Best moisturizer for acne

14 Best Moisturizers For Acne-Prone Skin Esha Saxena Hyderabd040-395603080 November 20, 2019

Here’s a piece of advice from every dermatologist out there: moisturizing is key to getting healthy skin. Most of us don’t fully understand the importance of hydrating our skin. If you struggle with oily and acne-prone skin, you might think cutting down on moisturizer is a good idea, but that’s where you’re wrong. Dehydrated skin can aggravate issues like inflammation and breakouts. Instead of skipping or skimping on moisturizer, what you need to do is find the right formula – one that fits your skin’s needs. To help you decide, we’ve rounded up 14 of the best moisturizers that are suitable for acne-prone skin. These gentle moisturizers hydrate your skin without irritating it.

Products Check Price
Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel-Cream Check Price
Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion Check Price
Elta MD PM Therapy Facial Moisturizer Check Price
The Body Shop Vitamin E Aqua Boost Essence Lotion Check Price
La Roche-Posay Toleriane Double Repair Face Moisturizer Check Price
Garnier Skin Active Hydrating 3-In-1 Moisturizer Check Price
CeraVe AM Facial Moisturizing Lotion Check Price
La Mer Moisturizing Cream Check Price
Simple Hydrating Gel Cream Check Price
Differin Oil Control Moisturizer Check Price

Contents

14 Best Moisturizers For Sensitive, Acne-Prone Skin

Review

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel-Cream is formulated with hyaluronic acid that boosts hydration and locks it in, so your skin stays soft and supple throughout the day. It is ideal for extremely dry and acne-prone skin as it soothes and quenches dehydrated skin instantly. It contains an olive extract that nourishes your skin with its moisturizing and antioxidant properties. You can also use it as a night-time moisturizer.

Pros

  • Gets absorbed quickly
  • Lightweight
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Oil-free
  • Fragrance-free

Cons

None

Back To TOC

2. Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion

Review

Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion is a blessing for all skin types. It is specially formulated to soothe and calm your skin with its lightweight hydration. We love how easily it gets absorbed into your skin and restores its natural moisture. Its ingredients are proven to bind water to your skin and help prevent moisture loss throughout the day.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Non-greasy
  • Fragrance-free
  • Suitable for sensitive skin

Cons

None

Back To TOC

3. Elta MD PM Therapy Facial Moisturizer

Review

If your skin always looks dull and is in need of some intensive repair, Elta MD PM Therapy Facial Moisturizer is the best choice for you. It restores your skin’s youth while strengthening its natural moisture barrier. It contains niacinamide and antioxidants that boost your skin’s color and tone. This moisturizer is especially ideal for mature skin, but it also works incredibly well on all skin types. The rice protein in its formula aids in promoting collagen formation and encouraging cell growth.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Oil-free
  • Improves elasticity
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Fragrance-free

Cons

None

Back To TOC

4. The Body Shop Vitamin E Aqua Boost Essence Lotion

Review

If you have dry skin that is extremely prone to acne, this formula from The Body Shop provides 48 hours of non-greasy moisturization. It is formulated with wheatgrass oil and vitamin E that protect your skin from free radical damage throughout the day. With regular use, your skin will feel so supple and plump that you can say goodbye to dry, flaky skin for good.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Non-sticky
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Gets absorbed quickly

Cons

None

Back To TOC

5. La Roche-Posay Toleriane Double Repair Face Moisturizer

Review

This oil-free moisturizer from the French brand La Roche-Posay works remarkably well in replenishing your skin’s moisture and restoring its natural protective barrier. If you have extremely sensitive skin, this product is a must-try as it nourishes and soothes irritated skin instantly. You’ll be surprised at how comfortable it feels on your skin and how efficiently it does its job within a few days of use.

Pros

  • Weightless
  • Does not clog pores
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Suitable for all skin types

Cons

None

Back To TOC

6. Garnier Skin Active Hydrating 3-In-1 Moisturizer

Review

If you’re on the hunt for a drugstore moisturizer, this one from Garnier is a great option. It works in three ways – as a day moisturizer that refreshes, a night moisturizer that hydrates, and a face mask that nourishes your skin. Its fast-absorbing formula provides a big dose of hydration instantly, leaving your skin feeling softer and smoother.

Pros

  • Non-greasy
  • Lightweight
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Versatile
  • Suitable for sensitive skin

Cons

None

Back To TOC

7. CeraVe AM Facial Moisturizing Lotion

Review

CeraVe’s AM Facial Moisturizing Lotion comes with SPF 30 to protect your skin from the damaging UV rays while nourishing it. It contains ingredients like ceramide, niacinamide, and hyaluronic acid that help your skin hold on to moisture. Here’s the best part: it works brilliantly even on sensitive skin as it does not clog pores or cause acne flare-ups.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Non-greasy
  • Broad spectrum SPF 30
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Oil- and fragrance-free

Cons

None

Back To TOC

8. La Mer Moisturizing Cream

Review

If you struggle with dryness, dullness, acne, large pores, and uneven skin texture, here’s your solution in a jar! La Mer Moisturizing Cream is known for its power to hydrate and improve the appearance of your skin in as little as three days. It is formulated with hand-harvested sea kelp, nutrients, and minerals that support the five facets of natural skin healing – moisture, regeneration, soothing, smoothing, and radiance.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Hydrates and repairs skin
  • Paraben-free
  • Value for money

Cons

None

Back To TOC

9. Simple Hydrating Gel Cream

Review

If you are not a fan of applying anything too heavy on your skin but your skin needs the hydration, this moisturizer from Simple is your best bet. It reduces the tightness and dryness on your skin that is often caused by cleansing. This gel cream is made with skin-loving ingredients, minerals, and plant extracts, and it works brilliantly on sensitive skin.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Fast-absorbing
  • Does not clog pores
  • Free of chemicals
  • Suitable for rosacea-prone skin

Cons

None

Back To TOC

10. Differin Oil Control Moisturizer

Review

This oil-control moisturizer from Differin comes with SPF 30, and it is specially formulated for acne-prone skin. If you are currently treating breakouts with Differin gel (adapalene), this moisturizer can be used with it, and it won’t interfere with the treatment. It is the perfect option for someone with oily to combination skin type as it also helps control shine and grease.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Gets absorbed quickly
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Oil-free
  • SPF 30

Cons

None

Back To TOC

11. N°7 Early Defence Day Cream

Review

N°7’s Early Defence Day Cream is a must-try for aging, acne-prone skin. It is formulated with lipopeptides and vitamin A that help reduce the appearance of those first fine lines and fight oiliness. It comes with SPF 15, so your skin stays protected from environmental stressors like pollution and UV rays.

Pros

  • Non-greasy
  • Lightweight
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Prevents fine lines
  • Controls oil

Cons

None

Back To TOC

12. Clean & Clear Advantage Acne Control Moisturizer

Review

Say goodbye to breakouts with this Clean & Clear moisturizer! This formula replenishes your skin’s moisture while clearing up acne (and preventing new pimples from popping up). It contains the magic ingredient salicylic acid that works amazingly well when paired with this creamy formula.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Fast-absorbing
  • Does not clog pores
  • Suitable for oily skin
  • Affordable

Cons

None

Back To TOC

13. LilyAna Naturals Retinol Cream

Review

Looking for something a little more intense? LilyAna Naturals Retinol Cream is easily one of the best picks for stubborn, acne-prone skin. It contains a combination of retinol and some of the best organic ingredients, such as hyaluronic acid, green tea, vitamin E, shea butter, and jojoba oil. This creamy formula works impressively fast in fixing flare-ups and improving your skin’s texture.

Pros

  • Non-comedogenic
  • Does not dry out your skin
  • Value for money
  • Lightweight

Cons

None

Back To TOC

14. Origins Ginzing Energy-Boosting Gel Moisturizer

Review

We saved the best for last! Origins Ginzing Energy-Boosting Gel Moisturizer is popular even among celebrities. This cult-favorite formula hydrates your skin and revs up its radiance with the help of ingredients like coffee bean and ginseng. It works well on all skin types, and it leaves your skin feeling fresh, bright, and insanely healthy.

Pros

  • Non-comedogenic
  • Reduces dullness
  • Evens out skin texture
  • Lightweight
  • Oil-free
  • Value for money

Cons

None

Back To TOC

If you wouldn’t go a day without drinking water, you shouldn’t go a day without moisturizing your skin as well. It is a very critical part of treating acne as it loosens the sebum that’s built up inside your pores. That was our round-up of the 14 best moisturizers for acne-prone skin. Do you have a go-to formula that you swear by? Let us know in the comments section below.

The following two tabs change content below.

  • Latest Posts
  • Bio

Latest posts by Esha Saxena (see all)

  • 9 Of The Best Green Concealers To Cancel Out Redness – October 10, 2019
  • The 9 Differences Between Loving Someone And Being In Love – October 9, 2019
  • 9 Of The Best Rainbow Highlighters Out There – September 30, 2019
  • 10 Of The Best Morphe Brushes Of All Time – September 30, 2019
  • What Is the Difference Between Primer, Foundation, And Concealer? – September 30, 2019

Esha Saxena

Esha Saxena is a writer, journalist, and a full-time wallflower. She holds a Master’s degree in Media and Mass Communication and firmly believes that makeup is nothing less than art. Combining her love for writing with her passion for makeup, she brings to you reviews, techniques, and her ever-growing knowledge on this form of art. In her spare time, she loves reading, listening to obscure indie bands, and writing poetry – all of this while being a crazy dog lady.

When you have acne-prone or oily skin, it sometimes seems like every skincare product is against you, clogging pores and leaving skin greasy or covered in troublesome acne. Fortunately, there are plenty of face creams and moisturizers that work wonders for oily and acne-prone skin to give it the hydration it needs without causing breakouts or looking greasy.

It might seem counterintuitive to moisturize oily, acne-prone skin, but acne-fighting products can leave skin feeling extra-dry as result. “Listen to your skin,” says Dr. David Lortscher, board-certified dermatologist and CEO of Curology. For some people, that might mean only moisturizing dry spots, but for others it could mean all-over hydration every day, and consult a dermatologist if you still have concerns about your skincare routine.

How to choose the best moisturizer for oily skin

Pay attention to labels when choosing a moisturizer for acne-prone and oily skin. If you see “non-comedogenic” on it, that means it won’t clog your pores, which is great for any skin type.If you have oily skin, look for oil-free moisturizers, and remember that products that claim to help treat acne should have a proper drug facts label that lists active ingredients (like benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid, for example), according to Danusia Wnek, a chemist at the Good Housekeeping Institute’s Beauty Lab.

Consider viscosity when shopping for new face moisturizer, too. Creams are generally thicker and heavier than lotions and serums, which may not be great for super oily or acne-prone skin. And make sure you load up on SPF with a face sunscreen that can hydrate your skin while also offering sun protection.

Beyond lotion, “serums are lightweight formulas that deliver concentrated cosmetic actives (like retinoids, ceramides, and/or peptides) to the skin without any extra ingredients, such as heavy oils,” says Wnek, which makes them great for acne-prone skin.

We rounded up the best moisturizers for acne-prone and oily skin — some are beauty expert and editor favorites, while others are GH Seal Stars and Amazon best-sellers. Here are the best moisturizers for acne-prone and oily skin in 2019:

Last Updated on Jan 14, 2020

Are you sick of dealing with breakouts? Try one of the best face moisturizers and lotions for acne-prone skin. Why? Because they respect the fact that your face is sensitive, but they still clear up and prevent blemishes.

There are issues when selecting a good product though. All of them claim to be the best, what are you supposed to do? That’s where we come in. Our team has hand-picked the best face lotions for all skin types that are prone to acne. We hope you find exactly what you need to solve the problem in our reviews below.

Best Face Moisturizers & Lotions for Acne-Prone Skin

Paula’s Choice SKIN BALANCING Invisible Finish Moisture Gel Moisturizer

The Skin Balancing moisturizer from Paula’s Choice is a refreshing gel. It brings dehydrated skin back to life while it reduces redness with niacinamide. It also tightens pores and fades discoloration with Vitamin C and antioxidants. The end result is a smooth and radiant complexion. Be sure to read the ingredients label for an explanation of what each component does. Moreover, this cruelty-free product doesn’t have parabens for artificial fragrances.

ACURE Incredibly Clear Mattifying Moisturizer

ACURE’s Mattifying Moisturizer is an excellent choice if you’re dealing with adult acne and an oily face. It clears up breakouts while it reverses signs of aging. First, the lilac extract firms up skin to erase fine lines. Then, chlorella, which is algae used in supplements, helps the skin to heal. Users say that even though it reduces shine, their skin feels soft but not too dry. In addition, the formula is free of oils, parabens, phthalates, formaldehyde, and petroleum derivatives.

Vichy Normaderm Beautifying Salicylic Acid Acne Treatment Moisturizer

The Beautifying Moisturizer from Vichy contains two key ingredients called Air Licium and Phe Resorcinol. Together, they soak up excess oil and minimize pores to control shine. The moisturizer also contains salicylic acid that clears up acne while it smoothes texture. Clinical testing proves that it restores hydration for up to 24 hours. That’s important when acne medication tends to dry out the face. Furthermore, this lotion is free of parabens and safe for any skin color.

The Body Shop Tea Tree Mattifying Lotion

This mattifying lotion from The Body Shop relies on Community Trade tea tree oil from Africa. Tea tree oil kills the bacteria that causes acne. Therefore, the moisturizer diminishes shine while it clears up your complexion.

La Roche-Posay Effaclar Mat Oil-Free Facial Moisturizer

The Effaclar products from La Roche-Posay are made to improve oily skin. Their award-winning Mat moisturizer begins with therapeutic hot spring water from France. Then it offers Sebulyse Technology with zinc pidolate and LHA that absorb excess oil and reduce pores. Each day after you apply it, you’ll enjoy a velvety matte finish that readies your face for makeup.

La Roche-Posay Toleriane Ultra Soothing Moisturizer for Very Sensitive Skin

The Toleriane moisturizer was awarded Allure’s Best of Beauty prize in 2013. That was because it quickly revives dry, sensitive skin with prebiotic thermal water. It’s free of artificial fragrances and parabens, has few ingredients, and is mild enough to use twice a day.

La Roche-Posay Toleriane Double Repair Face Moisturizer

For more intense hydration, try the Toleriane Double Repair moisturizer. La Roche-Posay’s thermal water is packed with prebiotics that nourish the micro-biome on the skin surface. In other words, it feeds the skin to keep it healthy and hydrated. Moreover, the effects last up to 48 hours after you apply it. Also important, this lotion has a broad-spectrum acne prone face sunscreen.

Philosophy Clear Days Ahead Oil-Free Salicylic Acid Acne Treatment and Moisturizer

Philosophy wants you to enjoy a clear complexion when you use their salicylic acid moisturizer. The formula unclogs pores and wipes out the bacteria that causes acne. Meanwhile, oligopeptide-10 strengthens the skin to clear up blemishes and improve skin tone. Finally, it sets to a matte finish that controls oil throughout the day.

Eau Thermale Avène Cleanance Mat Mattifying Emulsion

With regular use, the Eau Thermale Avène Mat Emulsion clears up blemishes and blackheads. Pores shrink and skin stays soft, but not greasy. The three keys are thermal spring water, zinc gluconate, and monolaurin. While the water and zinc moisturize and diminish redness and irritation, the monolaurin slows oil production.

Nip + Fab Teen Skin Fix Zero Shine Moisturizer

Grab the Nip + Fab Zero Shine Moisturizer if you’re a teen dealing with acne and shiny skin. It uses wasabi to stop acne-causing bacteria from doing its dirty deed. And it has zinc to absorb extra oil and calms inflammation.

Acne.org Moisturizer with Licochalcone

Acne.org’s bottle of moisturizer lasts between one to two months when you use it twice a day. Although it’s part of “The Regimen,” it’s fine to use by itself, too. The formula resolves flaky, dry patches without creating a sticky residue. It uses an extract of licorice root to relieve acne-prone skin. Furthermore, it has no artificial dyes or fragrances.

Cetaphil Pro Oil Absorbing Moisturizer with SPF30

Cetaphil ‘s Pro Oil Absorbing Moisturizer not only mattifies your skin, but it also protects it from sunburn and dehydration. But matte doesn’t mean flat because the lotion has Micropearl technology to keep your complexion radiant. Plus, this paraben-free formula has won a number of awards over the past few years.

Aveeno Clear Complexion Blemish Treatment Daily Moisturizer

Aveeno’s Clear Complexion moisturizer uses soy and salicylic acid to clear up acne and hyperpigmentation. With daily use, the lotion evens out both skin tone and texture while it prevents breakouts. Although it says it is safe for sensitive skin, it does contain a fragrance.

Murad Anti-Aging Acne Moisturizer with Broad Spectrum SPF 30 PA+++

Murad solves multiple problems with one product. Their moisturizer with sunscreen reduces shine, prevents breakouts, and keeps the skin looking young. It has Kombucha Defense and fermented black tea to increase collagen production and erase fine lines.

EltaMD AM Therapy Facial Moisturizer

EltaMD’s AM Therapy Moisturizer undoes the damage that acne medications and other health conditions can do to your skin. It moisturizes for up to 12 hours.

EltaMD PM Therapy Facial Moisturizer

The PM Therapy Moisturizer takes advantage of the natural skin repair that happens while you sleep. This comforting night cream improves cell metabolism to strengthen the skin and prevent wrinkles. It contains antioxidants, niacinamide, and rice protein peptides.

Mario Badescu Control Moisturizer for Oily Skin

Mario Badescu combines European skin care techniques with American technology to make Control Moisturizer for oily skin. Not only does it clear up acne, but it reduces oil for up to eight hours. It’s an excellent moisturizer to use underneath makeup. As a bonus, it contains Balsam Peru from South America. This tree extract is mildly antiseptic to cure inflammation.

Mario Badescu Oil-Free Moisturizer SPF 17

Ultraviolet radiation can cause more breakouts in acne-prone skin. Therefore, remember to wear sunscreen. This fragrance-free moisturizer has all the benefits of the Oil Control lotion above plus protection against sunburn.

Clinique Anti-Blemish Solutions Clearing Moisturizer

Fans of Clinique’s products know that they can depend on this moisturizer to dry to a matte finish that limits shine throughout the day. It also gets rid of pimples and prevents breakouts while it tones and textures the skin.

Neutrogena Rapid Clear Acne Defense Face Lotion with Salicylic Acid

Neutrogena’s Rapid Clear lotion has 2% salicylic acid to treat acne. It’s powerful enough to make a visible difference in as little as eight hours. And the primary ingredient not only clears up breakouts, but it also unclogs pores to prevent reoccurrences.

Eve Lom Time Retreat Intensive Night Cream

Eve Lom’s Time Retreat lotion contains a curious component called wild indigo seed. It halts cortisol production in the skin. That’s useful because too much cortisol causes breakouts.

Next, this night cream repairs inflamed skin and makes it feel better by increasing the production of beta-endorphins. At the same time, squalane, aloe, and hyaluronic acid intensely moisturize while shea butter protects against moisture loss.

CeraVe Moisturizing Cream Daily Face and Body Moisturizer for Dry Skin

CeraVe’s mild cream is tested to be safe for sensitive skin anywhere on your body. It doesn’t have a fragrance and it won’t clog pores. Instead, it restores moisture with hyaluronic acid and ceramides for up to 24 hours.

Proactiv+ Complexion Perfecting Hydrator

The ProActiv+ Hydrator is part of a three-step system for clearing up acne. This moisturizer has salicylic acid to unclog pores and diminish inflammation. Although it feels like a refreshing gel when you apply it, it moisturizes just as well as a lotion. It’s suitable for combination, oily, normal, dry, or sensitive skin. Please remember to apply sunscreen as salicylic acid can make your face more vulnerable to sunburn.

Christina Moss Naturals Facial Moisturizer

Christina Moss’ Naturals Face Moisturizer smells like licorice because that’s the natural preservative. There are no artificial dyes, perfumes, petroleum derivatives, or parabens in the bottle. Wear this lotion day or night to enjoy the benefits of aloe and natural fruit oils that keep your skin healthy.

Simple Gel Moisturizer, Ultra Light

Simple’s ultra-lightweight moisturizer is a gel without oils, fragrances, or parabens. It relies on glycerin plus Vitamins B5 and C to keep your complexion hydrated and happy. Like all the rest of Simple’s products, this one begins with triple-purified water. It’s hypoallergenic, too.

What kind of moisturizer is best for acne-prone skin?

Acne begins with a perfect storm of clogged pores and bacteria. That’s why it’s important to avoid moisturizers with oils or heavy emollients. Instead, choose lightweight moisturizers with salicylic acid and other acne-clearing benefits. Even if your skin feels extra dry, give these lotions a chance to resolve the problem. It may take a week or two before you notice a difference.

Conclusion

The best face moisturizers and lotions for acne-prone skin clear up and prevent breakouts. They reduce oil yet keep your face feeling soft and comfortable. Let us know which one works best for you. And please take advantage of our other articles about caring for sensitive and oily skin.

While you may have left your love for emo music behind in high school, acne isn’t always something you can say goodbye to so easily. Acne is becoming increasingly more common in adults, with up to 15 percent of women affected—and dry or oily skin can also have similar effects on your skin.

So what causes acne, exactly? “When skin pores get clogged, usually by dead skin cells, oil cannot discharge and accumulates in the pore and under the skin, creating a whitehead or blackhead,” explains Viseslav Tonkovic-Capin, MD, a Kansas City dermatologist and editor DermBoard.org. “This is a perfect environment for Propionibacterium acnes, which then flourishes and causes inflammation, creating pimples.”

Alison Tam, DO, a dermatologist in Las Vegas, says hormonal changes like perimenopause or menopause, or the use of hormones like testosterone, can cause adult acne. “Adult onset acne may also have no cause, which is extremely common, and progress from just a few pimples to full cystic acne over the course of months to years,” she says.

Which ingredients benefit acne-prone skin

Getting acne under control can be difficult, depending on the severity of your condition, but it’s not impossible. Derms swear by a few ingredients, the first being salicylic acid (which is also recommended for shampoos for dandruff and dry scalps). “Salicylic acid exfoliates the stratum corneum and penetrates into pores to remove sebum,” says Hadley King, MD, a dermatologist in New York City. “This helps to prevent pores from being clogged and can help remove clogs that have already formed.” Salicylic acid is a beta hydroxy acid, meaning it’s a chemical exfoliator. “It dissolves the bonds that hold dull, dead skin cells on the surface of the skin so the skin will gently shed, revealing smoother, brighter skin underneath,” says Hadley. She adds that salicylic acid is gentle enough for even sensitive skin types to use it.

The second ingredient dermatologists love for acne is benzoyl peroxide. “Benzoyl peroxide is helpful for treating acne not only because it kills bacteria that contribute to acne, but because it helps prevent and clear out clogged pores,” King says. “Micronized formulations are helpful because they cause less irritation to the skin, and they stabilize the molecule so the shelf life can be longer. Just keep in mind that benzoyl peroxide can bleach your clothes and towels, so it’s best to use cleansers with this ingredient in the shower.

An OTC retinoid can help manage acne as well, says King. Retinoids regulate skin cell turnover to keep pores free of oil and inflammation at bay. Adapalene is the first OTC retinoid, and it’s available in 0.1-percent and 0.3-percent strength.

Whatever products you choose, they should be labeled “non-comedogenic,” says King, because this means they won’t clog pores—look for that label in summer-perfect skin care, too. A skin care routine for acne should include gentle cleansing twice a day. “Harsh cleansers can strip too much oil and can have the opposite effect, over-stimulating your oil glands,” says Tam. “This may leave you feeling good right away but make you oilier over time.” Follow up cleansing with a non-comedogenic moisturizer and sunscreen (in the morning), suggests Tam.

When using an acne treatment like benzoyl peroxide or retinoid, you only need a small amount, about a pea size, for your entire face, says Nancy Samolitis, a dermatologist and co-founder and medical director of Facile Dermatology + Boutique. Because these treatments are powerful, you should limit application to once a day, Samolitis advises.

If over-the-counter products aren’t working for you, see a dermatologist or your general practitioner who can help you explore other treatment options, including prescription medications. For adult women, birth control pills with low-dose estrogen and progesterone are often helpful, says Melanie Palm, MD, a dermatologist in San Diego.

What are the best skin care products for acne-prone skin?

Ready to take the first step in getting your acne under control? Below, top dermatologists share their favorite skin care products for acne-prone skin. Here’s to clearer skin days ahead!

1. Neutrogena Oil-Free Salicylic Acid Acne Fighting Acne Wash

If you need a basic facial cleanser, you can’t beat this one. Samolitis is a fan of the 2% salicylic acid formula that unclogs pores, keeping them free of acne-causing buildup.

2. La Roche-Posay Effaclar Medicated Gel Acne Face Wash

“This cleanser contains salicylic acid to clean out pores and calm acne,” says Palm. It’s also formulated with lipo hydroxy acid to remove excess oil from the skin, leaving your complexion shine-free.

Get the better newsletter.

3. AcneFree Oil-Free Acne Cleanser with Benzoyl Peroxide

“This is an excellent benzoyl peroxide product,” says King. With 2.5% micronized benzoyl peroxide it’s effective yet gentle. The cleanser also contains glycerin, a hydrating ingredient. “This is a great cleanser choice if you have a combination of some clogged pore type of acne with whiteheads and blackheads and some inflammatory acne with bigger pink or red pimples,” she says.

4. Clarisonic Mia Smart 3-in-1 Sonic Facial Beauty Device

This sonic cleansing brush will help you wash your face more effectively, says Palm. A timer tells you when to move on to the next area of your face. It’s also waterproof, so you can use it in the shower.

5. AcneFree Blackhead Removing Scrub with Salicylic Acid Acne Treatment

Charcoal and 2% salicylic acid pack a one-two punch against pimples, plus the gritty texture provides physical exfoliation to unclog pores. “This is an ideal cleanser choice if you have oily skin and clogged pores with whiteheads and blackheads, without many inflammatory pimples,” says King. It’s also a good alternative to benzoyl peroxide if that’s something your skin can’t tolerate well, she adds.

6. Neutrogena Clear Pore Facial Cleanser / Face Mask containing Kaolin & Bentonite Clay

Emmy M. Graber, MD, a dermatologist and president of the Dermatology Institute of Boston, explains that most benzoyl peroxide products contain 10% of the ingredient, but higher strengths have never been proven to be better for acne. “Higher strengths only irritate the skin more, so you should look for a lower strength,” says Graber, who is a fan of this product. It contains 3.5% benzoyl peroxide and can be used as a daily cleanser or weekly mask to kill bacteria and prevent future breakouts.

7. PCA Skin Smoothing Toner

Toning isn’t an essential skin care step, but it can help remove pore-clogging debris from your skin. Samolitis likes this toner because it’s alcohol-free, meaning it won’t strip skin of essential moisture. Lactic and citric acids remove dead skin cells, while aloe soothes.

8. Dickinson’s Original Witch Hazel Pore Perfecting Toner

A great drugstore pick, Graber likes this toner because it helps control oil production. The formula is fragrance-free, so even sensitive skin types can use it.

9. PCA SKIN Clearskin Calming and Balancing Facial Moisturizer

Don’t think you can skip out on moisturizer if you have acne. It’s all about finding one that’s right for your skin type. This one, a favorite of Samolitis, is formulated with niacinamide to hold moisture in and prevent excess oil production. Cucumber soothes irritation.

10. Elta MD UV Clear Sunscreen with SPF 46

Sunscreen is a must, no matter your skin type, and this is a good pick for acne-prone skin. Palm raves about the non-comedogenic formula, which is free of heavy moisturizers that could clog pores. “Zinc oxide and niacinamide are anti-inflammatory and do not promote oil production,” she says.

11. Herbivore Lapis Balancing Facial Oil

It might seem counterintuitive to apply oil to your face if you have acne, but this one, which Samolitis likes, is formulated specifically to treat blemishes. Blue tansy is antibacterial and anti-inflammatory, so it minimizes redness associated with acne, while kukui nut oil balances sebum production.

12. Mario Badescu Drying Mask

“This face mask contains sulfur, the oldest known ingredient to help with skin inflammation,” says Graber. The combo of sulfur and zinc oxide in this mask draw out impurities and gets rid of excess oil, while calamine and cucumber extract cool skin and ensure you don’t feel irritated afterward.

13. Aveeno Clear Complexion Peel-Off Face Mask

Palm says this no-rinse mask is gentle yet effective, with ingredients including lactic acid and glycolic acid that target pimples and heal post-inflammatory pigmentation and redness.

14. Avene Tricaneal Night Smoothing Lotion

Formulated with 0.1% retinaldehyde (a non-prescription retinoid) and soothing thermal spring water, Samolitis likes this treatment lotion that targets acne without irritating.

15. Differin Adapalene Gel 0.1% Acne Treatment

Dermatologists like Samolitis and King like this OTC retinoid, which promotes skin cell turnover and curbs inflammation to deep clean pores and prevent new pimples from forming.

MORE TIPS FROM DERMATOLOGISTS

  • Best moisturizers for dry skin
  • How to choose the best anti-aging products
  • Best dandruff shampoos
  • A better way to take a shower
  • The best sunscreens for kids, according to dermatologists

Want more tips like these? NBC News BETTER is obsessed with finding easier, healthier and smarter ways to live. Sign up for our newsletter and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

You’d be forgiven for assuming that a spotty face is synonymous with teenage acne and everybody grows out of it. But acne can happen later in life too, so unfortunately you’re not immune, whatever your age. Which means you need to know about the best acne treatments on the skincare market.

Acne is one of the most common skin conditions in the world and it’s estimated that 80% of people between the ages of 11 and 30 will have it at some point, according to the NHS.

The number of adult acne cases reported in the past year has risen by 200% and around 50% of adults will experience acne during adulthood. As if that wasn’’t bad enough, more than 80% of cases of adult acne occur in women. Great.

So, how do you get nightmare breakouts under control? Arm yourself with our complete guide to combatting acne and soon enough, you’ll reveal clearer and calmer skin.

What is acne?

During your teenage years, acne normally occurs due to the heavy fluctuation of your hormones. But you can still get acne in your twenties, and some adults will experience it well into their thirties, forties and even fifties. It’s even possible to get acne for the first time as an adult.

Essentially, acne is caused by excess sebum. any things can cause your sebum production to become over-stimulated. This produces oil, which then mixes with things like the hairs on your skin or dirt. Your pores then become clogged.

Bacteria (especially one called Propionibacterium acnes) can then get trapped inside the pores and multiply. This causes swelling and redness — which is the start of acne.

Why do you get acne?

There is a range of factors that can contribute to clogged pores. Factors like pollution, cosmetic products like foundation, some medications, regularly wearing things that put pressure on particular areas (such as a headband) and smoking can cause your skin to break out.

But a lot of it comes down to good old hormones. They fluctuate during our period, while pregnant or if we suffer from hormonal conditions such as polycystic ovary syndrome. So most of the time, what you think is causing you to break out may only just be part of the reason.

Acne is also genetic, so if your parents experienced (or still have) acne, the likelihood of you getting it too is high.

And while the NHS advises that there’s no evidence that your diet plays a role in the skin condition’s prevalence, many people find there are links between their gut health, and whether they consume dairy and acne.

Best acne spot treatments

The good news is, there’s a plethora of medicated and over the counter products that can help, and we’ve scoured the market for the best to ease and treat your acne. Unfortunately there’s no ‘one size fits all’ product, and it may take a bit of experimentation to find what works for your skin, but persevere and you’ll be able to ease your acne woes.

If, however, you don’t have severe acne and you were looking for a product to treat a few painful zits, you want a totally different treatment altogether – find the right one for you in our best spot treatments round up.

Best acne scar treatments

Dr Brandt Microdermabrasion Skin Exfoliant, £51.75, AllBeauty

If you had acne as a teen, it may well have left you with some scarring. While there’s nothing wrong with acne scars, it’s understandable if you want to minimise their appearance as much as possible. Another treatment option is a microdermabrasion facial, a treatment that stimulates blood flow, which in turn increases the nutrition delivered to skin cells. Cell production is increased, which improves skin’s elasticity and texture and helps to minimise the appearance of scarring.

Alternatively, Dr Brandt offers a microdermabrasion exfoliating treatment you can use to treat your acne scarring at home.

Buy Now

Best acne treatments for adults

Neutrogena Visibly Clear Light Therapy Acne Mask, £39.99, Boots

Generally speaking, adult skin can tolerate much stronger treatments, so you’re looking for solutions with the highest concentrations of active ingredients, like salicylic acid.

Laser treatments are another popular option to treat problematic acne. Light therapy has been used for years by dermatologists as an effective treatment for acne, but now it’s been honed into a mask for you to treat yours at home. Using a combination of coloured light to treat your skin, blue light works to kill the acne-causing bacteria, while red light lessens inflammation of the skin. Use for 10 minutes a day over a period of 12 weeks, and your acne will be seriously diminished.

And if you work in the city, you could also try adding one one of the best anti-pollution products for skin into your regime to minimise the clogging effects of the environment on your pores.

Best acne treatments for teens

Clarins My Clarins Clear-Out Blemish Target Gel, £12.75 John Lewis

One product that’s particularly effective in teen skin is Clarins My Clarins Clear-Out Blemish Target Gel, a specially formulated gel that targets problem areas with clusters of sore, angry spots.

Shop our round-up of the best acne treatments to get rid of breakouts (and your skincare woes, too).

It’s time to wave goodbye to problem skin…

15 Best Pigmentation Creams For Flawless Skin – Best Of 2019 Ramona Sinha Hyderabd040-395603080 December 4, 2019

Recently, my friend came back from a beach holiday. Despite her best efforts, the sun and the humid climate ravaged her skin. She came back with large, brown patches of skin pigmentation, and she’s been freaking out since then!

Getting rid of skin pigmentation can be a real struggle. Though there are many factors that can cause it, excessive sun exposure is the primary culprit. Luckily, there are creams containing active ingredients that can help you get rid of it. Keep scrolling for our top picks.

Products Check Price
Re’ Equil Skin Radiance Cream Check Price
Vaadi Lemongrass Anti-Pigmentation Massage Cream Check Price
Mamaearth Bye Bye Blemishes Face Cream Check Price
Kama Ayurveda Rejuvenating And Brightening Night Cream Check Price
Khadi Anti Blemish Cream Check Price
Himalaya Bleminor Anti-Blemish Cream Check Price
O3+ Professional Whitening Face Emulsion Check Price
Jovees Anti Blemish Pigmentation Cream Check Price
VLCC Spotless Clear Active D Pigmentation Cream Check Price
Inveda Whitening & De-Pigmentation Cream Check Price

15 Best Pigmentation Creams In India

1. Re’ Equil Skin Radiance Cream

Product Claims

This cream is rich in active ingredients that prevent excessive melanin production. It reduces pigmentation, dark spots, and age spots and evens out your skin tone to make it bright and radiant. It has anti-aging properties that also prevent the signs of aging.

Pros

  • Non-comedogenic
  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Sulfate-free
  • No mineral oils
  • Paraben-free
  • Dermatologically-tested

Cons

None

Buy Now From Amazon

2. Vaadi Herbals Lemongrass Anti-Pigmentation Massage Cream

Product Claims

This is an anti-pigmentation cream with astringent and antibacterial properties that work on the root cause of blemishes. It evens out your skin tone and gives you a clear complexion without any dark patches and spots.

Pros

  • Natural ingredients
  • GMP-certified
  • Not tested on animals
  • 100% chemical-free
  • Paraben-free
  • 100% certified organic

Cons

None

Buy Now From Amazon

3. Mamaearth Bye Bye Blemishes Face Cream

Product Claims

This cream is formulated with natural ingredients and claims to soothe your skin and prevent dark spots, blemishes, age spots, and discoloration. It forms a protective barrier on your skin to prevent sun damage and reduces collagen breakdown. This day cream is also rich in antioxidants that nourish your skin.

Pros

  • Paraben-free
  • SLS-free
  • No mineral oil
  • No artificial preservatives
  • MadeSafe-certified
  • Suitable for all skin types (including sensitive skin)

Cons

None

Buy Now From Amazon

4. Kama Ayurveda Rejuvenating And Brightening Ayurvedic Night Cream

Product Claims

This is an Ayurvedic formula that contains saffron extracts. Saffron is known to brighten the skin and reduce pigmentation and dark spots. It also contains aloe vera, Indian madder, licorice, and vetiver extracts that repair your skin, correct uneven skin tone, and reduce fine lines, wrinkles, and age spots – all while you are sleeping.

Pros

  • Organic ingredients
  • Paraben-free
  • SLS-free
  • No mineral oils
  • Cruelty-free

Cons

None

Buy Now From Amazon

5. Oriflame Optimals Even Out Replenishing Night Cream

Product Claims

This night cream is formulated with Swedish natural ingredients. It claims to nourish your skin and reduce the appearance of dark spots. It also claims to prevent the formation of dark spots and give you a radiant complexion.

Pros

  • Dermatologically-tested
  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Hydrating
  • Consumer-tested

Cons

None

6. Khadi Anti Blemish Cream

Product Claims

The product claims to reduce pigmentation and blemishes to even out your skin tone. It is effective on acne marks and dark circles. A potent blend of everything natural, this cream from Khadi promises to leave your skin velvety smooth and soft.

Pros

  • Organic ingredients
  • Cruelty-free
  • No harmful chemicals
  • GMP-certified
  • ISO- and WHO-certified
  • Lightweight
  • Suitable for all skin types

Cons

None

Buy Now From Amazon

7. Himalaya Bleminor Anti-Blemish Cream

Product Claims

If you have melasma and hyperpigmentation, this is the cream you need to try out. Himalaya Bleminor reduces excessive melanin synthesis and prevents skin discoloration. It claims to effectively reduce post-inflammation hyperpigmentation and skin discoloration caused by an injury.

Pros

  • Natural ingredients
  • Works on acne scars
  • Removes tan
  • Suitable for all skin types

Cons

  • Takes time to show results

Buy Now From Amazon

8. O3+ Professional Whitening Face Emulsion

Product Claims

This face emulsion contains antioxidants that brighten your skin by minimizing pigmentation. It has skin hydrating properties that keep your skin nourished and make it glow from within. This cream is only recommended for anyone with dry or normal skin.

Pros

  • Cruelty-free
  • Paraben-free
  • Contains natural ingredients

Cons

None

Buy Now From Amazon

9. Jovees Anti Blemish Pigmentation Cream

Product Claims

This anti-blemish cream is a blend of botanical extracts that improve your skin clarity. It reduces discoloration, helps fade pigmentation, and evens out your skin tone. It has a creamy and velvety texture that gets easily absorbed into the skin.

Pros

  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Lightweight
  • Affordable
  • Paraben-free

Cons

  • Takes time to show results

Buy Now From Amazon

10. VLCC Spotless Clear Active D Pigmentation Cream

Product Claims

This depigmentation day cream contains active ingredients that protect your skin from environmental pollutants and sun damage. It contains carotenoids, licorice extracts, and chamomile oil that prevents pigmentation and clears your complexion to reveal bright skin.

Pros

  • Natural ingredients
  • Paraben-free
  • No harmful chemicals
  • Suitable for all skin types

Cons

  • Strong fragrance
  • Takes time to show results

Buy Now From Amazon

11. Inveda Whitening & De-Pigmentation Cream

Product Claims

This product contains turmeric and lemon extracts that are known for lightening dark spots and removing tan. This cream is best for anyone who has uneven skin tone. It also gets rid of all the impurities and makes your skin glow.

Pros

  • Natural ingredients
  • Paraben-free
  • No artificial preservatives

Cons

  • May cause a burning sensation

Buy Now From Amazon

12. Kaya Pigmentation Reducing Complex

Product Claims

This is a night cream that helps reduce dark spots, tan, age spots, and pigmentation marks. It gets absorbed quickly and prevents further darkening of the skin. This cream claims to give visible results in just two weeks.

Pros

  • Developed by dermatologists
  • Hydrating
  • Suitable for oily and combination skin types

Cons

  • Not very effective when used alone (gives best results when used with other products from the same range)

Buy Now From Amazon

13. Lotus Herbals Papayablem Papaya-N-Saffron Anti-Blemish Cream

Product Claims

This product is a blend of natural ingredients such as lemon peel extracts, apricot kernel, and clove oil that fade away scars, spots, pigmentation, and blemishes. It evens out your skin tone and rejuvenates it.

Pros

  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Quick results for minor spots and blemishes
  • Reduces tan

Cons

  • Clove oil may not suit some skin types.

Buy Now From Amazon

14. Fab India De-Pigmentation Cream

Product Claims

This skin-lightening cream aims to even out your skin tone and address issues such as hyperpigmentation, dark spots, and blemishes. It has a creamy texture that blends easily and does not weigh down your skin.

Pros

  • Non-greasy
  • Affordable
  • Suitable for all skin types

Cons

  • Contains parabens

Buy Now From Amazon

15. Olay Total Effects 7-In-One Anti Aging Day Cream

Product Claims

This day cream claims to fight the seven signs of aging. It promises to even out your skin tone and make your skin visibly bright. It keeps your skin refreshed and can be used under makeup. Apart from fighting dark spots and pigmentation issues, it also claims to fight wrinkles and fine lines.

Pros

  • Contains SPF 15
  • Loaded with antioxidants
  • Non-greasy

Cons

  • Contains parabens
  • Contains artificial fragrance

Buy Now From Amazon

No one wants highly pigmented and blotchy skin. These products are specially formulated to treat pigmentation issues. So, if you have been dealing with dark spots, it’s time you use these creams and say goodbye to them. Don’t forget to share your experience with us in the comments section below.

Recommended Articles

  • Kumkumadi – Best Anti Aging Facial For Pigmentation
  • 10 Simple Tips To Remove Skin Pigmentation
  • Fabindia Vitamin E Cream De-Pigmentation – Review | STYLECRAZE
  • 10 Shanaz Hussain Beauty Tips For Skin Pigmentation
  • Causes of Pigmentation On Face And The Associated Preventive Measures
  • Patanjali Aloe Vera Gel

The following two tabs change content below.

  • Latest Posts
  • Bio

Latest posts by Ramona Sinha (see all)

  • 10 Best Japanese Eye Creams – Our Picks For 2019 – November 25, 2019
  • 10 Best Korean BB Creams To Try – 2019 – November 13, 2019
  • 10 Best Japanese Face Washes and Cleansers of 2019 – November 13, 2019
  • 10 Best Korean Moisturizers For Oily Skin – November 1, 2019
  • 12 Best Japanese Face Masks For Every Skin Type – The Best Of 2019 – October 31, 2019

Ramona Sinha

Ramona has a Master’s degree in English Literature. She believes that beauty begins with a good skin care regimen and is on a mission to eliminate all toxins from her routine. She helps readers select products and ingredients specific to their skin type and gives out tips to keep their skin healthy in a natural way. When Ramona is not working or experimenting with a new skin care product or ingredient, her books and a passion for music, good food, and traveling keep her busy.

Best moisturizers for acne-prone skin in 2019

When you’re dealing with breakouts, choosing moisturizer can be tricky. Of course you don’t want to clog your pores or leave your skin looking oily or shiny. However, a moisturizer or face oil with the right ingredients can actually help your skin defend against breakouts! Acne has been associated in some studies with low levels of essential fatty acids (EFAs) such as omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin E. If your skin’s protective barrier needs replenishing, that could be a part of the problem, too.

To make things easier on you and offer even more options, we’ve researched many of the best face moisturizers on the market and analyzed their ingredients to make sure they don’t have pore-clogging or skin-irritating ingredients.

Tips for using moisturizer on acne-prone skin

  1. If you tend to get blackheads or pimples on your nose, or your nose looks shiny and oily, you can probably skip applying your moisturizer there. The oil-producers in your skin (known in derm-speak as the sebaceous glands) are more concentrated on/around your nose. Since your nose might get oilier than other parts of your face, you might not need to apply moisturizer as much there.
  2. Less is more, unless your skin is seriously dry or dehydrated. If you’ve got normal to oily skin, a thin layer of a lightweight moisturizer — like ours, which comes with the full set when you sign up with Curology — is all you need.
  3. Always check the ingredients before you use a new moisturizer. Some ingredients in cosmetics and skincare products can actually make acne worse, even if the label says “non-comedogenic”! Luckily there’s a (free!) tool that makes it easy to check any product for ingredients that can clog pores or irritate your skin. It’s called CosDNA.com, and it’s a must-have for your Bookmarks. Check out our quick-and-easy guide to checking products for pore-clogging ingredients!
  4. Speaking of checking the ingredients list, avoid coconut oil. It’s common in moisturizers and cosmetics, but it can clog pores!
  5. One more big one to keep an eye out for in the ingredients lists of your skincare products: alcohol. It’s usually found as “denatured alcohol” or “alcohol denat.” on ingredients lists. Alcohol is another common ingredient in skincare and beauty products that can irritate the skin. Irritation = inflammation, potentially leading to breakouts.
  6. Coconut alcohol is okay, though. Even though coconut oil isn’t good for acne-prone skin, and alcohol can irritate and dry out skin, coconut alcohol is actually fine! Coconut alcohol is a gentle surfactant (aka an emulsifier) which the skin tolerates just fine (unlike sodium laureth sulfate, a surfactant that can cause breakouts!). Coconut alcohol is derived from coconut acid, which is derived from coconut oil — but coconut alcohol is thought to be non-comedogenic because it’s a smaller molecule.

Best moisturizers for acne-prone skin

Whatever your skin type, our advice is: keep it simple, smartypants. Whether you’ve got sensitive, combination, or “normal” skin, a gentle moisturizer will do the trick. You can’t go wrong with a simple, gentle, non-comedogenic moisturizer that’s suitable for every skin type.

1. The moisturizers by Curology

Our in-house dermatologists developed two moisturizers to give your skin the extra love it needs: our gel moisturizer for a lightweight, cloud-like texture or our rich moisturizer for thick, creamy hydration. Both are daily moisturizers designed with Curology members in mind, so they’re great for acne-prone, sensitive, dry, and aging skin. Both moisturizers are formulated to be non-comedogenic and free of parabens, allergens, sulfates, fragrances, dyes, or any other common skin-irritating ingredients.

2. Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisture Broad Spectrum SPF 35

  • Broad-spectrum sun protection is especially important when using some acne medications that increase your skin’s sensitivity, so a combination moisturizer and sunscreen is always a good idea.

3. TATCHA Silken Pore Perfecting Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF35

  • Lightweight creamy formula gives skin a smoother appearance, visibly concealing enlarged pores
  • Doubles as a primer for wearing under makeup

4. Aveeno Clear Complexion Daily Moisturizer

  • Contains salicylic acid, which uses chemical exfoliation to clear excess oil from your pores (note: if your skin is adjusting to your Curology or other acne medication, you may want to wait a few weeks before adding a salicylic acid product)

5. FIRST AID BEAUTY Skin Rescue Oil-Free Mattifying Gel Moisturizer

  • Gives skin a matte appearance and reduces the appearance of pores
  • Hydrates and replenishes the skin with ceramides and antioxidant-rich botanical extracts
  • Formulated with oil-absorbing ingredients to reduce excess sebum

6. Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel

  • Lightweight enough for oily or combination skin

7. Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisture for Combination Skin

  • Great drugstore option for oily to combination skin

8. Boscia Cactus Water Moisturizer

  • Ultra-lightweight and fast-absorbing
  • Quenches dehydrated skin without feeling heavy

9. Sebamed Clear Face Care Gel

  • Gel formula with hydration-locking hyaluronic acid and soothing aloe

10. Fresh Umbrian Clay Oil-Free Lotion

  • Mineral-rich clay to help control oil and shine
  • Vitamins C and E plus green tea extract for antioxidant protection against free radicals
  • Includes algae, cucumber, and lavender to soothe

11. Boscia Green Tea Oil-Free Moisturizer

  • Lightweight oil-free formula
  • Green tea, jojoba leaf, and marine complex for antioxidant protection
  • Willowherb extract helps calm the skin and alleviate inflammation

12. Jack Black Clean Break Oil-Free Moisturizer

  • Oil-free, ultra-lightweight, and soothing
  • Transparent gel-cream formulation
  • Sodium hyaluronate to replenish moisture without heavy oils
  • Niacinamide to even out tone

13. No moisturizer!

You might not need one if your skin produces more than enough oil on its own. If you’d rather not use a moisturizer at all, we recommend using a gentle face wash that won’t over-dry your skin, like our Curology cleanser. You can always remove excess oil from your skin throughout the day if needed with oil blotting sheets or with a cotton pad soaked with micellar water.

Choose your own adventure

If you have another favorite moisturizer that your skin likes (especially if it’s labeled non-comedogenic or formulated for sensitive skin), feel free to keep on using it!

Best moisturizer for dry acne-prone skin

The moisturizer by Curology works for dry, acne-prone skin, too, but it’s lightweight, so your skin might want an extra boost of moisture. We recommend starting with a face oil or serum before your Curology moisturizer if your skin’s feeling thirsty. Contrary to popular belief, many oils are well-tolerated on acne-prone skin! In fact, acne has been associated with low levels of essential fatty acids (EFAs) in some studies, and many oils used in skincare are loaded with skin-nourishers such as omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin E. So smoothing the right oil on your face can benefit your skin in multiple ways. On the other hand, the wrong oils can clog pores — or just sit on top of your skin, leaving you with more of an oil-slick look than that dewy glow you’re going for. (Avoid coconut oil, for sure.)

Face oils for acne-prone skin

Packed with omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids, rose hip oil provides anti-inflammatory effects, which might help improve acne. It’s found in many face oil blends, but you can get it on its own and add a drop or two to your everyday moisturizer for extra hydration. Pai Skincare Rosehip Bio Regenerate Oil is a popular option ($40 per 30ml bottle).

Meadowfoam seed oil

Made from a flower native to Northern California and Oregon, meadowfoam seed oil is lightweight, non-comedogenic, and sinks right into the skin. It’s great at locking in moisture, leaving skin supple, glowy, and hydrated. It’s an effective carrier oils as well, used in serums such as Sangre de Fruta Solis balancing serum.

Sea buckthorn oil

Sea buckthorn has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties: it’s rich in anti-inflammatory omega fatty acids, including omega-3, -6, -9, and -7. A 2010 study of sea buckthorn fruit extract applied as a cream showed a decline in sebum (oil) production — this may point to some anti-acne benefit separate from fighting inflammation. It may be helpful for inflammatory skin conditions like acne, rosacea, and eczema.

Next step? Get acne under control

Now that we’ve got you covered with a list of moisturizers that should be safe to try for acne-prone skin, you’ll want to treat your skin to prevent pimples from popping up in the first place! Sign up for a free trial of Curology and you’ll have a quick online consultation, get matched with a dermatology provider one-on-one, and receive your very own custom acne treatment.

Best Moisturizers for Acne-Prone Skin

All products and services featured here are chosen for their potential to inspire and enable your wellness. Everyday Health may earn an affiliate commission on items you purchase.

Using moisturizers for acne-prone skin may seem counterintuitive. Anyone suffering from a breakout is likely to be focused on drying out their pesky pimples, not keeping their skin moisturized. But everyone needs to hydrate, according to Mona Gohara, MD, associate clinical professor in the dermatology department at Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, Connecticut. “This helps the skin barrier remain healthy,” she says.

Acne is the most common skin condition affecting people in the United States, but the exact causes are still unclear. Maintaining healthy, hydrated skin can be a challenge when you are using an acne medication that can be drying.

When choosing between all of the moisturizers out there, acne sufferers should consider their skin type. Even though acne is often thought of as an oily skin problem, acne patients can be oily or dry, says Dr. Gohara. “For those struggling with oily skin, stick with a lotion — they are lighter than creams — while those with dry skin should go with a more hydrating cream.”

There are some general guidelines all acne sufferers can follow to find a great moisturizer, sans breakouts. “I would look for gentle hydrators with hyaluronic acid and lipids,” says Gohara. And avoid fragrances to cut down on the potential for irritation.

6 ingredients to look for and 5 to avoid when picking a moisturizer for acne-prone skin

  • Acne-prone skin can benefit from the use of moisturizer.
  • If you have acne-prone skin, look for moisturizers with salicylic, glycerin, and hyaluronic acid.
  • Stay clear of petrolatum and coconut oil as they can clog pores and cause breakouts.

It’s a myth that people with acne-prone skin shouldn’t moisturize. Although it can be difficult to find a hydrating moisturizer that doesn’t clog pores, in general, hydrated skin will have fewer breakouts.

In fact, Kathleen Cook Suozzi, MD, assistant professor at the Department of Dermatology at the Yale School of Medicine, recommends using a moisturizer twice daily to counteract the drying effect of acne treatments.

INSIDER consulted with dermatologists and experts on the ingredients to look for, ingredients to avoid, and the “holy grail” moisturizers that they recommend to patients with acne.

Here’s what to look for when choosing a moisturizer for acne-prone skin.

Consider “the vehicle”

The difference between ointments, creams, and serums as vehicles for hydration can be major. Dr. Suozzi does not recommend ointments because they can leave your skin feeling greasy. Instead, she recommends you opt for creams and lotions but make sure they have beneficial and non-comedogenic ingredients.

If you’re using acne treatments, apply a moisturizer first

If an acne product is drying out your skin, apply a moisturizer first.

The order of which you apply products is especially important.

“When patients have severe issues with dryness, I will recommend an application of retinoid medication over the moisturizer… When the skin is dry, your body produces excess oil which can clog pores and can worsen breakouts,” said Dr. Suozzi.

Salicylic acid can help treat pimples

Dr. Joshua Zeichner, director of cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, recommends looking for a moisturizer that contains salicylic acid. Often found in acne spot treatments, salicylic acid, a beta hydroxy acid, can help keep pores clear and treat pimples, according to Zeichner.

He recommends Clean and Clear’s Dual Action Moisturizer which contains salicylic acid and “helps exfoliate dead cells from the surface of the skin to treat acne while it hydrates.”

If you have blackheads, he endorses Aveeno Clear Complexion Moisturizer, which he said is great at helping keep pores clear in the first place.

For extra-sensitive skin, he recommends Kamedis Acne Face Moisturizer for its addition of unique anti-inflammatory botanicals like purslane and Chinese rhubarb, Baikal skullcap, and Indian chrysanthemum. Another fan favorite of his is DR. JART+ Cicapair Tiger Grass Cream which contains resurrection plant, houttuynia cordata, and yarrow “to enhance the skin’s viability and help support strong skin.”

Glycerin and hyaluronic acid are amazing for keeping acne-prone skin hydrated

“Humectant property refers to the ability of the moisturizer to draw water from the dermis to the epidermis, increasing the water content and the ‘hydration’ of the epidermis,” said Suozzi. Glycerin and hyaluronic acid are both great for drawing out moisture without leading to acne.

Dr. Zeichner recommends Neutrogena Hydroboost Water-Gel, an “ultralight moisturizer that contains hyaluronic acid, which can bind 1000 times its weight in water. It does not leave the skin feeling heavy or greasy, making it ideal for people with oily or acne-prone skin.”

Zinc oxide in sunscreen won’t lead to acne

When it comes to picking a sunscreen, look for one with zinc oxide. Will Russell/Getty

“For moisturizer, I recommend a product that contains SPF,” said Suozzi. “In general, the physical sunblocks, such as zinc oxide, are better tolerated by patients with acne prone skin. A personal favorite for my acne patients is UV Clear by EltaMD.”

You may want to stay away from petrolatum

“The ‘oil’ in moisturizers is classically petrolatum …. Petrolatum can have a greasy, heavy feeling on the skin and is typically not preferred by patients with oily skin,” said Dr. Suozzi.

Instead, opt for moisturizers labeled “oil-free.”

Sodium lauryl sulfate can lead to irritation

Esthetician and owner of BodyBrite Med Spa, Elena Duque, doesn’t recommend using products with this lathering agent because it’s drying.

Although safe, it can cause “irritation and drying of the skin, resulting in more breakouts.”

Rosehip oil may reduce scarring

Rosehip oil, recommended by Duque, is pressed from the fruit and seeds of the rose plant, unlike rose oil which comes from the petals. The substance in high in vitamin C which may help boost collagen and aid in cell regeneration. This is what makes it great for reducing scarring and producing new cells.

Rosehip oil is also high in vitamin A, which is thought to “minimize the amount of sebum that your skin produces,” said Duque.

Coconut oil can be a big no

Coconut oil is comedogenic and can clog pores.

Though coconut oil can be beneficial in some parts of your beauty routine, it’s not great for acne-prone skin as it can clog pores and lead to pimples.

“Coconut oil is less like a pure plant oil and acts more like wax on the skin, much like jojoba oil,” said Annie Tevelin, creator of SkinOwl. “It’s very comedogenic which means that it can’t penetrate the pore. Because of this, it sits on top of the skin, leading to clogged pores, breakouts and without proper absorption, causes extreme dryness.”

Read more: 4 things you can do with coconut oil that’ll make you gorgeous — and 2 things you shouldn’t try

Fragrances are out of the question

“Many products contain fragrance to mask bad smells of certain ingredients,” said Diane Elizabeth, founder of Skin Care Ox.

“If you have dry skin, fragrance-heavy products might result in blotchy and itchy skin. It’s best to avoid fragrances altogether, if possible, as many people with acne have different reactions to different fragrances.”

Her number one moisturizer recommendation for acne-prone skin is the Christina Moss Organic Facial Moisturizer, which comes either unscented or lightly scented with star anise oil for a completely natural licorice scent.

Niacinamide sounds scary but will do wonders for you

Niacinamide is a type of vitamin B3 which is responsible for skin health.

Jazmin Alvarez, founder of Pretty Well Beauty recommends it as a clean ingredient to look for when choosing a moisturizer. Her favorite moisturizers for acne-prone skin that contain niacinamide are MUN Skin Protect + revive moisturizer and Bristol & Sussex Balance Moisturizer.

Avoid isopropyl myristate

Fayne L. Frey, MD, FAAD is not a fan of this synthetic ingredient.

“Isopropyl myristate is a synthetic oil that is used as a binder and emollient (makes skin feel smooth) and a known comedogenic ingredient. It depends on the percentage of the ingredient found in the product, but unfortunately, that information is not given to consumers. A general rule of thumb is the first six to seven ingredients in a moisturizer constitutes over 90% of the product.”

People with acne-prone skin should seek out a non-comedogenic moisturizer with anti-inflammatory agents for twice daily application to help hydrate skin, aid with scarring, and soothe irritation.

Ultimately, seeking out a dermatologist will help you find a gentle, healing moisturizer that’s customized to your needs.

31 Best Moisturizers That Won’t Cause Acne or Clog Pores

Acne: Let’s talk about it. Most of us have it, but many of us don’t know how to handle it. What we thought would leave us as soon as our high school days were over followed us to college and on to our careers. If this sounds like a page out of your book, trust us when we say you’re not alone. We know how embarrassing it can be to show up to the office with a pimple trying to take over your entire face. It happens.

Acne comes in different forms and blemishes come in various sizes. Whether you’re fighting cystic acne that forms deep down in your pores due to your hormones raging out of control as if you were 16 again or stubborn little whiteheads that just won’t catch a clue, we all have the same goal — to control acne. Now with the arrival of spring, the days will be getting warmer (eventually) and pores are at risk of being clogged with excess sebum, sweat and dirt. The last thing you want to do is add fluid to the fire by layering on a moisturizer that could potentially harm your skin.

Can moisturizer cause acne?

Moisturizing is a very important part of treating acne as moistened skin tends to loosen sebum built up inside pores. Finding a moisturizer for your acne-prone or oily skin can be tough. The same lotion used on your body shouldn’t go near your face. We wouldn’t even recommend using the same lotion on your neck, chest, back and upper arms since acne tends to occur there as well (hello, bacne). When choosing the best moisturizer for acne, steer clear of clogging ingredients like petroleum, mineral oil or silicones like dimethicone, which can cause acne. It’s also best to stay away from anything containing alcohol as drying out skin to control oil production will only produce more oil that can lead to inflammation.

Is moisturizer good for acne?

You want to snag moisturizers that are gel, oil-free or water-based as the lightweight formula gives you the moisture you need without bringing breakouts with it. A few ingredients to keep in mind are salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide as the two fight any existing breakouts as well as prevent any future ones waiting to occur. There are also humectants glycerin and hyaluronic acid that pull water to skin to retain its natural moisture and gentle exfoliants, such as glycolic acid and lactic acid, that work to fade any red or dark spots left behind. When using alpha hydroxy acids (glycolic and lactic), be sure to do so when you’re not using acne treatments containing salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide as using too much of a good thing can irritate and dry skin.

Can too much moisturizer make you break out?

Short answer, yes. Moisturizers are designed to be concentrated and slathering on copious amounts actually won’t make them work better. What it will do is irritate your skin (since it needs to absorb into your skin fully, which is kind of hard to do in layers), possibly leading to breakouts. So, while moisturizer is a necessary step in your acne-fighting regimen, too much can definitely do more harm than good.

Is Vaseline good for acne?

Since it’s been clinically proven that Vaseline doesn’t clog pores, you can feel safe putting it on your face, even if you’re prone to breakouts. While Vaseline doesn’t directly treat acne, its protective formula can help your skin recover faster from a breakout. It can also help keep your skin moisturized, which, as we know by now, is a must for acne-prone complexions.

CeraVe AM Facial Moisturizing Lotion SPF 30

Now that you have the lowdown on what you should and shouldn’t slather on your face, below are 10 of the best moisturizers for acne that leave your face soft and smooth without breaking you out.

  1. Drunk Elephant
  2. Herbivore Botanicals
  3. Ole Henriksen
  4. Glow Recipe
  5. La Roche-Posay
  6. Tatcha
  7. Missha
  8. Korres
  9. Vichy
  10. Benton

See the slideshow above to find out more about these best moisturizers for acne and where to buy them.

Finding the perfect moisturizer is hard for anyone—especially people with oily or acne-prone skin. But it is possible to find the best moisturizer for acne, we promise!

Part of the challenge is that people with acne-prone skin do everything in their power to keep oiliness away (trust me, I know). My thought process used be that moisturizers—some of which contain oil and can leave a greasy feeling on the skin—would cause more breakouts. So, I proceeded only with caution.

However, dermatologists agree that moisturizing is an essential step in every skin-care routine, one that can even help soothe and prevent acne if done correctly. “It may seem counterintuitive, but oily skin types need a moisturizer in order for their complexion to stay healthy and balanced,” Joel Schlessinger, M.D., a dermatologist in Omaha, NE, tells SELF.

Although I’ve made my peace with moisturizing my combination (and often acne-prone) skin, it doesn’t mean that every moisturizer will work for my skin type. Figuring out the best way to moisturize for your skin is often just a matter of choosing the best moisturizer for acne-prone skin like yours.

There are a few key words to look for when shopping for an acne-friendly daily moisturizer. “You always want to look for an oil-free, noncomedogenic brand for acne,” New York City-based dermatologist Michele Green, M.D., tells SELF. If the product is noncomedogenic, that means it’s less likely to clog pores and, therefore, less likely to cause a breakout.

But not all acne-prone skin is oily. In fact, dry skin, normal skin, sensitive skin, basically any skin can be prone to breakouts as well, depending on all kinds of environmental, hormonal, and genetic factors. For those skin types, it’s still important to look for noncomedogenic products to avoid adding any more oil to the situation, but they’ll need to find a moisturizer that also addresses their skin’s other concerns, like dryness.

In order to get the lowdown on some great moisturizer options that won’t break you out, we talked to a few dermatologists to find out the expert picks they typically recommend to their patients.

All products featured on SELF are independently selected by our editors. If you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

These Are the 6 Best Face Moisturizers for Acne-Prone Skin

Out of all the information swirling around about how to treat acne-prone skin, the biggest myth is that moisturizers can make the situation worse. “This is not true,” says Morgan Rabach, MD, a board-certified dermatologist and co-founder of New York-based LM Medical. “In fact, overly dry skin can sometimes lead to breakouts.” Mary Allan, who spent two decades formulating products for Jurlique and Dermalogica before launching her eponymous line last year, agrees: “Keeping skin hydrated will help keep skin calmer, and counteract the drying effect of acne treatment products.”

When looking for the best moisturizer for acne-prone skin, Rabach says it’s best to stick with oil-free formulas since “even some ‘non-comedogenic oils’ can cause acne for people with really oily skin.” Allan says that heavy oils like avocado, carrot seed, and coconut oil can indeed clog pores, but she recommends lighter oils, like hemp seed, blueberry seed, and argan oil, which can help restore balance to stressed skin.

Most important? Read your labels. “So many products on the market contain comedogenic ingredients, even when they’re intended for acneic skin types,” Allan says. She recommends looking for products with salicylic acid, hyaluronic acid, aloe vera, vitamin C, and retinol.

Here, six expert-backed moisturizers for acne-prone skin.

RELATED: 8 Things That Might Be Causing Your Adult Acne—and How to Deal (Without Making It Worse)

Image zoom Courtesy of manufacturer

1 La Roche-Posay Effaclar MAT Mattifying Moisturizer

Thanks to the addition of mineral-based ingredients perlite and silica—both are known for their unparalleled oil-absorbing properties—skin is left visibly smooth with this French moisturizer favored by Rabach. Even better? It doubles as a long-lasting primer under makeup.

To buy: $32; ulta.com.

Image zoom Courtesy of manufacturer

2 Mary Allan PM Sleep Renew Nocturnal Retinol Cream

Hyaluronic acid, one of the key ingredients in this potent night cream, is a must for dealing with acne. “Since our skin needs both water and oil for optimal health, hyaluronic acid adds the ‘water element’ without clogging the pores,” Allan says. And don’t be put off by the sunflower seed oil. Allan assures it “doesn’t clog pores and keeps skin calm.”

To buy: $110; maryallan.com.

Image zoom Courtesy of manufacturer

3 Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel

Just a dab of this ultralight, silky gel packs a deeply hydrating punch with the help of hyaluronic acid, which “pulls water to the skin’s surface from within the dermis,” says Rabach. It’s also refreshing upon application, and terrific for quick touch-ups throughout the day.

To buy: $15; amazon.com.

Image zoom Courtesy of manufacturer

4 Paula’s Choice Clear Oil-Free Moisturizer

After battling acne for years, Paula Begoun took matters into her own hands and developed this lightweight, multi-tasking lotion. Blueberry and pumpkin help tone down redness, while niacinamide helps combat dryness. Many of Allan’s private clients who suffer from acne swear by this stuff.

To buy: $29; amazon.com.

Image zoom Courtesy of manufacturer

5 Aveeno Ultra-Calming Daily Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 30

No matter your skin type, daily sunscreen is an absolute must. This lotion comes recommended by Rabach as it’s free of fragrance and oil, soothes with oat kernel extract, and shields against the sun’s damaging rays with physical (not pore-clogging chemical) sunblock.

To buy: $13; amazon.com.

Image zoom Courtesy of manufacturer

6 Bioderma Sébium Pore Refiner

If enlarged, congested pores plague you, then reach for this innovative product. In addition to a patented complex that helps regulate sebum production over time, this treatment—you can use it solo or layered under a moisturizer—also features agaric acid, which Allan says helps tighten pores.

To buy: $20; dermstore.com.

About the author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *