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Prevent Acne: Methods You Might Not Have Tried

June 6, 2022

Having acne can be very frustrating and upsetting, not to mention just trying to prevent acne in the first place. It can also have a big impact on your self-confidence. Treating acne often needs to be a multi-faceted approach. Before we discuss treatment, it is important to understand the basics of how and why acne develops.

Why Does Acne Develop? 

Most acne is caused by bacteria that lives naturally on our skin. This bacteria is called Cutibacterium acnes (formerly known as propionibacterium acnes). This bacteria can be found deep within our hair follicles, and pores, as well as superficially on the surface. It prefers to be on the face and upper trunk. In order for this bacteria to survive, it uses sebum and cellular debris as nutrients/energy. During times of elevated sebum production (think puberty, hormonal fluctuations such as around menstruation and during pregnancy) or with the blockage of a hair follicle, this bacteria can grow rapidly. An abundance of this bacteria then leads to byproducts that can trigger inflammation. This can then lead to symptoms that we typically think of when discussing acne—red, irritated skin and pustules.

Check out our Esthetician Alison’s video on the difference between breakouts and purging!

Traditional Acne Treatments 

Some of the most common at-home treatments for acne include topical treatments such as retinoids, azelaic and salicylic acid, dapsone, and antibiotics. As well as oral medications such as antibiotics, contraceptives, anti-androgen agents, and Isotretinoin (Accutane). There are also in-office treatments such as light therapy, HydraFacials, chemical peels, extraction, and steroid injections that can help. 

While the above treatments have been proven and are beneficial, it is also important to consider less traditional and non-medical changes that can also help improve acne.

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How to Prevent Acne: 4 Methods You Might Not Have Tried

  1. First, it is important to look at your diet. For many individuals, diet can have a significant impact on overall health, including skin health. Look for trends. Maybe it is dairy, gluten, excess sugar or alcohol that tends to cause an increase in acne breakouts. When you are able to pinpoint one of the dietary culprits, you can then avoid it to help improve your skin. 
  1. There are also some behaviors that can be altered to improve your skin. Start with changing your pillowcase regularly. Try to limit use to 1-2 nights per side. If you don’t want to do laundry every couple of days, plan on washing your pillow cases once per week but have 3 and put them on your pillow all at once. This way you can quickly remove the dirty pillowcase after you’ve used it the allotted amount of times!
  1. It is also important to clean your makeup brushes and sponges regularly. Aim to clean these every 1-2 weeks depending on how frequently you are using them. The brushes can harbor bacteria leading to more acne.
  1. Lastly, avoid pore-clogging products and layering too many products under a mask. Although most of us may not be using face masks daily, some careers require constant use. If that is the case, use the bare minimum amount of product on your face in the area under the mask. 

Fighting Acne requires a Multi-step Approach

As mentioned earlier, to prevent acne or treat it, you need to consider a multifaceted approach. It is important to look at possible causes of acne and make the appropriate modifications to get the best control over your acne and then the best results!

If you are struggling with acne, we are always happy to discuss your concerns and formulate a comprehensive plan to help improve your skin. Fill out our appointment form and we’ll be in touch to get you scheduled for a free skincare consultation!