Acne is a combined results of four elements:
- Androgen hormones
- Excessive cellular keratinization in the corneum layer and sebaceous follicle
- Excessive oil production
- Overpopulation of bacteria (P Acne)
For mild acne cases patients often do not need prescription drugs to reach the desired outcome. An acne regimen should include:
- Acne drugs.
- Gels or solutions that hydrate while reducing oils.
- Penetration enhancers/exfoliants.
Some of the acne cases where an over-the-counter regimen may be appropriate include:
- Mild facial acne.
- Occasional breakouts and/or spot treatment.
- Mild back acne.
- Pseudofolliculitis barbae (PFB).
- Complementary to RX treatment.
Some of the other factors that aggravate acne are hormonal imbalance, insufficient acidity in the skin (the skin's pH is believed to control bacteria population, normal pH of the skin is 5.6 - 6.6), heat and humidity that also increase the bacteria development and stress. The most efficient products are those that regulate oil gland secretion, heal, balance pH of the skin and reduce inflammation. Proper diagnosis of the skin condition is a key to identifying the correct skin care products.
- Wash with a salicylic acid-based cleanser. Salicylic acid can dissolve sebum (the oil in pores) because it's fat-soluble.
- Protect skin from bacteria with a treatment lotion containing benzoyl peroxide. If you find that too irritating, look for a product that contains a more gentle antibacterial agent like sulfur.
- Look for a sunscreen that's labeled "oil-free" and "non-comedogenic". Be aware that sunscreens may sting if your skin is red and sensitive from other acne products.
- Cleanse your face after vigorous exercise to keep pores from becoming clogged by sweat, makeup and greasy hair products.