Best skincare products for acne - how do you find them? In a sea of acne banishing promises - which ones do you trust? How do you know that right in your hand - at this very moment - you hold one of the best skincare products for acne? Come read this list and make sure.

12 Of The Best Skincare Products For Acne – must-try recommendations!

In Acne by Cheryl Woodman MChemLeave a Comment

Best skincare products for acne – how do you find them? In a sea of acne banishing promises – which ones do you trust? How do you know that right in your hand – at this very moment – you hold one of the best skincare products for acne?

Do not worry my friend – It is so, so normal to be confused by which acne skincare to try. 

It is not made easy for you.

In fact – it’s kind of almost made impossible.

Why?

Because there’s that ingredients list – it’s not human. It’s a completely different language. It’s called INCI.

Aka the international nomenclature for cosmetic ingredients.

And unless you’re a cosmetic scientist – it’s like trying to read hieroglyphics. Teeny-tiny hieroglyphics.

The secret of whether a new best skincare product for acne will work – you’ve got it my friend – it’s found in that ingredients list.

Which anti-acne actives does it contain?

How much of those anti-acne actives does it contain?

Are all the ingredients safe for acne prone skin?

Is the product respectful of your skin’s natural, delicate balance or is it a blitz it anti-acne beast?

The answer to that last Q is super important. I’ll explain more very soon.

My friend – the reason I’m able to tell you which are the best skincare products for acne – I am a cosmetic chemist – I understand INCI – I’ve read numerous studies on which anti-acne actives work and the extra bit – I’ve had acne myself.

I know how that sea of acne banishing promises feels. You have 360 degrees of directions to choose from and no coast to see.

Let this list be your lighthouse. I’m here for you.

Ready to get swimming? Let’s do this…

Best skincare products for acne - how do you find them? In a sea of acne banishing promises - which ones do you trust? How do you know that right in your hand - at this very moment - you hold one of the best skincare products for acne? Come read this list and make sure.

12 of The Best Skincare Products for Acne – the summary list

In a TL;DR kind of mood? Don’t worry my friend – I’ve got your back. Below you will find a super quick summary of the 12 best skincare products for acne. Choose a couple, pin this blog post and come back to read more when you do have time. Awesomesauce.

Got time now? That’s awesomesauce too – you’ll find an in full explanation of why these anti-acne skincare products are fab and have high potential to work below. This bit is going to help you pick a winner for your skin type aka find your anti-acne lighthouse. Yes to that eh.

  1. The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%
  2. Glossier Solution
  3. Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant 
  4. Honesty Revive Omega Facial Oil
  5. Benton – Deep Green Tea Toner
  6. EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46
  7. Bioderma Sébium Global Intensive Purifying Care
  8. Gladskin Acne Gel
  9. The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion
  10. Sudocrem
  11. NIOD Non Acid Acid Precursor
  12. Indeed Bakuchiol Reface Pads

1. The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%

A best skincare product for acne with a ridiculously crazy low £5 price tag. It’s not even sale price. This is 365 days a year price. Plus with super high concentrations of 2 anti-acne actives which have high potential to make great change to your skin.

This is the 95% cocoa chocolate of the anti-acne skincare world.

Nom, nom, nom.

Together these 2 actives work to 1) reduce inflammation and redness 2) stop your skin making so much sticky sebum. Both benefits work to fight away your acne as acne is an inflammatory skin disease which is mostly kicked off by sticky sebum.

Here’s how the acne cascade works;

Your skin starts making more sebum than it needs. Like going to a Body Pump class and doing 50 dead lifts instead of the shouted for 20. Yikes eh.

Then your skin bacteria balance shifts.

1 certain kind of bacteria that love air free environments aka your oil filled pores – starts to thrive.

This is p.acnes. Acne bacteria.

As acne bacteria eat skin oil and dead skin cells they breed until their great, great, great, great, great… granddaughters exist.

…and it’s what they poop out in the process that activates your skin’s immune function.

Then in come inflammatory markers.

And up raises mt.Vesuvius and it’s cousins. AKA acne has pounced.

The Ordinary’s Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% is fab for acne because it contains a type of zinc – called zinc pyrrolidone carboxylic acid/zinc PCA – which is especially absorbable by your skin. This guy acts to stop your sebum glands making so much sebum. It’s turning your skin’s oil volume down. Yes please.

You can buy The Ordinary’s Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% serum for £5 direct at The Ordinary here or at Beauty Bay here.

2. Glossier Solution

Remember how we said acne bacteria eat oil and dead skin cells? Well my friend another anti-acne battle plan with high potential to work is this – you use skincare which removes the foods acne bacteria loves eating. No dinner means acne bacteria can’t thrive.

One of the key actives in this best skincare product for acne is salicylic acid – this guy is a leave on active which dissolves away skin cell glue. That means your dead skin cells are extremely less likely to end up as acne food.

 

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You can buy Glossier Solution direct at Glossier here.

Psst! It’s also got a reverse pump – click that link to see what i mean. These are great – they’re perfect for no mess and no fuss dosing. Like swimming to your anti-acne lighthouse with a dry suit on.

3. Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant 

This best skincare product for acne prone skin is like #2 on this list but stronger. It has a leave on EU allowed maximum dose of 2% salicylic acid. Powerful stuff.

However this doesn’t necessarily mean Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid will work better for you than Glossier Solution. And that’s because Glossier Solution contains some other partnering exfoliating actives like glycolic acid. Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid doesn’t. Instead it focuses on 1 active at its highest dose.

 

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Salicylic acid is a great leave on exfoliant for your acne prone skin because it’s most dissolvable in oil aka it’s diving straight into your oil filled pores. The most important place to be exfoliating when you have acne. And the reason why anti-acne scrubs aren’t so helpful – they surface swimmers only.

You can buy Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant for £26 at LookFantastic here or FeelUnique here.

4. Honesty Revive Omega Facial Oil

A natural best product pick for your acne prone skin. Did you know people with acne have a different kind of skin oil than people without acne? Same ingredients but different balance.

Like having milk chocolate or dark chocolate.

A freshly picked green banana or a crazy ripe banana.

A quickly dunked and squashed with a spoon mug of tea or a carefully brewed, steeped and stirred cuppa.

And that replacing the kind of oil acne prone skin lacks – helps to reduce acne?

The one you want – it’s called linoleic acid.

 

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Oils which are high in linoleic fatty acids are oils like rosehip, grapeseed oil and even good old hemp oil.

It’s hard to find a facial oil which only contains linoleic high oils. Which is why, back in 2015 we gave birth to our Revive Omega Facial Oil. Designed to be a natural hero for acne prone skin. And also including well known anti-inflammatory actives like bisabolol – it can help take down the pain and redness of breakouts. Winning.

You can buy our Honesty Revive Omega Facial Oil direct here in our Honesty Store. Oh and if it’s your 1st time trying Honesty use code WelcomeMat to grab yourself 10% off. 

5. Benton – Deep Green Tea Toner

Green tea my friend – a must know about ingredient for acne prone skin. When your skin makes too much skin oil – it’s reacting to hormones. Super specifically androgen hormones – ones like testosterone.

Here’s the kicker;

Your skin contains an enzyme – called 5 α-reductase – which helps turn testosterone into a ridiculously more potent hormone called Dihydrotestosterone aka DHT. Green tea extract has high potential to help stop this from happening.

“Green tea decreases hormonal activity because tea gallates and α- linoleic acid are selective inhibitors of 5 α-reductase”Bosn J Basic Med Sci. 2010 Aug; 10(3): 260–264.

Hormonal acne my friend is not out of your control. Promise.

And if you’re wanting to give hormonal acne the slip – you’ll also want to look at your diet. Diet is a huge changer of your hormones – including ones specifically linked to acne causing biology. The best products for acne – they’re foods too! Grab my free list of yes, no and sometimes foods for clear skin eating by clicking here.

You can buy Benton Deep Green Tea Toner for £9.69 at YesStyle here.

6. EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46

…and we’re still on those skin oils my friend. They’re so, so important in the build-up of acne. The best skincare products for acne either;

1) Work to stop your skin making so much sebum

2) Help balance your sebum or…

3) A hugely overlooked one – help stop your skin’s sebum from going off.

Like a browning apple.

Or mushy banana.

EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46 helps make sure you have that last one covered. UV light – a kind of high energy light the sun makes has enough juice to make your skin oils go off. It can turn a major component of your skin’s sebum – squalene – into squalene monohydroperoxide.

You don’t want this stuff on your skin.

It’s pore blocking. Aka acne causing. Yikes.

 

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Help your skin resist becoming a mushy banana by using a best for acne sunscreen like the fab EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46.

You can buy EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46 for $35 at DermStore here.

7. Bioderma Sébium Global Intensive Purifying Care

Kicking butt to acne is all about getting your sebum levels down – limbo territory. Bioderma Sébium Global Intensive Purifying Care sole purpose is to reach this goal. It contains a kind of zinc called zinc gluconate – remember how zinc can help turn down your skin’s sebum volume?

It also contains a new type of retinoid aka vitamin A called bakuchiol. This family of actives are fantastic for acne. They help reduce sebum production and are clinically known to help reduce and get rid of acne.

Pretty fantastic stuff eh.

You can buy Bioderma Sébium Global Intensive Purifying Care for £15 at FeelUnique here.

8. Gladskin Acne Gel

For when your acne isn’t just acne! It’s actually infected acne. A very big possibility if your acne is red, hot and very angry. Turns out when your skin is acne prone it is so easily infected. Another bacteria which is naturally found on lots of skin types – s.aureus – can become pathogenic aka grow wildly out of control when given the groundwork it needs aka vulnerable, open acne lesions.

Gladskin Acne Gel makes this best skincare products for acne list because it my friend is selective. The technology used in Gladskin Acne Gel doesn’t just kill off any old bacteria – it specifically kills s.aureus bacteria. Great news. It means your skin microbiome aka natural bacteria habitat stays intact. Your skin needs this.

 

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Gladskin Acne Gel is like your hairdresser using extra sharp and selective scissors to craft you a fab new do vs. them coming at you with an electric razor whilst wearing a blindfold. #TooScaryToImagine

Learn a load more about the anti-acne technology used in Gladskin Acne Gel here.

You can buy a medically sealed pump bottle of Gladskin Acne Gel from £13.50 on Amazon here.

9. The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion

It’s vitamin A dude. Job done. Remember how vitamin A can help decrease sebum production and is also clinically proven to help kick butt to acne. Well this is another non-prescription kind. It’s fab for oily skin types while also having an extremely friendly price tag – just £8 for 30ml. Fainting territory.

 

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You can buy The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion direct at The Ordinary here or on Beauty Bay here.

10. Sudocrem

Nappy rash cream! And also fantastic for acne. Like a reset button for your skin.

 

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As one of the best skincare products for acne it’s going to do 2 key things for your skin;

  1. Help stop that excess sebum – thank you zinc oxide
  2. Help kill of a bit of pesky acne bacteria – it’s anti-bacterial too

Do not use Sudocrem for your acne before reading how to use it – I’m explaining all in this blog post. This will make the difference between you thinking – what the heck this cream is awful to OMG I can’t believe what it’s doing for my skin.

You can buy yourself a bumper sized pot of Sudocrem on Amazon here.

11. NIOD Non Acid Acid Precursor

Exfoliation, exfoliation, exfoliation. Your skincare routine for acne must contain it. That’s because – as you have acne your pores are in a state of follicular hyperkeratosis aka they’re making lots of thick skin and they’re not shedding it. Your pores are being blocked.

Extra fact; It’s unbalanced sebum that’s thought to trigger your pores into this condition.

NIOD Non Acid Acid Precursor is one of the gentlest ways you can exfoliate your skin. This is great news for your acne prone skin and also why it’s one of the best skincare products for acne because acne is chronically inflammatory. All this means is that your skin is suffering from long term and persistent inflammation – that’s red, raised bumps.

Psst! It also contains linoleic acid – remember how linoleic acid is what your sebum is deficient in? An extra helper.

You can buy NIOD Non Acid Acid Precursor for £35 direct at NIOD here or Beauty Bay here.

12. Indeed Bakuchiol Reface Pads

You’ve got this my friend. This is vitamin A and vitamin A is fantastic for acne prone skin – in your food too! But don’t eat this one. Instead these pads are pre-dosed with a new and natural retinoid – bakuchiol. It’s been found in studies to work even better for acne prone skin vs. other retinoids.

 

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And of course Indeed Bakuchiol Reface Pads wouldn’t make this list of best skincare products for acne prone skin if that was all it had. Oh no – there’s also anti-inflammatory, skin conditioning saviour niacinamide. Plus soothing bisabolol. Plus skin protecting allantoin. Yes, yes, yes.

You can buy Indeed Bakuchiol Reface Pads for £19.99 at ASOS here.

Help Me! I’m not sure how to put any of these together into the best skincare routine for my acne prone skin? I’ve got your back dear friend – mixing skincare can be mind boggling. Plus choosing the best of this list for your under lying skin type – time consuming. Let me do that bit for you – click here to find out everything you need to know about SkinCoach.


And that’s a wrap my friend. 12 of the best skincare products for acne. You’ve swum through them like an athlete. Go you. If you’ve got a question that’s niggling your mind, leave them for me in the chat below, I’ll be back to you asap…