of 3 essential ceramides, which not only provide all day hydration, but also help to restore the skin’s protective barrier.
We love how it comes from the dispenser as a foam - you can just feel it will be gentle on the face.
Best Face Wash For Perioral Dermatitis - Buyers Guide
What is perioral dermatitis and what causes it?
In order to ascertain how to treat perioral dermatitis, we must first seek to understand just what it is and what precipitates it.
Perioral dermatitis is a type of skin rash. Symptoms include multiple small bumps and blisters sometimes with background redness and scale, on the skin around the mouth and nostrils. It resembles rosacea and to some extent acne and allergic dermatitis. It’s appearance is thought to be related to changes in the skin’s hair follicles.
Perioral dermatitis often happens after the use of topical corticosteroids on the face, and is more likely to occur the greater the strength of topical steroid used. Such steroids are thought to lead to an increase in micro-organism density in the hair follicle. Some studies have linked perioral dermatitis to bacterial infection, while other studies have linked it to fungal infections.
Some cosmetics such as moisturizing creams, are also thought to increase risk of perioral dermatitis with prolonged use. Unfortunately the research on this is a little thin on the ground, so as yet we do not know which ingredients in moisturizers are actually leading to precipitation or worsening of perioral dermatitis.
One such issue seems to be the heaviness or thickness of the face creams clogging the skin’s pores, so if you feel like you need a moisturizer, pick one with a light, non comedogenic texture or feel.
What this means for your selection of skin care products
In sum, what this means for your product selection is, first of all, that where possible, you stop the use of any face creams or other products that contain any corticosteroids.
Secondly, you should be very careful about using moisturizer. Whilst there aren’t many moisturizers designed for use by those with perioral dermatitis, you should be able to get the same soothing relief of a traditional moisturizer if you use moisturizers designed for those with eczema or atopic dermatitis.
What to look for in a face wash when you have perioral dermatitis
Your first priority in choosing a face wash should be to avoid products that have the potential to dry your skin out or make your skin more inflamed.
This means that you should focus your attention on choosing products that are free of any harsh chemicals, be they added colours, fragrances, preservatives, or parabens. Luckily most products that are free of these harsh chemicals say so on the packaging and you don’t have to worry about doing a class in biochemistry to read the list of ingredients on the packaging!
You need to opt for a face wash that removes your skin’s impurities without aggravating your perioral dermatitis, and has a gentle and hydrating effect. If you stick with natural and organic products that are loaded with skin loving nutrients and vitamins you won’t go far wrong. This is reflected in our Top Few face washes for perioral dermatitis.
Since perioral dermatitis has been linked to both bacterial and fungal infections, you’d be well advised to go for products that have antibacterial and antifungal properties where possible.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you get rid of perioral dermatitis?
Unfortunately, perioral dermatitis doesn’t just go away overnight, it usually clears out slowly and can take a few weeks up to a few months to completely go away. The good news is though, in most cases, as long as you avoid whatever caused your perioral dermatitis, that red rash around your mouth should clear up. Sometimes however it can reoccur,which is why it's important to identify what triggers the flare ups.
When you have perioral dermatitis you have to be particularly careful what products you use on our face. There is some excellent advice on this in our buying guide, and elsewhere in our FAQ section.
If you need it gone quickly however, there are specific treatments you can get from your doctor, which leads us on to our next FAQ.
How do I determine if I should see a doctor?
Perioral dermatitis is generally a superficial condition, however if you start to show any of the following symptoms, we would strongly recommend that you seek help from a doctor or registered dermatologist:
You have a fever
The rash is sudden and spreads rapidly
The rash begins to blister
The rash is painful
The rash becomes infected (You can tell if a rash is infected when if you you have any of the following: yellow or green fluid, swelling, crusting, pain, and warmth in the area of the rash.)
Is perioral dermatitis a form of rosacea?
Perioral dermatitis can look very similar to the bumps and pimples of subtype 2 rosacea. However, perioral dermatitis is more like an allergic reaction than a chronic inflammatory condition like rosacea. While rosacea’s causes are unknown and the disorder often involves many triggers, perioral dermatitis usually has a more clear cause. A dermatologist will be able to determine which you have, and put together a corresponding treatment plan.
Can toothpaste bring about perioral dermatitis?
Sometimes fluoride, a compound found in most toothpastes can bring about perioral dermatitis. If you have perioral dermatitis, you need to switch to toothpastes that are free of both fluoride and sodium laureth sulfate.
Can I wear makeup if I have perioral dermatitis?
Ideally, you should not use any makeup while your skin is angry and red. Almost all foundation and pressed powder will irritate it further. If you do decide to use makeup, our advice is to only apply powders to your face. If you use a liquid foundation, the skin will not be able to get out of the inflammation because it will absorb the moisturizing component of the foundation.
Can I exfoliate if I have perioral dermatitis?
If you have perioral dermatitis, please resist the temptation to exfoliate,as this can exacerbate the problem and make your skin more irritable.
Can I wear sunscreen if I have perioral dermatitis?
Sometimes ingredients in sunscreens can bring about perioral dermatitis. However if you are going to be out in direct sunlight for a length of time, we would recommend that you use some. Our advice is to look out for light, natural sunscreens that don’t have any of the harsh chemicals we describe in our buying guide, and to do a patch test first to determine if it’s safe for you to use. This leads us on to our next FAQ.
How do I determine if a skin care product is safe for me to use?
First of all, if you have perioral dermatitis, read our buying guide to ensure your chosen product doesn’t have any of the nasty chemicals we refer to.
Also, if you’re considering using a new skin care product on your face, you should first do a patch test. To do a patch test, place a little of the product onto the skin behind your ear. Wait 24 hours to see if you’ve had an allergic reaction to the product. If you’ve had no adverse reaction within 24 hours, you can go ahead and use the product.