What Ingredients Should I Avoid for Acne-Prone Skin?

It’s obviously important to look for helpful ingredients when purchasing products for acne-prone skin. But you should also take care to avoid certain ingredients.

It’s obviously important to look for helpful ingredients when purchasing products for acne-prone skin. But you should also take care to avoid certain ingredients.

Generally, you want to avoid anything that will further unbalance your skin’s natural barrier function by blocking pores or stripping natural oils. So just what are these no-no ingredients? Read on.

 

What ingredients should I avoid for acne-prone skin?

 

Alcohol


Not all alcohols are bad for your skin, but alcohol denat., or denatured (SD) alcohol, is one to avoid. Seeing one of these names at the top of an ingredients list means the product contains a high percentage of this drying alcohol.

Alcohol swiftly cuts through the lipid layer of the skin, creating a grease-free surface and helping products sink in better. However, as you can probably imagine, this isn’t great for your skin.

The lipid barrier, or the surface layer of fatty acids on the skin, protects you from irritation. When you eliminate this barrier, you also destroy your natural protection from irritation, redness, and acne, only causing further issues with your delicate skin situation.


Thick Emollients


Your skin is most likely somewhat oily, so it doesn’t need layers of rich emollients to stay balanced and hydrated. Rich ingredients like shea butter and coconut oil aren’t necessarily what your skin needs, especially in the midst of a brutal acne breakout.

Thick, greasy ingredients applied to oily skin simply sit on the surface, mixing with dead cells, sebum, and acne bacteria to encourage more breakouts.

 

What ingredients should I avoid for acne-prone skin?

 

Harsh Botanicals


Numerous harsh botanicals can cause irritation, dryness, and flakiness on acne-prone skin. Ingredients like menthol or camphor provide a cooling sensation but can be incredibly drying. Citrus fruits like lemon and grapefruit are much more acidic than your skin’s natural pH and can cause stinging and burning.

Some great acne products that don’t contain these unwanted ingredients:

Alpha-H Clear Skin Daily Hydrator Gel is a lightweight moisturiser that contains humectants hyaluronic acid and sodium PCA, soothing aloe vera, and cotton seed extract to support your skin’s natural barrier function.

ASAP Clear Complexion Gel balances skin with resurfacing alpha- and beta-hydroxy acids. Liquorice, tea tree, bilberry, and calendula extracts naturally calm the skin.

Dermalogica MediBac Breakout Control contains tons of natural antibacterials like lactobacillus ferment and tea tree oil to help control acne bacteria before it can wreak havoc. This product also contains colloidal silver, which has shown to improve skin that’s prone to breakouts.

So go forth and be kind to your skin! Treating your complexion with care will help you achieve the positive results you're looking for.

 

What ingredients should I avoid for acne-prone skin?