It’s not fun to admit, but acne can last well beyond our adolescent years. In fact, many adults struggle with acne – either dealing with a lifelong condition or experiencing breakouts for the very first time in adulthood. Here are a few reasons why acne could be happening for you year round and what you can do about it
The first thing to assess when you’re trying to get to the bottom of an acne flare up – or an ongoing condition that’s plaguing you – is what your skin might be exposed to that could be irritating it. There are many culprits in this category, starting with skin care. Many times, cheaply priced, low-quality skin care products contain harmful ingredients that could be wreaking havoc on your skin. If you don’t see the word “non-comedogenic” on your product labels, chances are they may contain ingredients that are clogging your pores.
But even if you’re using higher-quality skin care products, they simply might not be the right ones for you. For instance, if you have oily or acne-prone skin and you’re using a moisturizer that’s too high in moisture content, you might be adding excess hydration, which can cause clogged pores as well. By the same token, you might be under moisturizing, which actually causes skin to produce more sebum (or oil) than it should – again, blocking up those pores and resulting in breakouts.
The best thing to do is consult with a reputable dermatologist who can make skin care regimen recommendations appropriate for your skin type and concerns. In addition to a high-quality daily skin care regimen formulated for acne-prone skin, the dermatologist’s recommendations might also include specialty treatments every two to eight weeks. Receiving regular deep cleansing and exfoliating treatments like acne facials or chemical peels can go a long way in treating your acne and preventing future breakouts.
If it’s not your skin care line that’s the problem, consider other irritants. Chemicals in particular can be very harsh on the skin, so if you work in an environment where you’re exposed to a multitude of chemicals, this could be the problem. In this case, it’s a good idea to wear a mask or face shield to protect your skin from these irritants.
Speaking of masks, having cloth or fabric on your face every day might be irritating your acne. The presence of “mask-ne” has increased significantly with the prevalence of mask-wearing practices, so this is something to be aware of. Change out your disposable masks regularly – ideally every couple of hours – and wash cloth masks after every use in hot water to kill bacteria.
Finally, consider other irritants you might be exposed to, like harsh laundry detergent on your pillowcases and clothing, bath soaps that could be drying your skin or clogging your pores, or makeup products that might be causing flareups. Through a process of elimination, you can find the culprit.
Finally, there’s the hormonal piece of the puzzle, which is very commonly the reason for year-round acne. With changing hormones during times of great physical, mental, or emotional stress comes excess sebum production and – you guessed it – the resulting acne breakouts.
Plus, hormonal changes during stages like menstruation, pregnancy, or menopause can drastically change the level of sebum in women’s skin. You may find that you need to use a completely different set of products during these times.
Need help managing your acne? If you’re in Baton Rouge or the surrounding areas, contact Louisiana Dermatology Associates today for an appointment.