If You Have Acne-Prone Skin, Try This Tarte Vegan Serum

Mask mandates are back and, obviously, so is acne. Clogged pores, increased sebum production and awkward smiles hide behind the face mask — but what do you do when you take it off? It might be tempting to throw every spot treatment on your face and exfoliate madly until it's all over, but that isn't a sustainable solution. Quick fixes can leave your skin dry, sensitive and lead to, god forbid, more acne. While you should definitely consult your dermatologist to figure out what works for your skin, a general rule of thumb seems to be hydration.

Dermatologist Dr. Rachel Nazarian tells Well + Good, "When the skin is dry, it can be more irritated and make acne look and appear worse ... With acne, the issue is inflammation in the skin — most acne responds better and improves when you calm it down. Therefore, moisturizing is helpful." While it may seem counterintuitive to add moisture to skin that already has excess oil, dryness can make things significantly worse by opening your pores, which invites in bacteria (via Eternal Dermatology). So, if you're adding hydration to your skin routine, we've got a product recommendation for you to consider.

Tarte's SEA Mermaid Skin Hyaluronic H2O Serum is affordable and comes in cute packaging

Tarte Cosmetics launched their Mermaid collection a few years ago, and we loved the iridescent packaging and fish-tailed brushes reminiscent of every scene from "H20: Just Add Water." And it's clear that the products stand the test of time, as Tarte's SEA Mermaid Skin Hyaluronic H2O Serum ($42) still remains on every beauty editor's list. The vegan formulation is made of hyaluronic acid, Vitamin B5, and algae, giving your skin an intense hydration boost with every application.

Hyaluronic acid, a naturally-produced substance in our body, can rehydrate your skin while reducing the appearance of wrinkles and improving texture (via NP Dermatology). This ingredient, Dr. Rachel Nazarian told Well + Good, helps the skin "maintain more water and hydration with continued use." (The Tarte website also notes that the sea plants in the serum also help minimize fine lines.)

The Tarte serum is also oil-free, which means it's great for acne. "Many acne medications work by targeting oil glands and decreasing production of oil on the skin," the dermatologist said. "So it's important to use a moisturizer ... so that it can tolerate the acne regimen. Many people find that their skin starts to over-produce oil in reaction to dry skin, which is another reason to ... apply moisturizer after every time you wash." 

In addition to the benefits of hyaluronic acid and algae, Vitamin B5 is known to reduce stress — yet another plus for the Tarte product, as stress is associated with producing pimples, per Healthline.