More than 50 million Americans are affected by acne and we can all admit the many (way too many) available medications and treatments can be confusing and overwhelming. It’s extremely easy to make serious mistakes treating acne, we can even make it worse! Many of us, girls (me too!), have to deal with acne, maybe some of us have less others might even have serious acne scars! But let me show you the basic dos and don’ts that can be really helpful treating acne 🙂 xoxo
1. mistake: Being Impatient
Girls, we all have to understand, even if those nasty spots came on fast, it requires a hell of a time for your skin to react to those treatments and to heal! It can take up to 6 to 12 weeks, so don’t panic! Give your product a month and keep on using it if you notice any improvement or switch to another if there isn’t. In some cases, your skin might feel a bit irritated the first couple of weeks of treatment, according to Diane S. Berson, MD. It will definitely get better!
2. mistake: Trying too many products at the same time
The story starts the same. You just started a new treatment and after a week there is no improvement. So you just start layering on many products, or even switching to another product, then back to the first one… This way you may accidentally distress your skin, making the acne lesions bigger, more likely to pigment, and heal with spots and scars! You definitely don’t want that …
3. mistake: Don’t pop your pimples!
Popping and picking pimples prolongs healing time and raises the risk of scarring. Infected material can get pushed further into the skin, leading to more swelling and redness.
4. mistake: Over-cleansing your skin
Scrubbing the skin will actually worsen acne, as it can compromise the skin’s protective barrier and increase irritation. Instead, gently wash with a nonirritating, pH-balanced cleanser to lessen inflammation. It’s also important to thoroughly rinse off the cleanser, because the residue can be irritating.
5. mistake: Don’t hesitate to contact a dermatologist!
It’s time to make an appointment once acne starts taking a toll on self-esteem, becomes painful, causes scarring, or if over-the-counter (OTC) medications aren’t clearing it up. Dermatologists have more tools to treat acne and can prescribe stronger concentrations of OTC medications and oral antibiotics. They can also offer you light and laser therapy and chemical peels. Dermatologists can also give prescription medicines that are tailored to the type of acne you have and also your skin type!
6. mistake: Never over-use or under-use the prescribed acne medication!
Always use the medication as instructed! Over-usage won’t help clear the acne. It can cause more redness and dryness. Many people under-use because they lose motivation after the first 2 weeks. Important to know that under-using the medication by spot-treating fails to prevent breakouts!
7. mistake: Don’t stop using the acne medication once it cleares up!
It’s best to taper medication usage by using it less and less. For example, if you’ve been using it twice a day, use it once a day for a while, then once every other day, then twice a week, and then stop. It often takes acne 4 to 6 weeks to return, just like it took it the same amount of time for it to get better…
8. mistake: You are trying the wrong product
Harsh cleansers, alkaline bar soaps, and alcohol-based products may only worsen your acne! You have to look for products which are noncomedogenic, so they don’t contain ingredients that tend to clog pores in you with acne-prone skin. Products containing cosmetics, sunscreen and moisturizers are more likely to clog pores. Products containing oil can also clog pores and lead to breakouts.
Top 5 Acne-fighting products according to Total Beauty reviewer ratings: