Acne is a skin disorder which is stimulated by the male hormone Androgen and results in blackheads, pimples, pustules and scarring. It usually begins at puberty and worsens in adolescence.
Girls suffer from acne at a younger age than boys as they reach puberty earlier. However boys can suffer from a more aggressive acne due to higher levels of testosterone.
For some, acne starts in their thirties and pimples and pustules are normally found around the chin, lower jaw, nose and upper lip area. Teenage acne can be found all over the face.
Makeup can also induce acne especially if your makeup contains talc. Stress, diet and sebum stimulation can cause an acne flare up.
There are four grades of acne:
Grade 1: blackheads and milia
Grade 2: papules and minor raised pustules with some inflammation.
Grade 3: mainly pustules, inflammation, blackheads and milia.
Grade 4: nodules and all the above.
Grade 1 to 3 can be treated by a beauty/skin therapist. Grade 4 must be treated by a dermatologist/doctor.
Milia: small, raised, pearly-white or yellowish bumps on the skin.
Blackheads: clearly visible, they are black and appear on the surface of the skin. A blackhead is not caused by dirt. Scrubbing your face vigorously when you see blackheads will not help.
Papules: visible on the surface of the skin. They are small bumps, usually pink.
Pustules: clearly visible on the surface of the skin. They are red at their base and have pus at the top.
Nodules: clearly visible on the surface of the skin. They are large, solid pimples. They are painful and are embedded deep in the skin.
Cysts: clearly visible on the surface of the skin. They are painful, and are filled with pus. Cysts can easily cause scars.
What NOT to do when you have Acne.
Do NOT pick your spots. It can be so tempting to do this. You look in the mirror and the first thing you notice is a juicy bulging white head. If you pick it you are spreading the bacteria and this will potentially worsen the acne. So instead use a spot cream. Preferably one that contains Salicyilic and/or lactic acid.
Try to avoid ones with Benzyl peroxide as this ingredient provides a short term fix but will not treat on a long term basis. By using Salicyilic acid you are allowing the pimple to unplug which in turn will oxygenate the pore and this will eliminate bacteria.
Do NOT touch your face or hold mobile phones close to your skin. Acne sufferers have a habit of touching their face. Those uncomfortable pimples may urge you to touch but really it is best not too. All you are doing is adding more bacteria to the skin. It is also amazing how a mobile phone can flare up acne. The heat from the phone and the bacteria can be a problem. Get a Bluetooth headset
Reduce your sugar intake. Even though sugar does not cause acne it definitely flares it up. Stop drinking soft drinks and drink water instead. It may not taste as good but boy is it better for you!
Do not use a harsh exfoliator. This can cause too much inflammation on the skin. Instead try an exfoliating serum.
Try to avoid products that are drying on the skin. Acne sufferers do need to remove excess oil. But there are many products on the market that strip the skin. When you do strip the skin of the oil you are actually stimulating the sebaceous gland to produce more oil to protect the skin. That's where the vicious circle begins. So avoid any product with Sodium Lauryl Sulphate.
Do NOT wear make up that contains talc. This is a breeding ground for bacteria. Try a good quality mineral make up. Please be aware some of them do contain talc so always look at the ingredients.
Do NOT use skincare that contains perfume or colouring This can increase sensitivity in the skin.
Please do NOT blame yourself for this condition. It is part of your genetics. It is a condition that can be managed and by looking after it properly, your skin will end up being the envy of your friends:)
All products at Time Out Beauty do not contain Benzyl Peroxide, Sodium Lauryl Sulphate or Talc.
What you CAN DO to help your Acne.
Be gentle with your skin. Use gentle products, such as those that are alcohol-free. Do not use products that irritate your skin, which may include astringents, toners and some exfoliants. Dry, red skin makes acne appear worse.
Cleanse twice at night and once in the morning using the right cleanser. Try to avoid cleansers with Sodium Lauryl Sulphate. Instead you may want to use one with a foaming coconut derivative. These can be found in many of our foaming cleansers on our website. Wash your face with cool or luke warm water.
Using a Vitamin A Serum This will normalise the cell renewal process and oil levels. It will also keep your skin hydrated.
Use a Vitamin B3 Serum This will suppress the excess oil production, enhance blood flow and increase the removal of toxins.
Exfoliate and Lactic or Salicylic acid Using a product that will gently exfoliate the skin and contains Lactic or Salicylic acid will oxygenate the skin and reduce the amount of bacteria. e.g Aspect Exfol, Synergie Reveal,Synergie Blem-X
Moisturise Use a light moisturiser that hydrates rather then increase oil in the skin.
Use a good quality mineral makeup. Avoid ones with Talc as this is a breeding ground for bacteria. This can be used for your sun protection if it contains zinc or titanium dioxide so there is no need for greasy sunscreens that will flare up the acne.
Be vigilant with your skincare routine. I find that clients that have an excellent skincare routine are very successful with managing their acne.
Increase your water intake Drinking up to 8 glasses of water a day is a brilliant way to reduce toxins and keep hydrated.
Drink Green Tea.
If your acne is not improving go and have a consultation with a good skincare therapist. There are many skin treatments that can help this condition and with the correct advice you will fast track your way to having healthy and clear skin.
Time Out Beauty is a specialist cosmeceutical and botanical skincare online store. We stock a wide range of products with free delivery available. We have a Reward Money loyalty program for return buyers. Our brands include Medik8, Synergie Minerals, Waterlily, Societe, Skin Medica, LashesMD, Aspect, Teen Aspect, Colorescience and Cosmedix.