Despite the embarrassment and shame that are often associated with it, acne is a very common skin condition that can affect people of all ages. While it may be caused by a wide range of factors, such as genetics and hormone fluctuations, there are a few effective prevention and treatment strategies that can help you manage and reduce your acne breakouts.
Using a Gentle Cleanser
There seems to be this misconception that individuals are afflicted with acne because of poor hygiene practices, but this is pretty much the opposite of the truth. In fact, people suffering from acne may have even better facial cleansing habits compared to those without acne. However, just like with everything else, there may be room for improvement, especially when harmful skincare myths are in play.
It’s easy for those with acne breakouts to believe that a harsh and stripping cleanser will wash away all the dirt and excess oil from their skin, but this is never the way to go. Using a cleanser like this will only strip your face of all the natural oils and nutrients that it needs, pushing your skin to produce much more oil as a way to compensate, which can lead to further breakouts.
Instead, it’s better to use a gentle cleanser that can clean your face, while still leaving all the good stuff behind. To take this a step further, you can opt for a cleanser with active ingredients like benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid, which have both been proven to be effective against acne. It’s also important to not overwash your face as dermatologists and other experts recommend cleansing a maximum of twice a day—once during the morning and evening.
Moisturize Your Face
You might have heard that those with acne don’t need to use a moisturizer, but this is simply another harmful skincare myth that needs to go. A facial moisturizer is there to supply your skin with the hydration that it needs, while also delivering nutrients that’ll keep your skin and skin barrier as strong as possible. While you might think that the excessive sebum production means that you can skip this step, that is simply not the case.
Even the oiliest skin can be dehydrated, and the most hydrated skin can also be dry. The trick to finding the right moisturizer is figuring out what your skin needs and choosing a product with the right formulation. Dehydrated skin will really enjoy an oil-free and water-based moisturizer, while dry skin will greatly benefit from a heavier cream with tons of occlusives and emollients.
If you’re looking for more ways to give your skin the water that it needs, then definitely consider getting a good quality facial steamer. Not only will it help give your face some much-needed hydration, but it can also penetrate your skin to dislodge and loosen any remaining dirt and debris inside your pores.
Always Use Sun Protection
When your skin is already incredibly compromised, the last thing you want is for the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays to make matters worse. Many people are still unaware of the fact that the sun is definitely not on your side when it comes to your dreams of getting clear and healthy skin. The UV rays shining down can cause a wide range of adverse effects, such as skin irritation, inflammation, and dehydration, while also exacerbating existing breakouts.
One way that you can fight off these negative consequences is by diligently applying a broad-spectrum sunscreen with a minimum of SPF 30 every morning before you leave the house. This will help keep these unwanted skin concerns at bay, effectively preventing your acne from getting angrier. Other sun protection methods like large hats, protective clothing, and umbrellas can also help you keep the UV rays away.
Change Your Pillowcases and Towels
As hard as it might be to believe, your pillowcases and towels may be the culprits of your acne. When your pillowcases go unchanged for long periods, they can unknowingly accumulate excess oil, dirt, dead skin cells, and bacteria, which can make your acne worse every time you lie down at the end of the day. The same can be said for your bath towels, but they might actually be worse, as any humidity can speed up the bacteria buildup.
It’s best to switch these out every week to make sure that everything your skin is exposed to remains clean and hygienic. To make things much easier for yourself, simply get multiple pillowcases and towels so that you won’t have to go to your washing machine as often.
Avoid Picking at Your Skin
This is definitely one of those things that are much easier said than done, but picking your skin can really inhibit the recovery process, or even aggravate your existing skin issues. And if you think about it, you touch so many things throughout the day that you’re most likely introducing harmful germs and bacteria to your skin, which can introduce a whole new set of problems.
There are many simple lifestyle changes that you can implement into your daily life to help your acne get better, and these are some that you can start with. When dealing with acne, keep in mind that any treatment and change will take time to show on your skin. In the meantime, it’s important to remember to be kind to yourself and your complexion, especially with how prevalent acne is as a skin condition.