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Expert Reviews

This specialty skin-care product is meant to help heal painful cracks and fissures in skin (the kind that result from extreme dryness or various types of dermatitis or psoriasis). It is medicated with 1% hydrocortisone, a potent anti-inflammatory that helps heal dry, cracked, itchy skin. The hydrocortisone is in a viscous, clear base of a glycol along with glycerin and several water-binding agents. The glycol and glycerin base creates this product’s unique texture and application that’s initially greasy but sets to a smooth, moist finish. Despite containing the AHAs lactic, malic, and citric acids and the BHA salicylic acid, Handy Manum’s pH of 5 is too high for exfoliation to occur. The addition of antioxidant green tea and anti-irritant beta Glucan are nice touches for irritated skin. Although this product is intriguing, potentially effective, and rated highly, you should know that a 1% hydrocortisone cream from the drugstore costs a lot less and, when combined with a good emollient moisturizer (or even plain Vaseline or Aquaphor) can be just as helpful as Handy Manum.

Last Updated:03.31.2015
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:No
Community Reviews

Handy Manum is on-call to lend a hand to help repair skin that requires an emergency fix-it. This medicated dry oil helps heal skin in critical condition, soothing and smoothing dry and irritated, cracked or broken problem areas. Provides relief from itching and inflammation.


Active Ingredient: Hydrocortisone 1%. Other Ingredients: Propylene Glycol, Glycerin, Methyl Gluceth-10, Oleic Acid, Lactic Acid, Malic Acid, Citric Acid, Camellia Oleifera (Green Tea) Extract, Oat Beta Glucan, Salicylic Acid, Polyquaternium-10, BHT

Brand Overview

DERMAdoctor At-a-Glance

Strengths: Company provides complete product ingredient lists on its Web site; well formulated AHA products; sunscreens provide critical broad-spectrum protection, good oil-control product; a couple of great, though pricey, cleansers.

Weaknesses: Expensive; mostly poor anti-acne products; anti-wrinkle products making imossible claims; clinical studies alluded to are not made available to the public (which is odd, given that this is a brand fronted by a dermatologist); some product formulas suffer due to jar packaging.

The DERMAdoctor line is the brainchild of Kansas City-based dermatologist Dr. Audrey Kunin. Dr. Kunin's Web site retails not only the DERMAdoctor brand but several products from other brands, many of which have ties to specific dermatologic concerns (everything from athlete's foot to warts). Many of these specialty products are available from your local drugstore, but Kunin's site provides helpful, mostly reliable information concerning various skin-care concerns.

We wish her own products followed the strength of her advice, but alas, most do not. This is another dermatologist-developed line with plenty of products whose names and claims make you think they're a cosmetic corrective procedure in a bottle (or, in some cases, a jar, which is never a good packaging move). There are some products to pay attention to, though whether you want to strongly consider them or not comes down to how much you feel comfortable spending (DERMAdoctor products aren't cheap).

DERMAdoctor isn't exactly "your prescription for beautiful skin" but Dr. Kunin gets enough right that her line isn't one to gloss over, particularly if you're shopping for sunscreens, AHA products, and facial cleansers. Those with acne should look elsewhere, because DERMAdoctor's products don't have the solution, despite their cute product names.

For more information about DERMAdoctor, call (877) 337-6237 or visit

About the Experts

The Beautypedia and Paula’s Choice Research teams have one mission: To help you find the best products for your skin, whether they’re from Paula’s Choice or another brand. By combining efforts, we’re able to share scientific research and remain committed to the highest standards based on our decades of experience objectively reviewing thousands upon thousands of skincare and makeup formularies in all price ranges.

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