HOW CAN I TREAT CYSTIC ACNE?
CYSTS ARE A SEVERE FORM OF ACNE THAT’S DEEPER UNDER THE SKIN THAN OTHER TYPES OF PIMPLES. GO TO A DERM, WHO WILL LIKELY PUT YOU ON ONE OR A COMBINATION OF PRESCRIPTION MEDICATIONS, BECAUSE WITH CYSTIC ACNE THERE’S A CHANCE OF PERMANENT SCARRING, AND YOU D
HOW CAN I PREVENT POST-INFLAMMATORY HYPERPIGMENTATION?
Stay out of the sun – UV exposure can further darken spots from acne – and wear an SPF 30 or higher daily. And don’t pick at your acne, which can cause skin trauma and lead to more hyperpigmentation. For the most part, it will resolve on its own over time, unless you repeatedly cause hyperpigmentation from sun exposure or from picking in the same spot. The speed at which it resolves depends on how deep the trauma is. You can get prescriptionlevel skin-lightening creams from your derm, too. Over-the-counter formulas can work, but creams with a higher percentage of ingredients are available by prescription only and are more effective.
WHAT WILL TREAT MY EXISTING ACNE AND POST-INFLAMMATORY HYPERPIGMENTATION AT THE SAME TIME?
Azelaic acid, an anti-acne ingredient, blocks an enzyme that leads to the darkening of skin after a pimple. Retinol can help with both, too. TRY: (8) Dermalogica Breakout Control, $69
WHY DO I KEEP GETTING THE SAME PIMPLE ON MY CHEEK?
Sometimes a pimple just never fully heals, and when hormones increase oil production in the skin, that can activate it again. I recommend using a salicylic acid spot treatment whenever a zit arises. TRY: (4) Ultraceuticals Ultra Clear Spot Treatment, $40
HOW DO I TREAT ACNE WHEN PREGNANT?
Some acne products – prescription and over-the-counter – are not recommended during pregnancy; avoid salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide and retinol. Azelaic acid and glycolic acid are OK – find the latter in (6) Alpha-h Balancing Moisturiser and Gentle Exfoliant, $62.