Own – Bio-Activating Breakout Control line review

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Gentle yet effective acne fighting products? They do exist!

Bio-Activating Breakout Control line photos: we heart this

Sometimes great things just drop in your lap; the umbrella you find under your front seat on what was supposed to be a clear and sunny day or the change in the bottom of your purse when you’re 5 cents short at the meter. I recently had one of those experiences when I realized that my formally well-behaved and blemish-free skin had been less a product of good genes and more of a side effect of my recently discontinued birth control pills. (Boo.)

A few days after this discovery, a box from heaven (and the ladies at wht) arrived containing the Bio-Activating Breakout Control line from Green Monday favorites Own. Problem solved.

When we reviewed the Nighttime Lip Therapy we learned Own is a natural skincare line dedicated to creating affordable products with natural ingredients instead of harsh skin irritants. The founders searched the world for natural sources and ingredients, assembled a group of top chemists to study their findings, and filed for 16 patents while creating this unique line.

How unique? All the products in the Bio-Activating Breakout Control collection contain Bitter Melon, Canadian Willow Herb, Neem and CLA (conjugated linoleic acid) instead of harsh chemicals like Benzoyl Peroxide to help make your skin smooth and lovely. A little Salicylic Acid thrown in the mix to help zap zits makes Own a natural acne-fighting powerhouse.

My package from heaven meant that I was the lucky reviewer of all four products (face wash, toner, lotion and spot treatment) that comprise the Breakout Control line. The products work in synergy to form The Four Steps to Breakout Control. Own breaks this down as renewing skin cells, taming bacteria, mopping up oil and soothing skin. Sounds good to me! But does it work?

Calming Facial Toner and Purifying Face Wash

The Purifying Face Wash ($10.99) cleanser cleans like a dream. A tiny amount gets loads of foam and it has nice refreshing scent. The cleanser also removes gunk, oils and makeup from my face without over-drying my skin.

The Calming Facial Toner ($10.99) works well, but it’s SO different from usual toners that it takes a bit getting used to. It removes makeup and dirt, but without alcohol, so it can leave behind a slightly tacky feeling to the skin as it dries. However, the calming effects of this gentle toner are a nice bonus. While many toners sting and itch, this one softens and soothes. Could be a miracle for the oily skinned with sensitivity issues.

The Shineless Face Lotion ($14.99) is also unusual – I’m sensing a pattern in the products from Own! This lotion is thick and opaque, almost like a primer, but as promised leaves your skin shine-free for most of the day. It’s designed “to help balance oil production,” leaving a matte appearance and less pimples behind.

However, it’s the Fast Acne Remover ($12.99) that’s the real star of the show! This little tube takes care of blemishes fast with Own’s exclusive blend natural pimple fighters without drying out the skin. Even better, since there is no Benzoyl Peroxide in this spot treatment, there are no worries about bleaching your hair or your linens if you wear it overnight.

Gentle, yet effective products
Nice herbal scent to the products; the toner in particular reminds me of cinnamon
Affordable, no product over $15

All natural ingredients
Paraben, SLS and phthalate free
All products and ingredients are cruelty free
Recyclable packing and a company with a commitment to being as sustainable as possible while delivering a great product

A tacky feel to skin from the toner
The lotion doesn’t moisturize as well as I would like.
(I use a separate oil-free lotion and then apply the Own lotion as a mattifier.)

I’m so grateful the beauty gods shined down on me and sent the Own Bio-Activating Breakout Control JUST when I needed it. Other acne products don’t always deliver, but Own’s Natural Bio-Activating Breakout Control kit does exactly what it says – fights acne without destroying your skin in the process.

we heartsters and testers – does your skin issues include the 1,2 punch of acne and sensitivity? Were you able to fight back with Own skincare?

Disclosure: This review includes products that were provided by the manufacturer/PR firm for our consideration. For more info, or any questions, please see our disclosure policy.


  • lyssachelle

    Alyssa is kinda geeky, kinda girly and all the way in love with her cowboy husband who can say words like, “ornery” with a straight face. She live in Texas and is working on her Masters, being a good cook and the art of looking cute in the morning AND being on time for work. skin tone: NC42 skin type: oily to normal favorite beauty product: nail polish and mascara

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  1. Great review @lyssachelle. I got to test the purifying cleanser. I really liked it and found it to be fairly concentrated. This is a great quality in my book when a small amount will go along way because the bottle lasts longer. (What a super value for the price.) It does have lots of suds. I have sensitive combination skin and this worked great when I used it a couple times a week. It was not drying but, was just what my skin needs when it felt clogged and congested.

    four stars

    1. Thanks, Holly!
      Isn’t all that foam, great? I’m used to face washes with pumps that put out way too much product, so the control is nice because I don’t feel as wasteful.

  2. Great review @lyssachelle! Would love to try out these products for my acne prone/combo skin. The Acne Remover sounds like something up my alley!

    1. Thanks! And it was after I submitted my review, but I used the Acne Remover on a BAD blemish recently, one of those large, painful under the skin ones, and it worked amazingly well. It took maybe two nightly applications, but it didn’t come to the surface AND my skin wasn’t all dried out and flaky as it went away. After that, I reccommend this even more! :-)

  3. I don’t know what it is, but I have such a soft spot for skin care systems. There’s just something so chic about matching skin care products! Haha, I’m such a geek.
    I’ve never found a natural product that really works on my blemishes but at such affordable prices (and a great track record) I think I should give Own a try! I think I’ll start with the big guns, the Fast Acne Remover. Thanks for the informative review @Lyssachelle !

    1. I’m the same way, Amanda!! There’s just something about a kit that I love and am a sucker for! We’ll be geeks together. :-)

  4. I tried out the Shineless Face Lotion. It has a faint herbal(?) scent, and has 2% salicylic acid in it. It felt and looked a tiny bit greasy at first, but after putting on my makeup, did a decent job of keeping my makeup looking good and keeping down shine. However, it didn’t seem to help with my breakouts at all. Additionally, the bottle is small (only 2 fl oz, which is more like “travel size”) for the price. I give it three stars.

    1. Marilyn, if it helps, I’ve been using my lotion as a mattifier. I have a oil-free moisturizer that I prefer, so I apply that and then the Shineless Face Lotion a little later. And for the price, it’s a great mattifier! :-)

    2. @lyssachelle–oh, yes, if you need a mattifying primer it’s a good price for sure. But since the primary purpose of this skincare line is “breakout control” I was a little disappointed.

  5. This sounds great and I would love to try a natural way to discourage blemishes! Thanks for the intro to a great contender! @Lyssachelle!

    1. Thanks, Stephanie! I love that all the products are jut a few bucks more than their drugstore counterpart, so it’s nice to try without a huge commitment!

  6. This looks like a great “new for me” line. It sounds perfect for my skin type. I am going to give it a try. Great review!!

  7. I got to try 2 of Own’s Acne products. But first I really have to say again how much I love the Nighttime Lip Therapy. I have indeed noticed plumping with this over time, and it’s become my go to night lip balm.

    I also really liked the Purifying Face Wash. Suds galore, even with my Clarisonic. Which is my #1 test for any natural cleanser. This girl needs bubbles. This has got it! Both this and the other product I tried (the toner) have the same scent and both contain Neem, Bitter Melon and Willow Herb. I like the herbal scent, it smells clean. And that’s exactly what it did, left me feeling super clean. I’ve been using it since the heat has gone insane in the CA desert, and despite one huge pimple on my forehead (which may be a large tumor, I’m not sure) my skin has been very calm. Good Stuff, 5 stars!

    Sadly, the Calming Facial Toner is not my cup of tea. As @lyssachelle mentions, it leaves behind a tacky feeling that I just couldn’t hang with. And I thought it actually felt a bit soapy going on. In their defense, I’m in LOVE with my brand of toner, so I might be very biased. But the toner only gets a 2 from me.

    Despite a miss on the toner, Own is a line I will be buying for a long time. Very impressed!

  8. Natural skin products are always good news to me…skin care products always seem to be sooo harsh!

  9. I tested the Fast Acne remover. My acne prone skin has been in really good shape these days so I haven’t had a lot of opportunities to use this. I did get a blemish on my chin shortly after receiving this and quickly put this ointment to the test. I did notice that my pimple shrunk pretty quickly after using this for two days and my skin did not get super dry and flaky. I absolutely love the OWN Nighttime Lip Therapy and would love to try some more products from this line. OWN is a winner in my book! 5 stars from me.

  10. Wonderful review! What’s the worst that can happen if I give it a try? Better skin. LOL. So why not…

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