Our skin is supposed to renew itself by flaking away dead cells. When this process becomes slow, dead skin cells can collect and get trapped inside the pore. Clogged pores result in the emergence of pimples.
This condition is common among adolescents because their bodies produce new cells so fast that the skin simply does not cope. It is not able to shed all the dead skin cells at the same rate as the new appear. However, among all the other age groups this is actually the fault of the skin (hormones, which are the real cause of the problem, and the topic of a separate discussion).
So, the pore which cannot get rid of sebum that is trapped inside, it is what we call a pimple. If bacteria (which thrive on oily skin) get into the pore, the pimple will swell up and become red. Pimples occur most often in the so-called T-zone where additional fat is secreted by the skin.
Step One – Cleansing
Thorough cleansing of the skin is essential because it will remove bacteria from your skin and prevent them from getting into the pores. Do not wash your face with soap. There are plenty of skin cleansing products which all do pretty much the same job, so don’t worry about the brand. If you cannot afford a specialized skin cleanser, a shaving cream will do.
Step Two – Peeling
Peeling off dead skin cells is essential to prevent clogging of the pores. Any scrub is suitable for this purpose. You can also use a special sponge for the skin on your face. However, using a small towel rather than a sponge is much more hygienic, because it can be washed at a high temperature, or boiled. Unfortunately, peeling alone, cannot completely cure the problem.
The use of scrubs often proves to be an insufficient method. If this is the case, chemical exfoliants which penetrate the skin, dissolve the oily plug and remove it from the pore. There are two kinds of chemical exfoliants – AHA (include glycolic acid and lactic acid) and BHA (include salicylic acid). BHA is preferable because it penetrates deeper and dissolves blackheads; so look for salicylate on the labels.
Step Three – Disinfection of the Pore and Removing the Nidus
Benzoyl Peroxide is the optimal remedy to serve this purpose. Remember this ingredient as will probably want to resort to it more than once. It is available in different concentrations; 5% and 10% solutions. My teenage son uses the 10% solution as his acne is really bothering him, even though he complains that it makes his skin very dry. In cases of severe skin dehydration, apply it only on the eruptions rather than the whole face. But applying to the whole skin eliminates reduces the chance of a new pimple appearing, although the skin may be uncomfortably dry for some time. Do what works best for you and assess how your skin feels.
All companies supplying cream for acne include Benzoyl Peroxide. If you can’t afford to buy the whole range of skincare products recommended, you can limit to either a cleanser or a toner, as we do. A tube of cream with powerful and effective ingredients to apply after the cleansing and toning process would also be ideal to have, though. It is available in the Clear Skin and Neutrogena skin care range. Avon produces a remedy based on tea tree oil, which is an excellent component effective at the concentration of 5%. 1% concentration of tea tree oil in Avon product is too low for serious conditions.
The Retinoic ointment is another remedy that I strongly recommend. It peels off dead cells and disinfects the skin. For severe acne conditions apply both remedies directly on the eruptions, while an exfoliant must be applied over the WHOLE face. Be patient. The first results will be seen rather quickly but it will take at least a month for the skin to cure completely. It might take even longer in teenagers.
If treatment does not work, you should see the doctor, who will prescribe you antibiotics or use specialized tablets to test your hormone balance. Some clinics provide phototherapy, which has proved to be a highly effective treatment for acne.
As a specialist, I understand that it is not difficult to get rid of acne. What you need is a medical approach, not just Granny’s remedies like cucumber lotion, pine-tar soap or levomycetin powder.
So, my dear girls, don’t be too thrifty when it comes to proper treatment. If your cream does not work, go to the clinic and get professional help for yourself and your teenage kids. It does not matter whether you could buy a $20 nail polish with the money you were going to spend on getting professional treatment. When it comes to skin blemishes, it has an effect on your self-confidence and it can last for ongoing years if left untreated; so it’s important to face the matter.