1. Cocoa Butter
I've learned from experience that cocoa butter is just too heavy for acne prone skin.
I love using this as a body moisturizer - it's one of the most nourishing, moisturizing butters out there, but with it's high concentration of oleic and stearic acid, and it's comedogenic rating of 4, it's going to cause breakouts in most people, but especially those who are already prone to acne.
Instead, if you're suffering from dry and acne prone skin, use shea butter, which is really moisturizing but has a comedogenic rating of 0-2 depending on quality.
2. Coconut Oil
Just like cocoa butter is too heavy for acne prone skin, so is coconut oil. While it works well for a lot of people, those with sensitive and acne prone skin often find it to be too heavy. Switch your products over to coconut oil free options with this list!
3. Salt / Sugar / Coffee / Plastic Beads
I really don't like physical exfoliants made with these ingredients. They're simply too harsh on your skin, and they can actually create tiny lacerations that become a breeding ground for bacteria. And if you have 'normal' skin that's bad enough, but if you have acne prone skin, these harsh exfoliants are just going to cause irritation and breakouts.
Instead, opt for a physical exfoliant like the Cocokind Organic Sea Moss Exfoliator. (And for the record I recommend everyone avoid face exfoliants with these ingredients, but especially sensitive and acne prone skin types!)
4. Pure Citrus or Vinegar
This may sound weird, but it's a thing, I promise. I fell victim to it as a teenager. When I was younger, I had horrible acne that I was desperate to "cure". I read everything I could find, and a lot of what I found was absolute garbage advice, but I didn't know that at the time.
There are a lot of skincare DIY recipes featuring undiluted lemon juice or apple cider vinegar as a way to treat acne. Please don't fall for it. Those ingredients are very acidic, and can throw your skin's pH levels totally out of balance, which means your skin is likely to become very irritated, inflamed, and of course, you'll probably have new breakouts.
There are healthy, safe ways to use citrus and vinegar in your skincare routine - even in your DIY recipes! If you're itching to use apple cider vinegar, this DIY toner is a really good option, and it's so easy to make.
And the same goes for essential oils! There are a lot of recommendations to use undiluted tea tree oil as a spot treatment. Please don't! Use a nourishing, anti-inflammatory spot treatment instead.
Do you have acne prone skin? What ingredients do you avoid?