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Do I Need a Moisturizer?

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Updated January 09, 2010

Moisturizer for oily or acne prone skin.

Even acne-prone skin can benefit from daily moisturizing.

Photo © Stockbyte / Getty Images
Question: Do I Need a Moisturizer?
I have oily skin that is prone to acne breakouts. Should I use a moisturizer?
Answer:

Even if you have oily skin, you can still benefit from the use of a daily moisturizer. And, no, moisturizers don't have to leave your skin feeling greasy and looking shiny. The trick is in finding the right product.

Moisturizers are used to improve skin's hydration (think water-content of the skin, not oil-content). They work by slowing the evaporation of water from the skin, helping to keep skin hydrated. Depending on the ingredients used, moisturizers also:

  • reduce moisture loss and increase water content of the epidermis
  • form a protective barrier on the skin's surface
  • give the skin a soft, smooth feel

And moisturizers become especially important if you are using drying acne treatments such as Retin-A, Accutane, or benzoyl peroxide. Using a daily moisturizer will help ease the uncomfortable dryness, peeling, and flaking that can be caused by many acne medications.

So, don't be afraid to moisturize your oily skin! Take the time to choose the right moisturizer by reading ingredient labels and asking your dermatologist or esthetician for recommendations. Experiment with different products until you find the one that is perfect for you.

Sources:
"Cosmeceutical Facts & Your Skin." American Academy of Dermatology. Schaumburg, IL, 2004.

Lynde CW. "Moisturizers: what they are and how they work." Skin Therapy Letter 2001; 6(13):3-5.

Kraft JN, Lynde CW. "Moisturizers: What They Are and a Practical Approach to Product Selection." Skin Therapy Letter 2005; 10(5).

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  6. Facial Moisturizers - Facial Moisturizers and Oily Skin

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