The Best (& Worst) Vegan Skin Care Products

September 26, 2018 3 min read 0 Comments

The Best (& Worst) Vegan Skin Care Products

By: Samantha Rizzo 


Looking for vegan skin care products for acne used to be a chore. Thankfully, more companies are now getting on board and creating amazing products, giving us a lot to choose from.

Now, instead of having too few products to choose from – we have too many! If you’re asking yourself, where do I start, then you’re not alone.

Here is a short list of some of the best (and worst!) vegan skin care products for acne.


DermaE Very Clear Acne Scrub 2% Salicylic Acid
If you can get past the smell, this scrub makes the top of my favorite skin care products for acne.
This scrub is exceptionally gentle, light and creamy, almost whipped!
It helps to remove dead skin, dirt, sweat, and everything undesirable, but it also works to keep pores unclogged and acne-free. The best part is its anti-inflammatory effects are immediate, resulting in less redness and swelling.

Nelson’s Pure & Clear Acne Treatment Gel
This one is a cult favorite – a gel containing several essential oils and acne-fighting ingredients like sulfur and tea tree oil – it packs a powerful punch.

COSRX Salicylic Acid Daily Gentle Cleanser 0.5% Salicylic Acid
I didn’t think I’d like a salicylic acid cleanser, but I do! I love that it’s a low concentration, meaning it isn’t going to be too harsh or drying as a cleanser. I also love the whipped, creamy texture which lathers nicely on the face and rinses away without leaving a film. Not only does it clean well, but it cleans gently which is even more important.

The Ordinary Salicylic Acid 2%
I’m not a fan of this formula for all-over application, simply because of the texture and consistency. I find it sticky and awkward to apply all-over (unless my skin is damp, which makes it too harsh), but I LOVE it as a spot treatment! It zaps my pimples overnight, sometimes even better than my tea tree oil.

Paula's Choice Clear Daily Skin Clearing Treatment 2.5% Benzoyl Peroxide
Yep, this baby is my ride or die emergency acne treatment. It nips my pimples in the bud before they even start and helps to clear up old pimples and red marks quickly with minimal dryness.

Yes to Tomatoes Blemish Clearing Facial Wipes
I love the entire Yes To line more than words can express, and their acne line Yes to Tomatoes is no exception. Although I love all their products, their facial wipes are perfect for busy folk with acne. The wipes work gently and effectively against blackheads, whiteheads, and inflammatory pimples.

Banish’s Pumpkin Enzyme Masque
This is hands down the only mask I’ll probably ever need for my acne (well, except maybe a clay mask!). It sloughs away dead skin that builds up and fights acne-causing bacteria. It smells great, it’s all natural and vegan, and it works – what more can you ask for?

Grandpa’s Thylox Acne Treatment Bar
Despite being a bar soap, this is a super effective sulfur treatment for persistent acne on the face and body, and is my choice when lingering pimples just don’t seem to be responding to anything else.

The Body Shop Tea Tree Oil Mattifying Lotion
If you’re looking for skin care products that will tackle the challenge of your oily skin, consider this daytime lotion your next holy grail. It tackles shine all day long, recruiting tea tree oil to gently fight acne spots.



I don’t like to say any product is the worst, because even they could potentially help some people.

However, some products seem to get it all wrong, at least for my sensitive skin’s needs.

Paula's Choice Clear Anti Redness Exfoliating Solution 2% Salicylic Acid
I wanted to love this, I really did. Paula’s Choice gets so many of their products right, but this one was a huge miss for me.
Not only did I hate the product packaging, but I also disliked the super liquidy texture. It made the formula difficult to apply evenly and left my skin irritated as all hell.
While this product isn’t for me, others with less sensitive skin have had great luck with it!

Andalou Naturals Blemish Vanishing Gel Maximum Strength
When they say maximum strength, they must mean that your skin must be made of steel to endure this. While it may be suitable for some skin types, anything that burns and stings upon application probably isn’t going to be a good addition to your regular routine.

While some of the best skin care products for acne might not be right for you, hopefully this list has you well on your way to finding the right product for your skin’s needs!

Do you have favorite skin care products you’d like to share with the acne community? Go ahead and leave them below!