Education, Physical Health, Wellness / Self-Care

Your laundry detergent might be causing your Acne

An extra step up in your skincare routine.

words by: Alee Kwong
Aug 22, 2021

So you’ve finally found the perfect skincare routine that works for you but you still can’t seem to shake those last few residual pimples? It’s frustrating because you’ve started to tell yourself that maybe your newfound holy grail routine isn’t actually the one. Little did you know that there was a sleeper irritant causing your persistent skin issues and luckily it has nothing to do with your skincare routine.


Psssst, it’s your laundry detergent.


Why laundry detergent?!

Think about it. You use laundry detergent to clean your sheets and your sheets generally make direct surface-to-surface contact with your skin for hours at a time. The reason skin irritation and acne occurs is because essential oils, fragrances, and dyes are being pressed into your skin causing clogged pores and contact dermatitis.


In an interview with Well + Good, David Lortscher (board-certified dermatologist and CEO of Curology) said:

“Essential oils made from parts of plants by distillation or by mechanical processing are sometimes added to laundry detergent products to add fragrance, but these have the potential to sensitize and irritate skin—especially for those with eczema whose skin may be more vulnerable to irritants,” and he added, “Keep in mind that some people are very irritated by essential oils. Although they can smell good and are naturally derived, they’re not always the best ingredients for certain skin types.”


How to solve the problem

The solution is as simple as this – go fragrance-free and dye-free. While the scent of fresh laundry is undoubtedly a fan-favorite, the ultimate goal is getting your clothes clean and avoiding skin irritation all together.


For more on skincare, read up about isoparaffin.