How one DC dermatologist would spend $100 on skin care

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Washington DC dermatologist, Elizabeth Tanzi, MD takes a proactive approach to maintaining a radiant, youthful complexion. Her philosophy centers around giving skin the attention and care it needs on a daily basis to avoid problems—wrinkles, hyperpigmentation, dullness—as you age. Her number one rule? Consistency. Dr. Tanzi encourages her patients to stick to a steady regimen, filled with non-irritating, gentle products.

Beyond what you put on your skin (more on that in just a moment), she also stresses the importance of committing to a healthy, wholesome lifestyle by staying out of the sun, eating well, and practicing positive sleeping habits. As for what to do if you can’t get a solid 8 hours? Wash your face every night, exfoliate, and slather on barrier protecting creams. 

Keep scrolling for Dr. Tanzi’s top skin care picks.

Neutrogena Hydroboost
Photo: Neutrogena

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel, $20

“I love this gel-cream,” explains Dr. Tanzi. “It’s packed with hyaluronic acid and is very lightweight. As an emollient, it pulls water into the skin and holds it there to improve moisture levels without being too heavy or greasy. Plus, it’s safe for all skin types from oily to dry.”

Olay serum
Photo: Olay

Olay Regenerist Regenerating Serum, $23

“Olay’s Regenerist line has a scientifically proven peptide that stimulates collagen,” explains Dr. Tanzi. “It really is anti-aging and—unlike some retinols—it’s not irritating so any skin type can use it. Apply it at night after you wash your face. Just use a couple of drops and let it dry before putting a moisturizer on top of it.”

Soothing cleansing milk
Photo: Dr. Hauschka

Dr. Hauschka Cleansing Milk, $13

“This cleanser is great for dry, sensitive, or combination skin,” says Dr Tanzi. “It has good ingredients that cleanse the skin without stripping it of its natural oils—jojoba and almond oils help maintain natural moisture levels on the surface of the skin. It’s gentle enough to use twice daily, and even helps remove eye makeup.”

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Eucerin lotion
Photo: Eucerin

Eucerin Advanced Repair Lotion, $9

“This is my favorite over-the-counter body lotion,” says Dr. Tanzi. “It gets rid of dry, flaky skin and moisturizes really well. You can use it at any point [throughout the day], but applying it right after the shower will lock in hydration. So, to get the most out of it, apply to damp skin after towel-drying off. You can put it on again before going to bed if you have really dry skin—but to be honest, you probably won’t even need to.”

Pixi glow peel pads
Photo: Pixi

Pixi by Petra Glow Peel Pads, $22

“If you use these pads on a regular basis your skin will look it got a chemical peel at the spa. They’re twenty percent glycolic and rosewater, which is a lot at a really good price point,” she tells me. “If you have sensitive skin, be very cautious here. Whenever you add glycolic to your skincare routine, you want to start slowly and see how your skin tolerates it. So, start using them once a week and build up a tolerance to two times a week, and note that they can make you slightly more sun-sensitive.”

Hit the road to see how derms in different zipcodes would purchase beauty on a budget: Here’s how an LA derm does it and this is how one from NYC does.

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