Comedogenicity (Clogged Pores)


Retail store cosmetic shelvesA comedogenic ingredient means that it clogs pores. It does so by increaseing production of keratin in hair follicles. Keratin is the key material making up the outer layer of human skin. This doesn’t always happen quickly, and it can take months of using a product before clogging is noticeable. One client may have no reaction, while another may have excessively clogged pores in a few weeks.

Here is a list of comedogenic ingredients that can potentially clog your pores:

  • Acetylated lanolin alcohol
  • Butyl stearate
  • Cetearyl alcohol and ceteareth-20
  • Cetyl acetate
  • Coal tar
  • Cocoa butter
  • Coconut oil
  • Ethylhexyl palmitate
  • Glyceryl-3 diisostearate
  • Isocetyl alcohol
  • Isopropyl isostearate
  • Isopropyl linolate
  • Isopropyl myristate
  • Isopropyl palmitate
  • Isotearic acid
  • Linoleic acid
  • Laureth-4
  • Lauric acid
  • Linseed oil
  • Myreth-3 myristate
  • Myristyl lactate
  • Myristyl myristate
  • Octyl palmitate
  • Oleic acid
  • Oleth-3
  • Oleyl alcohol
  • Olive Oil
  • Peg-16 lanolin
  • Polyglyceryl-3 diisostearate
  • Squalene
  • Steareth-10
  • Stearyl heptanoate
  • Xylene

Remember that not everyone responds the same way. If your skin is congested, (your esthetician can help you determine this), take a look at your skincare products and see if they contain some of the culprits.

This is a list of noncomedogenic ingredients that have been proven not to clog pores.

  • Butylene glycol
  • Cholesterol
  • Cyclomethicone
  • Dimethicone
  • Emulsifying wax National Formulary (NF)
  • Glycerin
  • Iron oxides
  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • Methylparaben
  • Oxybenzone
  • Petrolatum
  • Propylparaben
  • Squalane
  • Specially denatured (SD) alcohol
  • Talc

TIP: Go to Skin Deep Magazine (published by Associated Skin Care Professionals) cosmetic database for more information on skincare ingredients

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