When you have breakouts people point you towards all of the products that will strip your skin and then you're dry. But anything hydrating is going to break you out. OR it's winter and your normal routine isn't cutting it because it's freezing and your face is falling off. I have personally had this challenge and I can tell you that a LOT of our clients have written in about it too. Here's what has helped all of us:
use a gentle cleanser
If your skin is dried out then washing it with something that's going to dry it out even more is going to make it worse. I think we're trained to do charcoal and tea tree everything as oily folks (and we have a great cleanser for that!) but if you identify with the paragraph above I'm going to say skip that super squeaky-clean cleanser and go with something mild. I like to stay in the gel cleanser lane but go with something targeting combination skin over oily skin. Sometimes I'll pop in my charcoal cleanser only where I'm having breakouts but I use the gentle one everywhere else.
Use a tonic!
Having damp skin is going to help your lotions and potions sink in better. I like a hydrosol if you're feeling super dry as they just give me more nourishment but if I'm battling a lot of breakouts then I like to go with an HOCL spray as they clean your face (great for after sports/workouts) but don't dry it out. This is an easy step to skip but I find it really makes a lovely difference when I do it.
Use a serum made for your skin
Let's be real - most serums are targeting combination or dry skin - oily skin generally gets left behind in this arena. It's literally why I created our Clarifying Serum. I wanted something lightweight that wouldn't break me out, would give me a little bit of hydration but wouldn't clog. It also needed to help soothe my red marks from fading blemishes and purifiying my skin would be a bonus - and we did it!. It is packed with ingredients oily skin loves - Organic Jojoba Seed Oil (mimics our skin's oil so don't freak out - they're friends!), Niacinimide, tons of organic teas (helps with red marks), Tea Tree Oil (clarifies like crazy) and Chamomile (super soothing). So don't try to fit into a serum that isn't targeting your skin - it will break you out.
Swap cream moisturizer for an oil
I know, I know - every fiber of your being is potentially in revolt right now because we've been raised to think oils are horrible for us, will mess up our pores and make everything worse. And honestly, that's true for a lot of them, but not our Tamanu Oil. You can read how it worked for me and others who were dry/breakout-prone HERE. A 2015 study concluded that Calophyllum inophyllum oils (Tamanu is one) "have demonstrated...wound healing and antibacterial activity against Propionibacterium acnes and Propionibacterium granulosum, both involved in acne". And it hydrates! My skin felt soft for the first time in ages, my breakouts were less - it is a game changer!
Use a chemical exfoliant at least 1x/week
This sounds scary but chemical means "not scrubby" - we don't want to break anything open and spread it around. Chemical exfoliators dissolve dry, dead skin and sweep it away without any abrasion. If we're going super gentle look for Lactic Acid. Medium to heavy duty is Glycolic Acid, depending on the percentage.
Goldfadden M.D. Fresh A Peel Mult-Acid Resurfacing Peel (lactic - gentle)
Erin's Faces Pumpkin Enzyme Peel (glycolic - medium)
Juice Beauty Green Apple peel full strength exfoliating mask (glycolic/beta hyroxy - intense)