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Spots, pimples, blackheads, greasy, dry and/or oily skin are common teenage skin problems.

Their skin (and hormones/emotions) are all over the place and they need a teenage skin care routine especially suited to their needs.

We’ve rounded up our favourite teenage skin care brands which, when coupled with a healthy diet, not eating too much sugar, not smoking and keeping any make up brushes clean, can prevent or reduce the anxiety that comes with acne.

When it comes to teenage skincare products, Dr Amy Bibby, hospital Doctor and Head of Operations at Qured advises:

“Quick fixes are hard to find when it comes to dealing with teenage acne. A common myth in regards to skincare is that toothpaste helps to dry up facial spots. However, this could actually have the reverse effect. Toothpaste contains fluoride and whitening ingredients which can seriously irritate the skin and lead to allergic reactions. Some well-known advice for mild acne involves keeping your face and hands clean, avoiding touching your face, drinking lots of water and maintaining a healthy diet. But if nothing seems to be working then topical treatments are a good next step, you should go to see your GP who can give you advice on what to do, or, provide you with a prescription.” 

Mild face washes such as Cetaphil can be effective or you can choose one with salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide in to help unclog pores. The side effects of these can include dry, burning skin with some redness, but acne should visibly appear to improve after a month.  You should always wash your face in the morning and at night.

The aim is to kill bacteria on the surface of the skin and reduce the appearance of comedones, also known as whiteheads or blackheads. Things that produce this type of acne are called ‘comedogenic’. So, teens that are looking to buy make up or skin care products should try to find ones that are labelled ‘non-comedogenic’.  I would always advocate washing your makeup off before going to the gym and sweating so that your pores do not block up”. 

Our favourite teen/tween skincare products include:

The La Roche Posay Effaclar range is enriched with thermal spring water and each product maintains skin's moisture whilst targeting breakouts and reducing the appearance of shiny, oily skin and enlarged pores. The three step system is a good intro to the range and is suitable for sensitive and prone to allergic reactions skin.

Blackhead-prone skin will love the Dermalogica Clear Start Breakout Clearing Booster, especially designed to tackle areas like a problematic T zone. Formulated with powerful Salicylic Acid to clear impacted follicles, niacinamide to reinforce skin’s barrier, and Seaweed- derived Chondrus Crispus Extract to soothe and lock in moisture, it wipes out breakout-causing bacteria in only 15 minutes, working with the skin’s natural microbiome to balance and help prevent over-drying.

Follow up with their Blackhead Clearing Fizz Mask and its unique fizzing technology to target and eliminate stubborn blackheads before they become a breakout. The product activates upon application to open pores, dissolve and clear any congestion and blackheads, whilst botanicals work to combat dryness. Sulfur has anti-microbial benefits, Kaolin Clay will absorb excess oil and Apple Fruit Extract helps balance and hydrate so skin is left feeling clean, smooth and refreshed.

The award winning and best-selling Mario Badescu Drying Lotion is famed for its ability to help dry up surface blemishes overnight. It’s a fast-acting, effective spot treatment specially formulated with Salicylic Acid, Sulphur, and Zinc Oxide to help draw impurities from the skin and target pesky problems while you sleep.

French pharmacy brands are beloved by beauty experts due to their simple yet highly effective products and the Sebiaclear range from Laboratoire SVR is an anti-blemish skin care range with concentrated active ingredients for pimples and blackheads. The formulas contain a powerful duo of anti-blemish active ingredients: gluconolactone, a potent anti-inflammatory agent, and niacinamide which has incredible antibacterial and sebum-regulating properties. 

There are eight multi benefit products in the range: keratolytic; anti-inflammatory; antibacterial, sebum-regulating, anti-marks, moisturising and mattifying.

An oldie but a goodie, the Tea Tree range from The Body Shop contains some of the best teen skincare products for a reason – they work! Tackle blemishes, blackheads and oily skin with the cleansing power of natural tea tree, clinically proven to give clearer skin from one week. Our favourite product is the Clay mask – it cleanses, cools and refreshes blemished skin without leaving the skin dry and taut.

ELEMIS’ Superfood Skincare Range is a nutrient-dense, vegan-friendly collection, including Superfood Facial Wash, Day Cream, and Night Cream and a bestselling, award-winning Superfood Facial Oil. The Pre-Biotic gel cleanser gently cleanses and its natural Pre-Biotic helps balance the skin’s precious microflora. Gently purge pollution, dirt, and excess sebum while Broccoli Seed, Avocado and Pumpkin Seed offer a balanced diet of active ingredients that help transform skin lacking vitality into a radiant complexion with an outdoor-fresh glow. Superfood Day Cream is rich in vitamins and anti-oxidants and combined with a protective Pre-Biotic, which helps defend skin against environmental aggressors, for skin that looks and feels healthy. Lactobionic Acid, which is known for its ability to smooth skin, instantly brightens the complexion.

Great skin starts with a great routine and the Organic Young range by Green People contains organic ingredients, designed to encourage a blemish-free complexion. The range contains Willow Bark to reduce inflammation and kill bacteria, Tea Tree extract to help control bacteria, Rosehip oil to encourage a clear complexion and Yucca to deeply cleanse and gently remove dead skin cells.

The experts at Victoria Health recommend this skincare routine for acne-prone skin:

  • Cleanse with Derma E’s Very Clear Acne Cleanser which removes built-up oil and debris to help unclog pores, promote clear skin and prevent acne breakouts.

  • Spritz with Thyme Out (a moderate spritz) to moisten the skin area well. Allow to air dry. Thyme Out is so mild and actually soothes the skin meaning you can apply it many times a day to get your symptoms under control. Then, use Thyme Out as a preventative on an occasional basis 2-3 times weekly to prevent future breakouts

  • End with Garden of Wisdom’s Niacinamide Serum on a cleansed face; leaving for 30 seconds before applying moisturiser.

  • Follow through with a moisturiser if desired, or in more chronic cases apply Silver Serum to affected areas only.

What’s your must-have product for problematic, acne-prone skin?