CAN I TREAT ACNE IF I HAVE SEN­SI­TIVE SKIN? MOST PEO­PLE CAN TOL­ER­ATE SALICYLIC ACID. THE MOST COM­MON CAUSE OF IRRITATION IS BENZOYL PER­OX­IDE, AND THEN RETINOL. BOTH ARE DRY­ING.

Women's Health Australia - - BEAUTY & STYLE -

CAN I CON­TROL HOR­MONAL ACNE?

Yes, by con­trol­ling your hor­mones. Hor­monal acne can ap­pear any­where on the body, and it typ­i­cally flares the week be­fore or as you get your pe­riod, which is when hor­mones peak. High lev­els of types of hor­mones called an­dro­gens (which in­clude testos­terone) can lead to acne. Since this type of acne is un­pre­dictable and can be hard to avoid us­ing only top­i­cal treat­ments, talk to your der­ma­tol­o­gist about oral med­i­ca­tion. Med­i­ca­tions with anti-an­dro­gen prop­er­ties are a pop­u­lar choice for docs treat­ing hor­monal acne.

WHAT ABOUT STRESS-RE­LATED BREAK­OUTS?

Stress can ex­ac­er­bate acne, par­tic­u­larly if you’re ge­net­i­cally pre­dis­posed to it, but it’s not the pri­mary cause. Stress de­presses your im­mune sys­tem, and that may make your acne worse by low­er­ing your body’s abil­ity to fight in­flam­ma­tion. Also, when we’re stressed, many of us start pick­ing at our skin. A good spot treat­ment will not only treat the area but keep you from putting your hands all over it. You can also use a small ban­dage to cover the area when you’re not in pub­lic, be­cause you may not even no­tice you’re pick­ing.

WHY DOES MY FACE BREAK OUT WHEN I MOIS­TURISE?

If your mois­turiser is heavy or rich, it can clog pores, so switch to a light or oil-free mois­turiser. TRY: (5) Aveeno Pos­i­tively Ra­di­ant Daily Mois­turiser SPF15, $19.99

SHOULD I USE A TONER OR AN ASTRINGENT FOR BREAK­OUTS?

If you have very oily skin – which is some­times the case for peo­ple with acne – us­ing a toner or an astringent twice a day can help you. It draws out the ex­cess oil that can clog pores and is gen­tle for all skin types. TRY: (3) Sukin Oil Bal­anc­ing Clar­i­fy­ing Fa­cial Tonic, $13.95

I CHANGE MY UN­DER­WEAR DAILY AND ALSO POST­WORK­OUT, WASH WITH SALICYLIC ACID, GEN­TLY EXFOLIATE AND HAVE SWITCHED LAUN­DRY DETERGENTS. WHY CAN’T I CLEAR UP MY BUTTNE?

This isn’t true acne – it’s fol­li­culi­tis, an in­fec­tion of the hair fol­li­cles. It can cer­tainly oc­cur on the bum, par­tic­u­larly if you wear tight jeans or pants and are sit­ting for long pe­ri­ods of time. We typ­i­cally pre­scribe an­tibi­otics or top­i­cal an­tibi­otic creams – if you see a derm – but you may have suc­cess with stan­dard over-the-counter top­i­cal acne treat­ments as well. Peo­ple with fol­li­culi­tis on their bum tend to have small bumps called in­flam­ma­tory papules, which re­spond best to the pre­scrip­tion treat­ments that help tar­get the bac­te­rial com­po­nent.

HOW DO I FIX ACNE SCARRING?

Con­sult with a cos­metic der­ma­tol­o­gist about which method is best, be­cause dif­fer­ent scars re­spond to dif­fer­ent treat­ments. Gen­er­ally, there are three types of acne scars: a rolling scar (a slight in­dent), an ice-pick de­pres­sion scar (a deep dent), and a box­car scar (a flat de­pres­sion in the skin). Some­times peo­ple have mul­ti­ple kinds, so they need a com­bi­na­tion of treat­ments. Op­tions in­clude laser treat­ments, sub­ci­sions (a nee­dle in­serted un­der skin par­al­lel to the sur­face to break up scar tis­sue), mi­croneedling (tiny punc­tures in skin to stim­u­late col­la­gen to fill out dents), fillers and chem­i­cal peels.

HOW OF­TEN SHOULD I WASH MY FACE TO MAIN­TAIN CLEAR SKIN?

The most im­por­tant time is at night. If your skin is clean, you don’t need to scrub away in the morn­ing. Peo­ple with acne tend to wash too of­ten and rub too hard be­cause they feel their skin looks dirty, but that can ag­gra­vate skin and cause it to be­come more red and flaky. You could also try us­ing a mi­cel­lar wa­ter in the evening to gen­tly re­move make-up and un­clog pores. TRY: (9) Garnier Mi­cel­lar Cleans­ing Wa­ter, $13.95

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