Skincare Routine for Sensitive Acne-Prone Skin

My skincare routine for sensitive/blemish prone skin

My skincare routine for sensitive/blemish prone skin

I just want to start by saying that if you are having skin issues, particularly acne, I would recommend seeing a professional dermatologist. They can assess you individually and provide you with prescription strength treatments that are unavailable over-the-counter. Seeing a dermatologist helped me tremendously.

This is my current evening skincare routine. I hope this post helps you if you are struggling with similar skin concerns. If you have any questions, leave me a comment below and I will be happy to provide more information.

Step 1: Eye Makeup Removal

Lid-Care Towelettes Eye Makeup Remover

Lid-Care Towelettes Eye Makeup Remover

Lid-Care Towelettes Eye Makeup Remover

This is what the individually wrapped towelette looks like

I have VERY sensitive eyes and had a hard time finding an eye makeup remover that wouldn’t sting and irritate the skin around my eyes. Then I discovered these Lid-Care Towelettes. They are specifically made for cleaning your eyelids and are fragrance-free and non-irritating. I love that they are pre-moistened and individually wrapped: Great for travel! A box of 30 is $12.99 CAD. I get mine at Lawton’s Drugs, but they are also available at Wal-Mart and

Step 2: Makeup Removal

Bioderma Sensibio H2O Make-Up Removing Micelle Solution for Sensitive Skin (Fragrance-free)

Bioderma Sensibio H2O Make-Up Removing Micelle Solution for Sensitive Skin (Fragrance-free)

I started using Bioderma about 8 months ago and I have noticed a huge improvement in my skin. Miceller water, according to this cosmetic scientist, contains micelles or spherical liquid crystals that “vastly reduce the irritancy of some detergents”. This gentle cleanser removes every trace of makeup but doesn’t leave my skin feeling tight and dry. Although Bioderma is available in most drugstore chains, none of my local drugstores carry it (the perils of small town living). I order it online through Murale or pick op a bottle when I’m traveling. Its $21.95 CAD.

I use the square Quo Luxury Cotton Facial Pads with it. You may want to checkout my post on how they’re a dupe for the Shiseido Facial Cotton pads.

Step 3: Cleansing

Adasept Antibacterial Skin Cleanser and the Clarasonic Mia

Adasept Antibacterial Skin Cleanser and the Clarasonic Mia

My dermatologist recommended using an antibacterial cleanser, Tersaseptic, which I used for years but has been discontinued. My pharmacist told me about Adasept, which has the exact same active ingredient, Triclosan 0.5%. Adasept is a “gentle sudsing soapless formula for acne”. I buy mine at Lawton’s Drugs. Rexall also carries it and its available online through the 500 ml size is $22.89 and the  250ml size is $12.29 CAD.

I use it with the Clarasonic Mia. The Clarasoinc is an investment at $150 CAD, but I’ve had mine for 10 years and use it every night, dropped it a bunch of times, travel with it, and it just keeps on going! It deep cleans my pores (I get almost zero blackheads) yet its very gentle. I can’t recommend this enough. I use the “sensitive” head and replace it about every 6 months. Replacement heads are $31 CAD.

Step 4: Topical Acne Treatment

Clindets pads clindamycin 1% available with prescription only

Clindets pads clindamycin 1% available with prescription only

As I mentioned, I really recommend a prescription strength treatment for acne-prone skin. There are many different types and your skin may not respond to certain treatments, so a doctor can work with you trying different things until you find something that works for you. For example, my skin did not react well to Retinoid cream which severely irritated it and caused redness, and worst of all didn’t improve the acne. My skin responds better to a topical antibiotic. I initially used erythromycin, but eventually my skin stopped responding to that (which can happen) so we switched to clindamycin. The individually wrapped Clindets pads have been working amazingly well. I apply twice daily. The treatment is covered by my insurance.

UPDATE: I’ve been unable to get Clindets, as there seems to be a distribution issue. My pharmacist is filling my prescription with Dalacin T. It’s a topical antibiotic clindamycin 1% in isopropyl alcohol 50% in a bottle with a rollerball on top (VS pre-moistened pads). It is working as well as Clindets.

Step 5: Moisturize

Complex 15 Moisturizer

Complex 15 Moisturizer

Complex 15 was recommended by my dermatologist. Its water-based and fragrance-free.  There is a smaller 100ml size labelled “Daily Face Cream”  and a larger 300ml size labelled “Body Lotion”. Both are $9.99 CAD and I cannot for the life of me find any difference between the two, so I just buy the “body lotion” and use it on my face. Its available at most Canadian drugstores (Shoppers Drugmart, London Drugs, Lawtons Drugs), Walmart, and online through You may also want to see my post on Moisturizers for Sensitive Skin.

Step 6: Spot Treatment as Needed

Adasept Benzoyl Peroxide Gel USP 5%

Adasept Benzoyl Peroxide Gel USP 5%

If I feel a blemish coming on, I will use the Adasept Gel as a spot-treatment. When I wake up the next morning, its usually completely gone. It is amazing! I buy mine at Lawton’s Drugs and its available online through for $13.3 CAD. I only need to use a tiny amount of this so a little bottle lasts months.

Once a week: Exfoliate

Phytomer Vegetal Exfoliant

Use a gentle enzyme exfoliator once a week to remove dead skin cells

Its important to exfoliate dead skin cells regularly to help combat acne. I prefer a gentler enzyme-based exfoliator to a physical exfoliator (products with grains or beads which can actually irritate skin more). There are lots to choose from. I’m currently using the Phytomer Vegetal Exfoliant which uses papain, the fruit enzyme from papaya, to dissolve dead skin cells. I got it at a spa when I had a facial and I think it was around $35 CAD. I apply it to clean skin on a Saturday or a Sunday morning and leave it on for 10 minutes.

Morning Skincare Routine
In the mornings, I wash my face with just water, use my Clindets pad, and then moisturize with Complex 15.

This is what’s been currently working for me. Hope this  helps!

Thanks for stopping by ❤


Nerdy Librarian Girl


Filed under Accessories & Tools, Face, Favourites, Health & Skincare

10 responses to “Skincare Routine for Sensitive Acne-Prone Skin

  1. Pingback: Fantastic Spot Treatment & Inexpensive Dupe | nerdylibrariangirl

  2. Pingback: Battle of the Makeup Wipes: One Fav & One Fail | nerdylibrariangirl

  3. Pingback: New Skincare Routine | nerdylibrariangirl

  4. Pingback: A Great Acne Spot Treatment | nerdylibrariangirl

  5. Pingback: A Micellar Water as Good as Bioderma? | nerdylibrariangirl

  6. Pingback: De-Cluttering my Makeup Collection: Tossing some things I didn’t like | nerdylibrariangirl

  7. V

    This is very important to know 🙂


  8. This was such a great, informative, post. My skin type is similar. Slightly sensitive, acne prone, oily combo but dehydrated. I had it under control but it’s recently gone crazy. Also, my Clarisonic died last night – and I’ve only had it a little over two years! 😦 I’ll have to see if I can access some of these products you featured. BTW, per your recommendation my mum brought me back some Quo cotton pads from Quebec and Anabelle lip liners (she couldn’t find Visanti, unfortunately). So excited, my Canadian/French Pharmacy Haul will probably be up in the coming days! Woohoo!


    • Thank-you! I hope its helpful. That sucks about your Clarasonic! I have literally put mine through all kinds of beatings and it still keeps on going (knock on wood). So exciting you have some Canadian products to try! I really hope you enjoy them. Awaiting your post! xo


I'd love to hear what you think! Please leave me a comment.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s