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Acne and makeup can be a vicious cycle. When you've got acne, you put makeup on to make zits less noticeable. The bad news is -- when you put on the wrong kind of makeup, you can get even more zits. Not cool, right? If you've got acne-prone skin, you have to wear makeup that doesn't clog your pores. And, most importantly, always take off any kind of makeup before you go to sleep. Your pores don't love it when makeup particles are ground into them overnight.
Some people actually need oil in their makeup. When you get older, your skin doesn't make as much oil, and oil-containing makeup helps to make it softer. But that's not what you need right now when you're skin is producing higher rates of oil that can become clogged with makeup application. In addition to makeup that has oils, you should avoid wearing heavy makeup -- the kind where you can't see your real skin color underneath it. Think of heavy makeup as a thick layer of smog, chocking your pores, keeping your skin from breathing and producing oil that can keep your skin soft. When you put on heavy makeup, the oil can't get out and your pores get clogged -- and that's when the blemishes start.
Not all makeup has to clog your pores -- and there's a label that tells you the makeup that won't. Look for the words "non-comedogenic" thenext time you shop for a foundation or powder. These clear-skin words tell you that the product does not contain oil and is better for acne-prone skin.
Some makeup actually helps to heal -- not cause -- pimples. Some skin-clearing foundations contain salicylic acid or other acne-fighting products to help reduce oil in your pores. These anti-acne products are best for when you have a breakout and need a quick fix to cover your zits. The more you wear them, the more you can clear your face.
There's another way that makeup can cause your skin to break out -- and it's not totally your makeup's fault. When you makeup gets older and you are opening and closing it constantly, bacteria in the air can get into your makeup -- and your pores when you put makeup on. Putting on makeup with a dirty brush also can contribute to pimples and acne. The moral of the story is to use your makeup up in the first few months after you open it to minimize bacteria. Another option is to wear mineral powder makeup, which tends to have anti-bacterial effects.