Foundation doesn’t remedy persistent or chronic facial redness—it just covers it up. If you want more than the temporary fix makeup can supply, you need to start with skincare. While a dermatologist can help you pinpoint the exact cause—maybe it’s sensitivity to a common ingredient, or maybe you’re one of the 16 million Americans suffering from rosacea—there are also everyday staples, like moisturizers, specifically made to keep your skin hydrated while fading the flush.
"Redness-relief moisturizers contain the same ingredients as traditional moisturizers, but have added skin-calming ingredients," explains dermatologist Dr. Joshua Zeichner, Director of Cosmetic & Clinical Research in Dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. "The foundation of a moisturizer is a combination of occlusive, humectant, and emollient ingredients." Occlusives form a protective seal over the skin. Humectants, as Dr. Zeichner explains, act as a sponge and pull in water to the outer skin layer, while emollients smooth out rough spots on the surface of the skin. That's the magic trio.
In redness-reducing moisturizers, though, he says you'll see the above, plus common calming and anti-inflammatory ingredients like chamomile and licorice root extract. And just like any other moisturizer, they're meant to be used in the morning and at night. From French pharmacy favorites to green-tinted and cooling creams, here are a few of the best options out now.
More from InStyle
VIDEO: 6 of the Best Drugstore Finds Under $15
CLINIQUE Redness Solutions Daily Relief Cream
The Clinique aisle has it all! This daily cream is oil-free, so you don’t have to worry about breakouts popping up while you’re tackling redness.
Avene Antirougeurs Day Redness Relief Soothing Cream SPF 25
If you have sensitive or reactionary skin, Avene should be a mainstay in your daily skincare lineup. With several sub-section lines, the thermal spring water-famous brand took on redness with an SPF-infused collection that works to fade the flush and protect you from the sun without further irritation.
Paula's Choice Calm Redness Relief Moisturizer
Made with emollients and plant extracts, this daily cream will leave you with a dewy finish and a surge of moisturizer to keep your skin looking its best. It's perfect for those days when you don't want to wear any makeup, but still want a little glow.
IT COSMETICS Bye Bye Redness Skin Relief Treatment Moisturizer
Look to the color wheel for an explanation of this daily moisturizer’s green tint. Since the color is the opposite of red, it’ll help cancel out the redness on your face. Made with colloidal oatmeal, aloe, cucumber, chamomile extract, and avocado, it’ll soothe irritated skin while providing the moisture you need to keep it in tip-top shape.
Cetaphil Redness Relieving Daily Moisturizer
Ideal for sensitive skin types because it’s free of fragrance, Cetaphil created a redness-relieving line complete with a tinted daily moisturizer that provides a slight coverage to reduce the appearance of discoloration and to protect your skin from the damage of the sun with SPF 20. If you're looking for something that takes out a step from your morning routine, this is it.
La Roche-Posay Rosaliac Anti-Redness Moisturizer
Another green tint in action. La-Roche’s daily moisturizer is also infused with the brand’s signature thermal water to soothe the skin further.
DR. JART+ Cicapair Tiger Grass Cream
Dr. Jart+ has an entire line dedicated to reducing redness—this cream is designed to, yes, keep your skin calm, but to also strengthen and protect it so that you deal with less reactions from triggers in the long run.
Eucerin Redness Relief Night Cream
You’ve got your daytime cream covered but need something a little more moisturizing to count on before bed? Reach for Eucerin’s nighttime oil- and fragrance-free moisturizer made with licochalcone to keep your skin calm and under control.