Last Updated on August 3rd, 2019
Foundation makeup can make acne worse1, or it can help clear up blemished skin for good. It’s all in how you use it. This article explains what you need to know to use foundation on acne-prone skin.
Article Table of Contents
Foundation is the first layer of makeup applied to the skin after cleansing and moisturizer. The purpose of foundation is to provide an even layer to the skin. Foundation gives all the skin the same tone and texture, and it provides a layer to which other cosmetics can adhere.
What is needed in a foundation for acne-prone skin?
People who have acne-prone skin should choose foundation that contains sunscreen. This way they only have to put on one layer to protect the skin from sun instead of two. Using foundation that contains sunscreen6 saves time and prevents clogged pores.
Foundation comes in loose powder, pressed powder, sticks, creams, cream-to-powder, and mineral makeups. If you have oily skin, you will probably do best with loose powder. Pressed powder can form streaks when oil accumulates on your skin. If you have dry skin, then you probably want to use pressed powder. Loose powder can clump on your skin if your skin dries out as the day goes on. Liquid foundation that has acne-fighting ingredients can also be a good choice for your skin.
Whichever foundation products you choose, you should think they look good and they feel good. Foundation usually comes with a money-back guarantee. Be fussy about your foundation. Get the right foundation to bring out the color and tone of your skin while keeping acne under wraps.
If you have black skin, the only time you need sunscreen is when you are using a skin lightener, a peel, benzoyl peroxide, or a tretinoin topical product like Retin-A or Renova. Most of the time you don’t need sunscreen at all. If you have brown or Asian skin, you definitely need sunscreen when you use skin rejuvenation products, and to protect your skin from midday summer sun. If you have fair skin, you may need sunscreen all summer long and sometimes even in the winter, especially when you are exposed to glare from snow or ice.
Sunscreen protects your skin7, but certain sunscreen ingredients can make acne-prone skin break out. Ingredients that won’t make your skin break out include:
Any other sunscreen ingredients can make blemishes break out on your skin when your skin produces excess oil.
If you have acne and you want to use blushes, chances are you will get a better result with a cream blush applied over foundation. Liquid blushes are applied to bare skin. They are an easy way to treat large areas of skin, but they make large pores look larger, especially if you have recently gotten rid of whiteheads or blackheads.
There are foundation products specifically designed to help treat acne8. Foundation that includes the skin-active ingredient salicylic acid (in the right concentration and at the right pH) can break clumps of dead skin in pores and help clear the skin while hiding imperfections. Almay Clear Complexion Liquid Foundation (retailing for US $5.54) promises to get rid of blemishes—and if you don’t use a strong detergent soap before putting it on your skin, it just might. The only limitation of this product is that it does not come in the right color for very fair or very dark skin.
Almay’s Smart Shade Smart Balance Skin Balancing Makeup SPF 15 (retailing for US $4.75) provides both zinc oxide and titanium dioxide for sun protection. These mineral ingredients will never cause inflammation, although they are a little too “white” for some skin tones. This product also comes in eight different shades that will work for all but the fairest and darkest skin.
It’s important to take time to find a shade of foundation that works for you, however, as another, slightly more expensive product illustrates. Almay Smart Shade Makeup SPF 15 comes in three basic tones, gray, gray, and also gray. This product spreads easily across the skin without completely obscuring the natural skin tone, but leaves the skin looking dull. Just because you have acne doesn’t mean you have to have dull skin!
Many brands of foundation charge a little or a lot more for antioxidant vitamins in their formulas. Buying a foundation for skin-friendly vitamins and antioxidants is always a waste of money. Any product in a jar will begin to oxidize as soon as it is opened. The other ingredients in the product are likely to be just fine, but the antioxidants will be ruined after the very first application. And if the product comes in a clear jar, antioxidants and vitamins will be destroyed even before the container is opened.
Choosing the right makeup is just part of fighting acne. For getting rid of acne for good, you need a complete acne-fighting system such as Exposed Skin Care.
To be your most trusted ally in your pursuit of clear, healthy skin.