Acne is a widespread yet highly complex condition. Everywhere on the web, on social media, and in everyday life, you see and hear information purported to treat or heal acne, but in reality, it has nothing to do with it. So how can you tell facts true? The answer to this question is why we are here today. We found the top 8 acne myths and debunked them to help you better understand this prevalent condition and take steps to alleviate it. But before anything else, let's define acne and its causes.
What Exactly is Acne?
Acne is a condition that results from an intricate interplay of hyperactive oil glands and hormonal fluctuations. It can happen to individuals of any gender and age, typically from puberty onwards.
Oil (sebaceous) glands secrete an oily substance called sebum, which coats the skin with moisture to maintain its balance and health. However, when these glands go into overdrive, they produce more sebum than the skin needs. Acne then develops when excess oil production, dead skin cells, and bacterial buildup obstruct hair follicles, giving rise to pimples, blackheads, and whiteheads.
On another note, hormones also play a pivotal role in the acne equation. Fluctuations in hormone levels, most notably during puberty, can exacerbate the situation. Adolescents, in particular, are more susceptible to acne due to these hormonal shifts, which trigger an increase in oil secretion. Nevertheless, acne isn't limited to this age group, as puberty doesn't always end with clear skin. It can linger into adulthood, with hormonal imbalances continuing to influence its onset.
Given this dynamic, treatment approaches for acne primarily target these fundamental factors: diminish oil production, prevent pore blockages, and counteract hormonal influences.
8 Myths About Acne You Should Not Believe Anymore
Now that you know more about the medical implications of acne, let's address rumors and clarify them.
Myth #1: Getting a Tan Helps to Heal Acne
UV rays can harm the skin, causing premature aging or skin cancer. Additionally, sun overexposure can be debilitating and dry out the skin's top layer without sunscreen application and other forms of protection. In turn, this leads to a sebum production stimulation, which further exacerbates acne. So, contrary to this myth, getting a tan does not treat acne.
Myth #2: Popping a Pimple Makes Acne Heal Faster
When you pop a pimple, you can allow the acne-causing bacteria below the skin to spread to other regions of your face, promoting more acne flare-ups. Plus, popping a pimple can lead to more scarring, meaning dark spots down the line. As a result, when dealing with acne lesions, we recommend targeted acne treatments to support the healing process better, minimizing scarring and degree of hyperpigmentation. Naturally, this has to be a myth!
Myth #3: Acne-Prone Skin Does Not Require a Moisturizer
Consider this: when your skin is dry, it looks to compensate for the deficit, and a rebound mechanism takes place. The skin perceives itself as too dry, producing more oil (sebum) to offset the imbalance, resulting in a more acne-prone condition. Moreover, moisturizing your skin is vital if you are on an acne treatment as it allows your skin to tolerate the medication better and prevent overdrying. Overdrying can create irritation, skin discoloration, and even more bump formation due to the rebound mechanism described earlier. So, yes, acne-prone skin needs moisturizers.
Myth #4: Acne Is Caused by Not Washing Your Face
For acne-prone skin, it's essential to strike a balance when cleansing. It would help if you didn't neglect cleaning your face, nor overwash it. While disregarding keeping your face hygienic can lead to an accumulation of acne-promoting bacteria, furthering the problem, overwashing your face may lead to overdrying, which calls for more oil production and acne. You should wash your face at least twice daily with an appropriate cleanser for oily skin. So, this fact is a myth.
Myth #5: Acne Happens Overnight
No, not really. The process leading up to the formation of an acne pimple begins below your skin, weeks before you can visually see it on the surface. Acne builds up in skin pores from an accumulation of the keratin lining (from dead skin cells), excessive oil (sebum), bacteria overgrowth, and inflammation resulting from the bacteria. Although it may appear like so, acne does not happen overnight. It is an entire cascade of events before appearing on your skin. Therefore, the best way to treat acne is to prevent it at the root before it becomes known. Use topical treatments based on skin tolerance to avoid acne formation before an eruption.
Myth #6: Acne Is Not Genetic
Acne is a genetically-proven skin condition. People who develop the most acne are those with oily or oily/combination skin. As you inherit your skin type, like you do eye or hair color, height, or weight, acne is related to your genetics. This assumption is untrue and a myth.
Myth #7: Acne Always Goes Away on Its Own
While lesions can resolve over time, acne necessitates treatments to aid the skin in healing properly, minimizing future acne, and eliminating existing acne.
Myth #8: You Can Only Get Acne If You Have Oily Skin
For the most part, that's true because acne is a condition of oil glands and hormones, and you will primarily develop breakouts in areas of the face where you are the oiliest. Although acne does not typically form in dry skin types, it is not exclusive to oily skin types alone. As hormonal factors are a participating cause of the incidence of acne, exceptions are possible.
How Can You Treat Acne for Good?
We offer proven and tried-and-true acne treatments to heal and prevent acne forever. Thousands of people have our products to medicate acne and regain confidence in their skin's health, called the #glowers. Take a look at them here.
Most of them received an initial consultation complemented with products to restore their skin barrier and acne-specific prescription-strength medicine.
If you'd like to join in the happiest skin revolution, we encourage you to book an appointment with Dr. Thrower for a customized treatment plan. Telemedicine and in-office bookings are possible. Make yours here.
Alternatively, browse the acne range and use products as directed: