Don’t you just hate it when your skin betrays you? One moment you’re doing just fine and the next moment attacked with zits. Even if you’re playing by the rules and maintaining a healthy diet your skin can sometimes end up misbehaving. Moreover, it doesn’t help that it can be for several reasons like hormones, stress, environmental changes and the products you’re using. Not only is it super frustrating but also disappointing. Breakouts just plain suck but treating them really does depend on your specific skin type and condition so it’s important to find a routine that works. In this case, if you’ve ruled out other elements it’s necessary to take a second look at the products you’ve been using to treat your acne.

Now we totally get it that scanning the skincare labels can make your head spin. Over the years we might have picked up bits of advice that says to avoid alcohol and comedogenic oils or harsh chemicals but trying to understand all that from the lengthy ingredient list, most of us end up giving up. Even if we know there might not be the best ingredients we usually pick up recommendations from friends, something new or simply a brand new product looks or smells good. However, that’s the literal worst thing you can do for your precious skin!

No need to stress out yet just yet girl, we’ve got you covered! To make the whole process easier we’ve listed out a handy guide to the skincare ingredients you should avoid at all costs if you’ve got acne-prone skin. Of course keep in mind these are not hard or fast rules and if you’re struggling with major skin concerns please always get a professional consultation.

Read on to discover the top skincare ingredients acne-prone skin types should avoid:

1. Synthetic fragrance

Topping the list of one of the worst skin care ingredients for any type of skin in general, this is one of the first things you should stay away from. Many products contain fragrances to mask the unpleasant smell of products and tempt you into purchasing products. The downside is that these scents are usually a mix of different chemicals that can be potential irritants to the skin. It might even result in itchy or inflamed skin and even skin allergies. While not all fragrances can cause acne it’s better to be safe than sorry. Watch out for words like fragrance, parfum and perfume or any other terms that indicate that synthetic scents have been included.

2. Essential oils

While you might have heard a lot about how good essentials oils are not all of them are the best choice. Many brands claiming to be organic or natural skincare lines end up using way too many oils in their products. This is the absolute worst as they can be extremely concentrated, causing irritation to the skin and even more strong in their natural form. Moreover, they can even end up blocking pores! That’s why selecting your oils and using a carrier oil to dilute them a bit is your best bet. To be on the safe side it’s better to avoid heavier oils that contain high levels of saturated fats.

3. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, also known as SLS, is a foaming agent. It is commonly used in many shampoos, toothpaste and face products. The chemical responsible for removing dirt and oil from the skin is known to be a skin irritant that’s found all too often in our favourite products. However it doesn’t just casually bother your skin, it can in fact weaken the barrier of your skin and make breakouts worse. So it’s time to get into that cupboard and get rid of those nasty cleansers. Thankfully there are a ton of amazing sulfate-free cleaners available on the market that are gently and perform even better than sulfate-ridden ones.

4. Coconut Oil

We’ve all heard of coconut oil being amazing for a ton of benefits especially those with drier skin. It’s even been used as a form of makeup remover and moisturizer. However, coconut oil is considered to be highly comedogenic. This basically means it can clog pores and we all know that poses some serious risks if you have acne or oily skin in general.

5. Sodium Chloride

Sodium chloride is actually the technical term for salt that’s commonly used in makeup and or cleansers. It works to exfoliate the skin but is more commonly used as a thickening agent to get a particular rich looking texture in products. You might even find this in your foundations which can end up causing breakouts around the mouth and chin area.

6. Isopropyl Myristate

This is an enhancer that helps create a softening and soothing effect on your skin by allowing for increased absorption of active ingredients. But this is another ingredient that’s highly comedogenic due to its emollient properties. Because it’s emollient you’ll often find it in moisturizers and while shouldn’t affect inflamed acne but in the long run, may lead to clogged pores and bumps on the skin.

7. Alcohol

By now we all know alcohol is not great for your skin but the main culprits to watch out for are; SD Alcohol 40, Denatured Alcohol, Ethanol, and Isopropyl Alcohol. Many think that alcohol-based products are effective for controlling oily skin but they actually enlarge your pores and cause breakouts. When used in toner or exfoliating products they just end up drying and damaging the skin out which is really not what you want to happen even if you have oily skin. The only select time alcohol as an ingredient is useful is when it’s used in acne spot treatments. The drying benefit it gives to an infected blemish can help make it go away faster.

Now that you’ve gone through this list it might be a good idea to dig out your products and check out the ingredients list. We always encourage you to do your own research so take this as a springboard and find what works for you personally. At the end of the day, everyone’s skin needs and reactions are different. But the first step in any good skincare routine is prevention. So don’t forget to spot these irritants before purchasing your next beauty haul!

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