Treating acne on sensitive skin often feels like you’re fighting a losing battle. While common acne-fighting ingredients like salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, and retinoids can help prevent your breakouts, they carry the risk of irritation, leaving you with a whole new problem. According to dermatologists, the fix is to choose an ingredient that can target your acne without rubbing it directly onto your skin, which they say is in the form of sulfur.
Joshua Zeichner, MD, a board-certified dermatologist based in NYC, said in a recent Instagram video about the best acne treatment: “Sulfur calms inflammation and reduces levels of acne-causing bacteria. without causing inflammation. ingredients for different skin types.
And it’s true: Derms has long considered sulfur a “triple threat” for getting rid of acne thanks to the fact that it targets breakouts of all levels without irritating your skin. “It contains natural anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and keratolytic properties, thus addressing the three main ingredients that cause acne and breakouts,” says Libby Rhee, DO, board-certified dermatologist certified, previously told Well + Good. “In other words, this single ingredient can improve redness, fight Propionibacterium acnes bacteria in the skin, and help the skin shed and regenerate more effectively, reducing pore congestion.”
To integrate sulfur into your routine, look for a cleanser formulated with this ingredient. Since cleansers have brief contact with your skin, they provide an effective dose of sulfur without causing irritation. You can also opt for a mask or spot treatment, as long as it’s non-comedogenic (meaning it won’t clog your pores). Ideally, you’ll find a formula containing two to four percent sulfur to help avoid irritation, but if you already have something stronger on your shelf, don’t worry: Just mix it with a little moisturizer, this will help ease the irritation.
Shop our picks below, and you’ll be able to win your battle with acne/sensitive skin once and for all.
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Kate Sommerville Eradikate Daily Cleanser – $60.00
In addition to sulfur, this daily cleanser is formulated with sensitive skin-friendly ingredients like honey, rice bran and oat extracts that will soothe and soothe skin. It also has sebum-balancing properties, which help prevent future breakouts before they start.
Sunday Riley Saturn Sulfur Spot Treatment Mask – $20.00
This mask combines sulfur and tea tree oil to clear sebum and bacteria out of your pores and is great to use as a spot treatment for people with cystic acne, pimples that seem to like having their mind. It also has niacinamide, a great anti-acne and anti-inflammatory that will help calm any redness around your breakouts.
Lancer Skincare Clarifying Detox Mask with Green Tea + 3% Sulfur – $60.00
With a three percent sulfur concentration, this mask is exactly what the doctor ordered. You can use it as a spot or total treatment (depending on the type of acne you’re dealing with) and the combination of sulfur, azelaic acid, and green tea will clear your acne and make Your skin looks brighter and overall more even.
Adult acne is *real,* yes. Watch the video below for everything else you need to know about how to handle it.
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