The Best Products for Sensitive Skin

August 16, 2016

The Best Products for Sensitive Skin

At some point in my late 20s my skin began to be sensitive. I never really had any issues but suddenly when I touched my skin it could flare up. I’d lay down to get a facial and instantly the esthetician would remark “Oh, your skin is very sensitive.”

While I still stray from my routines in order to test out new products in the name of this blog, I also have those I rely on when my skin is acting up or when I’m following my routine properly. Below are my favorite products that I’d recommend to anyone with sensitive skin. I’ve also recently gotten a request for the products I’d recommend if you suffer from oily skin (which I certainly do!) so I’ll be working on culling that together next.

Of course, as always, be in touch with any questions you may have as they relate to skincare of general beauty!

Mario Badescu Protein Night Cream

I’ve had bad experiences in the past with thicker moisturizers causing my skin to breakout but this one is rich without causing any skin freak-outs. It is packed with anti-aging vitamins and collagen to plump skin overnight and heal any dryness. I wake up with more supple skin whenever I use this. When my skin isn’t feeling drier or irritated, I’ll use this moisturizer at night following a toner + a serum.

SK-II Facial Essence

I was first introduced to this product via this collaboration and fell in love with it. After showering and using a toner (see below), I pat this facial essence onto my skin prior to applying any serums or moisturizers. It helps them absorb and truly get to work. Skin feels soft and smooth and calm.

Mario Badescu Flower + Tonic Mask

My facialist told me this is the best mask for my sensitive skin and boy was she right. It clarifies pores and calms my skin whenever it is feeling extra congested, bumpy or feels overly oily. The 20 minutes it is on truly feels worth it every time. At only $18 it is one of my favorite masks of all time.

Tatcha Polished Classic Rice Enzyme Powder

This cleanser actually starts as a powder and is activated by a few drops of water. It’s a little messy so I keep the cute little jar in the shower and use it whenever my skin is feeling a bit irritated. It helps uneven skin and clears clogged pores thanks to its formulation with nourishing Japanese rice bran. The powder works as a polish of sorts so my skin is left feeling super soft whenever I use it. The jar size also makes it great for travel.

Mario Badescu Seaweed Cleansing Lotion

I have to say that my life was pretty much changed when I started using Mario Badescu’s lotions (aka: toners.) My facialist recommended this one for my sensitive skin to use following cleansing. I use it twice a day (morning and night) and it truly removes every last trace of dirt and makeup. It’s non-drying, alcohol free and the seaweed provides inflammation so it is super soothing. I follow it with a serum + moisturizer. Also, it’s only $15 and the bottle – despite use twice daily – lasts me several months.

Mario Badescu Cucumber Lotion

This is the other toner I use twice daily. I suffer from little tiny red bumps on my chest when it is hot out or if I’ve been working out a lot so this helps keep those at bay. The cucumber soothes and also fights acne by drying up existing blemishes and preventing future ones. If the condition is particularly bad, I follow this step with the Mario Badescu Special Healing Powder (see below.)

Mario Badescu Special Healing Powder

I’ve written about this product multiple times (most recently here) because it truly is a god-send. If you’ve ever suffered from those pesky irritating breakouts comprised of clusters of small red or white bumps, you will love this. It both heals and conceals acne but generally I’ll put it on at nighttime on my chest and sometimes at my hairline. It truly works serious magic to dry up any infected blemishes and if something is particularly inflamed, I’ll actually add a little bit of this powder to the spot using my pinky as it helps mask redness.

Mario Badescu Botanical Exfoliating Scrub

Sensitive skin often means having to avoid any harsh scrubs. (I’ve tried some that have left me with a rash all over my face and neck for over an hour – YIKES!) But this one banishes dullness without over exfoliating. Antioxidant-rich ginger, ginkgo and green tea extracts are blended with moisturizing coconut and aloe, leaving behind softer, younger-looking skin. I also swear by this exfoliator which I’ve never had an issue with and find is incredible at eliminating congested pores. It’s one of the products I buy over and over and over again.


Also a great drugstore option is this line. Super calming if you’re ever super irritated and particularly great in the winter when skin is extra dry.

Finally, I swear by getting my skin super clean with a Clarisonic for night time washing. I always dry cleanse my face (no wetting it before applying cleanser) and never find using the device a problem on my sensitive skin. I’d recommend, however, that you use their brush head specifically for sensitive skin.

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p.s. my nighttime skincare routine + how to wash your face according to a facialist.

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comments +

  1. I had coffee with someone the other day who was telling me that there’s a Mario Badescu facial at Blue Mercury that’s amazing and affordable – I think they do it in the store? Have you ever tried it? I definitely have sensitive skin so seems I should look into his products! I’ve been breaking out like crazy for some reason and sounds like some of these products would help with that.

    • Meghan says:

      I didn’t know that but would HIGHLY recommend going to the MB salon in Midtown East – they are skin wizards there and can make customized product recos following your facial. If you go let me know what you think!!

  2. Merritt Beck says:

    I always love seeing other peoples favorite skincare products, I have been so into masks lately that I think I will just have to try the Flower + Tonic one!
    xx, Merritt
    The Style Scribe

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