As unfair as it might be, most non–medical professionals, simply expect dermatologists to have picture-perfect skin. And 9 times out of 10, they do — but not without putting the work in. Sure, some dermatologists might be blessed with naturally cooperative complexions, but countless others struggle with common skin woes, like acne and eczema, just like the rest of us.
It definitely helps to have access to treatments like lasers, peels, and the laundry list of injectables available, but every dermatologist will tell you that determining and sticking to a core routine that caters to your skin type is crucial in order to maintain optimal skin health.
Below find 4 full skin-care routines
Joshua Zeichner, Dermatologist in New York City
Joshua Zeichner, the director of cosmetic and clinical Research at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, likes to keep his routine simple. He says. "I aim to protect the skin during the day and repair it from any damage in the evening," Right now, he's reaching for Dove's Deep Moisture Shower Foam, as he says it cleanses without drying or stripping the skin of necessary oils.
Fresh out the shower, he relies on a vitamin C serum, which he says he uses in the morning to prevent free-radical damage during the day. After serum, Zeichner skips a standalone moisturizer and instead goes straight in with a hydrating sunscreen. His sun-damage shield of choice at the moment is Neutrogena Healthy Defense Moisturizer SPF 50.
Shari Marchbein, Dermatologist in New York City
Courtesy of Dr. Marchbein/Brittany Theophilus
Shari Marchbein is a clinical assistant professor of dermatology at NYU's School of Medicine. She's also one of the countless dermatologists who struggle with both acne and eczema. "I have a combination of sensitive yet breakout-prone skin, so I tend to keep things really simple," she says. "The most important aspects for me [in the morning] are daily sunscreen with at least SPF 30 [and] an antioxidant vitamin C serum."
Before these two steps, however, she cleanses her skin with a super gentle face wash, which right now is Simple Waterboost Micellar Gel Wash. For free-radical protection, she relies on the SkinCeuticals Phloretin CF, a vitamin-packed serum that protects the skin from environmental stressors. She then follows up with a moisturizer that contains sunscreen, just like Zeichner. Her two favorites are Neutrogena Healthy Defense SPF 50 and Elizabeth Arden’s Prevage City Smart SPF 50, the latter of which also shields the skin from pollution.
Shereene Idriss, Dermatologist at Union Square Laser Dermatology
Courtesy of Dr. Idriss/Brittany Theophilus
Shereene Idriss is a New York City dermatologist specializing in facial aesthetics and rejuvenation. She says: "Generally, I'll shower and wash my face with water only," she says. "I’ve most likely exfoliated the night before and therefore don’t want to overstrip my skin of its natural oils," she explains of her cleanser-free step. Then she goes right in with an antioxidant serum — everyone's favorite, SkinCeuticals CE Ferulic. "It's my personal go-to because it contains a potent triple combination of antioxidants, including vitamins C, E, and ferulic acid — this simple step helps dramatically with the improvement of fine lines, skin firmness, and overall brightening."
For a moisturizer that contains SPF, she swears by the Alastin HydraTint Pro Mineral Broad Spectrum Sunscreen SPF 36. "It offers powerful yet lightweight protection, skin-hydrating ingredients, and antioxidants, like green tea extract and vitamin E, which protect against pollution-induced damage," she says. "This product has a subtle complexion-enhancing tint that evens out my skin tone and allows me to start my day without any makeup on."
Sejal Shah, Founder of Smarter Skin Dermatology
Courtesy of Dr. Shah/Brittany Theophilus
Sejal Shah, a dermatologist in New York City, prides herself on being a minimalist when it comes to her skin. "In the morning, I rotate between First Aid Beauty Face Cleanser and CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser, followed by a vitamin C serum and moisturizer with SPF," says Shah. For serum, she's loyal to the Revision Vitamin C Lotion 30%, and as far as moisturizer goes, she rotates between EltaMD UV Clear and the MD Solar Science Creme Mineral Beauty Balm.