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Review: Can You Treat Acne with Burt’s Bees Natural Acne Solutions Daily Moisturizing Lotion?

By Dr. Jaggi Rao, MD, FRCPC, Double board-certified dermatologist

Many people with acne avoid moisturizer for fear of clogging pores, but Burt’s Bees Natural Acne Solutions line just came out with a moisturizer made specifically for acne-prone skin. Unlike some other moisturizers that are heavy, oily, or pore-clogging, Burt’s Bees Natural Acne Solutions Daily Moisturizing Lotion is specially designed to protect your skin and fight acne at the same time.  It contains several classic moisturizing ingredients, such as glycerin, sunflower oil, and beeswax, alongside acne-fighting ingredients like salicylic acid. The question is, does it really work? We took a closer look at the ingredients and the reviews available on Amazon, Influenster, and Burt’s Bees’ own website, and found that it really does work—in the right conditions.

Burt's Bees moisturizing lotion
Burt’s Bees Natural Acne Solutions Daily Moisturizing Lotion is unique because it contains both soothing and acne-fighting ingredients.

Summary:

  • Moisturizing is an important step in everyone’s skin care routine, even if you have acne.
  • This Daily Moisturizing Lotion combines some of the best moisturizing ingredients with salicylic acid, one of the most popular acne treatment ingredients.
  • Reviews reveal that this product is both powerful and gentle enough to work for all skin types, though it isn’t ideal for everyone.
  • Although the price isn’t unreasonable, it also isn’t the most affordable option out there.

Why Do I Need to Moisturize If My Skin Is Already Oily?

We get it, if you have oily skin, you probably feel like moisturizer would only add to the oiliness and create more acne problems. While that can be true for some moisturizers, it’s important to find better, less oily options because moisturizing is a vital step to skin care.

Our skin naturally produces an oil called sebum that helps to protect it from irritants like allergens and rough particles. If we don’t produce enough sebum, like those of us with dry skin, then our skin is very vulnerable to irritation and inflammation, which often leads to acne. It’s obvious that those with dry skin would benefit from a moisturizer that helps protect the skin, but since people with oily skin produce too much sebum, why would they need moisturizer? Isn’t the sebum already doing the job of protecting the skin?

The truth is, many people with oily skin need moisturizer to protect their skin from the harsh acne-fighting products they’re using. Many acne treatment products are far too strong and they can strip the skin of too much sebum, leaving it red, flaky, and exposed to irritation and inflammation. However, some people find that these are the only products that really work to get rid of their acne. Instead of giving up your miracle product or simply living with red, flaky skin, we recommend adding a moisturizer to your routine. If you use the right one, it won’t interfere with your acne treatment, but it will help protect your skin.

Do the Ingredients in Burt’s Bees Daily Moisturizing Lotion Really Work?

Bee pollinating the flower
Beeswax is just one of the moisturizing ingredients found in this Daily Moisturizing Lotion.

In short: yes, they do. Burt’s Bees is well-known for using top-notch ingredients, and this Daily Moisturizing Lotion is no exception. It contains several ingredients that are ideal for protecting and hydrating the skin without clogging pores, plus one key ingredient for fighting acne at the same time.

The main thing to look out for when choosing the right moisturizer for acne-prone skin is avoiding comedogenic ingredients, AKA, pore-clogging ingredients. There are plenty of protective oils and hydrating chemicals out there that sound great, but really shouldn’t be in a moisturizer because they are highly comedogenic. The best way to check for this is to Google the ingredient name, plus “comedogenicity rating.” You’ll find that many popular ingredients in skin care products, like sodium lauryl sulfate, coconut oil, and cocoa butter, have very high comedogenicity ratings, meaning they are very likely to clog pores.

Burt’s Bees Daily Moisturizing Lotion avoids this by using some of the best, non-comedogenic ingredients available, like glycerin, sunflower oil, and of course, beeswax. All of these have a comedogenicity rating of 2 or lower (on a scale of 0 to 5), meaning there is a very small chance they could clog your pores. Meanwhile, they deposit and help retain moisture, strengthening your skin and protecting it from irritation.

But what makes this moisturizer so special is that it treats acne while it moisturizes but utilizing a 1% concentration of salicylic acid. Salicylic acid is a popular acne treatment ingredient typically used in concentrations from 0.5% to 2%, and it primarily functions as a chemical exfoliant. This means it help remove excess oil and dead skin cells from the pores, and studies show it can significantly reduce mild to moderate acne.

What Do the Reviews Have to Say?

When we first saw that Burt’s Bees Natural Acne Solutions Daily Moisturizing Lotion contained 1% salicylic acid, we worried that it might not be appropriate for those with dry or sensitive skin, and would rather be better suited for those with oily skin. However, when we perused the hundreds of reviews left on Amazon, Influenster, and Burt’s Bees’ own website, we found that people with all skin types seemed to benefit from this product.

The five-star reviews, of which there were well over 500, were written by people with all different types of skin, and all ages, from people in their teens to those in their 60s. People claimed the product both reduced their acne and made their skin feel softer and smoother, though the reviews were mixed when it came to how the product actually feels when being applied. Some of the one-star reviewers said that it leaves skin feeling oily or fails to absorb fully, while many of those writing five-, four-, or even three-star reviews said it absorbed quickly and felt light on the skin. As far as we could tell, there was no correlation between this negative experience and any particular skin type or age. People also seemed to disagree about the scent. Some found it pleasant, while others saw it as a major drawback. If you’re sensitive to smells, you may want to find this product in your local drugstore and give it a sniff before purchasing.

One negative thing everyone could agree on, however, was the packaging. Many reviews mentioned the pump breaking within the first few days, making it difficult to use the product.

Is the Cost Worth It?

Person passing on coins to another hand
Although it isn’t necessarily the right choice for everyone, Burt’s Bees Daily Moisturizing Lotion is a relatively affordable product ideal for acne-prone skin.

Because they use such high-quality ingredients, Burt’s Bees products are often on the higher end of the drugstore product price range. The Daily Moisturizing Lotion in particular costs $18 for a two-ounce bottle. This isn’t a terrible price, but it also isn’t cheap, so it may be an important factor when deciding whether or not to give this product a try. Whether or not it’s worth the cost really depends on the person. If money is tight and you already have a decent, inexpensive moisturizer, it may not be worth going out on a limb for this particular product. But if you have some wiggle room in your skin care budget and you’re unhappy with your current moisturizer, then Burt’s Bees Daily Moisturizing Lotion is a great option.

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