National Acne Awareness Month: Makeup Tips to Avoid Acne Breakouts

There are a lot of myths floating around out there.  Thankfully, June is National Acne Awareness Month where medical professionals strive to empower acne sufferers with correct information and solutions.

Yes, most cases are based on genetics, hormones, and stress—but there are ways you can deal with and even reduce breakouts.

Being extra careful about your makeup habits is an excellent way to avoid breakouts, especially after you’ve gone through the trouble of applying all those soaps and creams!

When Makeup is Part of the Problem

Makeup is often applied in an effort to cover up the signs of acne and small breakouts, but ironically, cosmetics may sometimes contribute to producing the very skin problems they attempt to hide.

From natural fats and oils to complex acids and other substances extracted from animal products or synthesized in the lab, there are scores of ingredients in cosmetic products, each with a potential set of actions on the skin depending on a product’s overall formulation and the skin type on which they’re applied.

What are “Non-Comedogenic” Products?

Early cosmetic formulas often contained heavy concentrations of substances termed comedogenic, which denotes their likelihood to cause breakouts on the skin.

In items such as foundation, blush, eye shadow, or lipstick, which tend to be left on the skin for considerable periods of time, the effects of comedogenic ingredients can be especially pronounced.

In response to the discovery of this problem, a growing number of cosmetics producers have begun incorporating non-comedogenic ingredients, and awareness of matching product types to skin types has risen dramatically.

Avoiding cosmetics with high concentrations of comedogenic ingredients such as the smoothing agent isopropyl myristate and oleic acids is advisable for anyone who has experienced breakouts following makeup application.

While some consumers have chosen to completely avoid cosmetics that do not claim to be non-comedogenic, such drastic measures are rarely necessary and should be taken only in cases of extremely oily skin or abnormal sensitivity.

Through the adoption of a sensible makeup application and removal regimen, cosmetics users may be able to enjoy their favorite products without suffering from unsightly and stubborn acne problems.

Breakout-prone beauty ingredients are widespread but include:

  • Some vegetable oils, especially coconut oil
  • Butyl Stearate
  • D&C Red Colors
  • Any substance that notably clogs pores
  • Difficult to remove products

Cleaning Up for Clearer Skin

Proper makeup removal can help reduce the risk of acne breakouts as a result of cosmetics use. Forgetting to remove makeup at the end of the day or after a special event can be easy, but making the effort to cleanse the skin and free the pores of any obstruction is likely to be rewarding.

The essential cause of makeup-related breakouts is the plugging of the skin’s hair follicles and pores with certain substances, resulting in acne or in black or whiteheads. When the skin is properly treated and allowed normal access to air and secretion pathways, breakouts are less common.

Skin should be cleansed whenever clogging agents are present, whether it’s makeup, sweat, or sunblock. Certain kinds of hair care products may also be to blame for adversely affecting the skin.  Spraying or smoothing these substances carefully and avoiding skin contact can reduce related breakouts.

Match-Up for Good Makeup

Understanding how to match makeup with a personal skin type is another important component of avoiding makeup-related acne issues. People with especially oily skin are likely to experience greater breakout problems with oil-based products than those with drier complexions.

Experimentation with different product types can lead to a harmonious balance, though meeting with a professional dermatologist or cosmetician is the method of choice for obtaining a clear skin profile to make cosmetic purchasing decisions easier.

Through knowing what ingredients are in a given cosmetic product, choosing items formulated for personal skin types, and taking good care of the skin between makeup applications, users can combat acne cosmetica and keep their complexions looking and feeling great.

Today’s post is from guest blogger Roxanne Jones. She blogs for Cadiz, an Austin medical spa that specializes in laser hair removal and skincare treatments.

2 thoughts on “National Acne Awareness Month: Makeup Tips to Avoid Acne Breakouts

  1. I agree with everything except for one point. Coconut oil is amazing for the skin Especially for acne sufferers. While there are lots of oils to be on the look out (mineral and petroleum), vegetable bases oils are easiy absorbed into the skin and have tons of benefits.

    1. Hi Dewaynia,
      Thanks for the feedback! I think it’s important to remember that not everyone’s skin reacts the same to all products. Studies of coconut oil have shown its positive affects on skin and hair, but it’s also listed as grade 4 comedogenic (0-5, 5 being the worst). I also believe it’s important that if you do try coconut oil, then make sure that 1) you’re getting pure virgin coconut oil and 2) just use a little bit to test your own reaction to it.

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