When introducing a new skincare product into your routine, you can sometimes experience an adverse reaction like an increase in breakouts or dry, flaky skin. While this may seem like you should stop using a new product, it may actually be a sign that it's working. This process is known as skin purging.
"Heavier lotions and creams can worsen congestion of pores and lead to increased oil production that can exacerbate acne breakouts," Dr. Hartman said. "The label should say oil-free or non-comedogenic to be sure."
When you start a new skin care routine or you incorporate new products into your current regimen, you may experience breakouts or skin flaking. This process is sometimes called purging. This is a normal, short-term condition where the skin will rid itself of underlying oil, bacteria, or dirt, according to Dr.
Excessive moisturizer use can cause pimples or breakouts on the skin. Your skin absorbs what it needs and the extra product just sits on top of your face. This greasy layer attracts dirt and bacteria, which then gets accumulated in the pores and causes acne.
Dr. Jaliman adds that itching, redness, or irritation are signs your skin is simply sensitive to the formula. "If it isn't something that's formulated to help skin turn over and you're breaking out more," says Dr. Nagler, "you should stop."
You Breakout A Lot
This is also a common sign and goes in junction with clogged pores. If you find yourself breaking out a lot, that typically is a good sign that you're using too much moisturizer for your own good.
Skin purging is a process that happens when certain skincare ingredients increase skin cell turnover. This encourages shedding of old, dead cells and growth of new, healthy ones. Unfortunately, this process often makes the skin look worse before it looks better.
When creating an acne treatment plan, dermatologists sometimes include a moisturizer. Acne can cause your skin to feel oily and greasy, so a moisturizer may be the last thing you'd think of trying. A moisturizer, however, may be just what you need if you're using one of the following acne treatments: Benzoyl peroxide.
You should absolutely moisturize your skin even if you have active acne. It's an absolute myth that moisturizing your face will worsen your acne. In fact, moisturizers are necessary to keep acne-prone skin as relaxed as possible.
Skin purging typically looks like tiny red bumps on the skin that are painful to touch. They are often accompanied by whiteheads or blackheads. It can also cause your skin to become flaky. The flare ups caused by purging have a shorter lifespan than a breakout.
Generally speaking, dermatologists say purging should be over within four to six weeks of starting a new skin care regimen. If your purge lasts longer than six weeks, consult your dermatologist. It could be that you need to adjust the dosage and/or frequency of application.
Some signs you may be over-moisturizing are clogged pores, blackheads, bumpy skin and excess oil.
Cerave Moisturizing Lotion
The combination of ingredients like polyglyceryl-3-diisostearate and cetyl alcohol both can contribute to some pretty serious breakouts. As well propylparaben, shown further down on the extensive ingredients list, is ranked at 7 out of a scale of 9 in regards to safety.
It shouldn't cause breakouts in the average person; however, if you're sensitive to any of those ingredients, it can.
If you're regularly washing your face — even just with water — you should be moisturizing too. If you have oily skin, skipping moisturizer won't prevent acne and will lead to premature signs of aging. If you have dry skin, skipping moisturizer will result in skin cracking, itching, flaking, and becoming tight and red.
CeraVe is the #1 dermatologist-recommended moisturizer brand for acne*, and our new Acne Control Cleanser with 2% salicylic acid is formulated to clear acne, reduce blackheads and improve the appearance of pores, while purifying clay helps absorb excess oil.
The answer is yes it can. Cetaphil Moisuturising Lotion isn't non-comedogenic as generally thought. It has a comedogenic combination of cetearyl alcohol + ceteareth-20.
What to do instead: Use acne treatments as directed. If your skin feels dry, apply a moisturizer made for acne-prone skin. You'll want to apply the moisturizer twice a day, after washing your face. You also want to avoid using astringents, rubbing alcohol, and anything else that can dry out your skin.
"Ideally the skin is smooth, supple, and uniform in color," Waldorf said. If your skin feels less bumpy, the size of your pores has been reduced, and you're noticing less marks, acne, and discoloration, your products are likely working.
Acne treatments — especially those that contain active ingredients like benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid — are drying and a bit harsh on your skin. If you use too many treatments at the same time, your skin may become irritated, and you may actually suffer more breakouts as a result.
Purging is a sign that the product is working and you should continue with the treatment as prescribed. After a few weeks of purging, your skin and acne will have noticeably improved. Breaking out is when your skin is reacting because it is sensitive to something in the new product.
If you want to prevent skin purging or limit a purge's severity, make sure you introduce your new acne treatment products slowly into your routine. This is true of other skincare products for most skin conditions! Slow and steady usually wins the race.
Peeling, redness, and irritation are common onset reactions for some people when they first start to use retinol. Some reactions get so bad that the common term used to describe the list of effects has been dubbed the “retinol uglies”. Note from a skincare expert: Many things in life get worse before they get better.