Noncomedogenic Makeup - Because Clear Pores Mean Pretty Skin

BlogHer Original Post

When I was in my 20s, my skin suddenly took a turn for the worse. I came home from college one spring and I swear to you, my mother called the dermatologist before I even finished unpacking my suitcase. 

It's possible I exaggerate. A little. Anyway. 

The dermatologist completely changed my skin care routine, and he introduced me to the term "noncomedogenic," which is skin doctor speak for "will not clog your pores and cause eggplant-sized zits the night before that fraternity semi-formal you've been looking forward to for the entire semester." 

Again, I may be exaggerating. A tiny bit. 

The combination of the prescription treatments and my new devotion to only non-pore-clogging skin care products cleared my skin up like that, which was great when that fraternity formal rolled around. And then I graduated from college and time passed and I got a little lax about both the prescription stuff and the noncomedeogenic stuff and more time passed and I got a job and turned 30 and decided it was time to invest in a Real Grown-Up Skin Care regimen, one that was not designed for college kids but for Real Women. Who of course do not have acne! or clogged pores! 

I went to the Clinique counter and invested in their Three Step Skin Care. And I say this with all due respect to Clinique (who make both my favorite lip gloss AND my favorite blush of ALL TIME): My face had never looked so bad. Terrible! Worse than when my mother staged the first dermatological intervention ten years earlier.

Because Clinique's products are not noncomedogenic.

Eventually, I went back to my all Neutrogena all the time system, which cleared everything up, but I wanted more -- I wanted to go to Nordstrom to buy my face stuff, not to CVS! So I got hooked on Clinique's City Block sunscreen, which has a nice light tint and just a little bit of shimmer and made my face look so lovely and had a 45 SPF! Except of course my skin was a wreck and I could never leave the house without foundation on because the City Block was blocking both the sun's harmful rays and my pores.

Back to the dermatologist. Again. Guess what he told me? I needed to use only products clearly labeled noncomedogenic! Because anything else would clog my pores! and make me break out! And then both he and his nurse sang the praises of all things Neutrogena.

(I love Neutrogena, I really do -- and these days, I'm especially loving the part where I can buy it all at CVS and still have money left over for a latte.)

These days, I'm combining prescription treatments (a topical antibiotic to control bacteria and a topical Retin A gel to exfoliate) with drugstore and department store makeup counter finds. i use Neutrogena's Fresh Foaming Cleanser morning and night; for day, I wear either Ultra Sheer Dry Touch Sunblock (SPF 45 and helioplex, for extra protection) or the Oil Free Fresh Moisturizer (super light and great under makeup). My foundation is Prescriptives Flawless Skin, which offers light coverage without blocking my pores.

I would still like to find a really terrific tinted moisturizer, but I'm not trying anything that isn't clearly labeled noncomedogenic. I've learned my lesson: You certainly can get too old for fraternity formals, but you're never too old for those horrible Friday night breakouts.

Looking for your own best foundation option? Real Simple has suggestions (honestly, some of my favorite makeup is stuff I read about in Real Simple). So Loverly road tests Revlon's ColorStay Foundation for Oily Skin and is pleasantly surprised. And Makeup and Beauty Blog is in love with DuWop's Foundation of Youth,which is perfect for oily and acne-prone skin.

How are you managing your acne-prone skin? What's your go-to product to ward off breakouts?


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