When it comes to your skin, the worst things that can happen are an unsightly little blemish that ruins your confidence. Even worse is if you have to deal with a serious case of acne that seems to have a hold over how you view yourself.
Acne is a common issue for a lot of people. No matter your age, race, gender, or diet, acne can come in and out of your life and make you miserable. This is a problem that usually arises during your teen years, and it has a lot of random factors to it, but acne can be a big self-confidence killer regardless of how or when you get it.
Luckily, as the years have gone by, there have been tremendous breakthroughs for acne treatments, both natural and chemical-based. Acne treatment is helping people get a whole new break on life, and it is certainly allowing people to deal with their social lives or self-esteem much easier. Here are 6 acne treatments you should check out and try to help improve the quality of your skin.
What Causes Acne?
First and foremost, you might want to learn more about what kind of problems can cause acne if this is your first go-around dealing with the issue, and even people who have dealt with it should get a refresher on the causes. Some of the main problems include:
- Fatty/greasy foods
- Touching your face constantly
- Not washing pillowcases
- High sugar consumption
- Hair follicles and pores clogged by oil/dirt
These are the usual suspects when it comes to acne. It can happen to anyone but these factors can certainly help exacerbate the problem. Drinking plenty of water and eating a more healthy and balanced diet can greatly benefit your skin, but some issues like menstruation or hormones (particularly estrogen production) can be unavoidable, especially during puberty. This is why the teen years are particularly bad for acne. It is also important to clean your skin well, but not overdo it and dry it out.
Neosporin is usually thought of as a solution for cuts and scrapes before you apply a band-aid, but it can help out with certain aspects of acne treatment as well. If you want to know how Neosporin can be used for acne, you might be disappointed to learn that it won’t kill the bacteria that cause acne breakouts, but it can be useful if you deal with irritation and damaged skin. Damaged skin can be a big problem if you use other types of acne treatments. So, unfortunately, Neosporin is not an acne treatment in itself, but it can help supplement others to heal your sensitive skin.
Retinol is a treatment you have likely heard numerous times on commercials for anti-aging creams, but that is not the only use it serves. It can be beneficial for people who are dealing with acne because it helps produce new skin cells very quickly, helps decrease the oil of the skin, and can exfoliate the pores. This treatment is a good way to see some benefits with treating existing acne, but also helps stop new acne from forming as well. Not to mention, it also works as an anti-inflammation treatment which is a big issue caused by acne.
3. Salicylic Acid
In nearly every major skin treatment product intended for helping with acne, you will find salicylic acid in the active ingredients list. This treatment has many benefits, some very similar to others on this list. It helps exfoliate skin cells to remove dead ones and make your skin fresh. It also helps treat inflammation as it is also anti-inflammatory. It helps get rid of excess facial oil as well, but it is important to note that, while salicylic acid is useful, it should be used in spot-treatment because it does have the propensity to dry out the skin when applied too much.
4. Benzoyl Peroxide
Another commonly seen active ingredient in many different acne treatments, benzoyl peroxide can be extremely tough on the bacteria that causes bacterial outbreaks of acne. It is particularly useful against Cutibacterium acnes, which is one of the common bacterial strains of acne, but benzoyl peroxide should be used with some caution. While it works, it can be harsh on your skin when used as a leave-on treatment, so you need to be very careful with how much you use and the concentration (2% or less) that you use. Drying out the skin can be a downside if you use stronger concentrations of it.
5. Glycolic Acid
You probably see the trend that many of the major acne treatments come in a variety of acidic compounds. Another noticeable pattern is that many of these are common ingredients in the major washes, treatments, peels, and moisturizers. Glycolic acid is a type of hydroxy acid, and it is useful because it is able to exfoliate the skin to remove dead skin cells. These skin cells can clog the pores and cause build-ups of oil or dirt which produce bacteria. Glycolic acid is found in many acne products and it is a good ally to have for fighting acne.
6. Lactic Acid
Another hydroxy acid, lactic acid is great for maintaining exfoliated skin, as well as hydrated skin because it can help draw moisture to it when applied. Lactic acid is useful for people with sensitive skin because it is gentle with the benefits of skin protection aspects. It will often be found in other exfoliants and can help you retain the protection of your face’s skin quality without damaging it too much while also ensuring that it cleans some of the major causes of bacterial infection that leads to acne.
Finding the right acne treatment has never been easier than it is today. Not only are there plenty of options both natural and chemical, but we have a much more robust understanding of the science behind it so it is better to see what works for your specific needs. Whether you have serious acne outbreaks or your skin is delicate, there are options out there. It is good to talk to a dermatologist, but the internet has plenty of resources to learn about treatments you might be interested in as well.