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Article: Noncomedogenic Foundation vs Oil-Free Foundation: What's the Difference?

Noncomedogenic Foundation vs Oil-Free Foundation: What's the Difference?

Noncomedogenic Foundation vs Oil-Free Foundation: What's the Difference?

Foundation is a great way to cover up little imperfections and smooth out the skin, but ironically, traditional makeup foundations can cause pore blockage and lead to breakouts and other skin issues. 

The best way to prevent this from happening is to switch to a clean product without toxic additives. Still, it can be an overwhelming task with so many options available and terms non comedogenic foundation and oil-free foundation that make everything even more confusing. 

That's why today we're talking about non comedogenic foundation vs oil-free foundation and hope we're going to clear up the most common questions. 

What does "non comedogenic" mean? 

Acne, blackheads, whiteheads and skin impurities are something most people deal with even after their teenage years. 

Yes, they can be caused by hormones, but often, the blocked pores are the main culprit causing these imperfections. 

A "comedo" is a clogged pore in the shape of a whitehead or a blackhead that leads to acne. A blackhead forms when the oil and bacteria get into the pore and are oxidised by the air - that's what makes it dark. If the clogged pore is closed and buried under the skin, it is a whitehead.

Skincare, makeup, and environmental pollution are the main contributors to the clogging of the pores.

Non Comedogenic foundation vs oil-free foundation

Before the term "non comedogenic", there was "oil-free", meaning that the foundation didn't have any oils in its formulation. 

If the product has a label "non comedogenic", it means it will not block your pores and contribute to creating more blackheads or whiteheads. 

Great, but is non-comedogenic the same as oil-free? The answer is no. Why? Because even if the foundation is oil-free, it could still contain various pore-clogging ingredients such as silicones, algae, etc. 

An easy thing to remember is that all non comedogenic foundations are oil-free, but not all oil-free foundations are non comedogenic.

However, the most effective way to choose the best foundation is to read the ingredients and make sure they’re clean as many producers use the terms non comedogenic and oil-free pretty loosely (unfortunately).


Organic Healthy Glow Fluid Foundation with Rose & Grapefruit

Learn More About Organic Healthy Glow Fluid Foundation


Ingredients to avoid

Yes, the best way to make sure that the makeup foundation you're looking at is non comedogenic and oil-free is to read the label. The ingredients reveal more than any slogan, so while there are many scientific terms, being familiar with the most common ones or simply having a little cheat sheet is very helpful.

Harmful ingredients

It's a long list, but generally, make sure to skip products that contain propylene glycol-2 (PPG-2) myristyl propionate lanolins, such as acetylated and ethoxylated lanolins and D&C red dyes. 

One group to pay special attention to is isopropyl myristate and derivatives:

  • decyl oleate
  • octyl stearate
  • octyl palmitate
  • isopropyl palmitate
  • isopropyl isostearate
  • butyl stearate
  • isostearyl neopentanoate
  • myristyl myristate
  • isocetyl stearate

If you see any of these ingredients on the label, it’s your cue to pick another one!

So, which one to choose?

People with oily, combination, and acne-prone skin benefit from foundations that won't clog the skin, however it's actually the best choice for any skin type. 

But which one of the two should you choose? Let us start by saying that by swapping your traditional heavy-duty makeup foundation to either of these alternatives, you’ll do your skin a favour. 

Such makeup products help prevent comedones (blackheads and whiteheads) as well as impurities and uneven skin tone. They also allow your skin to breathe and contribute to keeping it healthy. 

While generally the better option is the non comedogenic foundation which is usually free from toxic and pore-blocking ingredients, only reading the label will help you make an educated decision because there are many oil-free foundation options that are clean and don’t clog the pores.


SCOUT Breathable Mineral Makeup Collection

The benefits of non comedogenic and oil-free foundation

Now that we've covered the most important aspects of the non comedogenic foundation vs oil-free foundation debate let's talk more about why everyone should consider the switch. 

The non-clogging foundation is perfect for people with oily, sensitive and acne-prone skin, but it can make a huge difference for pretty much any other skin type.

Over time,  traditional foundation may cause dry skin patches or even flaking! Not great, right? Both non comedogenic and oil-free makeup generally has fewer ingredients that lead to these issues. 

Besides, even if you have healthy skin, makeup with harmful chemicals can still cause buildup and breakouts. This happens more often than not, and people often don't connect the two because it seems that the bumps, blackheads and acne have appeared out of nowhere! 

The easiest way to prevent this from happening? Choosing clean beauty products. 

Organic Healthy Glow Fluid Foundation with Rose & Grapefruit

What makeup is oil-free and non-comedogenic? It's the one that makes your skin look better, not worse, and we've worked hard to create such an alternative. 

Our oil-free Organic Healthy Glow Fluid Foundation helps slow the signs of ageing whilst revealing a healthy-looking, more radiant complexion, and most importantly - won't clog your pores. 

It provides light to medium coverage that evens the skin tone for a natural glowing base. The foundation, enriched with Rose and Grapefruit's natural Vitamins and Antioxidants, is gentle on the skin and suitable for every skin type.

The fresh Grapefruit scent and naturally nourishing properties leave skin feeling refreshed and hydrated, protected from free radicals. The natural Vitamin A slows signs of ageing by penetrating the skin's barrier to nourish and stimulate anti-ageing cells. 

Rose's natural anti-inflammatory and soothing elements counteract redness and even out skin tone for a perfect makeup base. 

SCOUT Active Beauty toxin-free makeup

At SCOUT, we're proud of our mission to be kind to your skin and the environment. All the ingredients in our chemical-free makeup are sustainably sourced, and we are committed to using natural and organic ingredients and ethical practices.

All of our makeup products are gentle and non-irritating. They are created without the use of potentially harmful and toxic ingredients such as parabens, sulphates, artificial fragrances and colours, heavy metals, MEA/DEA/TEA, Phthalates, Triclosan, petroleum-derived ingredients or fillers.

Our makeup products are Australian Certified Organic (ACO), COSMOS Organic, vegan and 100% cruelty-free. We are one of the first Australian natural beauty brands to earn both ACO and COSMOS Organic certifications.