27 Top-Rated Solutions For Skin That's Red, Irritated, and Stressed AF Right Now
In this time of social distancing, is anyone else out there noticing some rather unwelcome "guests" popping up where they weren't invited — and definitely well within six feet? Yes, we're talking about the blemishes, redness, and rough patches emerging from times of increased stress (and extended time indoors in drier air).
While there are spot treatments to specifically target these issues, you can actually soothe the area at various steps in your entire skin-care routine. After all, swapping in a gentler face wash or looking for calming ingredients like colloidal oatmeal, probiotics, and aloe vera in moisturizers can help, too. And whether this development stems from existing skin conditions (like rosacea, eczema, and dermatitis) or is a new reaction to protective face masks, there are plenty of solutions right at your fingertips.
To help you find it, we looked for the skin-care products at Sephora that had the best ratings and reviews for anyone dealing with irritated skin. Ahead, find the top serums, masks, toners, creams, and other things to give your stressed skin a helping hand.
Dr. Zenovia Skincare Aloe Vera Blemish Soothing Moisturizer
This new Dr. Zenovia Skincare Aloe Vera Blemish Soothing Moisturizer ($38) already earns high marks from other Sephora shoppers we imagine thanks, in part, to the medical-grade aloe vera packed inside. This nutritive ingredient is rich in skin-soothing vitamins and antioxidants that take on breakouts, redness, and other irritation.
Dr. Jart+ Cicapair Tiger Grass Calming Mist
No matter when sensitivity strikes, you're easily always covered with this pocketable Dr. Jart+ Cicapair Tiger Grass Calming Mist ($23). It improves your body's natural defense against irritation and damage later, plus features tiger grass to instantly soothe and protect delicate skin at the same time.
Drunk Elephant JuJu Exfoliating Bar
If the thought of exfoliation makes you imagine even more redness, this super-mild Drunk Elephant JuJu Exfoliating Bar ($28) actually uses thermal mud and bamboo with zero harsh ingredients, soap, or fragrance involved. Plus, if you're looking for an extra face wash to alternate in, there's a Drunk Elephant Baby Bar Travel Duo with Case ($22) including mini versions of this bar and the Pekee that clarifies, balances, and hydrates skin as it cleanses.
Skinfix Redness Recovery+ Antioxidant Eye Treatment
When the exhaustion you're feeling within has made its way to visible results under your eyes, this Skinfix Redness Recovery+ Antioxidant Eye Treatment ($48) brings five clinically-active ingredients — including peptides — to get things back on track. Just say bye to redness and puffiness right now.
Laneige Hypoallergenic Cica Sleeping Mask
Normally while you're happily fast asleep your skin is being weakened as it loses moisture and oil overnight . . . but that's where this Laneige Hypoallergenic Cica Sleeping Mask ($34) comes in. It's intensely hydrating thanks to the brand's fermented forest yeast extract which is does a better job at strengthening skin's barrier and soothing redness than many other traditional cica products.
Origins Mega-Mushroom Skin Relief Micellar Cleanser
One of the best things about micellar waters is that they can be used pretty much anytime as there's no rinsing necessary. This Origins Mega-Mushroom Skin Relief Micellar Cleanser ($36) not only comforts and gently cleanses, it also features a unique blend of reishi, cordyceps, and fermented chaga mushrooms to reduce visible redness and sensitivity, too.
Belif Problem Solution Toner
We like solutions to problems as much as anyone else and this Belif Problem Solution Toner ($28) uses a solution of white willow bark extract and tea tree oil to solve problematic skin conditions. It minimizes breakouts and the look of pores, but also balances so your complexion looks more refreshed and even-toned, too.
Ren Clean Skincare Atlantic Kelp and Magnesium Salt Anti-Fatigue Exfoliating Body Scrub
If your muscles are aching, the simple act of rubbing in the Ren Clean Skincare Atlantic Kelp and Magnesium Salt Anti-Fatigue Exfoliating Body Scrub ($49) activates microcirculation in your body to offer some relief. The scrub also includes epsom and sea salts to relax visible signs of irritation on stressed skin, plus energizing essential oils (like sage and rosemary) fight fatigue as well.
Dr. Jart+ Shake and Shot Rubber Soothing Mask
The Dr. Jart+ Shake and Shot Rubber Soothing Mask ($12) can take red — or otherwise irritated — skin and chill it right out with cooling aloe vera, protective guava-leaf extract, and soothing vitamin K3 (that's especially good for calming sensitive skin).
Youth To The People Adaptogen Deep Moisture Cream with Ashwagandha + Reishi
With more than 1,100 five-star reviews from Sephora shoppers, this Youth To The People Adaptogen Deep Moisture Cream with Ashwagandha + Reishi ($18-$58) is a popular choice to hydrate dry, reactive skin. It gets that job done with a squalane, jojoba, and shea butter trio infused with botanicals like ashwagandha (to reduce signs of fatigue) and fermented reishi (to fight premature signs of aging).
The Inkey List Oat Cleansing Balm
The Inkey List Oat Cleansing Balm ($10) is able to eliminate makeup and oil from your skin without removing necessary moisture. It uses colloidal oatmeal and oat kernel oil to support skin's moisture barrier as it soothes any irritation, too.
First Aid Beauty FAB Pharma Arnica Relief and Rescue Mask
The soothing First Aid Beauty FAB Pharma Arnica Relief and Rescue Mask ($32) helps relieve stressed, dehydrated skin with arnica and calendula flowers. It's actually a mask that is not meant to be rinsed off — just leave it on for 15 minutes and massage in any leftover product for soft, dewy skin. Ahh.
Herbivore Emerald CBD + Adaptogens Deep Moisture Glow Oil
You're stressed, your skin's stressed, and then your stressed skin is making you even more stressed. Well, Herbivore Emerald CBD + Adaptogens Deep Moisture Glow Oil ($58) packs a total range of cannabinoids to calm redness and boost hydration, and adds in ashwagandha to help skin cope with lack of sleep, daily stress, pollution, and more.
Kiehl's Since 1851 Calendula Petal-Infused Calming Mask with Aloe Vera
Not only does this Kiehl's Since 1851 Calendula Petal-Infused Calming Mask with Aloe Vera ($45) use aloe to soothe visible signs of irritation, there are also hand-picked calendula flower petals and calendula extract to buddy up and help take on dryness in just 15 minutes' time.
Peter Thomas Roth Green Releaf Calming Face Oil
The skin-nurturing "releaf" in this Peter Thomas Roth Green Releaf Calming Face Oil ($68) comes from cannabis sativa seed oil but there's also bisabolol and ginger root extract inside, too. This elixir can bring brightness back, cool any inflammation, and reduce flakiness that may be especially noticeable in winter months.
Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Stress Rescue Super Serum with Niacinamide
While this Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Stress Rescue Super Serum with Niacinamide ($74) can't take your worries away, it can help smooth worry lines. When you're facing that (or redness, breakouts, and other signs of stress-induced aging), this serum's ashwagandha, goji berries, and niacinamide tackle it head on.
Glamglow Supermud Charcoal Instant Treatment Mask
The ever-popular Glamglow Supermud Charcoal Instant Treatment Mask ($25-$86) has six exfoliating acids that work hard to unclog pores, especially in sensitive acne-prone skin. These acids — which include mandelic, tartaric, and pyruvic — work alongside activated-x charcoal to bring about the glowing, clear complexion that stress stripped away.
Algenist Genius Collagen Calming Relief
If your skin is not only red but also rougher-looking these days, the Algenist Genius Collagen Calming Relief ($58) offers vegan collagen and algae-rich alguronic acid too soothe and smooth, plus makes skin stay bouncier and well-hydrated for days to come.
Skinfix Eczema+ Hand Repair Cream
All that handwashing may do a number on your skin, and for people who already suffer from eczema, this can be even worse. The top-rated Skinfix Eczema+ Hand Repair Cream ($18) offers itch-relieving sweet almond oil plus colloidal oatmeal that calm rashes and dermatitis on cracked hands, too.
Herbivore Blue Tansy Fruit Enzyme Resurfacing Clarity Mask
This cooling Herbivore Blue Tansy Fruit Enzyme Resurfacing Clarity Mask ($48) features anti-inflammatory blue tansy oil coupled with pore-unclogging aloe leaf — and both of those ingredients also soothe skin while treating it. The gel mask also has papaya and pineapple to exfoliate dead skin cells so skin is left brighter, too.
Tatcha The Indigo Cream Soothing Skin Protectant
Tatcha The Indigo Cream Soothing Skin Protectant ($85) is not only a cushiony, noncomedogenic moisturizer that softens and firms skin. There's also natural indigo extract and calming colloidal oatmeal to create a protective layer against anything that may cause irritation moving forward.
Tower 28 Beauty SOS Save.Our.Skin Daily Rescue Facial Spray Mini
For an irritated-skin emergency, a spritz of the top-rated Tower 28 Beauty SOS Save.Our.Skin Daily Rescue Facial Spray Mini ($12) does more than just offer a quick dose of cool relief. This spray includes hypochlorous acid, which triggers an immune boost to soothe and heal skin. (FYI, this compound already does the same thing in your body's internal defense system, so you're getting some extra, natural help here.)
Youth To The People Activate Your Calm Kit
If only we could speak it into existence, but the aptly named Youth To The People Activate Your Calm Kit ($24) still packs together a rich cream and a moisturizing mist to soothe dehydrated skin (plus earned an average 4.6 rating from other shoppers). Peptides alongside adaptogens reishi and ashwagandha also reduce redness and guard against any environmental stressors that brought about the unwanted reaction in the first place.
Josie Maran Argan Infinity Cream Intensive Creamy Oil
Among the many moisturizing uses for this popular Josie Maran Argan Infinity Cream Intensive Creamy Oil ($28), several are perfect for stressed skin in particular. If parts of your face are irritated or dried out by the elements (or a protective mask), the argan oil can soothe those and even depuff swollen undereyes, too.
First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Wild Oat Hydrating Toner
The milky First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Wild Oat Hydrating Toner ($22) uses both wild oats and colloidal oatmeal to calm stressed skin. Hydrating honey and hyaluronic acid also help plump it up for better absorption of any other soothing products that follow.
Korres Greek Yoghurt Calming + Cooling Gel
This Korres Greek Yoghurt Calming + Cooling Gel ($26) can not only help soothe sensitive skin (thanks to the probiotics in its real Greek yogurt), but it's also rather nice post-workout when stocked in the fridge for a chilly solution for redness.
Caudalie Grape Water
This Caudalie Grape Water ($10-$18) comes directly from grapes in Bordeaux, adding in polysaccharides, mineral salts, and potassium — while still remaining 100 percent organic. This hydrating spray not only cools skin on the fly (or as a makeup setter), but its ingredients can also calm redness from rosacea, rashes, or post-peel irritation.
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