Pretty much everyone who’s ever had a pimple is familiar with the two main acne-fighting ingredients: benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid. (If you have no idea what these things are then, congrats! You’re officially the luckiest girl ever!)
But while those anti-blemish ingredients might be the most well-known, they aren’t the only compounds that can de-bumpify your skin. We chatted with some savvy skin experts to learn more about five other compounds that can keep your face zit-free.
This form of vitamin B can combat acne and rosacea, reduce redness, improve the texture of your skin, and reduce wrinkles, according to various studies. Try the new Super B Complex serum by ASAP Skin Products—it has niacinamide and hyaluronic acid, which dermatologist Purvisha Patel says can combat the drying effects of acne treatments.
2. Shitake mushroom complex
This ingredient is a double-whammy because it has antioxidant properties, says dermatologist Dhaval G. Bhanusali, MD. It also helps stimulate epidermal skin cells and prevents collagen breakdown, which can really reduce acne-related scarring.
3. Retinyl palmitate
A derivative of Retinol (which is a derivative of Retin-A), this compound helps exfoliate your skin and reduce the appearance of pores which, in turn, can reduce the appearance of blackheads, says Kasey D’Amato, co-founder of Airelle Skin. Have patience, she advises, as this treatment (and many others) may take a few weeks before you can appreciate the results.
This active form of turmeric has been used to treat a variety of skin issues on the eastern side of the world and it’s just now gaining popularity in the US, according to Bhanusali. Curcumin is a triple-threat: It’s a proven anti-bacterial (similar to benzoyl peroxide), anti-inflammatory (which can help difuse the red, painful bumps of acne) and collagen stimulator (to help with scars). Of all the new acne-fighters, he predicts that this will be the next big thing in skincare.
5. Flaxseed extract
This new natural ingredient is helpful for absorbing oil, as well as reducing the appearance of blemishes and shine, D’Amato says. Bonus: Products with this ingredient can make great makeup primers, too.