Acne is a common skin condition that affects most people, to some extent, usually when they are in their teens and early twenties. But sometimes ‘adult acne’ can continue, with an unwelcome impact on your everyday life.
Acne can vary from relatively mild and superficial blackheads or whiteheads with oily skin to more severe inflamed spots and cysts that may leave permanent scarring.
Types and causes
Acne is mainly due to hormonal changes that cause an over-production of sebum (the oil that the skin produces naturally to prevent drying). Oily skin and acne occur when the pores (openings for the hair follicles) become blocked with excess sebum and dead skin cells.
Different people have different types of acne. It is really important to get the correct treatment for your specific condition.
- Acne vulgaris is the most common form of acne – spots including whiteheads and blackheads, papules, pustules, nodules and cysts all fall under this category.
Acne rosacea is most common in women over 30. It is similar to acne vulgaris – the spots are the same, but there is also a red rash that can cover the nose, cheeks, forehead and chin.
- Acne conglobata is the most severe type of acne; this condition causes large lesions across the face and body, as well as a large number of blackheads. It can lead to severe scarring and usually only affects men.
- Acne cosmetica comprises of mainly blackheads and whiteheads and is caused by using pore-blocking cosmetic products.
- Acne fulminans usually affects young men and is accompanied by a fever and aching joints. The acne is severe and comes in cystic form.
- Acne mechanica spots normally appear in an irregular pattern and can be caused by constantly using a specific substance on the same part of the skin, such as a dirty handset. This type of acne should clear up once you have stopped using the substance.
- Excoriated acne occurs when spots have been picked. This leads to a longer healing period and a greater risk of scarring (it is important to let your aesthetician know if you have picked your spots, so the correct treatment can be prescribed).
- Poyoderma faciale is rare and sudden, with both pustules and nodules. This type of acne usually appears on the cheeks, chin and forehead.
- Steroid acne can form when using steroids, which can cause nodular-cystic acne as a side effect (it is very important to inform your aesthetician if you have been using steroids so the correct treatment can be prescribed).
Acne is generally hereditary and there is no cure. But there are ways to minimise acne.
- Don’t pick or squeeze spots
Picking and popping spots can cause scars, as well as spread the spots. Try not to touch your spots as this could worsen the condition.
- Check your diet
Eating a balanced diet is important and can help improve your skin. Eating too many fatty foods can affect your skin, so opt for foods high in Omega 3 and cut down on dairy products and sugar.
- Don’t clog pores
Using heavy makeup isn’t good for the skin and can block pores. Try using lighter mineral make-up to allow the skin to breathe.
- Stay out of the sun
Too much exposure to the sun can dry the skin. Your skin produces excess oil to compensate, which can lead to more spots.
- Take daily exercise
Exercise delivers oxygen to skin cells and regulates hormone levels, all of which contribute to reducing acne.
If you are self-conscious of spots and oily skin, however mild, please do call us. We guarantee we have a combination of treatments or products that will improve your skin –we find results are enhanced with the use of the quality products we can recommend.
- Laser – intense pulse light (IPL) treatments reduce the number and severity of active lesions, calming inflammation and slowing the frequency of breakouts.
- Skin peels – help improve acne by addressing all contributing factors, without causing dehydration or inflammation.
- Micro-needling – helps to reduce lines, wrinkles, open pores and acne scarring and treats dry, dehydrated skin to leave your skin looking fresher and smoother.
- LED Light – we use blemish-fighting blue light therapy to treat the causes and symptoms of acne and rosacea by reducing inflammation, irritation and bacteria with no downtime.