What Sort Of Skincare Products Should You Use While On Accutane?

If you've ever been affected by severely acne-prone skin or breakout after breakout, you may have been prescribed Isotretinoin. Isotretinoin, also known as Accutane, is a medication that can help to clear up bad cystic acne breakouts and scarring, per the American Academy of Dermatology Association.

It can feel like a lifesaver for those who have had acne for years. However, it's also notorious for leaving skin feeling dry, vulnerable, and flaky due to its powerful ingredients, according to Apotheco Pharmacy Group. Additionally, Accutane can make your skin more sensitive as it kicks in and gets to work, so you'll need to build a skincare routine for your sensitive skin. Some people have access to a dermatologist who can make product recommendations based on specific knowledge of your skin, but, if not, there are certain ingredients and products that will help all types of skin on Accutane.

To help you along your Accutane journey, here are the ingredients you should be looking out for, and some of the best products to help your skin recover during your time on Accutane.

Accutane can leave your skin feeling stripped, so a good skincare regime is essential

Accutane partially works by reducing your oil glands in size, which will naturally lead to your skin becoming drier, according to Verywell Health. Because of this, your skincare routine should focus heavily on hydration. It isn't just your cheeks, forehead, and chin that become dry, either. Dermatologist Yunyoung Claire Chang told The Strategist that 90% of people taking Accutane will suffer from extremely chapped lips. To counteract this, Chang recommends Aquaphor Lip Repair. Its lower price and handy tube makes Aquaphor a solid choice to stock up on, so you can top up your lips wherever you are.

Moreover, it usually isn't just your face that gets dry. As experienced by SELF writer Megan Wood, who took Accutane as a last resort to help with her skin issues, your entire body tends to experience the painful, flaky dryness that signals Accutane is working. To help with this, Wood used another Aquaphor product, this time Healing Ointment. Unlike the Aquaphor Lip Repair, Healing Ointment does not contain lanolin, so it's better for those who are allergic to sheep byproducts and wool.

These products will help to keep your skin hydrated

For more specific products like cleansers and moisturizers, you should focus on products that will hydrate and soothe your sore and inflamed skin. However, don't go overboard with products, as this can cause more irritation. 

When it comes to cleanser, you need something that's nourishing without any added greasy ingredients. The Avene Milk Cleanser is non-stripping and will nourish your skin even on its worst days, as will the ultra-gentle La Roche-Posay Toleraine Hydrating Facial Cleanser. If you want to add a serum into your routine for added soothing properties, serums that contain hyaluronic acid, like the Neutrogena Hydro Boost Serum, will help your skin to retain moisture.

As for moisturizer, dermatologist Dr. Monika Kiripolsky told HuffPost that you should look for one containing ceramides, like the CeraVe Moisturizing Cream, which is designed to restore a damaged skin barrier. Finally, TikTok favorite Cicaplast Balm B5, also from La Roche-Posay, is designed to hydrate your skin to the highest degree without leaving it feeling greasy. Accutane can be a tough journey, but with these products you'll feel that the other side is much closer.