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The Best Products for Uneven Skin Texture

Despite what all the overly filtered photos on Instagram will have you believe, no one has completely smooth, flawless skin. “Uneven skin texture is common and refers to irregularities in the contours and feel of the skin,” dermatologist Karan Lal told Elite Daily. “It can happen after years of sun damage, it can happen if you develop scarring after acne, and it can happen after certain breakouts,” he explains. To target the many causes of uneven skin texture, there are many different treatment options. Namely, the best products for uneven skin texture include serums, toners, and lotions that contain ingredients like retinol, salicylic acid, glycolic acid, lactic acid, and mandelic acid. You can also help to prevent texture inconsistencies by wearing a broad-spectrum sunscreen daily, which is especially important if you plan to use a retinoid or chemical exfoliant, as many of these ingredients can make you more sensitive to the sun.

The expert

Dr. Karan Lal, MD, is a board-certified dermatologist who practices with the Schweiger Dermatology Group. He specializes, among other things, in pediatric and adult dermatology, laser surgery and soft tissue augmentation. He is a member of the DEI working group for the American Society of Dermatologic Surgery.

What to Consider When Buying Products for Uneven Skin Texture

The most effective products will tackle the cause of your uneven skin texture first, and as Dr. Lal notes, you’ll often have to turn to more than one treatment. “Essentially, the treatment is often multifactorial to get the best outcome,” he says. “For example, if your skin has scars, it may be helpful to treat the scars with topical retinoids, micro-needles, and fractional lasers,” he says of combining over-the-counter products with in-office treatments. a board-certified dermatologist. “You want to make sure you get evaluated, because if [your uneven skin texture] comes from a rash, so you have to make sure you treat it with prescription medication,” warns Dr. Lal, who adds that retinol and some acids can actually make rashes worse.

You may also experience uneven skin texture on your body in the form of hyperpigmentation due to sun damage and acne, or conditions such as keratosis pilaris (KP), which causes tiny bumps and rough patches. “The skin on your body is not as resilient as the skin on your face,” says Dr. Lal. “I would look for body lotions that contain retinols (as opposed to retinoids, which can be too strong), glycolic acid, or lactic acid, which can gently exfoliate the skin.”

Shop the best products for uneven skin texture

Press? Here are the best products for uneven skin texture:

1. Best Serum: La Roche-Posay Glycolic B5 Serum with Pure Glycolic Acid 10%

2. Best Lotion: AmLactin Rapid Relief Repair Cream

3. Best Liquid Exfoliator: Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliator

4. Best Retinoid: Differin Gel

5. Best peel off tampons: Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Night Pads Extreme

1. The choice of the dermis: the best serum

“It’s great for the face and to even out skin texture,” says Dr. Lal of La Roche-Posay’s Glycolic Acid Serum. In addition to 10% glycolic acid, the serum includes a salicylic acid derivative to further exfoliate by accelerating skin cell turnover. Plus, kojic and tranexamic acids work to fade unwanted hyperpigmentation (so it’s great for uneven-textured skin) and tone), while vitamin B5 and La Roche-Posay thermal water provide soothing and moisturizing benefits. Because it’s non-comedogenic, oil-free, and fragrance-free, it’s tolerated by most skin types, but since it’s also a stronger serum, you may want to gradually introduce it into your nighttime routine.

Relevant notice: “I use it to lighten post-inflammatory pigmentation, and it works surprisingly well. The spots start to fade much faster and my skin looks even. It itches a bit, which takes a while to get used to, but it’s absolutely effective.”

Active ingredients: Glycolic acid, kojic acid, lipo-hydroxy acid, tranexamic acid, vitamin B5 Cut: 1 oz. Cruelty Free: Nope

2. The choice of the dermis: the best face and body lotion

For a multitasking formula, Dr. Lal recommends a moisturizer. “It’s great for the face and body, and [it] can gently exfoliate your skin,” he says of AmLactin’s Rapid Relief Repair Cream, which combines 15% lactic acid with three ceramides, glycerin and vitamin E to help hydrate your skin for up to to 24 hours Lactic acid is one of the mildest AHAs, and the non-greasy cream is also unscented, so safe for anyone sensitive to scents.

Active ingredients: Lactic Acid, Ceramides, Vitamin E Cut: 12 oz. Cruelty Free: Nope

Relevant notice: “I love this product. After using it for a few weeks, I could see a big difference in the texture of my skin, especially my arms.”

3. Best Liquid Exfoliator

For more sensitive skin, the concentrated formula of a serum may be too strong. Instead, try a gentler leave-in treatment like Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant, which has over 45,000 five-star ratings on Amazon. The treatment combines a lower concentration of BHA salicylic acid with soothing green tea to help exfoliate uneven skin without causing irritation. That said, the brand recommends working your way up to daily use, starting with one application every other day – crucial advice, especially if you have sensitive skin.

Active ingredients: Salicylic acid, green tea Cut: 1 oz. Cruelty Free: Yes

Relevant notice: “I have tried everything you can think of to improve the texture of my skin. I have acne scars from years ago from severe acne and this [has] does wonders! Your skin feels so clean after using it. My skin is glowing thanks to this! […] Little goes a long way! Highly recommend. I’ve been using it for a month now and I’m extremely happy…finally!!”

4. Best OTC Retinoid

If you can’t get to the derma for a retinoid prescription, Differin Gel is your next best bet (the key ingredient, adapalene, indeed once required a prescription). It is primarily used to treat and prevent acne, but because it works by increasing the rate of skin cell turnover, it also helps promote more even skin texture and tone. You may experience irritation as your skin adapts to the retinoid (known as retinization), which may present as dryness, redness, and flaking. If you’ve never used a retinoid (or its milder counterpart, retinol) before, you can minimize reactions by applying the product once or twice a week at first, then slowly progressing to nighttime use. . Also remember that you only need to use a pea-sized amount and remember to hydrate afterwards.

Active ingredients: Adapalene (retinoid) Cut: 0.5oz. Cruelty Free: Nope

Relevant notice: “I had cystic acne since I was 12 until now. I’m 29 and have tried everything except Acutane. BUY THIS. The purge is horrible and your skin will be dry. Like flakes peeling off. You will break out more than ever before. It takes away EVERYTHING. After 4-5 weeks you will have brand new skin. It will start to clear up and your skin texture will look completely different (in the common sense.) Hold the purge and you’ll be so glad you did. […]”

5. Best Peelable Pads

You can also find acidic ingredients in exfoliating pads, which are designed to quickly and easily incorporate exfoliants into your skincare routine (you only need to use them two to three times a week). These Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Night Pads are saturated in a formula that includes 5% glycolic, salicylic, lactic and mandelic acids to help dissolve the outer layer of dead skin, which can, in turn, make your skin smoother and more uniform. . Plus, hyaluronic acid, vitamin B5, and niacinamide are included to help keep skin hydrated (niacinamide also helps even out uneven skin tone and minimize the appearance of congested pores).

Active ingredients: Glycolic acid, salicylic acid, lactic acid, mandelic acid, niacinamide, hyaluronic acid, vitamin B5 Cut: 60 pads Cruelty Free: Yes

Relevant notice: “My new must-have Holy Grail. […] It smoothes the texture of my face and evens out the complexion. I use it every other night and then apply the Cera-ve moisturizer so it doesn’t dry me out. I’ve had professional glycolic peels a few times and it’s very gentle but it’s good because you don’t have that downtime (peeling for days) like an aggressive peel but it really works wonders over a short period.

6. Best Body Wash

For uneven textured skin on your body, washing in the shower with an alpha or beta hydroxy acid can help smooth out rough bumps and patches. CeraVe’s best-selling SA body wash uses salicylic acid, a BHA, to get the job done, along with niacinamide, hyaluronic acid and three ceramides to keep your skin hydrated and strong. Because it’s non-comedogenic, fragrance-free, and free of harsh microbeads, it’s gentle enough to use daily.

Active ingredients: Salicylic Acid, Niacinamide, Ceramides, Hyaluronic Acid Cut: 10oz. Cruelty Free: Nope

Relevant notice: “This body wash works – PERIOD. I’ve tried so many products for my chicken skin and nothing has ever worked. This body wash has drastically changed the texture of my skin in an amazing way! It has no fragrance. I am getting my next bottle soon. I would definitely recommend this product.”

7. Best Body Scrub

If you prefer a scrub to a body wash when it comes to treating uneven skin texture, this KP Bump Eraser from First Aid Beauty is a cult favorite. Although it aims to help with the bumps and rough patches associated with keratosis pilaris, the scrub can help anyone with uneven texture due to dryness and buildup of dead skin. Pumice stone, glycolic acid and lactic acid help exfoliate this gritty scrub, while bisabolol, colloidal oatmeal and vitamin E help soothe and revitalize dry skin. Because it combines the benefits of a chemical peel and microdermabrasion, you only need to use it once or twice a week to see results.

Active ingredients: Pumice stone, glycolic acid, lactic acid, colloidal oatmeal, bisabolol, vitamin E, green tea Cut: 8 oz. Cruelty Free: Yes

Relevant notice: “I have been using this scrub for ONE WEEK and have already noticed a major improvement in my skin texture. I will definitely be repurchasing.”


Dr. Karan Lal, MD, board-certified dermatologist practicing with Schweiger Dermatology Group