General Acne FAQ
Common questions about acne, myths, facts and reality.
For most people, acne is an inherited condition of the pores. When someone is prone to acne, his or her pores clog with dead skin cells much faster than normal. Healthy pores shed about one layer of dead skin cells per day inside the pore, but acne-prone pores shed up to five layers of dead skin cells per day. The body can’t keep up with keeping the pore clear. Technically, this is called “retention hyperkeratosis” — dead skin cells shedding more quickly than the pore can expel them. Hormonal fluctuations trigger more oil production inside the pore. Normally, this isn’t a problem because the dead skin cells don’t get trapped. However, with acne prone skin, when the dead skin cells shed more quickly and form a blockage, the perfect environment for the P. Acnes bacteria is created. The oil is a nutrient for the bacteria so that the bacteria can proliferate. So you see, bacteria is not the “cause” of acne, it is the effect of too many dead skin cells. This is an important distinction to remember.
It is becoming more and more common for young women who had no problems during their teen years to develop acne between the ages of 30-35. There are probably many reasons. One significant reason is related to the use of birth control pills. Birth control pills utilize two hormone groups that are synthetically made to mimic the ovarian cycle/ovulation processes that are usually at work during pregnancy. Specifically, birth control pills trick the ovaries into thinking the woman is already pregnant and ovulation does not occur. The synthetic hormones in most birth control pills have strong Androgenic (male hormone) side effects on sebaceous gland production of oil in the skin. Another possible reason for the 30-year-old onset of acne might relate to hormone adjustments after pregnancy, nursing a child, or just experiencing the stressful lifestyle so prevalent today with all the demands and time limits we impose on ourselves. Men may still have acne symptoms at age 30, but it is unlikely that acne will develop than for the first time. We are all subjected to stress, and men may skip the gentle cleansing of facial areas after sports, etc., so acne can still be a problem.
Acne affects men and women with roughly the same frequency, though there are some gender differences in how acne can be expressed. Women are affected by acne flare-ups related to hormone changes connected with their menstrual cycles, pregnancy or with the onset or cessation of oral contraceptive use. Men, possibly due to their higher concentrations of androgen hormones, are somewhat more likely to experience more severe and long-lasting forms of acne than women.
Many patients feel that sunlight improves their acne lesions and go to great lengths to find sources of ultraviolet light. There is no proven effect of the sun on acne. Also, ultraviolet light in sunlight increases the risk of skin cancer and early aging of the skin. It is, therefore, not a recommended technique of acne management, especially since there are many other proven forms of treatment for acne. Moreover, many acne treatments increase the skin’s sensitivity to ultraviolet light, making the risk of ultraviolet light exposure all the worse.
Your skin is the largest organ you have, and like any organ, skin needs nutrients. Gunilla of Sweden® uses hydroponically grown, 100% organic Aloe as the base component in every product. This means that even before any of the dozens of intended active ingredients that are added, like natural collagen, revitalin or elastin come into play, your skin has already received all 8 essential amino acids, and 11 secondary amino acids from our exclusive hydroponically grown aloe base component. In addition, our nutrient-rich 100% organic botanical base component has over 100 vitamins like A, B, B2, B6, B12, C, and 20 mineral co-factors, such as calcium, iron, magnesium and potassium as well as 20-30 unique antioxidants like tocopherols, superoxide dismutase and flavonoid compounds that promote the natural self-repair mechanisms needed to heal mature and environmentally damaged skin. Clean Skin Gently: Rough cleansing can aggravate acne. You should wash your face twice daily with a mild cleanser, as well as after heavy exercise. Make sure to spend at least 2 minutes gently rubbing the cleanser on to the skin in a circular motion. This will give the skin time to absorb the ingredients of the cleanser. Moisturize: Make sure that you are using an oil-free moisturizer to replenish your skin. Acne treatments almost always have a drying effect, and the sebaceous glands can produce extra sebum to try to compensate for the dryness. This is a significant contributor to breakouts because people with acne prone or oily skin are usually hesitant to use a moisturizer. Avoid Frequent Handling of the Skin: Avoid rubbing or touching skin lesions. Squeezing, picking, or popping pimples before they are ready to be extracted can lead to scarring and dark blotches. Avoid Sun Damage: Many people believe that being in the sun can help clear up acne. The truth is that it only makes the skin appear darker. Therefore the redness of acne lesions is less visible. Acne medications can make the skin more sensitive to sunlight. Sun damage can increase your risk of skin cancer and also cause premature aging. Choose Cosmetics Carefully: Cosmetics such as foundation, blush, eyeshadow, and hair care products can easily be a contributor to acne breakouts. You must read the ingredients and make sure there are no pore-clogging elements in what you are putting on your skin. Look for non-comedogenic and oil-free products.
An infected pimple is your body’s way of getting rid of infection or puss. There is nothing wrong with you speeding up the process by squeezing out the infection. The reason some say not to pop a pimple is that most people are too aggressive and don’t know how to extract correctly. They can easily damage your skin, usually causing a scar, so statistically its better to tell everyone not to touch their pimples and let their doctors do it. However, if you have LEROSETT®, take your time and wait for a pimple to come to a head then pop it, but not before. That is where LEROSETT® comes in. LEROSETT® can pull that infection to the surface. After the initial extraction, use a cotton ball to absorb any extra fluids that may come out. Then, after removal, you apply LEROSETT® several times and overnight. As the clay dries, it can absorb the remaining infection and tighten the opening, eliminating most of the potential for scarring. Spot treatments may need to be repeated 5-10 times over the next 24-48 hours before all the fluid is absorbed and the opening closes. A pimple is ready for extraction when it comes to a head. At this point, it must be extracted carefully to avoid scarring or infection. Please follow these steps below to extract a pimple safely. If you are having difficulty, seek a licensed skin care professional to assist you. Here is what you’ve been waiting for: Permission to engage in extraction as it is called in the doctor’s office. Picking is a double-edged sword. If you pick a new, developing lesion, you may drive it more in-depth and cause greater inflammation and potentially deeper scarring. On the other hand, if a lesion is a mature pustule with a head as mentioned above, proper extraction can speed healing, stop tissue digestion and reduce scarring. It’s all a matter of doing it right.
Although we tend to use both terms to describe breakouts that plague our skin, there is a big difference between pimples and acne. There seems to be an epidemic of acne if you have a few pimples we tend to say acne. However, acne is a chronic skin disease that leaves scarring, acne is treatable, but acne is not curable. Example: All teenagers get occasional pimples, adults too, does that mean all teenagers have an incurable skin disease? Probably not. How do you know if you have acne? Only a doctor can diagnose acne, but if you have acne, you will usually know about it. Both acne and pimples are caused when your sebaceous (oil-producing) glands collect dead skin cells, debris and bacteria along with oil and clogs your pores. That creates the perfect environment for bacteria to breed which causes inflammation and infection – thus causing your skin to breakout. If you are only experiencing a few pimples a few times per month, you are more than likely just experiencing breakouts- not acne. Acne Vulgaris, otherwise known as acne, is an inflammatory disease that impacts your oil glands and your life. When acne occurs, multiple breakouts appear on the skin at once and can be stimulated by various factors such as genetics, hormones, and lifestyle factors (diet, stress, cosmetics, etc.). There are many different types and severities of acne. Also, many skin conditions can occur that are similar to acne but may not necessarily be acne. Please consult a dermatologist to know for sure if you have acne.
There is no cure for acne. However, it can be controlled and prevented through treatment and a proper skin care routine. When looking for acne treatment, it is best to look for products that are nutrient rich. If you consider that your skin can only absorb a small percentage of what you put on it, you want to make sure that the products you use are high quality and are loaded with nutrients and antioxidants.
Acne can affect anyone, which includes any race, ethnicity, gender, and age. Acne can be caused by a back up of oil and dead skin cells in the pore. However, genetics, stress, diet, and products you put on your skin like makeup can increase breakouts.
Eliminating stress in our lives is easier said than done but finding ways to relax will help not only your skin but also your overall health in the long run. Limiting the amount of sugary/processed foods and dairy from your diet can also improve breakouts as many of these types of foods can cause inflammation and can aggravate acne. When choosing cosmetics look for products that are considered non-comedogenic. You can also check the ingredients in the product. Common pore clogging ingredients are Algae Extract, Hexadecyl Alcohol, Isocetyl Stearate, Myristyl Myristate, Sodium Chloride and Wheat Germ Oil.
The earliest age we recommend anyone using our LEROSETT® products is age twelve. Any younger we recommend consulting your doctor before purchasing.
No, makeup can increase the number of pimples, but it cannot cause the disease. This is because the makeup is clogging the follicles/pores. Using a non-comedogenic makeup might help to stop the clogs, but it’s not 100% sure.
Like any drug, your body becomes acclimated, and you need more of it to continue. Your body knows the difference between natural and synthetic ingredients. That’s why the more natural the ingredients, the less likely your skin will become acclimated. Do only teenagers get acne? No. Most teens don’t have acne, just problem skin. Remember, acne is a skin disease that is chronic. Keep in mind there is a difference between acne and hormonal skin.
Maintaining a balanced diet and drinking plenty of water can help you keep clear skin. Several nutrients and vitamins are known to improve skin. With sufficient amounts of these vitamins in your day to day diet, your skin will be equipped to fight off acne and inhibit the overproduction of oil. Vitamin A: Retinol is the naturally occurring form of Vitamin A. It is found in fish oils, liver, and dairy products. Vitamin A in plants is found in yellow/orange fruits and vegetables like carrots, yams, apricots, and cantaloupe, also vegetables such as parsley, kale, and spinach. Retinol is known to help with cell turnover and can improve skin stay smooth and acne free. Vitamin E: Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant. It protects your cells against free radicals, which are cell-damaging by-products of our metabolism. Vitamin E also helps the immune system and skin repair process. Natural sources of Vitamin E can be found in almonds, sunflower seeds, peanuts, broccoli, wheat germ and vegetable oils. Vitamin B-2: Vitamin B-2 is helpful in alleviating stress, which in many cases can contribute to acne. Foods with B-2 include, whole grains, fish, milk, eggs, meat and leafy green vegetables. Vitamin B-3: Vitamin B-3 improves blood circulation that can, in turn, promote cell turnover and healthy skin. Resources of Vitamin B-3 include peanuts, eggs, avocado, liver, and meats. Zinc: People with acne have been shown to have lower systemic levels of Zinc than those without acne. Zinc is an antioxidant that can boost the immune system. Zinc can aide in the removal of damaged tissue caused by acne, so the healing and repair of acne require Zinc. Zinc is vital for the skin’s repair functions; it also inhibits oil production. Zinc can be found in eggs, whole grains, nuts, mushrooms and especially LEROSETT ®.
Once acne pimples are gone, they often leave dark spots. That is what is called post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. While these spots can eventually fade, their presence can be very frustrating. The American Academy of Dermatology states that benzoyl peroxide prolongs the duration of acne-induced hyperpigmentation, especially in darker skin tones. Since it does reduce bacteria in the pores, Benzole Peroxide has been linked to dehydrated and premature aging of the skin. The dryer the surface of the skin is, the older it appears. Here is what a few acne specialists have to say. They explain a common problem and one reason we do not use benzoyl peroxide, an acne treatment that has been around for more than 50 years. Some don’t mind BP but why use it when LEROSETT® Clay is also effective with no added chemicals. LEROSETT® products make your skin healthier and fight off pimples too. If you feel parabens are a terrible thing, then BP is not the right choice. My sister and I are both estheticians and business owners, and we each have been doing professional skincare for 9yrs. We chose Gunilla of Sweden® for our clients because we wanted a result oriented product for acne without using benzoyl peroxide. The reason for no benzoyl peroxide is that clients who had used it were now experiencing hyperpigmentation and thinning skin so, we really felt strong about weaning them off. When switching them over to LEROSETT® we and our clients have found great success in their battle against acne even the troublesome Adult cystic acne, which for us has helped build a strong trust between us and our clients. Thank you, Gunilla of Sweden®. Sincerely, Heather Ramsey and Jennifer Neves, Sacramento Ca.
No. Dirt and surface oils cannot cause acne. This misunderstanding comes from the fact that blackheads look like dirt stuck in the pore opening. The black color is merely oxidized keratin, not dirt. In fact, the blockages of keratin that cause acne occur deep within the narrow follicle channel, where it is nearly impossible to wash them away. These plugs are formed by the failure of the cells to separate and flow to the surface in the oil created there by the body. So regular washing of the face could wash off old oil and help unblock the pores. However, scrubbing your skin hard and frequently can make your acne worse. It can irritate the skin and can cause your acne to be more inflamed. The best approach to hygiene and acne is to use a gentle face wash twice a day and be consistent with your skin care routine and acne treatment.
Aloe based acne cleansers can help heal the skin better than cleansers with water as the first and main ingredient. Bar soap should not be used with acne, it is too alkaline and causes oils to be stripped away, this causes the oil glands to make more oil and more pimples. Either a non-medicated aloe based cleanser for problem skin or a maximum strength medicated cleanser.
Anyone can get acne. While it is most common in adolescents and young adults, an estimated 80 percent of all people between the ages of 11 and 30 have had an acne outbreak at some point in their lives. Most people outgrow their acne by the time they reach their 30’s, but many struggle with it for their entire lives or don’t have problems at all until they are older. Women who are pregnant or menstruating are more susceptible to breakouts due to hormone fluctuations. Studies have shown that genetics may play a part in whether one person is more acne prone than another. If your parents had acne, then there is a higher risk that you will struggle with it as well.
Oral or topical antibiotics are the most popular treatments for acne among Dermatologists. Two reasons should make you wary of these treatments. One, the overuse of antibiotics is a common worry these days because of the creation of resistant strains of bacteria as well as the long-term health risks. These risks range from increased frequency of common colds to a dramatic increase in the risk of breast cancer. The second reason is that it is mostly ineffective. Even if we had an antibiotic that could kill 100% of the bacteria, you would still have an acne problem. The condition that causes pimples is caused by pores clogged with dead skin cells. The typical action of bacteria in the pores does have something to do with acne, but not as much as most people think. There are many risks to using antibiotics to treat acne: side effects such as recurring nausea, heartburn, interference with the useful bacteria in the digestive system, frequent vaginal yeast infections for women, possible permanent staining of the teeth, increase in colds, and possibly a link to breast cancer. A frequently used oral prescription is isotretinoin. FDA warnings about congenital disabilities, liver damage, skeletal damage, and severe depression are well warranted. It is a potentially dangerous drug been recalled by its manufacturer due to the drug causing Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, Crohn’s Disease, congenital disabilities, Stevens-Johnson Syndrome and Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis.
If you are going to take an oral medication for acne, first try an all-natural vegetarian acne supplement with a history of success like ClearPoint® All-Natural Clear Skin Supplements
People in every ethnic group may have acne. The genetic component is still in effect. Each parent’s family tree will have some impact on a specific person’s acne. Significant factors include whether or not the skin is oily and the thickness of the skin. Other factors, such as sun exposure, makeup, and skin care products used, may influence breakouts as well. Blue eyed, lighter complexion persons usually have thinner and drier skin as a rule. That group probably has fewer acne problems than some other groups.
The main reason is that there is no cure, so people keep buying different acne products looking for a cure that doesn’t exist. There is very little difference between most acne brands. If you look at the active ingredients, most of them use the same two drugs, and the main ingredient is almost always water. The more nutrients in your skincare, the healthier your skin can be. We recommend using a nutrient-rich organic aloe based acne product or products for the reason of better health and results.
Yes. Stress can increase the hormones that cause problems for the sebaceous glands. This can cause pimples, but we do not know if stress can cause acne. So far ClearPoint® Clear Skin Supplements work on a hormonal level and is very helpful in controlling stress-related acne.
Common Acne Related Terms
- Acid Mantle – Our skin’s natural protective barrier that defends us against bacteria, viruses and pollutants. A compromised barrier can lead to premature aging, infection, dehydration, irritation, sensitivity and acne. The Acid Mantle is very delicate and can be damaged by the sun, harsh soaps, Benzoyl Peroxide, Accutane and overall aggressive skincare regimens.
- Blackhead– A non-inflamed buildup of cells, sebum and other debris inside the follicle. The pore is open at the surface and exposed to air which keeps bacteria at bay.
- Whitehead – A non-inflamed buildup of cells, sebum and other debris inside the follicle. The pore has a very small opening blocking oxygen but no infection has set in.
- Papule – Occurs when the impaction has become large enough to tear the follicle wall causing an immune reaction (inflammation) and redness. Papules do not have a whitehead. Soreness is associated with papules because the deeper impaction affects the nerve endings. Papules can clear on their own by our body’s immune response.
- Pustule – Occurs when a clump of white blood cells push the impaction of a papule to the surface of the skin relieving the pressure on nerve endings by expanding the follicle wall. Pustules are less painful than papules and will have a puss filled whitehead.
- Cyst/Nodule – Deeply infected, puss filled, large papule that has been invaded by white blood cells. Very painful with a high potential for scaring.