Acne is caused by several factors. First, you start with clogged pores (ostiums). Then, excessive amounts of sticky oil (sebum) back up in the pores (follicles). When bacteria feeds on this sebum, you get inflammation. The resulting blemish is the body's attempt to fight off the invasive bacteria.
Perhaps acne is genetic, but no one really knows why some people develop acne, while others do not. What you need to understand is that controlling acne is just like maintaining your weight. You don't just go to a weight-loss clinic, lose a few pounds and then go back to eating anything you like. Acne is the same way - it requires constant care and discipline. But, at Renée Rouleau, we'll devise a plan that can easily fit into your lifestyle!
DON'T WASH WITH A BAR OF SOAP OR HIGH FOAMING FACE WASHES
Bar soap and many foaming cleansers have high pH balances with harsh ingredients that strip the water out of the skin, creating layers of dead, dry skin cell buildup. Choose gel cleansers that avoid the harsh ingredient Sodium Laureth Sulfate. These are better choices than over-the-counter acne products, as they won't rob the skin of much needed water. Try Renée Rouleau AHA/BHA Cleansing Gel.
REMEMBER THE RULE: DRYING OUT YOUR SKIN = MORE BREAKOUTS
Be cautious with over-the-counter acne products. Although these can work to dry up actual blemishes, when used all over the face they can trap oil in the pores by causing dead skin cell buildup, thereby causing more breakouts.
USE ALCOHOL-FREE TONERS
Similar to using bar soap, over-drying the skin with harsh, alcohol-based toners will only make breakouts worse by causing dead skin cell build up and trapping oil in the pores. Choose alcohol-free formulas that will effectively destroy acne-causing bacteria without drying out the skin. Try Renée Rouleau Balancing Skin Tonic.
WASH YOUR FACE AT BEDTIME
After a long day, oil, sweat, dirt, and bacteria have built up on the skin, which can make clogged pores and breakouts worse. Use a mild foaming face wash followed by an oil-free antibacterial lotion. Try Renée Rouleau Tea Tree Blemish Lotion.
DON'T PICK AT YOUR SKIN
We know it's tempting, but you can make problem skin a lot worse by forcing bacteria deeper into the skin, resulting in scarring and further breakouts. A better solution for problem skin is a regular facial schedule, where your pores can be cleaned professionally.
AVOID DAIRY PRODUCTS IF YOUR SKIN IS PRONE TO BREAKOUTS
Many people have heard that greasy foods and chocolate cause breakouts. In our experience, when breakouts are cyst-like in the chin and jaw area, most often this is related to too many dairy products your diet. Try eliminating cheese, milk, ice cream, and frozen yogurt, and watch your skin clear up!
LIMIT YOUR INTAKE OF ORANGE JUICE
If your breakouts most often occur on your cheeks, it may be from too many acidic foods in your diet. The acidity from orange juice, oranges, tomatoes, spaghetti sauce, and lemonade may be the culprit!
CHANGE PILLOWCASES NIGHTLY
For problem skin, bacteria and oil can build up on your pillowcase and be reintroduced to your skin the following night. Invest in a nice stack of pillowcases and make sure to wash them with a dye- and fragrance-free laundry soap.
AVOID PANTHENOL IN YOUR HAIR PRODUCTS
If you are prone to breakouts around your hairline or back, do not use hair care products containing panthenol. This is great for strengthening hair, but it can cause breakouts for some people.
WEAR A SUNSCREEN EVERY DAY
Especially if you play sports and are outside after school, wearing a lightweight SPF every day will protect your skin from damaging UV rays. Protecting your skin daily from the sun may prevent skin cancer, wrinkles, and aging of the skin.
Which products are right for your skin? Check out our nine skin types.
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