Steps To Combat Acne
There are only a few things that could ruin your day more than a stubborn pimple showing up right before an important event. Be it a date with that hot girl you’ve been chasing for months or an interview for that position you’ve always dreamt of; you’ll surely want to look at your best. Things could even be cool if it’s just a pimple, but covering up a whole-face acne outbreak is often near impossible.
If you’ve overcome your teen years and still struggle to get a clean face, here are eight quick steps to combat acne you should know about.
1. Wash Your Face Twice A Day
A proper hygiene routine is the first step to fighting acne and getting a clean face. Not that you don’t have a good hygiene routine already, but you’d be surprised how many people wash their faces the wrong way.
The first thing to keep in mind is that you must wash your face twice a day. Once in the morning to get rid of all that sebum gathered overnight, and once in the evening to clean away all dust and dirt that may have ended up in your skin pores.
Picking the right cleaning product is also crucial. A body soap may be too harsh for your face. Women’s products are also unsuitable. Opt for a face wash or facial cleansers formulated especially for men.
2. Refrain From Scrubbing
While washing your face to get rid of dust and dirt is essential, you don’t have to overdo it. Massaging the cleanser gently on your face and rinsing with lukewarm water should suffice. There is no need to use scrubbing agents or harsh sponges.
However, you will have to get rid of the dead skin now and then. The easiest way to do it is with mild exfoliators.
You can either choose a cleanser with exfoliating agents and use it sporadically instead of your regular face wash or opt for a professional treatment. We’d highly recommend the latter, as exfoliating too much skin can actually lead to more acne.
3. Keep Your Skin Hydrated
If you’ve missed your biology lessons in school, it’s time to find out that acne is the result of overactive sebaceous glands. This over-activity is often caused by bad hygiene practices, such as over-washing your face, although a series of health conditions or hormonal imbalances can also have the same effect.
Regardless of the cause, the lack of sufficient sebum on your skin causes it to dry. This dryness causes your body to produce more sebum to compensate for the lost one. Which eventually leads to acne.
Hydrating your skin right after cleaning it may balance things up and help you combat acne. A moisturizing cream works wonders for the purpose, while a moisturizing facial mask applied at least once a month can also aid your cause.
4. Switch To An Electric Shaver
Believe it or not, one of the leading reasons for acne in men is shaving. Straight razors and their blades can irritate the delicate skin on your face and cause all sorts of blemishes. It can also cause ingrown hairs, which can consequently lead to acne.
A solution is to shave with a sharp, single-blade razor; a more practical solution is switching to an electric razor, which usually helps if you have mild acne.
If you suffer from a more serious inflammatory skin condition, perhaps you could skip shaving altogether and invest in a quality beard trimmer. You must also know that what you believe is acne might be folliculitis; a condition caused precisely by the ingrown beard.
5. Refrain From Popping Pimples
It’s hard, I know, but unless you want to make things worse, let that pimple dry on its own. Squeezing it may be satisfactory, but it can cause inflammation and scars. Inflammation can even lead to more pimples, not to mention unsightly red skin.
A topical treatment can help you reduce redness and blemishes, as well as preventing the formation of acne.
6. Apply Topical Treatments
Topical treatments are over-the-counter creams and serums formulated to minimize acne breakouts. They work pretty well especially when acne tends to appear in the same areas over and over again.
While these products are not as potent as prescription treatments, they can still help reduce your issue.
If generic treatments don’t seem to produce the results you’ve expected, your dermatologist could prescribe topical retinoids. These substances can reduce the excess of dead skin cells and inflammation while enriching your skin with vitamin A, eventually reducing acne.
7. Watch Your Diet
Your diet can largely influence the condition of your skin and determine acne outbreaks. High glycemic index food is not only bad for your weight; it can also cause acne. These foods include a wealth of goodies such as donuts, cookies, sweets, chips, French fries, and even pasta and bread. Milk, chocolate, and fatty foods are also the enemies of clear skin.
If you want your skin to glow without pimples, switch to foods rich in omega 3 and healthy fatty acids, replace dairy products with their vegan counterparts, and opt for whole-grain bread and pasta.
Foods rich in antioxidants, such as fruits and nuts, can also successfully replace unhealthy snacks.
8. Consult A Doctor
If you’ve taken all the steps above, but stubborn acne won’t go away, consult your general practitioner. Many health conditions can cause acne, from hormonal imbalances to liver diseases.
Finding the cause of severe acne and treating it is, ultimately, the best step you can take to combat this condition.