Do you suffer from acne? What are the top 10 acne myths and misconceptions? There is a wide variety of acne products on the market that claim to clear up your breakouts. But if you have had acne, you know that treating acne can be a frustrating experience and you have to stick with a strict skincare routine. Many acne products have to be used long-term to help prevent future acne breakouts, especially now that we are wearing masks on a daily basis. There are still a ton of myths and misconceptions about acne. Have you heard any of these myths about acne as a teenager?
Myth #1: Acne is Caused by Dirt or Dirty Skin
Truth: While it is important to follow a skin care routine on a daily basis, dirt or not cleaning your face doesn’t cause acne. Acne starts below the skin’s surface. Increased androgen hormones trigger your body to increase oil production. As it travels up the shaft of the hair to the skin’s surface, it picks up dead skin cells, dirt, and P. acnes bacteria. This combination of oil, dead skin cells, dirt, and P. acnes bacteria clump together and cause the pore to become clogged. This combination typically results in whiteheads or blackheads.
Myth #2: Acne is Caused By Consuming the Wrong Types of Foods
Truth: This is one of the oldest myths about acne. After years of research in the ’60s and ’70s, researchers concluded that your diet doesn’t have anything to do with your acne breakouts. New research shows that individuals with acne may see more breakouts when they consume saturated fat, trans fat, milk, and fish. According to the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, “Future research is necessary to elucidate the proposed mechanisms linking diet and acne and determine the impact of medical nutrition therapy on acne development.”
Myth #3: Only Teenagers Get Acne
Truth: Acne is most prevalent during puberty, the teenage years. But since it is caused by fluctuating hormones, adults can have acne problems. You can still experience acne as an adult even if you didn’t have breakouts as a teen.
Myth #4: Washing Your Face Several Times A Day Will Clear Up Acne Breakouts
Truth: Washing your face too frequently with acne washes and medication can actually do more harm than good. Frequent washing or scrubbing can strip away natural oils needed to protect your skin. When you strip all the natural oils, it triggers your body to produce more oil and resulting in more breakouts. Instead, you should wash your face with a gentle cleanser and follow a strict skincare routine to help prevent acne.
Myth #5: Safely Popping Acne Can Speed Up Healing Proces
Truth: It is never a good idea to pop a pimple. Next time you are tempted to, popping a pimple keep in mind that it may not be fully ready to pop. Unless your pimple is ready to pop, trying to pop a pimple that isn’t ready can cause push bacteria deeper into your pores and spread the infection. Popping or picking at acne breakouts can cause permanent skin damage and scarring. Do your best to leave your pimple alone and let it heal naturally. If you have a throbbing or super painful pimple, try placing an ice cube on your pimple for 20 to 30 seconds several times a day. Ice helps reduce swelling and inflammation. Seek help from a dermatologist if the ice and acne treatment isn’t clearing up your breakout. A dermatologist can safely drain an infected pimple without scarring or give you a cortisone shot to reduce the inflammation.
Myth #6: Reaching for Over-The-Counter Acne Products Instead of Booking an Appointment With a Dermatologist
Truth: Most mild acne breakouts can be tamed with over the counter products that contain salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide. You don’t have to ignore acne breakouts won’t clear up with over-the-counter treatments. Instead of trying treatment after treatment with over-the-counter acne products, seek out the help of a dermatologist. A dermatologist can closely exam your acne lesions and customize a treatment plan specific to your needs.
Myth #7 Prevent Acne By Tanning
Truth: Spending time outside or at the tanning salon may seem like a great idea when it comes to preventing acne. However, the sun and the UV lights used in a tanning bed help produce melanin production making your skin darker. Darker skin may hide acne scars easier but spending too much time in the sun or tanning bed can dehydrate your skin. Dehydrated skin can trigger your oil glands to produce more oil and turn your acne into a bigger problem than you already have. Also, if you forget sunscreen and get a sunburn, it can cause sunburns which would cause extra inflammation and damage to your skin. Before heading outside or to the tanning bed, make sure that you wear sunscreen that is oil-free and at least SPF 30 before heading outside. The sunscreen will protect your delicate skin and help keep your acne under control. And yes, you can get a sunburn from a tanning bed.
Myth #8 – Make-Up Causes Acne
Truth: Actually, there is a bit of truth to this statement. Choosing the wrong kind of makeup can clog your pores leaving you susceptible to acne. The good news is there is plenty of make-up products on the market that won’t clog your pores or contribute to acne breakouts. Purchase products that contain “oil-free,” “noncomedogenic”, “nonacnegenic”, “benzoyl peroxide”, or “salicylic acid”. Don’t forget to look for products that contain sunscreen labeled SPF30 or higher, even if you are wearing makeup and not planning on spending any time outdoors.
Myth #9: Using Acne Products Frequently Will Get Rid of Acne Faster
Truth: Over-treating your acne breakouts can dry out and irritate your skin. When your skin is too dry, your body triggers more oil production leading to more acne problems than you originally had. When using acne treatments, it is better to use a small amount of product on your trouble areas. Whether you are using over-the-counter or prescription acne products, always follow the directions and skip applying extra medication even on a problem zit. Never use home remedies like toothpaste on a problem zit. It can further irritate your skin and cause more problems.
Acne patches are the new rave when it comes to treating breakouts. You simply clean the area and attach a patch over the zit. Then leave it on for 4-8 hours. The patch will extract the puss and impurities straight from the source. The patches are clear or a natural beige color so you can wear them during the day if you have to. Most individuals who use the acne patches typically wear them while they are sleeping. You can order the patches here from Amazon (aff link).
Myth: #10 Acne Will Go Away Eventually
Truth: Unfortunately, since acne starts beneath the skin’s surface and a shift in hormones, it is considered a chronic skin condition. Chronic skin problems typically last a long time and will require treatment to keep your acne prone skin clear.
Acne is a troublesome skin condition that can affect anyone long after puberty has come and gone. There are so many acne myths and misconceptions that it can be difficult to figure out which ones are true and which ones are false.
Which Acne Myth were you shocked to learn about?