I can tell them not to put anything on their skin, but the reality of that is just too difficult.

Dr. Natsu Watanabe
Director, Watanabe Dermatology and Plastic Surgery Asunarokai Medical Corporation

Patients who clearly suffer from asteatotic dermatitis know that they need to moisturize in order to treat their condition and maintain their skin’s barrier function. But in recent years, there are an increasing number of people suffering from what I guess you’d call excessive treatment syndrome. In other words, they’re putting all these different cosmetic products on their skin, undergoing beauty treatments, undergoing procedures by cosmetic dermatologists, and repeatedly doing things to their skin that aren’t appropriate for their condition. Instead of getting better, they’re actually damaging their skin and making their symptoms worse. Rosacea, which we only used to see in menopausal women or very occasionally in heavy drinkers, is now becoming more common in young adults. And it’s not that these patients are neglecting their skin—on the contrary, they’re extremely concerned about it and are using a ton of expensive products with high moisturizer concentration. Because their skin is overstimulated, I’ve started telling them to simply stop applying products for a while. But it’s really hard, because they’ve been putting so many supplementary components on their skin for so long that when they go cold turkey, they suffer from extremely dry skin, tautness, and so on. If I encourage them to hang in there through this period and continue with the radical treatment, their condition does improve. But it’s excruciating for them to have to show their face in that condition, so when they beg me to allow them to put something on their skin, I recommend medicated AK Mild Cream. I tell them to stop all of their lotions and emulsions and beauty serums for a while and just use that. Since it contains natural ceramides and no extraneous additives, there is very little risk of contact dermatitis. It also feels good on the skin, and my patients are happy to have it.