Efficacy of the combined use of a facial cleanser and moisturizers for the care of mild acne patients with sensitive skin

J Dermatol. 2015 Feb;42(2):181-8. doi: 10.1111/1346-8138.12720. Epub 2014 Dec 6.


Acne is a common skin disease that involves the seborrheic area of the face and results from the obstruction of hair follicles followed by inflammation. Careful face washing helps to improve and prevent acne; however, intensive washing has a risk of inducing skin barrier impairment and dry skin, especially in sensitive skin. We hypothesized that skin care combining mild skin cleansing and intensive moisturizing ("combination skin care") may be effective in the care of acne in subjects with dry skin and/or sensitive skin. We developed a combination skin care with a weakly acidic foaming facial skin cleanser based on a mild detergent, an aqueous lotion with eucalyptus extract and a moisturizing gel containing pseudo-ceramide and eucalyptus extract. To optimize an ideal facial skin care system for mild acne on sensitive skin, we performed a 4-week clinical trial with 29 post-adolescent Japanese women with mild acne with dry and sensitive skin. The acne significantly decreased after this trial accompanied by the improvement of dry skin, a significantly increased endogenous ceramide level in the stratum corneum and an elongated alkyl chain length of the non-hydroxy acyl sphingosine type ceramide. No adverse events due to the test samples were observed. Based on diagnosis by a dermatologist, 97% of the subjects found the combination skin care to be "useful" or "slightly useful". Based on these findings, the combined use of a facial skin cleanser and moisturizers is safe and effective for the care of acne in post-adolescent Japanese women with sensitive skin.

Keywords: acne; barrier function; ceramide; dry skin; sensitive skin.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acne Vulgaris / complications
  • Acne Vulgaris / drug therapy*
  • Acne Vulgaris / pathology
  • Adult
  • Ceramides / metabolism
  • Detergents / therapeutic use*
  • Epidermis / drug effects
  • Epidermis / metabolism
  • Eucalyptus*
  • Female
  • Gels
  • Humans
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use*
  • Sensation Disorders / complications
  • Skin Care / methods*
  • Skin Cream / therapeutic use*
  • Young Adult


  • Ceramides
  • Detergents
  • Gels
  • Plant Extracts