Today I want to talk about a subject that is very near and dear to me… why most mainstream acne products are making your skin worse, and in my opinion, can even be causing more breakouts, scarring, and hyperpigmentation.
Anyone with breakouts and acne wants to get rid of their pimples and blemishes ASAP, I know that, been there myself.
Acne skincare products give the lure and promise of drying out pimples so they go away quicker, but what’s that all about? And does your pimples really need to be dried out in the first place, or is that just setting you up for dry, cracked, scaly, discoloured, red, scabby skin? And will that eventually lead to scarring and hyperpigmentation as well?
How I see it, those mainstream acne treatment products containing salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide are just drying out and irritating the surface of your skin, not doing very much for the actual pimples and breakouts that are swollen, infected, and brewing from inside.
Active pimples and blemishes come from a blockage and inflammation inside your pores
How your pimples shrink and eventually go away is by your body’s ability to dissolve the sebum or debris that’s blocking your pores, and getting rid of the inflammation that causing your pores/skin to swell.
Unless your breakouts are coming from a bacterial infection on the surface of your skin, or you have some sort of allergy to something you are putting on your skin – very little has to with the actual surface of your skin, and treating the surface of your skin with drying gels/lotions and acne treatment skincare products could be making the problem worse.
So why is everyone using acne spot treatments and drying products? Where is the madness coming from?
Well, they are antibacterial. And pimples are an infection of the skin. But unfortunately the side effect of using such strong antibacterial products is the drying of your skin, which causes redness, irritation and will make your body produce more oil and sebum to counter the dryness (which will cause more breakouts and acne).
In my opinion, you are wasting your time and money on acne treatment products (and if you really want an antibacterial spot treatment, you’re better off using tea tree oil, which is antibacterial, without drying or irritating your skin).
Try it out yourself, do this experiment:
- Record how long it takes for a new pimple to heal using an acne treatment product.
- Record how long it takes for a new pimple to heal without using any acne treatment product.
- Keep note of any difference in your overall complexion, look and feel of your skin when you don’t use acne products.
For me this was a hardcore eye opener.
Years ago when my acne was at it worst, I had a dermatologist strictly tell me to stop using anything on my face (except for the gentlest cleanser I could find). Overnight I stopped using all acne treatment products I had been using for well over a decade. And you know what, my skin started to heal. It looked A LOT better. Yes, I still had pimples, but at least they weren’t red, inflamed, oozing, cracked, and difficult to cover up. Personally, I much prefer having pimples that are the color of my skin, easy to disguise, heal quicker (and evidently less likely to scar), than having pimples that are dry, parched, flaking, and scabby.
I know it’s not easy to let go of certain acne products, but ask yourself, how long have you been using these products, and is it really helping? If it hasn’t helped thus far, stop using it.
You might come to see that the products you’ve been using all along have only been making your skin worse, not better.
And one last tip – Your breakouts and acne are similar to any other skin conditions like rashes, wounds, and burns. When you have a rash or cut you usually keep it clean, let it air out, and let it heal on it’s own. You’re certainly not putting layers of skincare products on it twice a day, and picking at it. So start treating your breakouts and blemishes the exact same way you would treat any other skin condition. You’ll probably be pleasantly surprised to see just how quickly your skin heals on its own.
If you’ve stopped using mainstream acne products, I’d love to hear your results and changes you’ve noticed (post in the comments below).