I have dry skin AND acne. How is that possible?

Having dry skin with acne is annoying. On the one hand you want to ‘dry out’ the pimples and on the other hand you want extra hydration by greasing your skin. People with dry skin have reduced sebum production and/or increased moisture loss from the skin. With this skin type, this remains fairly stable and will not change that quickly. A genetic predisposition is often the cause.


Acne on the other hand, has various causes, in addition to excessive sebum production, a complex interaction between sebum composition, blockage of the sebaceous gland drainage, hormones and cutibacterium acnes bacteria also play a role. Acne can develop without excessive sebum production. The skin often becomes drier due to acne treatments, such as products with salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, cream with vitamin A, soaps, and also isotretinoin treatment. More about acne

Tip: Dry skin as a result of isotretinoin can sometimes be very unpleasant. Some studies indicate that isotretinoin treatment, combined with an omega-3 oil supplement, reduces dry skin and mucous membranes. A dose of 1 gram of omega-3 per day is sufficient to prevent dryness.

Acne Dry Skin Omega-3
Omega-3 Oil

‘If you have to make a choice about the best omega-3 source, choose krill oil rather than fish oil’
‘For vegans: are there algae oil, walnuts, chia seeds and hemp seed oil’

‘dr. Francis Wu

How about a normal skin in the morning and dry in the evening?

When the skin is dry, but shines at the end of the day, it is dehydrated skin. The skin can be dry due to the environment, such as the weather or an air-conditioned or heated room. It can also be caused by using the wrong products such as soap, cleaners and lotions, which contain denatured alcohol, for example. This is therefore not a skin type, but a skin problem. This problem can be solved with the right products.

To care for dry skin with a tendency to acne at home, it is important to use the right products.

Basic skincare routine

Dry skin with pimples benefits from moisturizing creams, serums and lotions.

  1. Cleanse: Cleanse your face daily in the morning and evening with a mild cleanser.
  2. Day cream / sunscreen : Use a moisturizing day cream with at least SPF 30 in it. This protects you from the sun and helps to prevent wrinkles. If you do not have a day cream with SPF 30 in it, you can then apply a sunscreen separately, which is especially for the face.
  3. Exfoliate: Use an exfoliant with glycolic acid or lactic acid (Alpha Hydroxy Acids, AHAs). These acids provide hydration to the skin. In addition, they remove dead skin cells and ensure that sun damage, such as pigment spots and fine lines, become less visible. An exfoliant with salicylic acid (Beta Hydroxy Acids, BHAs) can also be used. This removes dead skin cells, regulates sebum and ensures that blockages occur less quickly.
  4. Moisturize: Use a moisturizing night care in cream or serum form. Niacinamide, also known as vitamin B3, stimulates your skin’s sebum production and has an anti-inflammatory effect when you have acne. More about niacinamide

Now that you’re here

Ever heard of clowns eczema? The medical term for this is the medical term for this is Perioral Dermatitis. This literally means red bumps around the mouth. A variant around the eyes is called Dermatitis Periorbitalis. This condition is most common in women between the ages of 16 and 45. But children between the ages of 7 months and 13 years are not spared either. In men, it is rare.

It is a benign and non-contagious skin condition and can be recognized by the small inflammatory papules and pustules and/or red/pink scaly fields. The bumps are not real pimples, they are eczema bumps, filled with fluid. In this condition, the area around the mouth (periorale) or around the eyes (periocularis) is affected. It is striking that the area immediately around the lip red is not affected. However, the skin issues can also occur on either side of the nose. Sometimes the forehead, eyelids and between the eyebrows are also affected. The papules often develop in attacks and cause irritation such as itching and burning. The complaints can be aggravated by soap, sunlight, and even contact with water.

In most cases, the diagnosis is made with a trained eye. And if tissue research is done, also called a biopsy (histological examination), a mild non-specific inflammation becomes visible under the microscope. The inflammations are located between perivascular (around the vessels) and peri-follicular (around the follicle). More about dermatitis perioralis

Picture of Dr. Francis Wu

Dr. Francis Wu

Dr. Francis Wu, een vooraanstaande dermatoloog, is de drijvende kracht achter Iconic Elements. Hij heeft sinds 2004 zijn expertise ingezet om een veilige en effectieve huidverzorgingslijn te creëren, geschikt voor zowel gezonde huid als huidproblemen. Iconic Elements, opgericht in 2016, is de eerste brede skincare lijn in Nederland ontwikkeld door een dermatoloog. Als medisch specialist streeft Dr. Wu naar het bevorderen van het welzijn van mensen door hoogwaardige en effectieve huidverzorgingsproducten te bieden. De proefdiervrije en vegan producten vermijden schadelijke chemicaliën en bevatten natuurlijke ingrediënten.
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