7 Tips to Finding Moisturizer That Works for Seborrheic Dermatitis

Hi Eliza,

The honey to water ratio I found the best was 9 parts honey to 1 part water. More details on the honey approach can be found in the "Basics of Treating Seborrheic Dermatitis with Raw Honey" post.

Seborrheic dermatitis is heavily correlated with immunosuppression. From what I remember the correlation with SD and AIDS is off the charts, something like 40-80% (study). HIV it's something like 36%. In the general population the percentage is somewhere closer to 3-5%. This is likely to due to suppressed sebum protection from the fungus that causes the SD. (Common superficial fungal infections in immunosuppressed patients).

Let me know if you have any other questiosn. Hope that helps and best of luck!

Hi, first time on your site. Just wanted to tell you what has helped me. I am 29 yr old male and have SD flare-ups around mustache area (worse when it grows, so I keep it shaved) and front scalp/hairline. Being a typical guy with minimal skincare products, I don’t moisturize everyday like I should, but when this started 3 years ago, I already had some Simple Rich Moisturizer for use with mild acne treatment (I think it’s a UK brand that came to US retailers a few years ago. I get it at Walmart). It works like magic for me. When it flares and gets even worse from the irritation of shaving, it’s very noticeable red blotches between my mouth and nose. Looks horrible. But, I just use the Simple moisturizer, it burns slightly for a minute,and literally within hours, the redness has faded to pink and does not hurt or itch. After doing that twice a day for just 2 days, and it’s completely gone. No signs of it, just even, healthy looking skin. I’m sure if I was more diligent in using it every day, I’d probably never see it again. Anyway, I admit I didn’t read all the article information, and so I don’t know if Simple has any concerning ingredients. But, for me, it heals it so well and fast, I’m always surprised it’s not a medicated cream of some kind. Hope maybe it can help some others.

Hi Stephen,

Thanks for the tip. It seems that everyones skin is different and once they can find a moisturizer that works for them, things drastically improve. I’m thinking of buying a large variety of different products and putting together a sort of tester pack so people can find something that’s right for them. What do you think of this idea?

Is this the cream you are using? Overall the ingredients seem to look good from what I know so far.

Thanks again for the tip.

Thank you for this article! A quick question (s) regarding Seborrheic Dermatitis 1.) in your research have you come across why certain areas of the face have ‘flares’ more that others? like, are some areas more prone to SD? The last 2 years I had a 'breakout" of SD on my eyelids and moves up to the brows during winter months, went to the dermatologist and got diagnosed with SD, but this year it started in late Spring on the right side of my forehead, moving to the laugh lines around the mouth and chin. But, now AGAIN the eye area, lids, brows, under the eyes and the outside corner of the eyes. 2.) what if anything is safe to use around the eyes? The rash, redness, flaking skin is all bothersome and lowers your self esteem, but nothing is comparable to the B U R N I N G associated with SD on and around your eye area. The dr’s want to give steroid creams for this , but the # 1 caution is NOT to get it on, in or around the eyes??? I’ve spent endless hours researching but not coming across anything or anyone with it around the eyes and suggestions of what helps?

Hi Shannon,

From everything I’ve read so far it appears that heat attracts the issues. Areas of heat produce more oil, attract more microbial activity and as a result produce seborrheic dermatitis.
Hard to say why it moves around the face. I experienced this as well. What I believe happens is that the skin in that area may become good at defending itself, so the microbes react and relocate their activity to a different region that is also viable for them.

The area around the eyes is very tricky. Currently I am using the Biom8 fairly close to the eyes, but I make sure to never actually get it in my eye as it would likely cause irritation.

Overall though I think a comprehensive approach is necessary for long term results. If you haven’t yet, I recommend you take a look at the chapter drafts for a book I’ve been working on:

It goes into significant detail about a variety of associated topics.

Hope that helps and all the best.

Interesting info, particularly regarding the spread of the seborrheic bacteria by certain ingredients.

Hi Chris,

Glad you found the information helpful.
Let me know if of items mention show results.

Best of luck!

Writer - fyi Malassezia is a yeast, not a bacteria.

‘‘At the fundamental level the majority oils do not work, because they feed the bacteria (Malassezia) which is involved in seborrheic dermatitis’’

Hi Tony,

A huge thanks for your comment! Quite an embarrassing mistake, but my knowledge has been developing significantly since the writing of this post. Have gone ahead and corrected throughout.

At first this blog was simply a collection of my own thoughts and general notes I thought may be helpful. However, in the last year my approach has become much more academic. The eBook is primarily based on medical papers and provides a much more deep understanding of the condition. Will likely need to go back through each post and look for these sorts of mistakes.

Have emailed gone ahead and emailed you a copy of the eBook. Let me know what you think.

Thanks again and best of luck in the New Year!

Is the biom-8 okay to use on scalp areas with sebborheic dermatitis?

Hi Cindy,

Many users have reported using the Biom8 on the scalp with great success. Personally, I’ve only been using it on my facial area (and hairline). However, these is a version of Biom8 in the making specifically formulated for scalp applications (some may argue that it may not even be needed as the original has been effective enough). This scalp version is planned to be release sometime next week.

Hope that helps.
Please let me know if you have any other question.

I’m 29 and have SD. I’ve been using a Jericho black sea mud soap now and it will contain it with minimal flare ups. Recently my cheeks have been burning as if they are too dry. What is a good facial wash to try first as well as moisturizer? I also get the flakes in my ears, good to hear I’m not the only one.

how much does cetaphil restoraderm cost? I see it on amazon. Its so expensive, about $70. You buy it with that price, dont you?

hello, Thank you for your post. I’m asian. I’m a student. Can u tell me how much cetaphil restoraderm costs? I see it on amazon. Its so expensive, about $70. You buy it with that price, dont you?

Hi Christopher,

Thanks for checking in and providing your experience.
Out of all the commercial products out there, the Cetaphil Restoraderm line was my favourite for control my SD.
It provide good results for almost a year (skin remained SD free). A more detailed outline of my experience with these products can be found here:

My Seborrheic Dermatitis Skin Regimen

After a while, this approach seemed to loose effectiveness. This pushed me to keep doing research and then I ended up creating my own solution. A more detailed outline and overview of it can be found here:

My Seborrheic Dermatitis Skin Regimen 2.0

Others who have used it have reported similar results to me. However, there are also people who it didn’t seem to work for. This is likely due to a different set of microbes being at work on these individual’s skin.

Hope that helps.
Best of luck.

I really like this info given- I suffer from eczema and Seborrheic Dermatitis. I am allergic to coconut and all properties of coconut so I find it very hard for many years to find a good lotion with no coconut oils or properties( cocoate, caprilic Triglicerides copypolymer etc) I used to use the old vaseline intensive care lotion yellow bottle fro the late 90’s but this has now been discontinued and a new vaseline lotions are introduced with new ingredients that don’t agree with me. Would really love more advice as it making me more depressed especially at work having to face customers. Please help- I’m open to everything…

Hi every moisturiser seems to make things worse. I have been moisturising my t zone for years but maybe this is what is making it worse. Also have tried all medicated creams but none have done much to improve things. My t zone is not red. It is flaking and itching/irritated. Maybe all the moisturising is adding to the problem? Have heard people have succes with sea salt in water as a face wash. Have you heard of this or AVC on a cotton wool pad applied to the face? Your thoughts would be Much appreciated.

Hi Huyen,

Here in Canada they sell it at Wal-Mart. Both the cleanser and the moisturizer cost about $10-15 each. Amazon.com has them listed for roughly the same price as well. Not sure where you are located, but perhaps internationally it becomes much more expensive.

However, my regimen has currently changed from using Restoraderm products. A more detailed outline of my current regimen can be found here:
My Seborrheic Dermatitis Skin Regimen 2.0

Hope that helps and best of luck!

Hi Michael,

Just wondering if ever you try ACV? I have SD on my eyebrow and now its on my chin as well, its really itchy and flaky. I tried coconut oil but it makes worst! Then make some research and i found Apple cider Vinegar. I am using the Cerave which is ok but still i have very dry face and itchy face. I am thinking to switch to cethapil gentle cleanser and moisturising cream. I will wait for your reply thank you.

Really like the article, thank you for educating me! I suffer from SD, usually around my goatee, especially when I trim it. I have tried many products, but not much luck controlling, except when I use a steroid cream.

I’m trying to purchase the Cetaphil product you mention here, but can’t seem to determine which one you recommend, as there are many “Restoraderm” products. Is is the body lotion, or can you provide the specific name on the bottle?

Also, would you recommend using a pre-shave oil or another product before shaving, would this help reduce the redness / rash after shaving ?

Thank you.