The 5 Best Oil-Free Moisturizers For Acne

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While not all oily skin types are acne-prone, many acne flare-ups have at least a little bit to do with an over-production of oil. When dead skin cells get trapped in pores along with oil and bacteria, it can cause breakouts. Because of this, if you're acne-prone, it's important to pay attention to the ingredients list of your favorite skin-care products. Finding beauty buys that are oil-free is paramount to keeping your complexion clear, especially when talking about moisturizers. Luckily, the best oil-free moisturizers for acne are easy to find.

Moisturizers, unfortunately, tend to be the biggest culprits of hiding oil in their formulas. It makes sense — if you're not acne-prone, oil can often be an incredible moisturizer. But certain oils can be the kiss of death for folks who break out, which is why it's important to check products' ingredients lists. Even though they may not be the first ingredients listed, they can still be lurking in formulas that you wouldn't expect.

Instead, acne-prone folks want to reach for moisturizers that are lightweight and non-comedogenic. Hyaluronic acid is a particularly great moisturizing ingredient to look out for that poses no risk of clogging your pores. A moisturizer that mattifies skin can also be useful, since it will help control oil production and soak up excess shine.

Ahead, find five of the best oil-free moisturizers for acne-prone skin that you can buy.

1. The Best Oil-Free Gel Moisturizer

If your face is both oily and acne-prone, then a lightweight, water-based moisturizer is going to be the best option for you. Enter: Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel. This oil-free moisturizer provides hydration without the heaviness, leaving no trace behind once absorbed into skin. The hero ingredient here is hyaluronic acid, an incredibly potent moisturizer that's known for its ability to hold 1,000 times its weight in water. It also draws moisture from the air and holds it against your skin, so your skin stays softer and more hydrated for longer. The Hydro Boost gel moisturizer also has the benefit of being noncomedogenic, dye-free, and fragrance-free, making it a fabulous option for just about every skin type.

2. The Best Oil-Free Moisturizer For Severe Acne

Medicated moisturizers, like Clean & Clear's Advantage Acne Control Moisturizer, are a great choice for those dealing with severe acne. This formula contains salicylic acid, a gold standard of acne-fighting ingredients. It works to unclog pores of pimple-causing debris like oil and dead skin so it also helps prevent future breakouts in addition to treating existing blemishes. Oil-free and non-greasy, this moisturizer is a solid option for those who want to moisturize and treat their skin.

3. The Best Oil-Free Moisturizer For Sensitive, Acne-Prone Skin

Sensitive skin that's also acne-prone can be difficult to treat because of how different the needs of those two tend to be. But with a moisturizer like Avène's Cleanance Mat, you can treat your blemishes and your sensitive skin in one fell swoop. It's a lightweight moisturizer that actually absorbs oil and leaves skin looking velvety and soft, and it also doubles as a wonderful base for long-lasting makeup.

When it comes to sensitive skin, Avène is one of the most trusted brands, as everything they create is formulated to be gentle. Every product is infused with the brand's signature thermal water, which naturally soothes irritated skin.

4. The Best Oil-Free Mattifying Moisturizer

If you want a mattifying formula that smooths your skin and nixes oil on the spot, reach for La Roche-Posay's Effaclar Mat. It reduces shine and blurs pores, which makes them appear smaller. It also contains salicylic acid towards the end of the ingredients list to help unclog pores and prevent breakouts, and glycerin to keep skin moisturized. One reviewer with "extremely oily and acne prone skin" says, "This is by far the best moisturizer I've ever used."

5. The Best Oil-Free Moisturizer With SPF

There's a common misconception that sun exposure is good for acne-prone skin because the sun dries out zits. The fact is, though, that this drying can cause your skin to produce even more oil, leading to more breakouts. That's why a moisturizer with sunscreen, like this one from Paula's Choice, is a must-have for acne-prone skin. It contains an SPF of 30+, so your skin is protected, but the formula is also oil-free, noncomedogenic, and moisturizing. It's rich in hydrating ingredients and antioxidants that help smooth skin and reduce dryness and flaking, and it's fragrance-free to boot.

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