Dermatologist-Recommended Personalized Custom Skin Care Routines

There are so many companies offering personalized skin care and custom skin routines.  How do you know which is best? I am a dermatologist who has written the textbooks dermatologists use to prescribe custom skin care routines. In this blog, I review the personalized skin care companies Proven Skin Care, Curology, and Skinceuticals and compare they way they customize their routines to how dermatologists do customized skin care in their medical practices.  

Keep reading for a guide to find the best personalized and customized skin care routine.

I am a dermatologist and skin care expert

I am a dermatologist who strongly believes in evidence based data. To have good data you need a standardized approach to skin care so that true controlled comparisons can be made to find out what really works. 

I believe that:

  1. Skin care routines should be customized by skin type
  2. Skin type must be diagnosed accurately and scientifically
  3. Skin care products should be layered in the proper step order
  4. You should be educate on how much and how to use the products
  5. You need to adjust your skin care routine often.  At least every 3 months and when the weather changes. How often to change your routine depends upon your skin type.

I have spent the last 25 years figuring out how to do this scientifically so you can have a personalized custom skin care routine that works.  The Baumann Skin Typing System and Skin Routine Builder are used in dermatology offices.  How does it compare to the other brands that offer custom skin care routines?

Books by skin care expert Dr. Leslie Baumann

I have spent years researching skin care ingredients, skin types, ingredients, matching ingredients to skin types, building custom skin care routines, and mixing and matching the best products from different skin care brands in a custom skin care routine made with different brands. You can learn more about my skin care expertise and research here.

I feel very strongly that to personalize a custom skin care routine, you must first accurately diagnose the skin type using a valid quiz.

With this approach to personalized skin care. I will review the custom skin care routines by Proven Skin Care, Curology, Skinceuticals and other personalized skin care companies.

To understand my product reviews, you need to know there are 16 Baumann Skin Types and there are 4 subtypes of sensitive skin.

This skin typing system is used by dermatologists to personalized custom skin care routines.

The skin type is diagnosed used a validated scientific questionnaire.

16 Bauman Skin Types

Curology Custom Skin Routines Review

Curology was started by board certified dermatologist Dr. David Lortscher in 2014 when he had been a dermatologist for 2 years. His products focus on acne. If you sign up for a consultation, you can get products with active ingredients like:

When I review the Curology skin care products and ingredients in them, they focus on acne but not dry skin, aging skin, or sensitive skin with inflammation.

The custom skin care routines by Curology are not truly custom or personalized for all Baumann Skin Types.  They seem like a one size fits all routine for oily, acne- prone skin types that do not have much skin sensitivity.  These routines can be very irritating and cause skin inflammation.

If you get a reaction from a Curology products, read here what to do.  

The Curology brand reminds me of ProActive Skin Care started by Drs  Rodan and Fields.

Another downside is you cannot easily mix it with other skin care brands with confidence that the routine will still work well.

Curology Custom Skin Care Routine Review

What Skin Types Is Curology Good For?

Curology Custom Routines should work well for you if you have oily, acne-prone skin with minimal redness and irritation. 

The Curology products will only work well for Baumann Skin Types 5 and 6. Curology is best for Baumann Skin Type 6, but if you get the consultation, the products may work for Baumann Skin Type 5.   If you have dark spots from acne, and do not have stinging and skin irritation, the Curology line might work well for you.

Curology is not good for acne-prone skin types with dry skin and those that cannot tolerate retinoids, benzoyl peroxide, and foaming cleansers in the same skin care routine.


What skin types is Curology good for?

Proven Custom Skin Care Routines Review

Proven Custom Skin Care Routine Review

Proven Skin Care Regimens

We are not impressed with the Proven Skin Care Custom Regimens for several reasons. 

  1. They do not have a scientific way to determine your skin type or it's needs. They do not have a skin type quiz that has been scientifically validated to correctly diagnose skin type.  It is well known that people guess their skin type incorrectly. (6) Proven is asking you to guess what your skin type is.  
  2. They claim to have analyzed genome data from many different skin care ingredients but I do not see any publications from them about this in the medical literature. 
  3. They claim they have the most comprehensive skincare database in the world and technology that analyzes the effectiveness of over 20,238 skincare ingredients, from arnica to zinc." My question is- effectiveness on who and what skin type are they? Analysis of consumer data on skin care ingredients is essentially meaningless without an accurate diagnostic quiz and skin typing system. Just because an ingredient works for one skin type, does not mean it will work for another. 
  4. There is a question about if these products are truly personalized. For example, they cannot remove fragrance.
  5. They are not transparent about what ingredients will be in your products and your final skin care routine.
  6. They do not allow you to combine products from several brands.
  7. The chemical structure and activity of skin care ingredients change when you combine them so studies must eb done on the final formulations, no on the individual ingredients alone.  You also need to test them in a layered skin care routine to see if they work together. 

You can learn more about product layering here.

Its a shame that they have these issues because a simple approach to skincare is a nice idea.  

What are other options?

When you take our quiz, we give you the option to choose between a 3 product basic regimen, or a full regimen that has more steps.  A full regimen works faster.  Although 3 steps is easier, our data shows that 3 products is usually not enough, especially if you have a complicated skin type.

Take the quiz to see how many steps should be in your skin care routine.

Skinceuticals Personalized Custom Skincare Routines

Skinceuticals Custom Skin Care Routine Review

Skinceuticals Custom Skin Routines Review: Pros and Cons

Skinceuticals was originally started by Dermatologist Sheldon Pinnell, the Chairman of dermatology at Duke University. 

The medical grade products are well made and effective for many different skin types.  We do not like their skin type quiz because it is not as accurate as ours.  But that is ok.  You can use our skin care routine quiz and buy their products from

 us! build your routine with us!

Although it can be confusing to know which Skinceuticals products to use because they have so many, we can easily guide you. The only downside to this brand is that it is expensive- especially the Vitamin C serums. But if you choose the right products for your Baumann Skin Type, the results are worth it.

Skinceuticals Regimens

Skinceuticals has many different products that can be combined in a regimen to cover the spectrum of skin concerns. As long as you choose the right Skinceuticals products for your skin type and use them in the correct skin care routine order, you should have good results.

The best part about the Skinceuticals custom routines is that you can combine Skinceuticals with products from other skin care brands to get a truly custom routine that works.  This is the best personalized skin care routine that we reviewed.

Take the advanced personalized skincare quiz to get a Custom Skinceuticals Routine.

Which skin type is a Skinceuticals personalized custom skin care routine good for

How To Find The Best Personalized Custom Skin Care Routine?

Each skin care product in a skin care routine step should help the other skin care products in the skin care routine work better. The order that skin care products are applied on the skin makes a big difference! Product layering of skin care products needs a lot of scientific consideration to be done properly. 

Click here to learn more about product layering in a skin care regimen.

Designing a skin care routine is challenging. When a skin care routine is designed properly, it is a huge scientific puzzle because there are so many things to consider when customizing a skin care routine. 

For example:

So let us help!  Its free, it's easy, and we will empower you to make better skin care decisions.

things a personalized custom skin care routine needs to consider

Your skin care routine should be customized for your unique skin type for you to get the best skin benefits. These puzzle pieces illustrate all of the things that need to eb considered when building a personalized custom skin care routine.

It all starts with taking the skin type quiz to diagnose your skin type. There are 3 ways you can learn your Baumann Skin Type:

  1. Take our dermatologist-developed skin type quiz
  2. Find a STS trained medical provider in your area
  3. Schedule an online skin care consult 

Use A Skin Care Routine Designed By Dermatologists For Your Baumann Skin Type

Your Skin Type Solutions (STS) trained dermatologist or medical provider will diagnose your skin type and design a custom skin care routine that may include prescription medications such as acne, melasma, or rosacea medications.

Your STS trained dermatologist, physician or medical provider will give you the exact skin care routine steps so that you will know exactly what to do to for your am and pm skin care routine.

Or- take the 3 minute quiz and shop by your Baumann Skin Type.

Level up your skin care knowledge with medical advice from dermatologists

Best References and Scientific Publications on Personalized Custom Skin Care Routines:

  1. Baumann L.  in Ch. 35 Skin Care Regimen Design in Baumann's Cosmetic Dermatology Ed 3. (McGraw Hill 2022)
  2. Falcone, D., Peppelman, M., van Erp, P., Ezerskaya, A., Varghese, B., & Uzunbajakava, N. E. The Role of Quantitative Optical Methods for Personalized Skin Care Solutions: Perspectives Offered by In Vivo Reflectance Confocal Microscopy, Raman Microspectroscopy and Near-infrared Microspectroscopy.
  3. Siddiqui, S., Khan, A. A., & Dey, I. (2022). Internet Technologies for Personalized Care. In Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Frameworks in Telehealth (pp. 173-189). Cham: Springer International Publishing.
  4. Markiewicz, E., & Idowu, O. C. (2018). Personalized skincare: from molecular basis to clinical and commercial applications. Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology, 161-171.
  5.  Standardization of Skin Care Routine Design and Skin Phenotype Diagnosis Facilitates Machine Learning and AI, lecture at 75th Annual Society of Cosmetic Chemists
  6. Youn, S. W., Kim, S. J., Hwang, I. A., & Park, K. C. (2002). Evaluation of facial skin type by sebum secretion: discrepancies between subjective descriptions and sebum secretion. Skin Research and Technology8(3), 168-172.
  7. Baumann, L. S., Penfield, R. D., Clarke, J. L., & Duque, D. K. (2014). A validated questionnaire for quantifying skin oiliness. Journal of Cosmetics, Dermatological Sciences and Applications2014.
  8. Baumann, L. (2016). Validation of a questionnaire to diagnose the Baumann skin type in all ethnicities and in various geographic locations. Journal of Cosmetics, Dermatological Sciences and Applications6(1), 34-40.

Comments 0

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

    1 out of ...