There are many products on the market that advertise themselves as makeup for acne.  In this article, we will look at what exactly that means and what these products contain.

There are two categories of makeup that might be considered safe for acne:
1. Medicated acne makeup
2. Makeup for acne prone skin

Medicated Acne Makeup
Makeup that is promoted as a product that will help heal acne usually contains one or more of the following

  • salicylic acid
  • benzoyl peroxide
  • one or more calming or healing ingredients

Salicylic acid is the most common ingredient in makeup for acne and is used as an exfoliator, similar to any AHA (alpha hydroxy acid).  It rids the pores of excess skin cells and oils.  This prevents the pores from clogging and forming blackheads.  It can also help eliminate existing blackheads.  Most makeup that contains salicylic acid has concentrations of 0.5% up to 1.0%.  This has the potential to help mild acne and blackheads, but will not heal moderate to severe acne.  Those require stronger treatments.  A couple example of medicated acne makeup are the Murad Acne Treatment Concealer and Neutrogena Skin-Clearing Foundation.

Benzoyl peroxide is more commonly found in soap for acne and acne lotions and moisturizers rather than makeup.  It helps eliminate the bacteria that contributes to blemishes.  If your acne is more severe, the salicylic acid in medicated acne makeup will not be enough and you may need a benzoyl peroxide cleanser or lotion.

There are other ingredients added to acne makeup as well which claim to help heal the skin.  These include things like aloe vera and chamomile (for soothing), vitamin C and green tea (as antioxidants), and healing minerals.  Whether they really help heal acne is questionable, but they may help soothe your skin if it is inflamed.  I like
bareMinerals RareMinerals Blemish Therapy
, which helps heal blemishes with minerals while providing a little coverage.

See A Guide to Makeup for Acne: Part 2 to learn about non-medicated makeup that is safe for acne prone skin.

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Filed under: Acne Makeup Tips

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