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Wearing make-up can make you feel more confident – especially if the make-up also helps conceal acne redness and blemishes. Most cosmetic brands carry products that are designed for acne prone skin so you don’t have to worry about making your skin worse.      

Liquid foundations

These products are typically labelled as oil-based, water-based, oil-free, oil-control or matte-finish. Where possible, choose oil-free and matte-finish products (which tend to be oil-free).  The oil-control products are not necessarily oil-free but they contain blotting ingredients such as talc, kaolin or starch to help absorb excess sebum.  

Face powders

Face powders used to be something our grandmothers wore straight over their moisturisers until liquid foundations became the norm. Now powders are back big time especially with the popularity of mineral make-up ranges.   Powders are great because they help conceal skin imperfections. Mineral powders don’t settle into the pores of the skin and are therefore non-comedogenic. They give a matte finish and smoothness and also help control oil. They also give good coverage and reduce the redness associated with acne. Some also have additional soothing agents. Mineral make-up is also good for your skin because it contains physical sunscreens such as titanium or zinc oxides.  


You might need a range of concealers in your make-up kit. A lightweight concealer may be sufficient for everyday use but a heavier concealer may be the go for problems areas. Concealers with a green base help camouflage redness. Some also contain acne-fighting ingredients such as salicylic acid so they can help treat your acne at the same time as hiding it.  


Some of the red colour in blush comes from ingredients known as D&C pigments which can be comedogenic. Instead, look for products that use carmine as the colourant. Powders and gels are better than heavier cream blush. Also avoid shimmery products – an effect caused by mica particles in blush and eye shadows. Mica can block the pores and cause skin irritation.  


Last updated March 2016

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