Wearing Makeup When You Have Acne
People have been covering up their blemishes for centuries. In the 1600s, women wore star-and moon-shaped silk patches to hide their smallpox scars. Today we use makeup to camouflage our pimples, but applying layer after layer of cover-up when you have acne isn't necessarily the best approach. Makeup can be very good at hiding pimples, but it can also accentuate zits if you use the wrong kind of concealer or slather it on too thickly. The redness and peeling many acne treatments leave behind can look even worse when smeared with thick makeup.
What to look for : All of your makeup, from blush to eye shadow, should be non-greasy, non-comedogenic (or non-acnegenic), hypoallergenic, non-irritating, and oil-free. Read the ingredients -- the very first one should be water. Mineral-based cosmetics contain added ingredients like silica, titanium dioxide, and zinc oxide, which both absorb oil and hide redness without irritating skin and causing pimples. Another ingredient to look for is dimethicone, which also conceals redness while smoothing out uneven skin.
Pick a makeup color that compliments your skin tone. When applying foundation, a little goes a long way. Use about a quarter-sized amount, and blend it into your entire face. Allow your foundation to dry for a few minutes before putting on the rest of your makeup.
If you notice that your skin is red, itchy, or swollen after you apply a certain type of makeup, stop using it. Some ingredients in cosmetics cause an allergic irritation known as contact dermatitis in certain people.
Sunscreen for People With Acne
Contrary to popular belief, sunscreen doesn't cause acne. And while red, sunburned skin might temporarily hide your pimples, getting burned too many times can also leave you with premature lines and wrinkles, and increase your risk for skin cancer. You want to protect your skin when you're outside in the sun without slathering on gobs of greasy sunscreen.
What to look for: A broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 that protects against both UVA and UVB light. A water-based or light liquid-based gel or spray-on sunscreen is best for people who tend to get breakouts. Zinc oxide is a physical blocker, physically reflecting the sun’s rays from the skin surface, and does not aggravate acne. Watch out for chemical blockers such as PABA and benzophenone, which can irritate sensitive skin.