Is My Shampoo Making My Acne Worse?

If you've ever been frustrated at how seemingly everything seems to cause your acne to flare up, or if you just want to avoid any products which may aggravate your acne in the future, it is important to know if your products are causing the problem.

So you're already using acne face wash, a non-comedogenic moisturizer, and taking care to avoid products with oil and fragrance, but your skin is still breaking out. What's going on? Your shampoo might be the culprit!

A lot of ingredients in the products we use daily are known acne triggers—including some in shampoos and conditioners. This creates a lot of tension between having hair that looks great and being able to have clear skin too!


Here’s what you need to know about these potential triggers, what they can do to your skin, and what product should you use if you are struggling with acne on your scalp, face, or back.

How Can I Tell If My Shampoo Is Causing Me To Break Out?

The most obvious way to tell is if you use a shampoo and break out shortly after using it, it could be causing your acne. Try switching to another brand or simply stop using any shampoo on certain days of the week (say every other day) and see if your skin improves.


Similarly, if you constantly have some type of blemish around your face, neck, and back (areas where your hair frequently comes into contact with skin), it's very likely that these are caused by the hair products that you are using.

What Acne-Triggers Are Found In Hair Products?

The ingredients in some shampoos can cause acne because they clog the pores. While it’s not that common, there are enough people out there who are sensitive to shampoo ingredients. Check the labels of your shampoo to make sure your skin is okay with it. In fact, when considering a new shampoo, you should always take into account how it might affect your skin as well as if it works for your hair type.


Oil-based products may seem harmless, but they may also be trapping the most bacteria, thereby, creating a breeding ground for acne. Ingredients like petroleum, silicones, jojoba oil, shea butter, and even cocoa butter can also cause flare-ups of pimples.


Based on a study from the International Journal of Medical Research, coconut oil is one of the major acne-causing ingredients to avoid in hair care products. While coconut oil can be great for adding hydration and shine to hair, it's a well-known comedogenic, meaning it can lead to breakouts on the skin. Thus, coconut oil in shampoos would not work for you if you're prone to acne or sensitive to oils as it may cause your skin condition to worsen!


In addition to that, SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulphate) or Ammonium Lauryl Sulphate (ALS) can also trigger problems for people with sensitive skin types. Both can irritate the skin and clogs pores. These two are known as detergents which make bubbles when you wash your hair. Usually, if you have sensitive skin then it's best to avoid these chemicals throughout your entire beauty routine.

What hair products are acne-safe?

If you've got acne-prone or oily skin, try shampoos that are specially formulated for those who suffer from skin problems. A shampoo that has salicylic acid helps balance oils on the face and scalp. As well as being an effective way to treat dandruff, it also works great for treating scalp acne because it penetrates deep into pores to gently exfoliate and remove excess oil.


CLn Shampoo contains salicylic acid to remove unwanted oils and dead skin cells in scalps and even in beards. Designed by physicians for normal-to-oily scalps and hair, this specially formulated shampoo cleanses pores and hair shafts, leaving scalps rejuvenated and hair fresh. It is effective cleansing for those prone to skin problems like acne, itching, folliculitis, dandruff.


Aside from salicylic acid, CLn Shampoo contains sodium laureth sulphate (SLES) instead of sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS). Despite having the same chemical formula, SLES is mild and non-irritating.


What's more? CLn Shampoo is fragrance-free, making it perfect for sensitive skin. Like all CLn products, CLn Shampoo is free of steroids, antibiotics, parabens, triclosan and has not been tested on animals.



If you have acne, the worst thing you can do is spend money on hair products that worsen your acne. Yet, the ingredients found in most shampoos and conditioners can aggravate acne. By switching to CLn Shampoo with mild, gentle ingredients and developed by trusted physicians, you may find that your skin clears up. Say goodbye to acne on your scalp, back, and even face!

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