DermTV – Moisturizers and Acne [ Epi #245]

DermTV – Moisturizers and Acne [ Epi #245]

Hello, I’m Dr. Neal Schultz [pause] and welcome to DermTV. A frequent question that I get form our DermTV
viewers is: if I have acne and I’m treating my acne with topical skincare
products, when in the routine of putting on my products, do I put
my moisturizer on? That may be a trick question, and the reason it may be
a trick question is that almost everybody with acne has oily skin, particularly
in the T-zone. Oily skin means you have just too much oil, and when
you have too much oil, it lays on the skin and tends to hold in your own
moisture, so it’s very unlikely that you’re going to be dry in the T-zone.
Now, moisturizers are used to treat dry skin, which is an absence of moisture
and that’s just very unlikely to happen in the T-zone because of
that extra oil. However, there are some people with acne who have dry cheeks,
and the reason that they have dry skin on their cheeks is because we
have many fewer oil glands on your cheeks. That’s one of the reasons you
tend to get less breakouts there. But with those fewer oil glands you
can’t hold in your own natural moisture as well. So in that case, those people
have oily T-zones, dry cheeks and they thus have combination skin.
So, they do need moisturizers. There are however just three rules. Number
one: put your acne medicines on first. Number two: then put your moisturizer
on. And number three: if make- up is appropriate, put it on then. A last
point: make sure your moisturizer is water based or oil free and you really
want to avoid putting that moisturizer on in the T-zone. It’s unnecessary,
it’s just another layer, you’ll get done quicker if you don’t and
who knows…maybe that extra layer will then predispose you to clogging more

About the Author: Earl Hamill


  1. can people with acne wear sunscreen (not makeup with spf) daily? and if they can, where does it fit…? i know that sunscreen must be in direct contact with skin, but so does acne medication. i'm confused πŸ˜›

  2. I disagree. Everyone needs something on top of the acne treatment. What i see from experience is that a lot of people with acne and/or oily skin tends to overdry their skin by using a harsh cleanser. I saw a lot of people improving their skin by using a bha (salicylic acid) and benzol peroxyde on their blemish prone areas and then moisturizing with a water based products. With spf during the day, antioxidants at night

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