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Acne-Prone? It's Time to Switch to Gel Products

Gel formulations in skincare are smarter these days, tackling aging, acne, and spots for every skin type.
IMAGE Eva Rinaldi/ Wikimedia Commons
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Gone are the days when gel formulations in skincare caused dryness and irritation for those with normal to dry skin. This season, gel-based “intelligent products” seem to be taking the spotlight, with new formulas that work well on all skin types and not just on oily and acne- prone skin, for which they were previously recommended. Apart from being typically transparent and thick, an important property of gels is their ability to enhance skin penetration, according to Dr. Giselle Lazaro of NU.U Asia Center of Dermatology.

 Gels may either be alcohol- or water-based, which are both greaseless and thin. Today, many formulations are free from oils and emulsifiers. Emulsifiers prevent the separation of ingredients or properties in cosmetics and skincare products—say oil and water—and work mostly to extend their storage life. Oils in cream formulations, on the other hand, act as buffers in terms of delivering key ingredients into the skin. These new oil- and emulsifier-free gel products “are absorbed quickly, less pore-clogging, more natural, and contain fewer preservatives,” adds Lazaro.

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YVES ROCHER SEBO VEGETAL PURIFYING CLEANSING GEL
Best for: Evening out the skin tone while cleansing. 
Why we love it: It cleanses deeply, removes makeup, and unclogs the pores without drying the skin. Also mineral oil-, silicone-, and paraben-free. At leading department stores.

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OBAGI NU-DERM FOAMING GEL
Best for: Breakouts and oily skin.
Why we love it: It treats existing acne and prevents future breakouts, cleanses deeply, regulates oil production, and soothes blemishes. 

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MARIO BADESCU AHA BOTANICAL BODY SOAP
Best for: Dealing with chest, back, and shoulder acne. 
Why we love it: It gently exfoliates, cleanses, and gets rid of bumps on our backs in as quick as three uses. Rustan’s Makati, 813.3739.


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CURE NATURAL AQUA GEL 
Best for: Exfoliating without peeling.
Why we love it: It removes dead skin gently. It’s fragrance-, color-, and preservative-free. At leading department stores.


NEORETIN DISCROM CONTROL GEL CREAM 
Best for:Sun protection with skin brightening.
Why we love it: It has SPF 50, which is the recommended daily sun protection, it moisturizes, and it works hard on dark spots while stimulating skin regeneration. Available through leading dermatologists

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BIODERMA ATODERM GENTLE SHOWER GEL 
Best for: Dry and sensitive body skin.
Why we love it: Soap- and preservative-free, it moisturizes, cleanses, and soothes dry skin without clogging pores. Available through leading dermatologists


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About The Author
Nicole Limos Morales
Nicole is the former managing editor of Town & Country Philippines. After working as features editor and beauty editor of the title’s print edition for 6 years, she helped launch Townandcountry.ph in 2016, creating new concepts and story formats, analyzing data, and mastering digital audiences—establishing the title to become the Philippines’ leading luxury lifestyle website. She left her full-time position in 2019 to focus on family life, while carrying on writing beauty content for T&C as a contributing editor. “I think what’s amazing about beauty is that in its arena, you can really only be a skeptic for so long,” she says. “There will always be a product that will make you believe.”
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