If you’ve ever spoken to people who have gotten their acne under control, you know that it’s rare for them to attribute their newfound clarity to a single product. While you may hear people tout a holy-grail product that made all the difference between breaking out and clearing up, chances are that product, while effective, was only one factor in reducing pimples and maintaining a less-blemished complexion. It’s how an entire routine works together that really boosts the likelihood of breaking the breakout cycle.
It can be an overwhelming challenge to try to assemble the skin-care regimen that will improve your acne situation. Unless you’re someone who genuinely enjoys researching ingredients and reading reviews before you put items in your cart, the options don’t just seem endless, they can seem intimidating, too. Luckily, a number of brands have bundled their best clarifying formulas like beta-hydroxy acid cleansers and oil-free moisturizers into convenient sets that take the guesswork out of engineering the ideal routine.
“A pre-assembled acne set has a controlled and balanced amount of active ingredients,” board-certified dermatologist Morgan Rabach tells Allure. “This is in contrast to picking a separate cleanser, treatment, and moisturizer that may all have too many of the same or different active ingredients. Too many active ingredients may irritate the skin, and irritation can cause more acne.”
It’s also a great way to avoid combining ingredients that don’t work well together. For example, while board-certified, Miami-based dermatologist Roberta Del Campo says that benzoyl peroxide and retinoids are both gold-standard ingredients for getting acne under control, she also notes that they can compromise each other’s impact. “When using benzoyl peroxide and a retinoid together, the retinoid will not be at its maximum effectiveness,” she tells Allure.
With affordable drugstore options from brands like Clean & Clear, collections from more niche brands like Biossance, and everything in-between, there’s a set or system meticulously formulated to work for both your skin and your wallet.
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