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The Ultimate Guide to Acne Moisturizers

Updated: Mar 11

Acne, a skin condition we often associate with teenagers, can persist into adulthood, causing distress for many. While there are numerous treatments available, moisturising remains a crucial step in the skincare routine, especially for those with acne-prone skin. But why is it so essential, and what kind of moisturisers are best suited for acne? Let's delve in.


A man looking in the mirror and putting on moisturiser

Why Moisturisers are Essential for Acne-Prone Skin

  • Combating Dryness from Acne Treatments: Many acne treatments can dry out the skin. Using a moisturiser can counteract this dryness, making the treatment more bearable.

  • Protecting Your Skin: Dry or irritated skin can become more sensitive, leading to increased water loss from the skin and inflammation.

  • Boosting Treatment Efficacy: Pairing your acne treatments with moisturisers can make them work better, reduce dryness, and improve overall skin comfort.

Understanding Moisturiser Ingredients

  • Occlusive (Skin Sealants): Think of occlusives as a protective seal or barrier. They work by forming a light shield on your skin, preventing water from escaping and keeping your skin hydrated. Common ingredients you might see include petrolatum, mineral oil, and silicone derivatives like dimethicone.

  • Humectant (Moisture Magnets): These ingredients pull moisture from the air and the deeper layers of your skin to hydrate the surface. Examples include glycerin and hyaluronic acid.

  • Emollient (Skin Smoothers): Emollients help make your skin feel soft and smooth by filling in tiny gaps between skin flakes with oil droplets.

Special Ingredients for Acne-Prone Skin

  1. Anti-inflammatory Agents: A whopping 92% of skincare products have ingredients that reduce skin inflammation. This is crucial for calming the redness and swelling associated with acne.

  2. Natural Soothers: Ingredients like aloe vera and witch hazel are nature's answer to skin inflammation. Aloe vera, for instance, soothes the skin, while witch hazel acts as a gentle astringent for those with oily skin.

  3. Beneficial Metals: Some metals, especially zinc, have properties that can reduce inflammation and promote wound healing.

  4. Acne-fighting Ingredients: Some moisturisers come packed with ingredients that directly combat acne, like salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide.

A woman with dark skin putting moisturiser on her glowing skin


Choosing the right moisturiser for acne-prone skin is about understanding its ingredients and how they benefit the skin. Look for a balance of occlusive, humectant, and emollient properties, and consider those with added anti-inflammatory ingredients for an extra soothing effect. Always consult with a skincare professional before introducing new products to your routine.

Schedule a consultation today and start your acne recovery journey today.

This blog post was medically reviewed by Dr Summer Zhang.


1. S. Kang, J. Um, B. Chung, S. Lee, J. Park, J. Kim, C. Park, H. Kim. (2022). Moisturizer in Patients with Inflammatory Skin Diseases


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