Acne and blemishes can be frustrating to deal with on a daily basis. Skin that is prone to acne may require that you adopt a unique approach. If you have acne-prone skin, you must eat foods that will not cause or inflame your ace. You must also use products that are suitable for your particular skin type and even suitable to your hair. Yes, sometimes, hair products can lead to acne on the forehead. With the right type of skincare (and haircare) routine, you can achieve skin that is clear, well-hydrated, smooth and acne-free. However, it is important to note that once you’ve achieved that clear skin, that you must maintain it with the things that got you there. This is a step that is neglected by many to their peril.
What is acne? How do we get it? The answer to the second question is not an easy one as there is no one precise reason, otherwise, we’ll all make sure to avoid it. However, here are some things that can cause or exacerbate acne conditions: stress, compulsive skin picking, hormones, genetics, hair and skin care products and foods. When it comes to foods, people who suffer or are prone to acne must avoid high glycemic foods, including sugars, french fries, honey, corn chips, sweetened chocolate, doughnuts, dates, etc. Those people must also avoid milk. With milk, the issue is lactose, but not all of it. Lactose has two components, viz: glucose and galactose. Galactose is the culprit because of its inflammatory properties. The milk that your must avoid if your skin is prone to acne is skim milk. The reason is that it has the highest concentration of galactose. So, nut milk like almond milk will be just fine. In the same vein, whey protein will be a no-no for anyone that is acne prone.
Humans are distinct from other animals in that we are the only species that get acne. How is that? Our skin is covered in hair follicles. At the base of each is surrounded by oil (sebum). The oil helps the hair get to the surface. There is a lot of oil relative to the fine hair that needs to come out. That proportion is the main difference with other animal. So, the potential for clogging is rather great at any moment. Thus, acne must start with pore care. Acne must not be confused with rosacea which sometimes comes with acne, compulsive picking of the skin causing irritation or ingrown hairs that is common with people of darker hues.
Acne forms when a skin pore gets clogged. What happens next is that the skin oil (sebum) builds up inside the pore, resulting in blocked hair follicles. The blocked hair follicles then become inflamed and infected by bacteria. The bacteria feeds on the skin oil and multiplies. The inflammation from the blocked and infected follicles result in bumps that are now visible on the skin surface. It is fair to say that all acne starts as one clogged pore. There are two categories of acne, viz: inflammatory like whiteheads and blackheads; and non-inflammatory acne like papules, nodules, pustules and cysts.
What’s important is that we break down some of the causes behind acne & blemishes, how they can be treated, and what products are ideal for the best results. Whether you want to call them overacting sebum, comedo, comedones, zits, pimples, breakouts, blemishes or acne, they all come under the same category and are all equally distressing to deal with. As we stated above, these conditions are usually triggered by clogged pores, dead skin cells, and/or too much oil looking to get to the surface of the skin. All of this leads to acne on the face, shoulders, back or your chest or even your scalp! T-zone acne is the most common to deal with. The cysts and hormonal acne can be more problematic. However, once inflamed, then topical application is no longer enough as the bacterial infection must be dealt with too. It is thus time to see your dermatologist.
Without over-simplifying this, facial acne and body acne share the same root causes and can, for the most part, be treated with the same products. There are however, subtle differences. There are adult and teenage acne that are caused by a change in hormonal levels, then there are acne from sporting activities as you may have noticed in a lot of athletes and there is breakout from food allergy, etc. The commonality seems to be an increased production of sebum for one reason or another is blocked from draining to the surface of the skin. The blockage of the sebaceous gland duct can cause a comedone known as blackhead or whiteheads, or may lead to an inflammation causing acne lesions. Just not fun to deal with acne and the resulting blemishes in their various forms.
Getting your skin fully clear and getting rid of acne and blemishes altogether will probably be a daily struggle, as you make your way through most routines that involve cleansing your skin at least twice a day, along with other topical applications. In some cases, seeing your dermatologist may be your only recourse. We address only the topical applications for help deal with acne, not the medical angle.
Find a way to deal with your stress. Do not pick at the acne. If you are genetically disposed to acne, find products that work for you. Make sure that the products you chose are not made with harmful chemicals and have no sulfate, parabens or alcohols. Find effective skin care products that should make your taking care of your skin easy. That will most likely result in your being able to continue with that care. That care should include a face masque to draw out impurities and open up clogged pores, daily wash with a good charcoal body wash and daily hydration and moisturizing with a body oil or a body cream with natural SPF to help calm down the sebum production and get a smoothened, soft and hydrated skin.
If you have acne scars or blemishes or pigmentation, you should find a good complexion-evening and toning oil, complexion and hyper-pigmentation clarifying cream or a good and effective skin blemish cream. Be sure that the products you use do not have harmful chemicals, do not have harsh chemicals and have no parabens or sulfates.
Whatever you chose to do, make sure that you stick with your routine and do not jump around too much or use harsh irritating chemicals. Make use of moisturizers and skincare products that are compatible with your particular skin type, and make sure to avoid foods that can contribute to acne breakouts. Folks who take hair growth “supplements” may experience acne breakouts. The more balanced and appropriate your diet, the clearer your skin is going to be.
If you have acne or acne prone skin and still love to wear your make up, it is important that you use a face protector primer before applying your makeup. The primer you are looking for must not clog your pores, but must allow them to breath and must promote collagen synthesis, enhances tissue repair and still make your makeup look great. However, do not forget to wash off the makeup at the end of the day. Do not sleep with your makeup on. Check the ingredients in your makeup and avoid heavy metals.
You’re looking for products for your acne that are specific to your body or to your face. Those products must be of high quality and effective. Do not buy into hypes. Get products to help clear and open up your pores and keep them healthy. The products you use must help remove dead skin cells altogether and help halt the development and re-development of blemishes, meaning they are unlikely to reappear after they have faded away. However, with acne care, this must be a continuous process. Acne has no cure, but can be managed effectively with vigilance.
For acne, acne-rosacea in young and adults, avoid dairy. Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States of America. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, up to 50 million Americans suffer from acne annually. They write that acne in adults is in the upswing. We’ve written about acne in the past, but for this purpose, we are talking about aging skin. Avoid dairy, skim milk, diary ingredients in your granola bars, whey protein, canned foods, shakes, milk chocolates, bars, supplements etc. Hormones and growth factors in diary not only help acne explode by generating more sebum, but they also help acne grow more violently. These cause acne scars, skin blemishes and discolorations. However, when it comes to aging, acne sufferers may have reason to rejoice due to a study published in September 2016 issue of the Journal of Investigative Dermatology, which suggests that “[P]eople who suffered with acne had longer telomeres in their 50s…” Shorter telomeres are associated with skin that appears more aged.
In conclusion, when dealing with acne & blemishes, be sure to use products that are free of soap, paraben, sulfates, phthalates, alcohol-based fragrances, and other ingredients that can be toxic, caustic, irritating or detrimental to your body and cause a negative reactions. Find a way to remove stress from your life or find a way to effectively manage stress. Eat low glycemic index foods and avoid galactose and whey. When you expect or aware of a hormonal surge, use a good face mask to draw out excess oil before there is clogged skin. Now that you know all there is know about acne, you should be on your way to a forever clear skin. Above all, be good to yourself.