I had been trying cetaphil for years off and on with NO improvement. I have dry red itchy easily irritated skin. Water alone made it worse. Then i figured it out. I make sure my face is bone dry, absolutely no water, and rub the cetaphil in like lotion. Added more and more till my skin stopped " drinking" it. Then gently wipe the excess off with a wet washcloth. Miracle. If your skins similar to how mine was try it!!!