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October 2008 Rosacea News

(Non)Comedogenicity of Skin Care Ingredients in Rosacea Skin Care Products

(Non)Comedogenicity of Skin Care Ingredients in Rosacea Skin Care Products<i>

Example "non-comedogenic" (and "natural") skin care product, "Yonka Gel Nettoyant Cleansing Gel and Makeup Remover" from the French manufacturer Multaler et Cie (self-proclaimedly "non-comedogenic" although also containing the cytotoxic and irritant natural aromatherapy skin care ingredients citral and linalool).


Comedogenicity refers to the tendency of a skin care ingredient or product to cause whiteheads, blackheads or acne by blocking the pores of the skin.

Conversely, non-comedogenic products are marketed as preventive of acne or acne-like symptoms.

Whether you use rosacea or other skin care products marked "non-comedogenic" or not — and truly, few sensible manufacturers remain making products which will provoke acne anyway — if your underlying skin is congested, it may be prone to acne both with and without skin care products of any description, be they "non-comedogenic" or not.

Moreover, it is worth keeping in mind that:

  • skin care product comedogenicity is not a regulated or objectively tested area, and that;

  • while some individual skin care ingredients are definitely comedogenic, it is also possible for individually non-comedgenic skin care ingredients to function comedogenically within the context of their final formulation.

Coffee doesn't spike your blood sugar — you can call it a "low-GI " and even "antioxidant" food — until you add sugar to it, and it becomes a different equation. (Reference: Glycation).

One extremely popular and unfortunate misconception (among patients, beauty product consumers and some physicians alike) is that you cannot have the acne symptoms of whiteheads and blackheads occur at the same time as rosacea, as if rosacea itself were somehow an anti-comedogenic, anti-acne, anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory entity.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

You can absolutely have rosacea and acne at the same time — one doesn't automatically rule the other out, and skin inflammation is associated with a greater likelihood of acneform-symptoms.

The last decade has seen "acne rosacea" re-named "rosacea" on the basis that rosacea is not associated with acne bacteria (propionibacterium), yet a great many acne treatments yield improvement for rosacea patients where anti-inflammatory treatments may not.

Having said this, it should be kept in mind that acne treatments used alone on rosacea will produce relatively and significantly poor results in the long-term because they do not treat the totality of the disease's symptoms and its (thus-far known) processes.

We find no objective or clinical evidence to favour the use of any product just because it is stamped with the words "non-comedogenic" primarily because:

  • comedogenic products tend not to exist in reality;

  • non-comedogenic skin care product users can be afflicted by acne and acne-like symptoms irrespective of what products they use;

  • many products marketed as "non-comedogenic" are relatively more harmful or less beneficial than those which make no statements about their comedogenic potential.

Additional Comedogenicity, Skin Care and Acne-Symptom References [External Site(s)]

A skin care reference list for "comedogenic".

Skin Care Failure: Use Organic or Natural Skin Care

Comedos and Comedones and Propionibacterium / P. Acnes Bacteria.

A definition of blackheads.

A definition of whiteheads.

About Open Pores.

Other skin care products containing citral. (i.e. amongst those to be avoided).

Other skin care products containing linalool. (i.e. amongst those to be avoided).


Author: Peter Wilson.

Reviewed: Wednesday, October 8, 2008.


Further Information: Rosacea News July 2017 : Rosacea News June 2017 : Rosacea News March 2017 : Rosacea News February 2017 : Rosacea News December 2016 : Rosacea News November 2016 : Rosacea News October 2016 : Rosacea News September 2016 : Rosacea News August 2016 : Rosacea News July 2016 : Rosacea News June 2016 : Rosacea News May 2016 : Rosacea News April 2016 : Rosacea News March 2016 : Rosacea News February 2016 : Rosacea News January 2016 : Rosacea News December 2015 : Rosacea News June 2014 : Rosacea News May 2014 : Rosacea News April 2014 : Rosacea News March 2014 : Rosacea News February 2014 : Rosacea News January 2014 : Rosacea News December 2013 : Rosacea News November 2013 : Rosacea News October 2013 : Rosacea News September 2013 : Rosacea News August 2013 : Rosacea News July 2013 : Rosacea News June 2013 : Rosacea News May 2013 : Rosacea News April 2013 : Rosacea News November 2012 : Rosacea News August 2012 : Rosacea News August 2011 : Rosacea News July 2011 : Rosacea News June 2011 : Rosacea News May 2011 : Rosacea News September 2010 : Rosacea News August 2010 : Rosacea News July 2010 : Rosacea News June 2010 : Rosacea News May 2010 : Rosacea News April 2010 : Rosacea News March 2010 : Rosacea News February 2010 : 2010 Rosacea News : July 2009 Rosacea News : April 2009 Rosacea News : March 2009 Rosacea News : February 2009 Rosacea News : January 2009 Rosacea News : December 2008 Rosacea News : November 2008 Rosacea News : October 2008 Rosacea News : September 2008 Rosacea News : August 2008 Rosacea News : July 2008 Rosacea News : June 2008 Rosacea News : May 2008 Rosacea News : April 2008 Rosacea News : March 2008 Rosacea News : February 2008 Rosacea News : January 2008 Rosacea News : REDLOG — The Rosacea Weblog :




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