But what's equally important for acne control is what you do after you're done cleansing.
The process doesn't stop after that wash cloth inches down your clean face. Getting rid of your acne is dedicated process.
"Immediately following cleansing of the skin is a great time to apply therapeutics," Germain instructed. "[Try] a vitamin C or hyaluronic acid serum product in the morning, followed by a mineral based, oil-free sunscreen and at night a retinoid-like retinol serum and exfoliating acids."
So what are a renowned dermatologist's two favorite acne cleansers? She has two.
The first is the Refresh Oxygen Infusion Wash by Skinbetter Science, $38. "It is gentle but still provides light exfoliation with alpha hydroxy acids," she said. The other is MD Complete’s Acne Clarifying Cleanser, $15. 'It contains soothing ingredients like green tea, ginseng, and salicylic acid to clear congested pores."
And in my journey of fighting acne, I too have two personal favorites that have recently provided my skin some serious breakout relief.
DermaQuest DermaClear Cleanser ($32, Dermstore)
This lightweight cleanser soothes and prevents blemishes while deep-cleaning pores. Mandelic acid and willow bark extract slough dead skin cells away for a smoother and more radiant complexion as tea tree oil calms irritated skin and promotes healing. I use this first thing in the morning followed my my regular toning and moisturizing routine.
SkinCeuticals LHA Cleanser Gel ($41, SkinCeuticals)
My favorite nighttime cleanser, this is a deep-digging facial wash that penetrates your pores to decongest and offer cell-by-cell exfoliation while washing away impurities. A combination of LHA, glycolic acid, and salicylic acid encourage cell renewal, resulting in more refined skin texture, even skin tone, and a brighter appearance.