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Oily Skin that’s also Sensitive? A Solution…

So many people email me or leave comments asking about products for oily skin that’s also sensitive. It’s quite a difficult little situation, really, because many soothing moisturisers and treatments are unsuitable for oily or blemish-prone skins – and also, I have no idea what people have been doing to their skin (if anything) to make it sensitive in the first place. So imagine my delight when I stumbled across this little tube of delights! The Compensating Soothing Moisturiser from La Roche-Posay  has been formulated for this very problem – oily skin that has become fragile and sensitive.

Interestingly, the full ‘label’ for this Efflacar product is that it’s for “Oily skin made fragile by over-drying skincare“. Now for me, this hits the nail right on the head when it comes to many cases of sensitive oily skin, or oily skin that feels raw and has dry patches; if you strip the life out of your skin with harsh acne products then the skin’s barrier will be compromised, leaving your skin vulnerable and sensitive to just about everything. It’s important (and I have said before) that when you cleanse, you cleanse well but respect the skin – don’t leave it tight and stripped. If you do leave it tight and stripped, then you’re going to have problems. I’m trying to think of a clever analogy here, but all I can think of is that if you take the paint off your car it rusts. That doesn’t really work, does it?

The Efflacar H works really quickly to help rebuild the skin’s protective barrier and make the skin feel supple and plump, but it’s light and easily absorbed and won’t make oily skin oilier! It actually contains some of the same things that can be found in sebum (the very stuff that you’re trying to do away with when you use the harsh cleansers and acne products) but this is a good thing; the skin needs some of these things to be balanced. That’s why it produces them in the first place, it’s just some people produce sebum in excess. You don’t want to absolutely remove all oils, just some, which is why effective-yet-gentle cleansing is so important.

Anyway, I thoroughly recommend this Efflacar H cream – I use it in the run up to Aunt Flo’s monthly state visit (did I just use that phrase? Anyone would think this was Bunty magazine!) and it works a treat as an alternative to some of the richer soothing creams that I use. I don’t exactly ‘strip’ my skin, but still, once a month I find that it goes a bit mental, along with the rest of me!

So to recap: great cream for those with oily skin that’s also sensitive or has dry, tight patches. Brilliant also for those on anti-acne medicine who find their skin very dry but need to steer clear of traditional rich creams. The cream also contains ingredients to soothe irritation and redness so when those spots flare up and you feel that there’s nowhere to turn, this could be your answer! One thing though; if you are stripping the hell out of your skin, then why? Take a good look at the products you’re using. If you’re looking for an amazing gentle cleanser, I can recommend Alpha-H Balancing Cleanser or Pai’s Cleanser, both of which I use absolutely loads.

Efflacar H Compensating Soothing Moisturiser is £9.50 (bargain!) from Escentual.com


  1. I’m using Bioderma sebum for washing my face. It’s good. For moisturizing I use natural coconut oil. Just a little bit after washing my face. I take milk thistle powder which is good for liver. But if only I could stop picking on my tiny pimples it’d be great.

  2. If you want something home made, you should purchase cosmetic grade zinc oxide and mixing a tablespoon or two into a bottle of moisturizer. Right now I’m using it with a moisturizer I got from Citrus Clear. It is the Citrus Clear Control Moisturizer. I put on this lightweight moisturizer that soaks in quickly. It will help mattify and absorb excess oil. It helps keep acne down and helps heal acne that has popped up.

  3. Hi! I’ve got thin skin which is why mine is often quite sensitive. I get oily all the time (with dry bits down the sides and thin skin on my nose and forehead) and teen-spotty more than regulary.

    I used a la-roche posey toner a while ago (Physiological Soothing Toner)and it was horribly drying. Is this likely to cause similar problems if they are using the same types of ingredients?

    Is there something else that you would recommend? I feel that perhaps too much anti-spot type stuff might be too harsh and soothing it with the moisturiser would be good… So confused!

    Love & kitten smushes.

    • I wouldn’t bother with a toner, really. This wouldn’t have the same kinds of ingredients as it’s a moisturiser, so it could be what you’re looking for if you want to soothe temperamental skin? How old are you? xx

      • Hey there :) I’m actually 28 and have had oily skin for the past year or so – whether it’s that my hormones have kicked into overdrive or what, I don’t know. I have found that RENs clay type mask & glycolatic mask have helped alot though so I’m doing better than I was.

        I haven’t really changed my diet more and if anything I look after myself better than I used to – water!

        Gentle, oil-free, more natural than not, and good for oily/breakout prone skin.. I love love the soap and glory hand cream & foot cream so I’m tempted by their other items.

        Oh, how much difference do you think it makes using cold/body temp/warm/hot water when you shower or wash your face?

        • I think that too hot can be very bad, actually – I’m sure I have loads of broken veins on my legs from too hot baths! The vein specialist said not, but I am convinced! x

  4. Hi Ruth,
    You are absolutely the ONLY person on you-tube/blogging world that i trust to give skin care ptoducts recommendations from. I tried ur firm favs fr alpha-h and I love them! My challenge is to find a good moisturiser and day/non glycolic serum. did alpha-h or pai both not wow u with their moisturisers? Can u pls pls share ur fav moisturisers? My skin has responded well to your recommendations so far, particularly alpha-h cleanser, liquid gold. I’m normal-dry, on sensitive side, 30 yo, breakout prone and worry abt aging!! I hope u have time to answer me!! I’m desperate to get my skin in tip top condition for a big occasion in a month!!

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