The Quest to Heal Perioral Dermatitis Naturally

The Quest to Heal Perioral Dermatitis Naturally

Perioral dermatitis (PD) is a skin condition that usually starts around the mouth and can move up around the nostrils and in some cases around the eyes. It is red, scaly, slightly bumpy and inflamed. It is often mistaken for acne. It is seen mostly in women aged 15-45. In my opinion, there is a silent epidemic of PD amongst women going on right now. I can count 5 of my female friends who also have this skin condition. Often times uneducated doctors will prescribe steroid creams to treat PD, and this makes it far worse. Often times oral antibiotics clear up PD, which was the case for me, but because they don’t address the underlying cause of the PD, it often comes back later on and sometimes with vengeance. For this reason, I do not recommend treating PD with oral or topical antibiotics.

I was first diagnosed with PD in 2014. You can read more about that experience here. I did end up going on a low-dose doxycycline to treat the PD and with changes in the products I was using it cleared up. Unfortunately, in April of 2016 when I was down in Mexico on vacation, thinking I could get away with using a generic toothpaste because I forgot my SLS- and fluoride-free one, it came back again. Toothpaste is a MAJOR trigger for me. I decided this time I wasn’t going to turn to antibiotics to treat it. I wanted to figure out more about this annoying rash, what was causing it and how I could heal it naturally. I’ve made some major strides, but I do still have a small patch of it near my nose that I’m working to clear up. For the most part, no one really notices it, but of course it bothers me and it’s irritating when it flares up. If you are interested in clearing up your PD using natural approaches, I can’t stress enough how important it is to be patient. There is no magic cure for PD. It will not disappear overnight. But if you put the time and energy into trying to figure out what is causing it, I think it can be super informative in other aspects of your health.

This blog post shares some of the information, tips and products I’ve found most useful. As I continue to learn more about PD and discover new natural remedies, I will update this post for you all. As always, please do no hesitate to reach out if you have any questions. I know how annoying and disheartening PD can be. Please know you are not alone. I see you and understand what you are going through.

SLS and Fluoride Are Your Worst Enemies
This is the first piece of advice I always tell people when they tell me they have PD. Check every product label. Seriously. Even your laundry detergent. Get rid of anything with Sodium Lauryl Sulfate or better yet any Sulfate containing products. This may mean parting with your favorite cover up and mascara. Also seek out a new fluoride-free toothpaste. I’m personally sensitive to mint toothpaste too, so I use this one and love it. Also of note, cinnamon flavoring can irritate PD.

PD Is Complex – Bacterial, Hormonal, Fungal or Inflammatory?
Pinpointing the exact cause of PD is often times difficult. I believe the cause can be bacterial, hormonal, fungal, inflammatory or a combination of these. I always say a good place to start is to try treating it as though it’s fungal. Many people have had successes using over-the-counter anti fungal creams, like Lotrimin, to treat their PD. After much trial and error, I think mine is mostly inflammatory and bacteria related. A common thread for people with inflammatory skin conditions, like PD and rosacea, is impaired barrier function. This basically means the skin has lost its ability to retain moisture. Because the skin barrier can’t perform this function as effectively, it allows external stressors and irritants (pollution, allergen particles, etc.) to permeate deeper into the skin. This causes the skin to be more vulnerable and reactive, ultimately making the skin more rapidly and strongly irritated.

Less Is More
If I could stress one point more than any other it’s this. Most people’s initial instinct to any skin condition is to try to figure out what they can put on it to make it go away. Unfortunately with PD there is no magic cream to make it disappear. PD actually would rather be left alone. If you can avoid wearing makeup, do it. There is nothing PD hates more than foundation and cover up. Don’t try to put a bunch of natural product remedies (coconut oil, apple cider vinegar, tea tree, etc.) because they won’t work. Honestly, you’ll probably find that your PD is happiest with nothing on it. I’ve tried pretty every product under the sun, and I’ve found a few that I feel are the best on the market. These products have been formulated by women especially for people with PD. My PD skincare routine goes like this:

I use my jade roller in the morning and at night before applying any products to my face. This helps with increased blood circulation and decreases inflammation. I wash my face alternating with warm and cool water in the morning – no soap – followed by January Labs Restorative Tonic and then Marie Veronique + Kristina Holey’s Soothing B3 Serum followed by their Barrier Restore Serum. I use the Osmia Organics Black Clay Facial Bar to cleanse at night. I follow cleansing with the Restorative Tonic. If you also struggle with hormonal acne, or any sort of chronic breakouts like I do, follow with the Intensive Repair Serum. This is a super potent product, so I would recommend only using 2X a week to begin with. Also, only use this serum at night. I personally only use it on areas that are broken out or are prone to breaking out, but you can use it all over if you want. I then follow with the Soothing B3 Serum and Barrier Restore Serum. I will say using these 3 serums together has made the most difference in my skin out of anything I’ve tried. They are definitely an investment, but to me they’ve been worth the investment. They are especially effective if you are also treating adult-onset or hormonal acne. If you aren’t ready to invest in the serums, but want a moisturizer that PD can tolerate, I would recommend Osmia’s Purely Simple Face Cream.

[UPDATE TO ORIGINAL POST: I’ve been cleansing with the Black Clay Facial Bar then moisturizing with Avené Cicalfate Cream, and my PD is completely gone after 2 weeks!!!! I recommend using these 2 products only (refrain completely from makeup and all other products) for at least 2 weeks. I think you will likely see great improvements in your PD or eczema.]

If you need to wear makeup, I would recommend this pressed foundation or this one. PD does not like HOT or COLD. So if you can avoid very hot or cold water when bathing. You may also need to avoid saunas or very hot climates, as some people are more effected by this than others. I’ve heard mixed reviews about UV exposure. I personally think a bit of sun helps my PD, as the light has antiviral properties, but I’ve also read of people who avoid UV exposure, as it worsens their PD.

Supplements that may be worth trying: Black cumin seed oil capsules, vitamin C, zinc, B-complex and evening primrose oil.

“I think we have seen such a rise in these dermatitis type skin issues because people are using too many products on their skin which disrupts the microbiome of the skin. Dermatitis is a modern skin disease caused by too much washing, too much this, too much that, and using moisturizers with synthetic preservatives and irritating fragrances. It’s a constant assault on the microbes on the skin that are there to help keep your skin’s microbiome balanced.” – Marie Veronique

Diet and PD
I definitely believe that diet plays a role in PD. As many of you know, I adapted a very strict version of the SIBO Specific Diet and the acne diet, as recommended by my naturopathic dermatologist, in hopes that it would clear up my PD. Unfortunately, it didn’t, though I’ve heard it has greatly helped people with more severe cases of PD. One of my trigger foods that I discovered through this experience is eggs. I’ve since cut out eggs (for now) since I believe they were contributing to my PD flaring up. I’ve also found that sugar, gluten, dairy and coffee have a negative effect on my skin overall, so I avoid these almost completely. I would recommend trying an elimination diet if you are interested to see how foods may effect your skin. Usually 3-4 weeks is a good length of time to eliminate common allergen producing foods. Once you start reintroducing them, do it slowly, so you can see if a certain food has a specific response in your body or on your skin. I’m still working with my naturopathic doctor and acupuncturist to figure out what is causing my digestive symptoms. My hope is that as I learn more about this and start treating my gut it will help facilitate healing my PD.

Like most health conditions, PD is majorly effected by stress. I’ve definitely noticed a correlation between heightened stress and skin irritation. Every morning before I start my skin care routine, I look in the mirror and repeat to myself, “I have beautiful skin. I have beautiful skin. I have beautiful skin.” What we believe and the story we tell ourselves really has a major impact on the physical realm. I totally understand how frustrating, embarrassing and depressing it is to have a blotchy red rash on your face. I really do. But at the end of the day, no matter how low I may be feeling about the current state of my skin, I always remind myself of how many things in my life I have to be grateful for. And it really is never as bad as you think it is. We are always our own worst critics. No one else sees, notices, or cares as much as we do about the breakout or wrinkle or extra roll of skin we have on our bodies. Learning to love and accept ourselves both on the inside and the outside is a life-long journey, but each moment we have the choice to take a step in the right direction simply by showing ourselves compassion.

“The simple fact is that the more you stress about the condition, the worse it gets. I think there may be a correlation between PD and Type A personalities as well. This is not meant in a derogatory way – I am Type A Plus, if there is such a thing. It just means that the same adrenaline that can make Type A people super-productive can also have an effect on the skin. So, be less Type A about your face! Stop spending endless hours hunkered in front of your computer researching miracle cures (because there are none). Don’t look in the mirror every five minutes. Stop trying olive oil and powdered sugar one day, and yogurt masks the next, and vinegar the next. Your skin won’t calm down if you don’t calm down, and stop changing the routine every couple of days.” – Sarah Villafranco



stacey snacks - 1:50 am

I have suffered with eczema all of my life….as a kid on my elbows and wrists….then went completely away, now at 52, it’s back! I have it around my eyes this season (as do many of my friends….but I think it’s environmental). I have tried every steroid creme, like you, helps with the itching….but long term, not good.
I agree, you have to be patient with skin issues and do not irritate them more with oils, etc. Eventually mine clears up.
Funny, my girlfriend has also been having an allergic reaction to toothpaste and a rash around her mouth. Hmmmm. I had never heard of PD, so thanks for the good info. Hope yours clears up forever!

alison wu - 1:39 am


I would recommend trying the Avene Cicalfate cream (just updated my post). I think it might help with your eczema.


Kate - 7:25 am

Hi Alison and thanks for this post. I have been dealing with PD for a few months now and have finally found a remedy for my particular case. I’m beyond the normal age limit (over 45) quoted in most articles concerning PD, and I personally think it knows no specific group. In this day and age with such a variety of products on the market from brand name cosmetics and skin care products to DIY, and as you mentioned in your article, it’s difficult to know the exact cause. And as you say, you can over apply using moisturizers to try to combat this annoying skin disorder making it worse. Been there. A few days ago I decided to make a bottle of hyarulonic acid (HA) serum without any additives and using just distilled water and a high quality HA powder. After applying the serum to the area around my mouth morning and night, I let it dry before applying the main protective barrier of Lansinoh cream. A nurse recommended the Lansinoh and I added the serum since HA holds moisture under the top layer of skin. It has been about 2 weeks now and my PD is disappearing. You are so correct to say this condition does not go away overnight, rather it takes months in some cases depending on whether the culprit has been taken out of the skin care routine or whatever might be the cause of your PD. Thanks again and I hope my remedy can help others who suffer from PD. It’s important to add what works for one may not for another, making note for anyone willing to try the above should first make sure they can tolerate the products I mentioned. Take care Alison

Tessa M Hollar - 10:12 am

I just tried an antifungal cream and it is seriously the best thing I’ve tried. Over night it has completely vanished. Seriously antifungal cream saved my life!

Jessica - 2:31 pm

Tessa, which anti-fungal cream did you use?

LeeAnn - 4:25 am

Hi Tessa,

What did you use??? I’m suffering terribly right now!

Dani - 8:02 pm

What kind/brand of antifungal cream? Used on your face?

Karlyn - 11:15 pm

I have used the Avene Cicalfate cream as well and it seemed to have helped for about a month and then my PD started to get worse again, I think for me stress triggered it. I also started switching all of my products to Cruelty-Free and found out that Avene is not Cruelty-Free so will not be using their products anymore :/

Lauren - 6:53 pm

Hello, I am having trouble controlling my PD. I have had the rash on my chin since the beginning of this year. I was given the doxycycline for 30
Days but after a week I had to
Stop as it was making me sick. I have now been using the clay
Bar and Avene for two weeks no makeup or other products and it’s not changing anything for me if anything it’s worsen since. Is there any other recommendations? I’ve changed my eating habits and avoid all other products but I’m still having the flare up and itchiness.

Sarah Simonian - 5:41 pm

Hi! I can only find the Cicalfate Restorative AND PROTECTIVE Skin Cream, I think they stopped making the regular one you have linked! Do you think this will work the same? Thank you!

Amanda Bower - 5:37 pm

Hi! Oh my goodness I have followed you and LFA for so long and just found out that you suffer from PD. I have steroid induced PD, it started about 3 years ago, it is mostly under control now, but only because I do like you had mentioned and put absolutely nothing on it and the FODMAP diet. I have not tried the Avene cream yet, I am still so hesitant to put anything even near my face. However, I have read a lot about the new probiotic creams like LaFlore Probiotic Concentrated Serum and Columbia SkinCare Probiotics Complex or even the one from Mother Dirt. I was wondering if you had tried any of these yet. I really like that you try new things, my fear is still to great to do that. Wondering if you have even heard from others who have tried it? I would be so grateful for any reply. Also, thank you tremendously for being so giving with your time and energy. All of your posts, via blogs and Insta are just amazing!! I am so very thankful to you!
Amanda Bower

alison wu - 3:36 am

Hi Amanda!

The Avene Cicalfate cream has been an absolute lifesaver for me. It is so nourishing. Anytime I feel an irritation that could be PD, I use the cream and it goes away within 12 hours. I’ve heard from several other people that it’s worked for them as well. It really depends on what is causing your PD, but I would definitely recommend stop using all other products and don’t wear any makeup for 2 weeks. Cleanse with the Osmia Black Clay Bar and use the Cicalfate cream on your PD. I hope it helps for you! XO

Diana - 6:11 pm

Hi Allison

Inhope these alternative approaches will help me . I looked for Avene Cicalfaet Cream and could only find one described as Restorative Skin Cream . Is that the same ? Living in Canada perhaps labelling is different .

April - 1:44 am

HI, this message is for Diana! I also live in canada and had a reaction to topical steroids on my hand that created steroid induced PD, I would love to know more about your story if I can!! And what you did as a result of PD from Steroids!

Celeste - 3:39 pm

Any word on this? I’m having the same problem with only being able to find the Restorative Cream.

Emma - 10:06 pm

I think they are the same thing. I use the Avène Cicalfate Restorative Skin Cream and it works wonders for my PD.


Oh My Goodness – I could kiss you and send you flowers – I have been struggling with this for over a year and I work pipeline with lots of guys in and out of my office. Last night it was soooooo bad that I wanted to crawl in a hole this am I woke up and wanted to cry – I had used Boudreauxs butt paste and it worked great and once I added greek plain yogurt it went away – well silly me spray tanned my face knowing that wasn’t good and it came back with a vengeance. I started using the black clay two days ago and added the Avene Cicalfate and within 24 hrs it looks GREAT and it doesn’t burn. I must admit that after reading that some sun helps some people with PD I sat in front of my new face tanner WAY TO CLOSE and way burned my PD area. This may have been a good mistake because my skin got tough as leather yet this am i peeled large pieces off from the burn and it is almost like it needed it. Cleaned with clay and added the Avene and i Feel great – miraculous – now I am praying it stays this way because i have literally spent thousands of dollars and i have enough product to open my own organic store. Like most stuff it worked for two days then got worse. Thanks so much for your outreach to us desperate women. Smiling and out of Hiding 🙂 Sharon

April - 1:43 am

HI, this message is for Diana! I also live in canada and had a reaction to topical steroids on my hand that created steroid induced PD, I would love to know more about your story if I can!! And what you did as a result of PD from Steroids!

Bianca - 8:07 am

Hi! What sunscreen do you recommend using to not irritate PD? I’ve been using the REN sunscreen and hate it, switched to Elta MD and I’m worried it might be causing a flare up.. but it could be other factors.

Emily Yates - 4:07 am

Listen to me, I’ve fought this for years: I have a STRONG suspicion this is related to candida, as my symptoms have been correlated to other related issues. Cut our sugar and all starches until the symptoms clear. A week on a Ketogenic diet and almost all of my outbreak completely cleared up. Tea tree oil helps and so does taking a tincture of Fresh Green Black Walnut, Wormwood and Cloves (you can feel nd it online). This is treatable and quickly. Best of luck. -M

Benjamin Salem - 11:17 pm

Every single thing you just said is completely true candida is the devil

Sarah - 9:07 pm

How long from the time you consume something would it visibly show on your skin? Trying to find a trigger, however, I am not sure if it would have an impact in just a matter of days or weeks. Thanks!

Helen - 11:59 am

Our daughter ate mango and within 18 hours (6am, started sometime during the night) started complaining about itching from PD.

angie - 8:42 pm

Could be because Mango is in the poison oak family – lots of people are allergic! Some even swell up when the mango trees are in season – just the pollen in the air! yikes!!!!

Anston Kovalcik - 3:14 pm

Hi! Thanks for the recommendation on the clay soap on the Avené cream! I’ve only used it night and morning and It helped removed some of the dead skin the has been irritatingly flaking in areas around my mouth, nose, and chin area. I’ve NEVER had Perioral Dermatitis before and noticed it got bad in the last week. I originally thought it was acne, and I do suffer from acne, but this seemed so much different. I did go to the dermatologist and they prescribed me doxycycline which I’m begrudgingly taking just to help clear this up a little quicker and they prescribed some cream l, but I may not pick it up at the pharmacy as I think the soap and Avené are working and don’t want to screw with multiple creams.

Is Avené also a sunblock since it has zinc? I’d love that as my face HATES sunblock, breaks my skin out like no tomorrow.
I’m also on the keto diet right now and my friend thinks it could be what’s called keto rash, but I think my skin got irritated before I started keto so I think I had an allergic reaction to something.

Irene - 9:36 pm

Thank you for this article! I really needed to read this. I’ve realized in the last week that the “rash” I’ve had for over a month is actually PD. I’m really trying to not stress but it’s hoenstly very hard 🙁 I’ve eliminated flouride and SLS in my products and trying to supplement and heal within. I’ve also been using sulfur ointment and it seems to be helping.

Jen Peace - 12:41 pm

I am so happy to find you blog!! I’ve been struggling with Pd since oct 2019. My husband is starting his own business, I have 3 boys, my dad passed away in nov and we are in quarantine just finishing up with home school 😳. I’m type a plus too! I was on antibiotics for a month in February, but it came back!! I’m going to take some of your advice and products and run with it! My husband keeps telling me to chill, lol. He’s type B😀 anyways I still haven’t ditched the toothpaste, my dad was a dentist so I can just hear what he would say! But I’m considering it. I’m going to look for a jade roller and try that soap. I’d be open to try the serums, but I did just invest in a hydrating regime from beautycounter. I want to give that some time. And not go back to the derm!! Thank you again for your post. I loved it♥️♥️

Keri Dawn - 3:01 am

Thank you for your insight Alison! When I moved to Hawaii from SoCal, I was diagnosed with PD. Contrary to what I thought, my skin HATES the humidity here. I had PD all around my mouth and it looked like Herpes, it was so awful! I think it was partly stress from working a terrible job, and moving to a new environment. I too was prescribed with a topical cream and it went away but came back just around the nostrils and on my chin (is that a common spot?) Nobody else says that they notice it, but I can FEEL it. Especially when it gets dry. I never know whether to put lotions/serum on it or to just leave it alone..? I’m wondering what type of skin do you have? Dry, Oily, Combo? It is very interesting about the eggs, I eat a lot of them so I think I’m going to eliminate them and see how it goes. My acupuncturist told me that the Night Shade family can also cause lots of inflammation, so I brought my tomato-eating down a notch 😛 Honestly, nothing seems to make a difference! I started taking Evening Primrose Oil per your Insta stories. Do you take all the supplements you mentioned in am or pm? I would be interested to hear what type of supplements you take in general since you seem very knowledgeable! 😀

alison wu - 1:38 am

Hi there!

I’ve found that the Barrier Restore Serum plus this new Avene Cicalfate cream (just updated the post!) has been the most helpful. I would give those a try and see how you do. Refrain from wearing makeup or using any other products for 2 weeks, and I think you should notice a difference. I’ve been taking evening primrose oil and zinc. I’ve found those to be most helpful.


Keri Dawn - 8:20 pm

I have just started use those three products as well as taking evening primrose oil! I’m going to add zinc to the mix too. Rarely wear makeup anyways since it looks awful on my dry skin. I just have one more question, do you do this night and morning? I don’t like to wash my face too much but sometimes in the morning I can feel a little dry. I seriously am already feeling less inflamed, thank you so much for your help Alison!

Sasha Swerdloff - 6:38 pm

Love all the suggestions! I had a flare up of PD for the first (and last time) a few years ago. The dermatologist wanted me to take 30 days of antibiotics which I refused to do. Instead I stopped using all the skin care products I had been using and switched to a super simple soap and moisturizer and then went to my Chinese doctor who gave me some herbs that cleared things up and tackled whatever the root imbalance was. I remember being terrified about the long term implications of PD and the prospect of having to deal with it over and over again but feel lucky to not have had any recurring symptoms. It’s great to know what other tips and tricks are out there though if it comes back.

Carla - 4:34 pm

Sasha, What soap and moisturizer did you switch to?

Athenais Andresi - 8:31 pm

I am currently suffering from what seems like PD. I have no idea how it happened and am patiently trying to cure it. I have never used facial washes in my life. But reading this amazing blog and it’s repsonses, I will definitely be considering other possibilities for cause. CAN ANYONE HELP ME WITH MY SWOLLEN EYES? The redness of my face almost doesn’t compare to how massive my eyes are!

Abby - 5:57 am

Hi! Thanks for all of these suggestion, insights, and words of encouragement. PD is the pits! I sent you a message with some other questions, but in the meantime am wondering if you put the Avene cream on just the affected area? All over your face? Both day and night? Same questions for the Barrier Restore I suppose. Also, how do you clean your jade roller and how often? Thanks again for being such a helpful ally in this quest!

alison wu - 3:44 pm

Hi! I use my jade roller AM + PM. You can clean it with a little Dr. Bronner’s or any other non-toxic soap. I used the Barrier Restore and Avene all over my face, twice a day. Hope that helps!

Clodagh - 12:09 pm

Can I ask who is the barrier restore cream made by? Is it also Avené?

Abby - 5:06 pm

Thanks so much, Alison. This particular flare up continues to be such a mystery, a moving target, and an all around pain! I got the jade roller, black clay soap, barrier restore & avene and am starting that daily regimen now. In addition to cutting out wheat/dairy/alcohol/sugar (as recommended by my acupuncturist). Fingers crossed things start to clear up. It’s such a strange and stubborn issue – but I guess the silver lining is the other ways it makes me look at habits that may not be serving me. Random question – did you ever notice it was worse around your period and/or ovulation?

Lisa - 1:13 am

This is so fascinating. I think I have this. Most people kept saying it was pregnancy, but it began months before. I don’t do gluten, so I knew it wasn’t that, but I notice it more when I eat dairy, but also strangely HUMMUS. I have a vitamin B serum that I use a night and changed my moisturizer and things have calmed down – for now. I’m going to try your recommendations. This is SUPER helpful!

Christina - 1:15 pm

When I read your last paragraph re: Type A personalities I had to laugh. Are you looking over my shoulder?! I have been researching all morning ever since a visit to my dermatologist confirmed what a first derma told me: perioral dermatitis. It seems my skin started deteriorating right after I returned from Florida where I spent Christmas with my family. I’m not sure if the return to the dry Colorado climate caused the flare up, stress, etc. I also started the Whole30 (elimination diet & paleo) about 3.5 weeks ago, which seemed to aggravate the condition. I have been eating more eggs. And ghee. Maybe some combination of these foods? But otherwise my diet is better than it’s ever been with lots of fresh, organic produce. I’m going to check out my shampoo too; I just switched to Evo brand which my hairstylist has used in the past.
Thanks for the article and the great insights. I just subscribed to your newsletter. Your blog looks like the kind of site I would create if I had a blog. I look forward to reading more from you.

alison wu - 2:04 am

Hi Christina,

PD is so tricky! I can be doing all the “right things,” and still get a flare up from time to time. It’s totally frustrating! I’m here for you if you ever need any advice.


Jocie - 3:13 am

Hi! I just found your blog & it’s been so helpful so far! I’m curious-did you follow that skincare routine for your PD when it was at the height? Or after it had calmed down a bit? My is at height and I’m needing some direction as far as what to put on it. Thanks!

Kimber - 6:07 pm

I’ve never had PD in my life but mine started right after I returned from vacation in Florida in November!! I live in Dallas, TX…. I wonder what the odds are of Florida being a factor for ours! LOL

Haseena - 5:12 pm

Hi there, what was the Zinc supplement you use? I’d love to try it for my skin, thanks so much!

Jamie - 6:14 pm

I have PD pretty bad on my chin and around my nose. I keep reading the fluoride toothpaste thing… I use Tom’s, but it does contain fluoride and SLS (I think?). Anyway, does this affect PD EVEN if you are very careful not to let it touch your face/outer lips? I question this because last year I started using non-fluoride toothpaste and after several months I had THREE cavities when I’ve never had cavities before in my life. For this reason I am nervous about going fluoride free again but have been super careful not to let my toothpaste or foam touch my outer lips or chin. Thoughts?

Erin - 6:25 am

I went off fluoride with my flare up I had about 2 years ago. After a year I had a bunch of cavaties. My PD went away when I got pregnant, but came back 10 months pp at the same time I finally got my period back. So I know it’s hormonal. I went off fluoride for a little bit to see if I could catch it before it got bad, but I’m worried to go off totally.

My Experience with SIBO and How I Found Balance with Digestive Health - Wu Haus - 9:01 pm

[…] naturopathic dermatologist after dealing with a 6-month-long flare of perioral dermatitis (read my post about PD here). She immediately brought up SIBO (Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth). She said based on my […]

Alicia - 9:16 am

I want to share my story because I know how much it sucks to have perioral dermatitis and grasp at straws for a cure, which I believe I finally found. I recently suffered with PD myself and did TONS of research about it. I also saw my dermatologist to confirm my diagnosis and see about getting a food sensitivity test, as I’d read that that could be the underlying cause. I opted not to take antibiotics as all I’ve read seems to indicate it will always return because the underlying cause isn’t addressed. I decided not to do the food sensitivity test as my research later on supported why it would be unnecessary for me in particular.

Initially I treated my PD as if it were caused by a damaged skin barrier from product overload, because I am a bit of a product junkie. That went absolutely nowhere. Then I opted to try to treat it internally with various things I’d read on the internet, ACV, aloe juice, sulphur 30c.

Eventually all of the research I did put me on a path that actually made sense to explain the PD and it all comes down to gut health. I know, my initial thoughts about this were that it’s all nonsense, but after reading extensively about “leaky gut”, healing the gut, and the science behind it as to how it relates to PD, I became convinced I was on the right path. Basically when the bacteria in your gut gets out of whack it sets off a series of chain reactions that directly affect your skin, among many other things. I really recommend to anyone suffering with PD that you read up on“leaky gut” for yourself and figure out your own game plan to heal your gut. For me, essentially decreasing my sugar intake, taking loads of good quality probiotics, and eating cleaner has allowed my skin to completely heal in less than a week. It has been such a relief!!! Bottom line, all of my efforts to change my skin care, apply something, or just leave it alone did nothing to eliminate the PD. It was focusing on the internal issue that really fixed the problem. I hope this helps someone!!!

Mel - 1:38 am

Thank you for your post. I have been suffering with this annoying condition as well. I bought the Cicalfate and it feels amazing on my skin. I also ordered the barrier serum, I put it on and it began to sting right away. I washed it off immediately because I didn’t want my PD to flare anymore. Is this what happened to you? Any other advice would be much apprecitated!

Cheryl - 11:37 am

Hi, Mel. I have the same stinging. I think it’s subsiding though. I’m still healing my PD, and although my is still dry, I think the serum and Cicalfate combo is working. I’m waiting for the MV Treatment Oil to arrive, hoping it will help calm the dryness, and in the meantime I’ve added the Avene Tolerance Cream to help with he flakes that the Cicalfate can’t moisturize up.

Thanks, Allison, for this post. Gives me hope.

Taylor - 2:18 am

I have suffered on and off from PD. I have tried antibiotics, topical Rx creams, fluoride free toothpaste, zinc, among other things. I switched my skin care to Dermologica products and my PD has been gone for almost 4 months. I am not sure if that is 100% of the reason but there really haven’t been other changes. I wonder if anyone else has any insight on this! Very helpful read.

Lisa - 11:06 am

I realize this is written a while ago. But can you tell me which products helped you!

Kara - 2:14 am

I use dermalogica and wish it would go away! I imagine clean eating and repairing the gut is the only way to go.

CeCe - 12:55 am

I had a terrible case of PD several years ago and have managed to avoid a recurrence, until this fall. I thoughtlessly started using Toms of Maine again and forgot it has SLS in it now, along with the change in the season and started seeing the random red dots on my face and the dry, scaly spots under my nostrils. I came across recs about Osmia black soap, but had to find a different price point. Target carries the Shea Naturals African Black Soap, and I was inspired to try Acure Seriously Soothing Blue Tansy Night Oil from Target as well. My face is so happy, soft and smooth. I have also changed to Eco-Dent tooth powder, which keeps the irritation at bay.

Megan - 7:24 pm

Thank you for sharing! I have had this for a month now and just cleared mine up. I will say that coconut oil really helped me, but only when used at night when it was really dry. Keeping it moisturized with coconut oil was something I read mixed reviews about and avoid for so long and I am sad a waited so long to try it. The key seemed to be not overusing it. For me a combination of changing to no fluoride toothpaste, taking a probiotic, mediating, avoiding peanut butter, washing my face with only water (at least in the PD areas), apply coconut oil only when it was very dry, and using the neutragena light therpy mask (blue light help SO much) was my cure. I think that it may be different for everyone and that coconut oil may not work for some but certainly did work for me. I think the most helpful thing was just to think back to when it started and try to see if I had started using my intake of any food or face cream, etc. After a few trail an error eliminations I realized I had greatly increased my peanut butter intake before it began and now know it’s a trigger for me. Anyway, it’s nice to read articles that encourage a more natural healing, so thank you for sharing!

Lindsey - 5:58 am

Can I ask, how did you use the blue light? I mean in terms of frequency and duration? Is the light a specific strength?

Asking to help my six year old daughter.

Megan - 11:37 pm

For me the trigger is cashew or almond butters. I read somewhere that the high mold content in natural nut butters can cause PD. I was on antibiotics for a while that cleared it up, but I’ve weaned myself off and it has come back in a few spots. I don’t want to continue to take the antibiotics so I appreciate all the suggestions on this blog.

Jo - 11:41 am

I am so hopeful after reading this. I just ordered the soap and Avene cream. I have been struggling with this for about 4 months now. My dermatologist recommended oxiconazole and Neo-synalar. I think this makes it worse. I am not even sure. This is so depressing. My bottom rim of my bottom lip is even getting irritated. I really hope this will help. It is so bothersome and itchy. I can’t imagine living with this every day. I miss my skin!

Lori - 4:16 am

I am so glad I found this post I have just been diagnosed with PD that was steroid induced around my mouth and cheeks and nose. I have been fighting it now for about five months I am definitely going to get the soap and Avene cream tomorrow. I will keep you posted. Thank you, I’m so very grateful for this information.

Madison Drake - 8:28 pm

i’ve has a recent super bad flare up recently due to just a little bit of it under my nose from steroidal nasal spray from 8 months ago. it spread all over my face coming up 98% of my face from steroidal creams my derm prescribed. I stopped tacrolimus 5 days ago and since then it got really super bad but I do not want to go back, I was having really bad side effects from it and it can cause skin cancer and i’m only 17. my skin used to be perfect, with no acne or anything I never had dermatitis but now I do. I need help, I stopped intaking dairy and gluten for almost 3 weeks and it’s only gotten worse I haven’t had tomatoes in 3-4 months because i thought that was a trigger at the time but that has done nothing. my face is so dry and itchy and i can’t even go to school :/ my mom just ordered me avené cream that you reccomened and I hope that works :/ because i’ve tried everything. if there’s anything else you think I should do please lmk!:)

Nicki - 11:04 pm

Any luck? I too am suffering from possible peripheral dermatitis. I feel I’ve tried everything almost 🙁 I’ll be 31 in September and have had this now since nov of last year. Thanks for any suggestions !

Madison drake - 8:29 pm

and also I was prescribed doxycycline for a month. it’s been 3 days and there’s been no change I was wondering how long it takes for antibiotics to work?

Krista - 1:16 pm

Hi Allison! I just got recently diagnosed with PD and man is it horrible! I have a massive rash under my nose that is painful and itchy at the same time! I have decided to go back to a strict diet to help regulate and control this condition. The one problem that I see is that I got an IUD placed about a year ago so I know that my hormones have been out of whack since then. I don’t want to give up on the IUD because I want to stay extra careful, but am not sure if you know of ways to help balance my hormones while still having an IUD?
I love all of your recommendations, I have already ordered the black clay bar and have eliminated dairy and wheat!
THank you for your help!! 🙂

Lindsey - 5:54 am

Oral steroids causing horrible PD on my little girl!!! I’m desperate.

My daughter is 6 years old and having an awful case of PD. She is severely asthmatic and has an acute asthma attack in October that put her in the hospital. Unfortunately, she had to be given massive doses of steroid to get her lungs functioning again. She was prescribed a new (stronger) type of inhaler (oral corticosteroid) and the spacer mask. A few weeks after starting the new inhaler/mask she got a rash that looked like a severe chemical burn exactly where the mask was being placed (perioral). Her skin turned thick, leathery-like, dark brown-orangish color and began to crack. After a few weeks the skin finally peeled off (it was literally like a 2nd degree burn).

Her skin was clear for about a week, but now she has developed PD. It’s red, bumpy, inflamed “ring” around her mouth (smile lines area), up to her nose, and around her eyes.

Its breaking my heart to see her so uncomfortable and it’s causing a lot of pain to her eye area. I know the exact cause of her PD is her inhaler, but we cannot discontinue it. A few years ago I tried weaning her off the inhalers and she ended up in children’s hospital not able to breathe (still have mom guilt about that).

My point in all this rambling is, that I have actually been using Avene Cicalfate Restorative cream for over a year on myself . I don’t have PD but have every other skin condition, acne, redness, Cysts, you name it! -it’s the ONLY cream that calms my skin and balances it out. I JUST decided to try it on my daughter’s PD two nights ago. I came across your post right now and I’m so grateful that someone has had some success with this!!!! The thing is, I’ve only been applying it for two days, and it definitely does give her some relief and improve it, but the rash has been reappearing in about 4 hours. I’m not giving up, I’m going to continue to use it for now, but I’m so scared she is going to be scarred or permanently disfigured if I can’t get this under control.

How long after you started the Avene did you have “total” clear up? It’s it still on-going for you? Do you apply it throughout the day or just morning/night?

I have made an appointment with her pediatric pulmonologist to see if we can switch to a new inhaler, but I think as long as a steroid is still being used, the PD may very well persist. I ALWAYS buy Toms kids flouride FREE toothpaste, and I just noticed I must have grabbed the wrong tube because the Toms she’s using has fluoride, so that might have been exacerbating it too.

Thank you so much for posting this. Sorry for the long ramblingness! I am one, stressed-out, sleep-deprived, single mommy, right now…trying to do anything in my power to help her get relief. Also, sorry for any grammar / spelling typos. I’m writing this from my phone.

Any feedback would be greatly appreciated. (When I took her to the pediatrician yesterday- she prescribed her an even stronger steroid cream… (sigh). The docs don’t get it. So the internet is my only hope.

Christy - 5:43 am

How’s your daughter doing? I read this and my heart broke for you and her. Hope she’s doing better. ????????♥️

Marisel - 4:06 am

Hi Alison! Do you have a sunscreen you recommend that is PD- friendly? I am coming into my second month of ZERO creeams
Or facewash (just water), and my skin is clearing up. But i’d like to at least get sunscreen back into the mix eventually (sun damage, premature aging, wrinkles, ah!). Thanks so much!

alison wu - 11:47 pm

Hi! The sunscreen I use it featured on the Products page of the site.


Cindy - 5:09 am

I wonder what the path to easing this skin rash is for someone who does not use skin creams, sunscreen, make up, drinks spring water and eats a diet high in raw foods, fermented foods, and superfoods? We keep no chemicals in the house and I live on a supremely beautiful and vibrant organic vegetable farm – free of pollutants and chemicals?

alison wu - 11:46 pm

Hi! Could be related to candida or leaky gut and triggered by diet (grains, cacao, eggs and legumes trigger mine).


Erika - 4:35 am

What SLS-free laundry detergent do you recommend? And where can you buy it? I am having a hard time finding SLS-free detergent. I live in Alaska and we have very limited selection in terms of natural products!

alison wu - 11:45 pm

Hi! I use ECOS brand. Hope that helps!


Bren - 4:56 pm

Hi Alison,

So glad the Black Clay Facial Bar and Avené Cicalfate Cream cleared your perioral dermatitis. I’m chuffed to bits 🙂 Stress definitely can play a role in triggering this AND making it worse and should be mimimised as much as possible as it also causes a whole host of other illnesses and diseases. I myself use herbal adaptogens to cope with stress and meditate, do yoga etc. Regarding my perioral dermatitis, like you, I completely cleared this using a cream I bought for eczema that has geranium oil, calendula and of all thing east cape manuka. My skin is so soft now and I still use a tiny bit as it is also a great moisturiser. I use nothing else else on my face except a gentle cream cleanser and the only make up I wear is some vegan lipstick, mascara and eye liner. My skin is radiant and there is no need to cover up the blemishes etc. any more. love Bren

Asia - 2:31 pm

Hi Bren!
What products are you using with calendula? I keep reading that it’s a great ingredient for PD. I was just diagnosed. Tried Azelaic Acid for a week from the Ordinary but my skin reacted poorly and now I’m putting Metronidizole on (as rec by my derm) and it doesn’t seem to be doing anything. Has anybody else had interactions/results from these two topical creams? Looking into other products now. Thanks for all of your help and stories everyone!

Ann - 5:50 pm

I had a terrible reaction to the Metronidizole. It made my PD worse. It was originally mainly on one section of my left eye. Now it has spread all over the left and right eyes. Ugh! On the blog now to find relief. Good luck!

Laura - 12:11 am

I had an allergic reaction to the Metrogel causing a rash on my back, legs etc… in a few hours! I definitely don’t recommend!

Anne - 9:36 pm

I solved PD in my son. It’s related to leaky gut and food sensitivity.

Nutritional deficiencies (which we all have) cause a breakdown of you gut lining which causes leaky gut. You can google this but heres a very short explaination. Undigested food passes from your gut into the blood stream, your body sees it as in invader, and your immune system tries to remove it from your body. Your skin is a massive organ for detoxifying. That’s why you get the rash, its toxins pushed out of your body. It’s like a rash on a baby after a fever.

It’s easy to fix. Temporarily remove the foods that your body is currently reacting to (it’s usually proteins because they are hard to digest). At the same time, supplement what you need to fix the nutrient deficiencies so that your gut heals. Then reintroduce the eliminated food and see if you get the rash. So you need to see a functional doctor to get a food sensitivity test done and all the labs possible to detect any and all nutritional deficiencies.

You should see an improvement a week or 2 after removing the offending foods.

In the meantime, the only topical product I found that made a real impact is Emily’s Hot Skin Soother. But it’s just a temporary topical, it’s not the real fix. Do the real fix. Be grateful that your skin is telling you there is something wrong inside your body.

Rachael - 4:59 pm

2 words ladies….Pyrithione Zinc. I’ve been to 2 dermatologists who gave me antibiotics but I think it was fungal. After days of my own research I came across the pyrithione zinc and wow my skin is finally clearing up 🙂
Here is the exact product I used and it healed it up using 3X a day in about a week. Its the best 5 dollars you will EVER spend! This will cause burning sensation but just know that’s normal and it works! I tried the diaper rash ointment too but that’s zinc oxide and did not work as well for me.. This stuff feeds off the oil on your face so must keep it dry and I used a mineral powder over it to hide the redness.

Asia - 3:44 pm

Rachael, which product did you use exactly? Thanks for the tip!

Nicole M - 8:07 am

Hi Alison,
I being dealing with POD since October 2018 I believe mine was induced because of stress from a car accident and hormones imbalance erupt ovarian cysts. Like you said I try everything natural possible but nothing work, the only thing that would make my rash less flared up is if I applied manuka honey with aloe gel but still its red and painful. So decided to eliminate this thing I went to the dermatologist which he prescribed me doxycycline for one month, it worked great my POD went away within 2 weeks this was the end of January and I was so happy, so decided to celebrate i went eat spicy food well that made it come back really bad and now is so itchy that i don’t know what to put on it, it was not itchy before do you have any suggestions on why could be so itchy and what to put on it to make the itch stop?

TARA K - 2:08 am

I was diagnosed years ago with Perioral Dermatitis. My dermatologist had my allergist run an allergy patch test to determine what I was allergic to, since it is an allergic reaction. It turns out a nickel allergy was the cause. The culprit was a platinum-plated ring (nickel as the binding agent) I was wearing for months non-stop that caused the PD on my face around my mouth! As soon as I took the ring off, it cleared up immediately. Completely gone in weeks once the area healed.
Fifteen years later I am dealing with PD again so back to the allergist! I think it is a new allergy causing this round. (Or maybe I was pushing it wearing the —fun but nickel-plated I know I should not wear but it looks so good with outfit— jewelry!)

So I would recommend a visit to an allergist to determine the cause of the allergy. Good luck.

Nicki - 11:19 pm

Any luck? I too am suffering from possible peripheral dermatitis. I feel I’ve tried everything almost 🙁 I’ll be 31 in September and have had this now since nov of last year. Thanks for any suggestions !

Holistic Skincare Update and a GIVEAWAY! - Wu Haus - 4:57 pm

[…] dermatitis (PD) about 5 years ago. I’m not going to go into major detail here, as I have an entire blog post talking about my experience with it. The main takeaways are that PD hates relatively all products […]

Erin C. - 1:48 pm

Thanks so much for your initial post Alison, because it helped me to identify what was going on with my face. I’ve been suffering a major outbreak all around my mouth, which then moved to my nose and eyes. I think it was triggered by toothpaste. One treatment I didn’t see mentioned here though, and that has REALLY worked for me, is Calendula. This seems to be widely used in soothing creams in Europe, but is almost non-existent here in Canada. I started by making a compress of dried Calendula flowers, which made such a difference that I ordered a concentrated Calendula cream from Weleda online (I found it through I chose this particular cream because it’s lanolin-based and doesn’t have any petroleum products – anything I’d tried with petroleum was causing even larger blisters! It’s only been 48 hours since I started using the cream, and the rash is perhaps 50% of what it was. I’m sure each one of us is different, but this product has made such a difference to me I just had to mention it! That and avoiding all sugar and refined carbs, of course. I agree on the candida front…. Good luck everyone!

Jo - 8:42 am

Ive done so much research on this and the thing that has worked for me is doing nothing! Putting nothing on it! I was using the cicklefate cream and it did work but then it just came back again. After 3 days of washing only with water and not putting cream on it at all. It’s almost gone. It went dry which makes me think I was keeping it moist with the cream and this kept it going. I live in a very humid hot climate so this may have added to it hanging around. So now it’s completely dried out and flaked off my skin is almost back to normal!! Such a relief.

Athenais Andresi - 5:48 am

UPDATE: (I left a reply about a week ago on this page under someone’s comment.) My PD is horrendous. Eyes, forehead, and all my mouth area were purple/red. After ONE WEEK of Alison’s Organic Black Clay Soap + Cicalfate Cream recommendation, I am a few shades lighter and the flakes of skin covering the areas are healthier every day. So so thankful. (One month of antibiotics gave me an allergic reaction, and fungal treatment did nothing). With time I am hopeful for a full recovery. Thank you again Alison!

Shauna - 11:59 pm

Hello everyone – I have been dealing with PD for 4 months now and it is very frustrating! I feel for all of you who are dealing with it. I think mine came on as a result of windburn from a winter hike, petroleum products (Vaseline & Aquafor) and hydrocortizone lip balm (Dr. Dans). I was trying to calm my lips and skin down after the windburn and it seemingly created the perfect storm. So I am definitely type A and have researched the heck out of this and have tried a whole bunch of things – too many things. I have finally resorted to only using water or Simple Micellar water to cleanse and applying La Roche Posay’s Cicaplast Balm B5. When applying Micellar water to PD areas that are peeling and flaking do not rub – just dab and then rinse with water. I had a horrible flare this weekend while trying the KH+MV serums – bummed they didn’t work for me after so many great reviews out there. So now using just this simple regimen my PD areas went from raw, itchy, burning, red to much calmer in 3 days! I highly recommend simplifying drastically and as Allison mentioned stop trying a million different things because it is only going to further sensitize your already upset skin. Definitely stop makeup. Also consider your hair care products – I’m now just using Honest unscented Purely Simple shampoo and body wash. I am also taking the following supplements: Zinc, EPO, Oregano Oil and just added in Caprylic Acid (to fight Candida). I’ve also cleaned up my diet a ton – stopped dairy, gluten, alcohol, coffee, nuts, nightshades, refined sugar. I also changed my toothpaste to Dr. Bronner’s Anise toothpaste or Jason’s Coconut toothpaste. I tried the cicalfate and it didn’t work for me because of the mineral oil. If you try that and it doesn’t work I super recommend the Cicaplast Balm – it’s amazing and doesn’t cause acne if you are also acne prone.

Lauren - 11:01 am

Hi Allison, I have been suffering with PD for a year or so now and currently it’s very calm, but I’m very worried, I’m going on holiday in July and the sun makes it worse, any advice? I’m really scared as I don’t want a huge flare up so far away from home
Thank you!

Hannah - 4:54 pm

Thank you for writing about your PD issues and solutions.

I didn’t have PD until three or so years ago (I’m 30 now), and I discovered recently that my body has changed and I now have a gluten sensitivity. I’ve eliminated gluten from my diet, and my face has begun to clear up. I’ve read the journals of a few dermatologists who found evidence that a gluten-free or (if not gluten sensitive) a low-carb diet has helped most of their patients with PD. Good luck to all of you searching for what’s causing the issue. It’s a harrowing journey but worth it in the end!

Athenais Andresi - 6:47 am

Thank you for your positivity and advice! I have yet to figure out what my flare up was caused by, and I am terrified of it being a chemical or food sensitivity because I lead a very busy life and don’t know if I could make all the effort to take out many different factors. I’m staying strong and hopeful! May you all be at ease while dealing with this tricky problem!

Danielle - 4:06 am

I tried your regiment of using the Organic Black Clay Soap and Cicalfate Cream and it helped but didn’t resolve the eczema on my face. I have used raw aloe in conjunction and that seems to be helping. I’m still searching for a solution although I think my breakouts are heavily tied to stress. I try to minimize my level of stress, but stress in inevitably in certain circumstances. Thank you for sharing what has worked for you.

Danielle - 9:34 pm

I stand corrected! It took 3 months but I continued with your regiment and it worked! My skin looks so good. I can’t believe it.

Bren - 4:35 pm

Hi Alison,

Agreed! Stress can wreak havoc with your body including your skin and being a Type A I have suffered at the hands of stress for years. I sometimes wish I was the laid back Type B. My healing crystals help me in this respect though. Anyway I digress.! My dermatologist put me on to an eczema cream by Mama Nature. This ProSkin Eczema (funny name!!!) worked wonders for me and DOES NOT contain SLS or any other nasties. I love your hat by the way x

Lauren Rempel - 9:31 pm

Hi Alison,

Thank you, thank you, thank you for posting about your learnings on healing PD yourself! It has been a real lifesaver. I had my first flare up 3 months ago, it took 3 doctors and 2 derms to get an agreement on the diagnosis of PD (two just sent me away saying I had a cold sore, which I had never had before!! What a waste of time.) and by this point it was covering my entire face. I started to have a small flare up this week, found your blog (and other blogs talking about Avene Cicalfate), immediately picked some up and WOW, I have it under control! It has been a few days now with just the odd bump showing up but I can live my life normally and not feel embarrassed to leave the house.
It is wonderful to find a forum like this, of other women sharing their experiences, and helping others!
Thank you again!!

Adrianne Christensen - 12:17 am

Did you have any initial breaks outs from the Marie Veronique? I bought the barrier serum and the probiotic spray, and I think the serum made me break out.

Lisa - 7:10 pm

Thank you so much for this post! I have an autistic son who had a bad allergic reaction to Zovirax duo used for a cold sore I could see coming up. His lips enlarged, cracked, flaked and were so uncomfortable. A couple of trips to the doctors – we tried steroid creams, Elidel immunosuppressant cream, oral antibiotics. I tried a 100% medical grade lanolin to try and protect the skin which made things far worse. My son was distressed, self harming – hitting himself on the head so I turned to google search for some alternative cream for his lip. Enter your post and the amazing Avene Caclifate restorative cream. I put this on his lips about 4 times after lunch and the difference by the evening was remarkable. I have a much happier son and lips that are visibly starting to repair and heal. I cannot thank you enough.

Kate - 5:30 am

I had mild PD for nearly 9 months on and off! When dermatologist-prescribed topicals and antibiotics didn’t work, (antibiotics worked magically but my PD came back after I stopped them) I tried to attack it from all angles – I changed my diet to mostly plant and fruit based and cut alcohol and coffee, switched my face products to Osmia clay bar and Marie Veronique products, and started working out way more. However two things that cured my PD within two weeks of starting (so I’m not sure which one is the cure) was 1. I went to a TCM dermatologist & she prescribed me herbal tea to take twice a day 2. I started using LyonsLeaf Zinc and Calendula cream ( on my chin where I’d get PD bumps consistently. Within 10 days, my face cleared up and has been good ever since!

Kristen - 6:15 pm

Kate, do you happen to know what is in the herbal tea?

Holistic Skincare Update and a GIVEAWAY! - Wu Haus - 11:36 pm

[…] dermatitis (PD) about 5 years ago. I’m not going to go into major detail here, as I have an entire blog post talking about my experience with it. The main takeaways are that PD hates relatively all products […]

Emma - 11:49 pm

My PD appeared a few months ago and it was caused from using a strong steroid ointment. I also have psoriasis that I get on my face, scalp, and body. I use a steroid ointment and a medicated lotion to treat my psoriasis. I accidentally used the steroid ointment on my face (NEVER use a topical steroid on your face). This accident occurred just once but it was enough to bring about my first case of PD.
My dermatologist prescribed doxycycline and clindamycin lotion as a treatment for PD. After using the clindamycin lotion for a week my skin was more inflamed and sensitive. I then decided to start taking doxycycline and stop the clindamycin lotion. The doxycycline didn’t help and it messed up my stomach.
By this point I had had PD for almost a month and it spread to all around my mouth. It looked awful and I was at a loss for what to do next. I tried natural remedies (apple cider vinegar, turmeric, coconut oil, anti-fungal cream, yogurt, taking fish oil and a probiotic). Nothing helped. Please keep in mind I was still wearing makeup daily and using my normal skin care routine (facial cleanser, toner, serum, moisturizer).
I finally came upon this article and decided to try it. This was an EXPENSIVE REMEDY. I gave up lip balm, whitening toothpaste, dairy products, my normal skin care routine and makeup (except mascara and eye liner). I bought Dr. Bronner’s Anise Toothpaste Fluoride-Free Natural Toothpaste with Organic Ingredients, Osmia Organics Black Clay Facial Bar, Eau Thermale Avene Cicalfate Restorative Skin Cream and Osmia Purely Simple Face Cream. Only those 4 items. I use the black clay facial bar and restorative skin cream twice daily on my entire face. Osmia Purely Simple Face Cream in the morning on my entire face. Coconut oil in the evening only on PD and the rest of my face gets Vanicream Moisturizing Cream for Sensitive Skin (can be used on dry lips). I also added a daily probiotic. Within a week of doing all of this, my PD was less inflamed and halfway gone. It took another 1.5 months for ALMOST all of it to go away. I still have a very stubborn, small patch of PD on the corner of my mouth. I have NOT gone back to my pre-PD skin care routine but I do use makeup all over my face except for that one stubborn area by my mouth. I am going to add an OTC anti-fungal cream (use at night only on PD) in hopes it will get rid of the remaining PD.

Emma - 12:00 am

Clarification: I meant to say that I initially gave up makeup but once my PD significantly cleared up I went back to wearing makeup but still avoiding that small, stubborn patch on the corner of my mouth.

Sharon - 6:51 pm

Thank you thank you, you solved my problem Alison. I ordered the charcoal mud soap and the Avene Cicalfate cream and the next day it was totally cleared up. I can’t tell you how grateful I am!

Meghan - 7:31 pm

Hi Alison! I’m not sure if you still check the comments on this post, but I would love to know what you use around your eyes? Do you use your face products mentioned above on your eyes as well? My PD is around my eyes so I’ve been weary of eye creams but feel like I need to put something on them when I am not experiencing a flare up. Would love to know what you (or anyone else who reads this) do for the eye area!

Thank you so much for sharing your story. I just recently was diagnosed with PD and this has been the most helpful site I have found. I’ve also really enjoyed the community responses and suggestions. You all are amazing 🙂

Emma - 3:34 pm

I recently started to get PD around my eyes. It used to just be by my mouth and nose. I’ve been using Spectro fragrance free gel cleanser (purple label) to remove my makeup (including eye makeup) for several weeks now. I bought it on Amazon cause it isn’t sold in stores outside of Canada. The reviews on Amazon highly recommend this product for those with PD and I completely agree. I encourage those who have PD around their eyes to try this product. Use it on DRY skin. Do not use water to make a soapy lather with it. Put the product on clean, dry skin and let it sit for 1-2 minutes before rinsing off with warm water. Follow with your choice of lotion. I’ve been using Avene Cicalfate cream and Osmia purely simple face cream as an eye lotion. I’m not a big fan of using a face cream nor the Avene Cicalfate cream as an eye lotion. The Avene Cicalfate makes my eyelids sticky and oily. I’m not even sure if you can use either around your eyes but that’s how I’ve been doing it. I’ve watched several YouTube videos regarding PD and a few recommended the brand, Yes To Blueberries. I’m going to try the Yes To Blueberries Age Refresh Eye Firming Treatment along with the Yes To Blueberries Age Refresh Daily Repairing Moisturizer. I’m waiting to purchase both these items because they are currently unavailable on Amazon. I’ll let you all know how it goes. Any suggestions for eye creams and eye lotions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Lisa - 12:50 pm

I’m not sure how old these posts are but I’ve been suffering with PD for 10 months. I’ve tried absolutely everything. I’ve never had any issues with my skin, never a pimple! In fact for years I’d get complements on how nice my skin was! I’ve been on 2 different antibiotics both for 6 weeks each time. First round cleared it (horrible side effects) but it came back after a month- I tried another type of antibiotic with no change to my skin at all! Very disappointing. I also tried a compound cream and another cream, again nothing helped. I tried the Lo Roche posay sensitive range advised by my dermatologist with no results! I’ve tried using nothing at all. Nothing is helping me at all- I’m on evening primrose, collagen, zinc, omega 369 supplements, absolutely nothing is working and I don’t know where to turn. I’m so exhausted!

Talia - 5:35 am

Hi! I saw your edit to your original post that using just the facial bar and face cream were very helpful. Did you use both of them in the morning and at night? Also, did your hormonal acne get worse during that time?

Ashley - 12:14 am

I tried everything to get rid of mine. Going sulfate free, eliminating all fragrance, using PD friendly skin care products. Etc, etc.

I finally did a food intolerance blood test and my top one was for eggs. Cut eggs out of my diet and it cleared up immediately. If I eat eggs I start to get a couple bumps and it gets progressively worse if I continue to eat them.

Jon - 7:57 am

I’m a male of 48 that has suffered with PD since I was 12. After all these years I can nigh on guarantee that it is to do with diet. I can’t have anything with peanuts in, which is gutting because I love peanut butter. Other nuts such as Pecans, Walnuts, Almonds etc I’m okay with. Cheese also triggers flare-ups, as does too much coffee with cream or milk.

If it is really getting you down, do a low carb/keto meal plan for a week and lay off the dairy and nuts. Don’t use any cleansers or face washes on the problematic area of the face and, if you do need to use a moisturiser, use one that you know for sure won’t exacerbate the problem. I use Aveeno, but sparingly, and as soon as I come out of the shower.

Good luck all of you. When it’s bad, it makes you not want to leave the house and can seriously affect your mental health and confidence, so I know how you all feel.


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