Overview of Seborrheic Dermatitis Face Treatments

Hi Michael,

You said that you were using Restoraderm Cleanser and Moisturizer. I googled it to see if I can purchase some to try out but Cetaphil Restoradem body wash keeps coming out. Is that the Restoraderm you are using or a completely different one?

Any info would be greatly appreciated.


Hi Kelly,

Sorry about the confusion. Someone actually pointed this out previously, but I forgot to clarify in my writing.

This appears to be the one I am using right now: http://www.cetaphil.ca/en/products/restoraderm.
My sample packs are labeled different, but the ingredients are identical. Here is a picture of my samples. My last sample of the cleanser/wash is almost out and I’m planning to purchase a full bottle from Wal-Mart (saw they had it on the shelves) here in Canada.

One other thing to note is that some of the ones listed of Amazon.com have a slightly different ingredients list.
Not sure if that is the newer formula or the older one. Also I don’t know if that formula works as good, better, or worse.

Maybe try a local pediatric clinic, I believe they commonly carry samples for child eczema.

Best of luck. If you can, post an update on where you end up finding it.

Hi Kelly,

So I ended up going down to Wal-Mart to finally get a full bottle (samples are almost done). Here they are on the shelf here in Canada.

At first I didn’t even think they had them any more as they are not near the other Cetaphil products. They were off to the side with some moisturiser products.

As an additional bonus they have coupons on the back (wash has $2 off moisturiser coupon and vice versa).

Michael, thank you for setting up this website and passing on your knowledge. I have had red and flaky skin (nose, sides of nose, eyebrows) for the last 20 years. I didn’t even realise it was seb derm until someone mentioned it about a month ago.

When I washed my face with soap, acne lotion, or most types of cleansers, it made my face dry and didn’t clear it up at all. So I tended to just use moisturiser (nivea and then e45). I realise now although this helped with the dryness, it just led to more inflammation.

After reading your blog, I have been using cetaphil cleanser twice a day for the last two weeks and my skin has cleared up and is the best it’s been for 20 years. I don’t really use the moisturiser as it seems to make me a touch red and shiny.

It’s great to just have normal skin again at last and once again thanks so much for your help!

Hi Nick,

Thank you for the update. Glad to hear that the Cetaphil helped. It’s shocking how long some people can suffer with seborrheic dermatitis. 20 years is a significant part of ones life.

Did you also get diagnosed and prescribed creams? Did you previously attempt any anti-fungal creams?

Similar to your experience none of the other cleansers were as ever as effective as this one.

As for the moisturizer I use an extremely tiny amount. Typically while my face is still wet I just take a dab and it mixes with the water on my face. The 30ml samples can last me for 3-4 months with nightly use. It feels great massaging my skin like this. However, it’s good to hear that even without the cleanser is just as effective.

Thanks again for leaving the update. Glad my writing has made a difference. All the best.

Hi Michael,
I went to the Doctor a few times. I was diagnosed with adult acne as my skin would often erupt and was prescribed steroid tablets or cream. I also tried dakatarin and hydrocortisone and the odd acne cleanser. But I must admit I was quite sparing with these treatments as I was wary of them being too harsh and they didn’t seem to help much.
I assumed the problem was diet related and cut down on processed wheat which seemed to help a bit. When I tried keeping to just vegetables and fruit this definitely seemed to clear up my skin, but this was unsustainable as I was losing too much weight.
Thanks for the tip re the moisturiser and I will try again at some point in a smaller dose.
By the way you mention in one of your articles your cleanser is ‘clearasil’. I think this is a different product (for acne) and you mean ‘cetaphil’?
Cheers Nick

Hi Nick,

Thanks for checking back. Additional thank you for spotting my “clearasil” mistakes. Sometimes mix the two up. Went back and made sure everything is corrected. Originally I meant Cetaphil and I’ve never tried using clearasil for treating my seborrheic dermatitis.

Definitely agree with you on the diet thing. My weight and energy was always up and down when going on vegetables/fruits.

How good are your results with the Cetaphil?

Thanks again.

Hi Michael,

Just spent a few hours reading through your site, thank you so much for sharing your knowledge with us. I will be purchasing the cetaphil tomorrow. I have used the normal cetaphil face wash in the past but never the restoraderm. I actually avoided trying it a few weeks ago because I thought it was meant as a body wash. The one I saw had lanolin and oils in the ingredient list. Is there a face wash version of the restoraderm meant for sensitive skin? Thanks again for your insights on this horrible condition!



i would like to ask if this cleanser , Cetaphil Restoraderm bodywash is suitable for the face?

and also what is your routine on these two products for each day?

how many times do you wash per day with this cleanser and how often do you apply Cetaphil Restoraderm moisturizer ?

i am currently using La Roche Posay Toleriane cleanser once daily with great results as a cleanser and cetaphil classic moisurizer, small amounts of it . Im thinking of trying what you suggested.

Hi Steve,
Same as you I saw this stuff a few times in the store before. However, I wasn’t really sure if it was meant for the face.
On several occasions I purchased other cleansers instead of it (Cerave, SebaMed, Aveeno). It wasn’t until I got a bunch of samples that I gave it a try.

Don’t think there is a face wash version, but this stuff is super gentle. In a way I can’t really see myself using it as a body wash.

The ingredients list of my bottle doesn’t seem to have Lanolin, but it does have Shea Butter and Sunflower Seed Oil (even though oils seems to be bad in general, in this they are fine for me).
Here is a picture of the wash and moisturiser at my local Wal-Mart.

If you have the time please share any updates you may have.

Best of luck and hope this stuff helps.

Hello Again,
You can disregard the cleanser question in the other comment :).

The labelling threw me off as well in the beginning. The Cetpahil Restoraderm is quite gentle.
Can’t really see myself actually using this stuff as an actual body wash.

My routine is now really bare bones. This is what I do practically every single night (have missed an odd day here and there without any negatives):

  1. Wash my face with the Restoraderm using only cold/room-temperature water
  2. Brush my teeth allowing the face to air dry during this time
  3. After brushing my teeth my face still has some moisture left from washing, but is mainly dry. I take a tiny amount of the moisturiser and massage it into the skin. The water moisture helps to spread the moisturiser really thin, and the moisturiser seems to help lock in the moisture.

With this approach I barely use any moisturiser at all, but I feel the tiny amount I do use goes a long way.

For the scalp I actually went against most the suggestions I read online. Instead of controlling the oils on the my scalp I went and bought a quality moisturising shampoo.
This is all I use now. Sometimes I can feel the dandruff flakes start to appear, but a bit of extra massaging the scalp with the shampoo seems to make it go away.
However, my scalp and hair are much better off now that I stopped using Head and Shoulders.

Additionally I’ve stopped the glutamine supplementation and currently only wash my face once a day before heading to bed.
Right now I eat whatever I feel like, can drink alcohol (even beer finally seems to be okay), exercise and sweat are no longer a problem, and even intense stress doesn’t seem to cause any issues.

Hope this helps.
Best of luck and look forward to hearing any updates from you.

Hello again Michael,

thank you for your answear i will check some other potential remedies first and then buy the cetaphil products as i already have the classic moisturizer which is actually very good.

For my hair i use ACV(leave it for 5 minutes) after i shampoo with orzene shampoo every now and then and i dont have so much flaking now . I will also have in mind this shampoo which seems good.

I would like to ask you something. Is it wrong that after i shower i wipe with a clean towel the dead skin out off my face(usually white small pieces of dead skin) ? it really feels good when i do this but im worried if this action damages my skin and then it is easier for incredients or things i might be allergic to,to penetrate my skin(?)

i would also like to tell everyone that i am a member of a forum which one thread is about seborrheic dermatitis . So here is the link and my nickname is the same there:

Hi Again,

Yeah the shampoo is probably much better than I have previously described it being.
The ingredients list includes many things which are suppose to be quite good for helping control seborrheic dermatitis.

For example the main ingredient is Aloe Vera (as opposed to water being the main ingredient in most others). Alongside of this it contains manuka honey, argan oil, arginine (an amino acid the restoraderm actually also contains, supposed to improve circulation), milk thistle, vitamin e, hyaloronic acid, borage oil, jojoba oil and a bunch of others. Granted since there is so much stuff it’s hard to known if there is actually enough of any of them. The smell of the stuff is enough for me (it’s like orange candies from childhood).

So I guess the shampoo is not really a “simple” moisturising shampoo as I have described it before.
It might actually be some of the stuff that’s been controlling the SD on my scalp, not sure though.
Maybe if someone else gives it a try, we will have more evidence.

Thanks for the link to the forum. I’ve gone through that whole thread before and picked out all the potential solutions.
If I’m not mistaken I tried about 75-80% of the stuff that people had good results with there.

Actually used Evernote to collect some of the stuff from there and other places.
Here is my notebook for that: https://www.evernote.com/pub/vzeazy/forumscrape

Hope that helps. All the best and thanks again for updating.

Hi Michael,
I went ahead and bought the Restoraderm, and going to try out. I’ll be giving you weekly updates to see how it turns out. It’s labeled as Cetaphil Restoraderm, Eczema Calming Body Wash. Is that the same thing? It gives me somewhat a burning sensation when I use it, but goes away shortly after I wash it off. Did you experience the same thing? I’ll be also starting on the L-Glutamine to see if that makes a difference at all. Thank you again for this informative website!

Hey man, I just wanted to thank you for all this. I’ve struggled with dandruff since I was young, and then in my teens I started suffering from painfully dry skin and seborrheic dermatitis. Your suggestion for cetaphil restoraderm has been the only thing that has left me essentially symptom free. Thank you so much, you’ve changed my life if even in a small way.

Man, I’m glad I came across your website today.

I just started having flakes and redness on the sides of my nose beginning a few months ago, previously nothing but occasional light dandruff. Thought it would go away but it didn’t and since it wasn’t super bad I did nothing.

Could be coincidence but I think it started when I started using this rose oil for my face, and now that you mention it my diet did change from mainly meat and vegetables to high protein/fat and high carbs. Been eating bit of sugar too, which I normally don’t like. Generally pretty healthy with no digestion/gut/food issues though.

Anyway, decided to do something about it tonight. Went to Shoppers and bought some tea tree face wash and Selsum Blue 2.5% after minimal research. Like yourself I was a little concerned about going so chemical/broad anti-fungal bacterial approach. I also agree with you that the over-researching health issues on the internet really is detrimental if not outright depressing.

I’m going to head back to store and return that Selsum Blue (stuff’s expensive) and head to Whole paycheck and find that Andalou shampoo. Looks to be what l was thinking would work… I agree with you about needing the conventional stuff in perpetuity or risk it coming back worse.

I actually have a bit of glutamine somewhere as well. Couldn’t hurt.

Anyhow, thanks a bunch for the information and well linked pictures of the products you’re using. It helps that I think we’re from the same city. Take care.

I’ll let you know how it works out.

Hi Luis,

Yeah that seems like the same thing. Here is the ingredients list of the one I have, you can compare yours:

aqua (purifed water/eau purifée), butyrospermum parkii (shea butter), sodium trideceth sulfate, glycerin, helianthus annuus (sunflower) seed oil, sodium chloride, sodium lauramphoacetate, cocamide MEA, citric acid, niacinamide, sodium PCA (filaggrin BP), tocopheryl acetate, 1,2-Hexanediol and caprylyl glycol, disodium EDTA, guar hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride, allantoin, potassium sorbate, arginine (filaggrin BP), methylisothiazolinone

For me I didn’t get any burning sensation, how bad is your skin at the moment?
When I started my skin wasn’t flaring much. Has your skin calmed to it since?

Thanks for the positive comment. Hope it ends up working out for you as well. Looking forward to hearing any progress you make. All the best.

Hey Kyle,
Thanks for the update. Glad that it worked out for you and it impacted your life in a positive way :slight_smile:
You have any certain approach with the washing?
All the best.

Hi Scott,
Thanks for the update. I’m in Vancouver if that helps.
Let me know how the shampoo works out? Are you using anything for the face?

Yeah, I’m not really still 100% if the glutamine really helped as much as I think it did. Might be more clear if other people confirm it as well.

Also one thing that I did right before going to the Andalou was use a more natural anti-fungal shampoo. It used a mineral based coal tar variant. This stuff had a transitioning faze and was more of head paste (didn’t sud) than a typical shampoo.

The reason I switched was that stuff was really expensive (+$30) and the only place I could find with a reasonable price was the US Amazon (inconvenient). The ingredients of it can be found on their page here. However, mine doesn’t contain the xanthan gum and recent reviews on Amazon seem to be for that formula (here is mine).

Not sure if that shampoo was a good transitioning step to the Andalou.

Also towards the end you mentioned “Whole paycheck”, I’m guessing Whole Foods? :slight_smile:
Look forward to hearing any updates. All the best.