fungal acne safe skin care routine

Here’s Exactly How to Treat Fungal Acne & Get Clear, Glowing Skin

This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase through one of the links, I earn a small commission at no cost to you.

I recently filmed a video for my Brooke's Beauty Bazaar Youtube Channel about exactly how to treat & clear fungal acne. Feel free to watch it here, or if you prefer-- you can read the entire transcript in this blog post.

In this post, you'll find out:

  • What fungal acne is, and how it differs from regular acne
  • My approach to treating fungal acne
  • The only 4 products you need to get rid of fungal acne
  • Exact product recommendations for treatment of fungal acne
  • Exact skin care routine for clearing fungal acne
  • How to prevent fungal acne from coming back
  • Additional resources for fungal acne safe makeup & skin care

Intro to Fungal Acne

Hello & welcome back to Brooke’s Beauty Bazaar! My name is Brooke, and today I am going to be talking about exactly how to treat & clear fungal acne, also known as malassezia folliculitis or pityrosporum folliculitis.

I think you’re going to be very surprised to hear my approach to treating fungal acne, which involves simple steps &  a lot fewer products than you’d expect. 

So be sure to read all the way through this article, because not only am I sharing the exact products & skin care routine I used to treat my fungal acne, but I’m also going to tell you how to prevent fungal acne from coming back.

This is How Fungal Acne Differs from Regular Acne

Ok, before I get into the details of how to treat it, here's a quick reminder of what fungal acne is, and how it’s different from regular acne vulgaris, or bacterial acne:

Regular acne happens when your pores (which are actually just hair follicles) become clogged with excess oil (sebum), dead skin cells, and bacteria.. this results in inflammation & produces pustules & papules.

Where fungal acne differs is that we have the added element of yeast, or fungus, in the hair follicle, or pore. All people have fungus that occurs naturally on the skin, but in the case of fungal acne, it’s an overgrowth of yeast.

Specifically a yeast called malassezia furfur

Hence the name malassezia folliculitis. Folliculitis literally means inflammation (-itis) of the hair follicle, and malassezia being the fungus that causes the inflammation.

Now to hopefully keep anyone from getting confused here, all humans have sebum (oil), bacteria, and yeast naturally occurring on your skin, and it’s possible for a person to have both bacterial and fungal acne at the same time. 

I’m not going to go into great depth on why some people are more prone to acne breakouts in general, or how you get an overgrowth of yeast in the first place--because I’m not kidding when I say the reasons and circumstances are vast, diverse, and unique to each person. 

Instead, if you need help diagnosing your fungal acne or want to learn more about it- check out my PDF Guide - From Fungal Acne to Clear Skin, where I go into much greater depth on the science behind fungal acne!

Disclaimer & My Approach to Treating Fungal Acne

For the purposes of this article, I’m going to assume that you already suspect you have fungal acne, and therefore I’m strictly going to discuss exactly how to treat and clear your fungal acne.

First of all - I need to be clear - I am not a dermatologist. Everything I’m about to share is based on my own research and experience in clearing MY own fungal acne - and if you take my advice, you are doing so at your own risk.

I don’t think it’s that risky though! ?

Second, you can listen to what I say in this article and decide whether you agree or disagree, but I really want to stress that YOU must take responsibility for your own skin conditions, PERIOD.

Alright, that’s enough of all that disclaimer stuff... Here’s my approach to treating and clearing fungal acne..

I want to throw it out here that oral anti-fungals are a treatment option, but I decided the rare but potential side effects, such as liver damage & heart failure - were too risky for me..

Many of you won’t be surprised to hear that, because if you’ve watched my acne story video, which is linked below, you will know that I also decided I wasn’t willing to risk the side effects of Accutane.

By the way, if you want oral anti-fungals, you will obviously have to see a doctor to get a prescription.

So when I started treating my fungal acne, I did it strictly from a topical standpoint, and these are the only 4 products I needed to clear my skin..

Are you ready? Of course you are!

The Only 4 Skin Care Products You Need to Treat Fungal Acne

  1. A good fungal acne safe cleanser.
  2. A good fungal acne safe “active ingredient” - which is the ingredient that actually kills the fungus. I prefer salicylic acid for this.
  3. A good fungal acne safe moisturizer.
  4. A good fungal acne safe sunscreen.

And that’s it-- I’m serious!

Now you might be thinking.. Brooke, that sounds just like my regular acne skin care routine, or that sounds like my daily skin care routine already, or maybe even.. That sounds too simple.. And you’re absolutely right on all accounts.

How to Prevent Fungal Acne From Coming Back

But don’t miss this point, because it’s important. I want to emphasize that these 4 skin care items need to be “fungal acne safe” products.

And what do I mean by “fungal acne safe”?

Well, most skin care and makeup products are formulated with ingredients that can actually feed malassezia yeast and make your skin worse. 

So if you want your fungal acne to go away, you need to use products that don’t contain ingredients that feed the malassezia yeast. 

Got it?

Don’t worry - I’m going to get to what those products are in a minute, but don’t miss this point - using products that are fungal acne safe is not only how I cleared my fungal acne, but it’s also how I prevent it from coming back.

Fungal Acne & Makeup

If you are reading this article, suffering from fungal acne, and wearing makeup - then you don’t just need to focus on using fungal acne safe skin care… you also need to change your makeup products to ones that are fungal acne safe.

Yes, I know how much you’ve invested in your products. I threw out $1200+ worth of my own makeup & skincare when I discovered I had fungal acne, and IT HURT!!

But ask yourself - which would you rather have? Clear skin, or an $80 oil from Sephora that’s actually making your skin worse?

Check Out Everything Fungal Acne Safe in the Sephora Collection

So to make this pill a little easier to swallow, I want to add that my entire fungal acne skin care routine costs about $50. Now I’m not going to mislead you, because that does not include what I spend on makeup - but I can also tell you it’s possible to get an entire makeup bag full of fungal acne safe products for about $45 - that price includes a foundation, concealer, blush, bronzer, and lipstick. (Lexie link to foundations video)

It’s true - you can build yourself a whole fungal acne safe skin care & makeup routine for less than $100! 

How does that sound?

I want you to go into the comments RIGHT NOW & tell me how much your current skin care and makeup products cost combined. Is it more than $100, or less than $100? I personally have never spent this little on makeup and skincare in my entire life.

And while you’re down there, don’t forget to Subscribe to my channel for more of my beauty content from a fungal acne perspective.

Fungal Acne Treatment Product Recommendations

OK, so now we’ve covered the basics.

We’ve talked about what fungal acne is, the 4 products you need to treat it, and how to prevent it from coming back by using makeup and skincare that is formulated with fungal acne safe ingredients.

And now I have two more places I want to go with this information on treating fungal acne. First I’m going to give you 4 specific products you can use to treat your fungal acne, and then I’m going give you an exact skin care routine.

Check Out My Morning Skin Care Routine for Fungal Acne

So here are the 4 products I use & recommend.. Drumroll, please!

  1. Vanicream Gentle Cleanser, which is $9
  2. Stridex Maximum Strength Pads, which are $3 and contain salicylic acid that will actually fight the fungus
  3. Garnier SkinActive Moisture Rescue Refreshing Gel Cream, which is $6
  4. Paula’s Choice Youth Extending Daily Hydrating Fluid SPF 50, which is the most expensive item I’m recommending at $33

In total, these four products add up to $52 plus tax.

And if you don’t want to spend so much on a sunscreen, there are other, more affordable options.

The reason I recommend this Paula's Choice sunscreen over the more affordable options is - cheaper formulas just don’t have nice formulations. I find that they leave a white cast on skin, they tend to be greasy, chalky, thick, and hard to wear under makeup. 

However, this one by Paula’s Choice is so lightweight, non-greasy & non-chalky, and leaves a nice finish on the skin perfect for wearing under makeup.. I love it and I think the higher price point is worth it. This is one of those cases of - you get what you pay for.

Now let’s talk about exactly how to use these products in your skin care routine, so you can treat & clear your fungal acne.

I want to stress a less is more, gentle approach in your skin care routine.

Morning Routine 1

Assess your skin when you first wake up. Is it looking healthy, plump, & well-moisturized? Do This:

  • Wash Face with Cleanser
  • Use Stridex Pad (Use one per day, use one every other day, or even less, depending on your skin's hydration levels)
  • Apply Moisturizer
  • Apply Sunscreen
  • Optional Makeup

Check Out ? Why A Healthy Moisture Barrier is Critical to Healing All Acne

Morning Routine 2

Assess your skin when you first wake up. Is it dull, dry, or dehydrated? Do This:

  • Rinse Face with Water Only
  • Apply Moisturizer while skin is still wet
  • Apply Sunscreen
  • Optional Makeup

Notice we skipped the Stridex pads - if your skin is too dry - you're better off adding extra moisture than using a chemical exfoliator. Trust me.

Pro Moisturizing Tip with Hyaluronic Acid

Pro tip here - you can spritz some water on your face and apply your moisturizer to damp skin to really lock in moisture.

Additionally, consider using hyaluronic acid, which draws moisture from the environment to the skin. Follow these steps:

  • Spritz with water (here is a good spray bottle for this purpose)
  • Hyaluronic Acid & let dry
  • Spritz with water
  • Moisturizer while still wet

I can't drive home this point enough - Well hydrated skin is going to be your biggest ally in healing all types of acne.

Check Out ? Best Fungal Acne Treatment Products from The Ordinary

Nighttime Routine

At nighttime, you definitely want to use your cleanser to wash off all the dirt, sweat, and oil that’s built up throughout the day.

Nighttime is also a good time for using actives like salicylic acid or glycolic acid to give them time to really do their work uninterrupted. Do This:

  • Optional Remove Makeup (I like Bioderma Micellar Water)
  • Wash with Cleanser
  • Use Stridex Pads (or another active ingredient, if you prefer)
  • Apply Moisturizer (go for a thicker formula if you like!)

Remember! If you ever think your skin is too dry, then skip the Stridex pads/active ingredient, or use it every other day instead of daily.

Although they are formulated to be gentle enough for daily use, I’ve actually found that tapering my usage down helped my skin improve faster.

Sometimes nowadays I only use Stridex Pads once per week.. Like I said, less is more.

More Fungal Acne Resources

I have provided links to all the products mentioned in throughout this post. You can also shop my favorite fungal acne safe makeup right here!

Check Out These Fungal Acne Articles I Think You'll Enjoy