You can treat acne successfully at home without antibiotics, prescription acne medications, or harmful side effects. Combine these acne skin care tips with the right home care strategy to get your skin looking and feeling better fast.
Partner up with an expert that can show you how to have clear skin.
One of the biggest myths about acne is that it will run it's course and go away on it's own. This notion is completely FALSE.
In nearly every case, severe acne problems can be avoided by seeking early treatment with a licensed expert that can recommend the right professional acne treatment combined with effective skin care products.
While acne may reach a burn out phase sometime in your life, you could suffer with break outs for many, many years. Acne does not just run its course -- many people break out well into their 40's and 50's. If left untreated, acne can cause scarring, hyperpigmentation, and could also lead to low self-esteem or depression.
Don't be fooled into thinking your acne will just go away. Start treatment early, at the first signs of blackheads or break outs. It will be much easier to treat your acne the earlier you seek help.
Have you ever wondered why the top selling acne treatment works great for other people, but doesn't help you at all? Want to find out why some treatments quit working after a few weeks? Tired of getting burned (literally) by products that are too strong?
When considering how to clear acne, it's important to get accurate information from a reliable source. A licensed acne expert can advise you about the best treatment options for your type of acne and level of skin sensitivity. Our focus is helping you get clear skin quickly without adverse side effects.
Having an acne expert that can recommend treatments, skin care products, and monitor your progress will accelerate healing as well as prevent future break outs.
Because we never know which pores will become clogged next, acne treatments work best as a preventative (not a spot treatment).
Although there are many effective spot treatments available, you'll never keep acne under control unless you treat your skin consistently with the right products for your type of acne and unique skin conditions.
You've got to use products strong enough to be effective, but not so strong that they create excessive dryness and irritation. That's where expert guidance can really help.
Most importantly, you have to treat the entire area that tends to break out in order to treat lesions that are not currently visible. Even when acne prone skin looks clear, it still has tiny impactions and constant tension in the pores. If you could see inside these weakened pores, you would see continuous filling, breaking, leaking and healing activity. When your skin is clear, a delicate balance has been struck.
It can take up to 90 days for an acne lesion to form. So, while sometimes it seems like break outs happen overnight -- most often, these lesions have been forming over a long period of time. That's why you have to be consistent and treat your skin every day in order to get your acne under control.
Once you start treating your skin consistently with the right products for your type of acne, the current lesions will heal and you'll be preventing new lesions from forming. Because acne is a chronic condition, you must continue treatment daily to keep it under control.
Stick With It -- Be Patient -- Celebrate Small Improvements.
No matter how badly you want to get rid of acne, you cannot scrub it away. Over washing or aggressive scrubbing will only irritate your skin and can lead to inflammation or more break outs. Using a harsh cleanser or washing more than twice a day will dehydrate your skin and may increase sen-sitivity to your acne treatment products.
Twice a day, use a gentle cleanser suited to your skin type and acne conditions. Follow with a non-drying toner and lightweight hydrator. Even extremely oily skin can benefit from a light-weight, gel hydrator.
Carefully follow directions when using acne treatment products. Over using products will not get your skin clear any faster, in fact, it may impede your progress.
Be consistent with your routine and adjust as needed. It will take time (usually 90 days or longer) before your skin shows the full effects of your skin care routine.
Avoid the temptation to jump around from product to product.
Some of the best ways to avoid acne include making simple lifestyle changes. Coupled with the right home care strategy, these changes will make it easier for you to stay clear.
For overall health & wellbeing, it's imperative that you get enough rest and find ways to manage stress.
Stress stimulates the adrenal gland, which promotes oil production and can lead to clogged pores or break outs in people with acne prone skin.
There are many ways to manage stress, including:
Eating healthy, nutrient-rich foods will help keep your body and your skin looking it's best. Remember -- chocolate does not aggravate acne for most people -- but highly refined foods and sugary foods may increase inflammation in the body, including the skin. Greasy foods aggravate acne only because they often contain high levels of salt.
To maintain natural, clear skin -- avoid foods, sports drinks, protein bars, and vitamin supplements containing iodides. Iodized salt, seafood, fish, seaweed, fast foods, dairy products and kelp tablets all contain iodides. See "Foods High in Iodides" for a more complete list.
Avoid foods containing androgen hormones. Androgens aggravate acne and are found in peanuts, peanut oil, peanut butter, corn oil, wheat germ, shellfish, organ meats, sweetbreads, beef, and liver. NOTE: other nuts do not contain androgen hormones (just peanuts).
Handling your skin causes pressure and friction on the pores which can lead to break outs. Be careful not to rest your chin in your hand or on your cheek while studying or working on the computer. Avoid excessive rubbing or touching & never pick or try to pop your pimples.
My insider secret and one of my best acne skin care tips -- after cleansing, put several ice cubes in a small plastic baggie and rotate the ice pack over areas you tend to break out. This is one of the best pimple remedies I know -- treating your skin with ice will reduce inflammation and cut healing time dramatically. Just be sure not to overdo it -- a few minutes is enough to get the benefits of icing.
Icing your skin for a few minutes prior to applying benzoyl peroxide acne products will also help them to penetrate the pore and work more effectively.
Liquid fabric softener and dryer sheets leave behind a waxy residue that is highly pore clogging. Avoid using fabric softener on your towels, sheets, wash cloths and pillow cases. Fragrance-free fabric softeners aren't any better -- in this case, it's the softening agents that are a problem for acne prone skin.
Once you're wearing acne medication overnight, you may notice your skin and eyes get irritated. Sometimes this happens because your products are transferred onto your pillow cases & then back to other areas of your skin. Wash pillow cases frequently to avoid this problem.
If your skin is sensitive, use fragrance-free detergents such as Cheer Free, All Free & Clear, Tide Free or Arm & Hammer Free. If you can't tolerate static cling in your dryer, try anti-static balls like Dryer-Max Anti-Static Balls (available at Bed Bath & Beyond).
NOTE: There is also some evidence that water softeners can lead to acne, especially those containing high amounts of potassium chloride.
In addition to following an appropriate skin care routine, you can reduce inflammation and improve healing by taking nutritional supplements or vitamins for clear skin. Be sure to avoid vitamin supplements that contain iodides, seaweed, or kelp, as they can actually make your acne worse.
Zinc - Taking zinc supplements can be helpful because studies show that it acts in a similar way to antibiotics in improving inflamed acne. Zinc is an essential trace element that is best used as a treatment, not as a preventative. If you have inflamed acne, you may consider taking zinc in a dosage of 50-100mg.
Many zinc supplements can upset your stomach, and taking more than 60 mg may lead to deficiencies in other vitamins and minerals -- I recommend OptiZinc because it contains copper, a mineral that can be depleted by zinc supplements. OptiZinc is formulated to prevent nausea -- be sure to take it with food, and discontinue taking zinc once your skin is completely clear.
Fish Oil / Omega-3 Oils - Evidence suggests that people with chronic inflammatory acne may benefit from taking relatively higher doses (1000-1700mg) of purified omega-3 oils -- primarily found in wild ocean fish such as salmon, mackerel, cod and herring.
Omega-3 oils have anti-inflammatory properties, may help regulate hormones, and may shorten the intensity of break outs for people with acne prone skin. There is no known toxicity associated with taking fish oil long term, however, be sure to check with your doctor to make sure this is an option for you.
Keep in mind -- vitamins, minerals, and herbal supplements can be helpful in getting severe inflammatory acne under control. But in most cases, taking vitamins for clear skin will not be sufficient treatment alone. You must also follow a consistent home-care routine with the right acne control formulas.
Wash skin gently yet thoroughly immediately following exercise, sports, or any other activity that causes you to perspire heavily.
Heat & humidity as well as pressure & friction can lead to increased break outs. When we exercise or engage in activities that cause us to perspire, we increase heat in our skin and create temporary swelling and pressure surrounding our pores.
Be sure to cleanse your skin with a gentle cleanser and lukewarm or cool water following activities that cause you to perspire. This will help reduce heat and pressure and will clean sweat and oily secretions from your skin.
Follow cleansing with a light hydrating gel and/or sunscreen.
Pressure and friction can be caused by headbands, backpacks, helmets, hats/caps, shoulder pads, and tight fitting sports clothing. Sometimes you won't be able to avoid wearing these items, so whenever possible, try to wash your skin gently after use. Be sure to keep caps, helmets, chin straps, and other things that come into contact with your skin clean by wiping them down with a soap and water solution or disinfectant wipe after each use.
If you have acne prone skin, you must get in the habit of checking skin care and cosmetics labels for acne causing, comedogenic ingredients.
Before you put anything on your skin (including acne treatment products), check the product labels to be sure they don't contain these pore clogging ingredients that cause acne.
You'll find more acne skin care tips and free advice sprinkled throughout this site, so be sure to explore other topics.