More protein means more muscles. But that whey shake might be the reason why you’re breaking out more than before. Milk proteins can cause pimples. That’s why the best protein powder for acne-prone skin doesn’t contain whey or casein.
What protein powders don’t cause acne? Here are the top picks:
|The best protein powders for acne-prone skin||Why we love them|
|KOS Organic Plant-Based Protein Powder||
|Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Organic Plant-Based Protein Powder||
|Orgain Organic Plant-Based Protein Powder||
|NOW Sports Nutrition, Egg White Protein||
|Protein Powder Made from Real Bone Broth by Ancient Nutrition||
|NutriBiotic Rice Protein||
- 1 What type of protein powder is best for acne? Why?
- 2 Don’t put this ingredient in your protein shake
- 3 Besides plant-based, what other protein powder options are there?
- 4 Best Protein Powders for Acne-Prone Skin in 2021
- 4.1 KOS Organic Plant-Based Protein Powder
- 4.2 Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Organic Plant-Based Protein Powder
- 4.3 Orgain Organic Plant-Based Protein Powder
- 4.4 NOW Sports Nutrition, Egg White Protein
- 4.5 Protein Powder Made from Real Bone Broth by Ancient Nutrition
- 4.6 NutriBiotic – Vanilla Rice Protein
- 5 Conclusion
What type of protein powder is best for acne? Why?
Put acne-safe protein powder in your shaker and give your skin a break. The experts agree that plant-based protein powder can help you build muscle without triggering breakouts (1).
Why does milk protein powder cause pimples? There are several reasons. First, whey stimulates IGF-1, the hormone called “insulin-like growth factor 1”. Then, that hormone tells the body to make more sebum or skin oil.
At the same time that the oil glands are overstimulated, the hormone tells the body to make more androgens and testosterone, and still more oil. Finally, milk protein can interfere with how the body processes blood sugar, leading to excess inflammation, and you guessed it – more acne (2).
Don’t put this ingredient in your protein shake
Even skim milk can lead to more acne because it’s high in milk protein even though it’s low in fat. Don’t mix skim milk with your plant-based protein shake. Try almond, hemp, or coconut milk instead.
Besides plant-based, what other protein powder options are there?
Bone broth is a natural protein that’s rich in amino acids and collagen. Although it sounds like it might taste meaty, you can get it in chocolate, vanilla, or unflavored versions.
Next, egg white protein is a smart option because it has lots of leucine, the BCAA that builds muscles. It’s also easier to blend than pea protein, another favorite choice.
Still, pea protein has a pretty smooth texture and doesn’t taste like peas. It’s often blended with brown rice protein, which has a neutral flavor and is safe for pretty much anyone, even people with allergies.
Best Protein Powders for Acne-Prone Skin in 2021
KOS Organic Plant-Based Protein Powder
We saw a lot of sports nutrition sites recommending this protein powder, which made us curious. It turns out that it’s an award-winner that comes in chocolate mint, peanut butter, vanilla, and regular chocolate flavors. An enthusiastic reviewer said that the chocolate tastes like brownie batter. We can’t disagree.
But let’s be honest, the flavor isn’t everything. Typically, plant protein powder is notoriously grainy, gritty, and hard to blend. It doesn’t matter what brand you choose, you’ll still get better results if you use a blender instead of a shaker. Still, the KOS powder has a decent texture if you mix it with almond, rice, or oat milk – never water by itself.
What’s in it? It’s a long list of organics like pea protein, flaxseed, quinoa, pumpkin seed, and chia. Plus, it has digestive enzymes and a fruit and vegetable blend. Yes, you’ll be getting your veggies even though the shake tastes like chocolate. There’s even a bit of fiber, too.
How is it sweetened? We understand that this is a make it or break it question for a lot of people. Fortunately, the formula uses monk fruit and organic stevia as sweeteners. That might not make everyone happy, but it doesn’t have an overly sweet aftertaste. Moreover, there’s a pinch of Himalayan pink salt to keep it balanced.
You’ll need two scoops to get 20 g of protein per serving. And you might be glad to know that most of the ingredients are certified organic and the formula as a whole is gluten-free and contains no dairy, soy, artificial colors, or GMOs.
- Award-winning protein powder
- 20 g of protein per serving (two scoops)
- Available in chocolate, chocolate mint, peanut butter, and vanilla
- Naturally flavored and sweetened, with no dairy, soy, or GMOs
- Provides fiber, fruits and vegetables, and protein from organic plants
- Not as inexpensive as cheap commercial whey powders, but healthier
Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Organic Plant-Based Protein Powder
If you’re not a fan of monk fruit, this powder doesn’t have it. It’s sweetened with organic stevia leaf. When we say sweetened, we mean it. That’s either a pro or a con depending on your personal taste.
It also has organic cinnamon powder which gives it a little extra something. Reviewers say it blends well with almond milk and frozen fruit, especially tart berries. But note the keyword “blend”. The texture is a little chalky unless you shake it like crazy or use a blender. Also, if you let it sit for a few minutes, you’ll want to mix it before sipping.
With those details out of the way, let’s look at the label. It has organic pea, brown rice, sacha inchi, quinoa, buckwheat, millet, and chia protein. There’s also a helping of organic pomegranate for 100% of the daily value of vitamin C. Helpfully, it also has plenty of vitamin B12 and no gluten, artificial flavors, or colors.
In summary, each serving also offers 24 g of complete plant-based protein.
- 24 g of complete plant-based protein
- Made with organic ingredients and no artificial flavors, gluten, or dyes
- Provides 100% of the daily value of vitamin C plus vitamin B12
- Texture can be a little chalky and the flavor a little sweet
Orgain Organic Plant-Based Protein Powder
Do you know how they give non-dairy protein shakes a creamy texture? Manufacturers like this one use ingredients like acacia gum, sunflower oil, rice dextrin, and inulin. That’s not a bad thing because it helps if you only mix the powder with water. (Keep in mind that you need to mix it really well).
Moreover, this particular protein powder isn’t just good for shakes. You can bake it into brownies and cookies, too. It has a vanilla flavor from organic vanilla bean protein – yum!
Each serving provides 21 g of plant-based protein from peas, brown rice, and chia seeds. There’s also a little bit of fiber, but no added sugar, for a total of 150 calories.
The sweeteners include organic stevia and erythritol. Plus, the formula is vegan, Kosher, and free of gluten and soy.
There’s just one catch. Even though the majority of ingredients are certified organic, the unflavored version of this powder tested high in glyphosate residue back in 2018. Glyphosate is a pesticide that’s harmful to human health, yet the levels they found were still within the “certified organic” limits. If this concerns you, it’s good to know that the Optimum Nutrition powder above passed with flying colors (3).
- 21 g per serving of plant-based protein from peas, brown rice, and chia
- Vegan, Kosher, and gluten-free
- Creamy texture, sweetened with organic stevia and erythritol
- We were uncertain if the company has reformulated to avoid glyphosate residue
NOW Sports Nutrition, Egg White Protein
If your body can’t digest it, eating more protein won’t help you build more muscle. On the bright side, egg white protein is bioavailable and easy to digest. The manufacturer points out that this sports protein scores high on the Protein Digestibility Corrected Amino Acid Score (PDCAAS).
Obviously, since it’s simply pasteurized egg white, it has no sugar, added salt, yeast, gluten, soy, milk, or preservatives. It’s bland, so don’t just add water and expect it to taste good. Instead, blend it with fruit, yogurt, or veggie milk. Furthermore, you can mix it into food and baked goods. Each serving provides 16 g of protein.
We prefer this brand because it’s a family-owned business that operates a GMP-certified facility in the USA. They run their products through stringent testing to ensure potency and quality.
- Pasteurized egg white with no added salt, sugar, gluten, or preservatives
- Each serving provides 16 g of easily digestible protein
- Blends well in smoothies, foods, and baked goods
- Manufactured in the USA
- None unless you blend it with straight water and nothing else
Protein Powder Made from Real Bone Broth by Ancient Nutrition
One scoop of bone broth powder provides 20 g of protein and about 80 calories. Contrary to what you might imagine, it doesn’t taste like meat. You can get it in unflavored, chocolate, or turmeric versions if you like.
The powder can be mixed with hot or cold beverages like coffee, soup, or fruit juice. In our experience, it’s easier to stir into hot drinks, but still straightforward to use a blender for cold drinks. If you don’t have a blender, dissolve the powder into hot water first, then stir that into yogurt, oatmeal, or juice. Since it comes with a 30-day guarantee, it’s good for a trial run.
What’s it made from? The label says it’s chicken bone broth protein concentrate. Therefore, it contains collagen, chondroitin, minerals, and glucosamine that support joint health and healthy skin.
- Each serving of chicken bone broth protein concentrate has 20 g of protein
- Available in different flavors like chocolate and turmeric as well as unflavored
- Doesn’t just provide protein, but also minerals, collagen, glucosamine, and chondroitin for joint health
- Comes with a 30-day guarantee
- Blends easier into hot liquids than cold
NutriBiotic – Vanilla Rice Protein
Rice protein powder isn’t as protein-rich as other options, but it’s a solid choice for vegans and persons with restricted diets or allergies. Plus, it’s keto-friendly. For every 2 tablespoons of this powder, you’ll get 12 g of plant protein.
What’s more, this is made with non-GMO sprouted brown rice that’s enzymatically processed for maximum nutritional value. The plant enzymes separate the carbs and fiber from the protein. This results in powder that’s 80% protein! Don’t worry, it’s made without pesticides, PCBs, and preservatives.
It’s flavored with natural vanilla, which is nice, but not quite enough on its own. It tastes much better when combined with another beverage or fruit.
The manufacturer is a small business based in California. They’ve been making nutritional supplements and health food products for over four decades.
- Keto-friendly, vegan, and ideal for restricted diets
- Made with non-GMO sprouted brown rice
- Offers 12 g of protein for every 2 tablespoons of powder
- Flavored with natural vanilla
Reduce acne breakouts by switching protein powders. Instead of whey, try plant-based, egg white, or bone broth powder. It will give your skin time to heal and still build muscle and stronger hair and nails.
We hope our reviews of the best sport protein powders helped you find what you need today. If you’re enjoying your new supplement, tell us more about it in the comments below.
1. https://www.menshealth.com/health/a19546380/protein-shakes-and-acne/ by Emily Shiffer, published January 10, 2018, accessed September 24, 2021
2. https://www.byrdie.com/whey-protein-breakouts-5115362 by Ariane Resnick, CNC, published March 5, 2021, accessed September 24, 2021
3. https://sustainablefoodnews.com/amazon-organic-protein-products-tested-for-glyphosate-residue/ published May 15, 2019 by Sustainable Food News, accessed September 25, 2021