When managing sensitive, acne prone skin, it can feel like you’re stuck between a rock and hard place. No one wants to pick between having acne or feeling (and looking) raw and irritated! 

While it can take some time to find what works, it’s important to remember that there is no “one-size-fits-all” solution for everybody’s acne. What may work well for your friend or family member may not work well for you. Everyone’s skin is different and has different levels of sensitivity. That’s why it’s so important to customize your acne treatment and skin care routine according to how your skin responds. 

Here are some helpful tips for managing sensitive, acne prone skin:

  • Cleansing: If removing makeup, use an oil-free face wipe. In general, avoid using drying and irritating products like benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, exfoliants, or scrubs. Instead, stick with an all natural, hydrating gentle cleanser. Use lukewarm (not hot!) water, and avoid scrubbing, which can aggravate and worsen acne. Gently pat skin dry. If using a toner, stick with alcohol-free options. 
  • Toning: Use a gentle toner, such as our Skin Wise Clinical Enriched Soothing Toner, to help detoxify skin without causing irritation. This is perfect to apply after cleansing if you have sensitive, acne prone skin. 
  • Moisturizing: For acne prone skin, it’s very important to stick with a scent-free moisturizing lotion or cream without irritating ingredients that will clog your pores. Our Skin Wise Clinical Sheer Facial Moisturizer is a great option for long-lasting hydration without any harmful ingredients or greasy residue left behind. 
  • Sunscreen: Sunburns can aggravate acne and skin sensitivity, so sunscreen is a must. Pick a sunscreen that has a mineral base for its active ingredient. If your skin has had a bad reaction with sunscreen in the past, pick a pure mineral based sunscreen. The less ingredients, the less likely you will react.

When it comes to sensitive skin, simple is better. Avoid starting multiple new products at once. Instead, add to your skin care routine slowly, one product at a time, over the course of weeks. If you are struggling with irritation, then back off that new product. It takes 4-6 weeks to accurately assess how acne-prone skin is responding to a change in regimen, so this will require some patience on your part.  But once you’ve found a routine that works for you, it’s totally worth it!

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