If you struggle with acne, you’ve probably tried a myriad of products that promise clear skin but leave your skin irritated or dried out. The large number of acne products on the market certainly makes it difficult to choose, so it is vital that you know which ingredients to look for and which ones to avoid.
Many acne cleansers contain alcohol or menthol. These ingredients help to dry out blemishes, but they also dry out your skin and can cause irritation. It’s best to avoid products that have a high level of alcohol or menthol. Instead, look for products that will treat the bacterium that causes the breakout and contain ingredients that are good for your skin.
What to Look for in an Acne Cleanser
Salicylic acid is one of the more favorable acne treatments and is used in acne cleansers and moisturizers to treat and prevent outbreaks. Salicylic acid penetrates hair follicles and pores and helps to shed the cells that accumulate and cause blockage. Salicylic acid can be very effective, but if you have sensitive skin, try using the product every other day to start. You can increase the frequency once you know how your skin will react. Our favorite is L'Oreal Paris Ideal Skin Genesis Pore Minimizer Gel Cleanser. This acne cleanser uses salicylic acid to remove makeup that gets trapped deep in the skin. It also minimizes pores and helps prevent breakouts.
Aloe Vera gel is also very helpful ingredient for those with sensitive skin. The gel soothes and helps to heal rashes and irritation that can occur when using an acne treatment. We like Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash. Not only is this product oil free, it uses Salicylic acid to cleanse the skin and Aloe Vera gel to soothe.
Lastly, some acne cleansers contain glycolic acid which exfoliates and helps fade skin discolorations that are due to acne. Many times, glycolic acid is used in conjunction with salicylic acid for added benefit. This too can be irritating to sensitive skin, so it’s recommended that you use the product sparingly until you are certain how your skin will react.