Acne Sucks. There’s no pretty way to say it. But adult onset acne can be doubly frustrating, because you probably thought, isn’t this just what happens when we go through puberty? Why am I getting pimples now as an adult??
We hear you. But tune in, we’ll be addressing this topic here in this post, and in upcoming posts and podcast episodes. We’ll share information to help you determine the root cause of your acne, and showcase some effective non-harmful treatments that can greatly improve or eradicate your acne situation. Sound good? Read on.
Why do we get acne as an adult? According to the American Academy of Dermatology, acne can be caused by any of the following factors, and many times by several of these factors combined:
- Fluctuating hormone levels
- Family history
- Hair and skin care products
- Medication side effect
- Undiagnosed medical condition
We’ll go into deeper dives on all of the above topics in future FitFluential Beauty posts. Be sure you are subscribed here so you are notified of new posts!
Below are some of the most common ways we as adults (or teenagers!) will try to erase acne– DON’T DO THESE!!!
WHAT NOT TO DO TO TREAT YOUR ADULT ACNE CONDITION.
1️⃣ Dry it out.
When you overuse harsh, drying products- especially alcohol-based astringents and drugstore benzoyl peroxide- you will leave your skin with an impaired barrier function. This causes Transepidermal Water Loss (TEWL) and skin dehydration, which will actually stimulate an increase in oil production in an attempt to correct the problem.
2️⃣ Disinfect and scrub it.
Although lack of hygiene would certainly perpetuate acne, most acne sufferers tend to over-cleanse in an effort to eliminate all oil and bacteria. What they inevitably end up with is a poor barrier, high TEWL, dehydrated and sensitized skin.
Healthy skin has a balanced microbiome. The benefits of probiotics go beyond keeping your gut healthy. When “bad bugs” overwhelm the “beauty bug”, they trigger inflammation which can cause everything from breakouts and sensitivity, to rosacea and premature aging. So, cleanser choice is very important. We can help you find the best one for you! Otherwise, change your pillowcases weekly, cleanse your makeup brushes regularly to keep the bad bacteria #’s down.
3️⃣ Coconut oil (or slathering on other oils) fights oil with oil.
Nope. Most oils are comedogenic. This means that oils just add to the problem of occlusion and make acne worse.
4️⃣ When you feel a bump, squeeze it, pick it, or pop it.
Arrrrgh! I know it’s so tempting, but you will actually make it worse by inflaming it with the self-inflicted trauma, leading to a spread of infection and scarring.
5️⃣ Sun and tanning beds will kill the bacteria and dry the acne out.
UV won’t dry the oil out, but it will cause free radical damage, premature aging, hyperpigmentation, and diminished skin immune function. The skin will also respond by decreasing shedding of keratinized cells, leading to more dead cell buildup and even more potential for acne comedone formation.
The ultimate goal of acne treatment is to create a healthy skin function that can maintain a balance of beneficial bacteria and excellent barrier function.
Have you been guilty of any of the above treatments for adult acne? Let us know what questions you have for Dr. Alina about acne, and in the next post, we’ll address the best ways to treat adult acne. Stay tuned!!
This post was contributed by Dr. Alina Sholar, my personal Botox injector and overall beauty designer. She is an Austin,TX Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon, owner of Skin•Science•Soul MediAesthetics, and owner and President of Serenity Medical Centers, LLC. You’ll be reading a lot more from Dr. Sholar here on FitFluential– so feel free to leave your questions for her on this topic or others in the comments.