Expert tips and debunking myths: Acne-prone skin

Here’s what you should and shouldn’t do with this skin type

The reason why acne prone skin is so misunderstood is because there are so many different causes for it, along with treatments to reduce its severity. Plus, throw in a few other variables such as gender and age, and we’re all left in a world of confusion. With so much misinformation out there, we thought it would be a good idea to clear the air; we spoke with expert dermatologist Dr Jo-Ann See.

Fact or fiction: My acne is hereditary

Do we have our ancestors to blame for our pimply skin? The answer is a yes and a no. “There is an element of heritability, but acne is multifactorial,” says Dr See. “We do know that in some families, people are more prone to acne-scarring or hormonal acne.”

Fact or fiction: I shouldn’t exfoliate if I have acne

The truth is that you can and should exfoliate, but it comes down to a fine art. “Often, scrubs can cause problems if you irritate inflamed acne,” explains Dr See. “Try a gentle scrub maybe once a week, or go with products that contain an alpha hydroxy acid or a beta hydroxy acid like salicylic acid, glycolic acid, or lactic acid.”

Here’s where the La Roche-Posay effaclar Anti-Acne Salicylic Acid Serum will come in handy. Boosted with salicylic acid to unblock pores, glycolic acid to reduce redness and LHA to gently buff the surface, this serum is specially-designed for acne prone skin and can be used everyday to curb any new spots from appearing.

Fact or fiction: I shouldn’t use retinol if I have acne

This is quite the contrary, and Dr See explains why: “It’s actually really, really good because retinol is a weaker base of retinoic acid, which is a well-known acne treatment. Its role is to unclog the oil gland, so it’s very useful.” As this ingredient can take some time for your skin to adjust to it, use it with care and start with applying it every second or third night.

If you’re wanting to introduce retinol into your skincare regimen, go with La Roche-Posay’s Retinol B3 Serum which features vitamin B3 and pure retinol in its formula to address the appearance of fine lines and spots on your face.

Fact or fiction: The sun will heal my acne

Tempted to get some vitamin D to try and heal your skin? Don’t even try it. “The reason why people like the sun is because they often get a tan and this masks their acne,” says Dr See. “But we don’t want people to get more sun because of the risk of skin cancer.”

Fact or fiction: My pillowcase is the cause for my acne

You should think twice before blaming your pillowcase for your blemishes. “Your own acne bacteria is actually the root cause of your skin condition,” says Dr See. “So, it’s not really your pillowcase that’s causing the problem. You should still be washing your pillowcase once a week though.”

This article was written by Iantha Yu and sponsored by La Roche Posay

The All About Acne team – the authors of this site – are a group of medically-trained skin experts from across Australia who have an interest in acne management. Our experienced team of leading dermatologists guarantees the information on this website is independent and based on the highest quality research available.

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