A Patient's Guide to Acne
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Sunscreens and Acne

Acne patients need the same basic skincare tools like sunscreens, moisturizers, and cleansers as everyone else. Sunscreens, in particular, are important in protecting the skin from both immediate and long-term sun damage. However, like many other cosmetic products, sunscreens can contain ingredients which can induce acne to flare. This is a complex problem that can differ from individual to individual. Here are some answers to common questions regarding sunscreens and acne.

Does the sun help acne?

No. Although this is a common myth, there is no evidence to suggest that sunlight helps heal acne. On the contrary, it can sometimes be a trigger that causes acne to flare and worsen. Sunburns or tans may reduce the overall appearance of acne by changing the color of the surrounding skin, but there are far better and safer solutions.

Should I avoid using sunscreen on the face if I have acne?

Sunscreens should be used regularly, acne or not. They serve an important role in protecting the skin from many skin problems in addition to sunburns. The face is also the most exposed area of the body, as it is not covered by clothing, and one of the first areas to show signs of aging due to accumulated sun damage. We recommend that you choose non-comedogenic products, if they are available as they are less likely to trigger acne flares.

What if I have oily skin?

Regardless of skin type, sunscreens are necessary to prevent long term sun damage (as well as short-term sunburns). For those with oily skin, it will help to find a non-comedogenic sunscreen product and one that is not too sticky. This is especially true when applying sunscreens to the face as this area naturally has more oil than other parts of the body.

Which sunscreen product do you recommend?

For those with acne prone skin, or very oily skin we definitely recommend sunscreen products that are labelled non-comedogenic. Although it will not guarantee that it will not induce acne as skin is individual and unique, it is much less likely to aggravate acne. If you visit our sunscreen product guide you can search for high quality sunscreens that fit criteria like non-comedogenic or SPF over a certain amount.

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