In order to understand what acne is, how it develops, and how to manage it, we met with three specialists.Acne is the medical term for a skin disorder that can cause breakouts, but pimples of all kinds have come to be associated with the phrase. Although all acne symptoms initially appear the same, some may develop into various types of outbreaks. According to Kraffert, the microcomedone, a microscopic blockage of the little duct leading from the deeper dermis to the skin’s surface, is the origin of all acne lesions. Treating Acne-Prone Skin That Works.
The Complete Guide To Treating Acne-Prone Skin That Works
The microcomedone can develop into a typical open comedone (blackhead) or a closed comedone, which appears as a little whitehead on the skin’s surface, as it continues to grow. Sometimes elevated inflamed comedones with surrounding redness. Some microcomedones may develop underlying inflammation rather than developing into normal comedones.
These red, sensitive lumps are known as papules when there are no central pus points, and pustules when there are central pus points, depending on the severity of the inflammation and its depth within the skin.
Cysts are painful papules that are deeper. Nodular cysts are a term sometimes used to describe larger cysts.
Comedones: According to Garshick, comedonal acne, which are also known as whiteheads and blackheads, typically appears in oily-prone areas of the skin like the T-zone but can occur everywhere.
The “classic” signs of a pimple that come to mind are presumably papules and pustules.
“Red papules and pustules are considered to be more inflammatory acne, and as such, can also be attributed to bacteria and inflammation,” adds Garshick.
The primary distinction? Pustules contain pus, whereas papules are elevated bumps.
Cysts: “Hormonal breakouts, while they can occur anywhere, tend to show up as deeper cystic breakouts
[Ed. note: those “invisible” breakouts that feel tender to the touch.]
Involving the lower one-third of the face or the jawline area,” according to Garshick.
These outbreaks can be recurrent for many people and often coincide with their periods.
Simply said, when too much oil, worn out skin cells, or bacteria clog a pore, the body reacts by producing an inflammatory reaction that causes breakouts in the form of red, elevated sores. Below, in further detail:
Excess sebum: Sebaceous glands, which are found at the end of each hair follicle or pore, create sebum, an oily material that is intended to protect and hydrate the skin and keep it healthy.
These glands can occasionally overproduce oil and go into overdrive, which can lead to clogged pores and ultimately outbreaks.
These sebaceous glands are primarily activated by hormones.
According to Kraffert, hormones frequently have a role in acne. The same hormones that cause acne also frequently lead to oilier skin. Which hormones are mostly in charge of the increasing synthesis of oil?
According to Kraffert, androgens are the primary cause of acne. Adolescence and early adulthood, especially in women, are when androgen levels tend to grow.
Worn out skin cells: Acne symptoms aren’t solely caused by greasy skin; debris like dead skin cells can clog pores and result in breakouts.
Diet: Although it is hotly contested as an official cause, many people think that what they eat directly affects how their skin looks. According to Camp, eating a diet with a high glycemic index may contribute to acne.
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These kinds of foods significantly raise blood sugar levels, which trigger the production of hormones that could encourage acne development. Foods with a high glycemic index include white bread and sugar, for instance.
While the actual signs of acne will probably go away with time, the issue itself needs to be addressed if you want your skin to be free of pimples the majority of the time.
Skin cleansing. Your complexion will benefit greatly from a regular cleansing regimen, but before using a cleanser, be important to consider how severe your acne symptoms are.
According to Garshick, a skincare regimen might change according on the kind and intensity of breakouts. It is advised to cleanse your face 1-2 times each day for the majority of acne sufferers.
Use of a salicylic acid-based cleanser, such as Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash, which helps to unclog pores, might be beneficial for people with minor outbreaks or oily skin.
“Be sure to take into account your skin type when cleansing in addition to your breakouts, and make any necessary adjustments as the seasons change.
“Those with dry skin do not want a cleanser or treatment that will remove all the oil from their face, while those with oily skin may tolerate something stronger,” advises Camp. “I suggest Cetaphil DermaControl Foam Cleanser for oily skin. I advise CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser for dry skin.
Exfoliate. Your skin can be cleansed to eliminate excess oil and grime, but you should also gently exfoliate the WORN OUT skin cells. Kraffert suggests using the gentle enough for everyday use Amarte everyday ExfoliPowder to cleanse and exfoliate.
Tone. Toning is optional, but depending on the ingredients—such as sulfur or tea tree oil, both of which may lessen acne symptoms—it can help balance the skin or treat it.
Although not everyone needs to use them, toners are fantastic items to utilize, according to Kraffert. Because toners are designed to eliminate sebum, oil, and dirt from the pores, those with oily skin and skin that is actually acne-prone tend to benefit from them the most.
Put active components to use. Dermatologists say that retinol and a spot treatment are the best cosmetics for acne-prone skin, though specific treatments will differ from person to person.
Camp suggests using Differin gel, which “helps regulate cell turnover and prevent clogged pores to use at night,” combined with a 5% benzoyl peroxide product, such as Clear Skin Spot Treatment from Glo Skin Beauty, to eliminate the bacteria that causes acne. Once you’ve developed a tolerance, though, don’t use them simultaneously; instead, use the retinol at night and the benzoyl peroxide in the morning a few times a week.
Introduce these items gradually when you first begin. Consult a dermatologist if significant redness or peeling develops.
Although it may seem paradoxical to give more moisture to skin that is already oily, it’s crucial to moisturize because acne treatments can be drying.
I suggest La Roche Posay Toleriane Double Repair, which contains ceramides and niacinamide to help reduce inflammation, or CeraVe Facial Lotion, which provides hydration and contains ceramides to help strengthen the natural skin barrier without clogging the pores.
Always apply SPF. It’s crucial to commit to using sunscreen every day because many anti-acne products can make you more susceptible to the sun, adds Garshick. Elta MD UV Clear, a zinc-based sunscreen containing niacinamide and hyaluronic acid to help soothe and hydrate the skin, is a fantastic alternative for sunscreen for people with acne-prone skin.”
When necessary, treat the body.
“A benzoyl peroxide cleanser, such as Panoxyl 4%, is a great option for those with back and chest breakouts that are red and inflamed,” explains Garshick. It is better to stick with a soft body wash like Dove Sensitive Skin Body Wash, which is non comedogenic and won’t clog the pores.
“As it is important to be gentle on the skin, especially if you are using any prescription products or chemical exfoliants like salicylic or glycolic acid, it is best to stick with a gentle body wash,” the expert advised.
Similar to working out or learning a new language, consistency is essential if you want to see improvements from your skincare program. “Those with acne-prone skin should commit to a consistent skincare routine daily, not just when the breakouts show up,” advises Garshick.
If you have acne, you might be tempted to slather on a variety of acne-fighting creams, but doing so could deplete your skin of essential oils and cause irritation and dry skin.
“Less is more” is often my rule of thumb when treating acne, claims Camp. “The more things you use in your routine, the more difficult it is to stick to it, and the less likely you are to do so.
Additionally, the acid mantle and microbiota are more likely to be disrupted by utilizing numerous products.
Garshick advises doing the same with your haircare products because build-up can result in outbreaks everywhere on the face and body, even at the hairline.
Acne outbreaks do not appear overnight and do not disappear easily. Camp counsels against giving up on acne treatments too soon. “I advise patients to utilize topical acne treatments for 8 to 12 weeks before they ‘declare’ themselves to be successful or ineffective. Rapid product turnover is not beneficial.
And try your best not to touch your skin while you’re waiting.
“While tempting, it is not a good idea to pick or pop acne,” he continues.
The follicle is ruptured, and the inflammation is widened as a result.
This can result in a bigger patch of skin that is darkened. Additionally, it raises the possibility of scarring and might cause a bacterial infection.
Know When to See a Professional If over-the-counter medications don’t work for your stubborn acne problems, seeing a doctor may be your best choice for finding a treatment that does.
To try to ensure optimal absorption with any medication, apply immediately following cleaning and exfoliating. Specialized treatments can assist address problems and restore the skin in addition to topicals.
“In-office treatments that can help address acne include steroid injections, acne surgery, peels, blue light and red light therapy, photodynamic therapy, microneedling, and lasers,” claims Camp.
In conclusion, acne breakouts can happen when extra oil, dead skin cells, or bacteria build up inside a pore, triggering the same response in the body as when an infection disturbs its normal functioning.
A skincare routine can definitely lessen symptoms or even stop new ones from arising, but the specific plan will vary depending on the severity of your acne symptoms, your skin type, and you.
However, dermatologists typically advise washing, frequent exfoliation, moisturizing, and spot treatment when necessary, in addition to actions that promote overall skin health, such as taking retinol at night and SPF every day.