Anti-acne tips for a clear year

Anti-acne avengers assemble! It’s a new school year, and whether you’re headed back to high school, off to college, or getting back into the workplace rhythm after vacation, this is no time for acne flares.

We know acne can trouble us at any age, in any place, for all manner of reasons. Your skin type and genetics may predispose you to adolescent acne, or hormone shifts may trigger adult acne. Some things you just can’t control. But this time of year, the American Academy of Dermatology wants to remind you of 10 things you might be doing, inadvertently, to make your acne worse. These bad habits are all related to your skin care routine — something you may think is your greatest anti-acne weapon.

Here are a few of the AAD’s anti-acne mistakes, and how to repair them.

Try a new acne treatment every week or so. This approach can irritate your skin, which can cause breakouts.
What to do instead: Give an acne treatment time to work. You want to use a product for 6 to 8 weeks. It takes that long to see some improvement. If you don’t see any improvement by then, you can try another product. Complete clearing generally takes 3 to 4 months.

Apply acne medication only to your blemishes. It makes sense to treat what you see, but this approach fails to prevent new breakouts.
What to do instead: To prevent new blemishes, spread a thin layer of the acne medication evenly over your acne-prone skin. For example, if you tend to breakout on your forehead, nose, and chin, you’d want to apply the acne treatment evenly on all of these areas of your face.

Use makeup, skin care products, and hair care products that can cause acne. Some makeup along with many skin and hair care products contain oil or other ingredients that can cause acne breakouts. If you continue to use them, you may continue to see blemishes.
What to do instead: Use only makeup, sunscreen, skin and hair care products that are labeled “non-comedogenic” or “won’t clog pores.” These products don’t cause breakouts in most people.

Share makeup, makeup brushes, or makeup applicators. Even if you use only non-comedogenic products, sharing makeup can lead to blemishes. Acne isn’t contagious, but when you share makeup, makeup brushes, or applicators, the acne-causing bacteria, oil, and dead skin cells on other people’s skin can wind up in your makeup. When you use that makeup, you can transfer their bacteria, oil, and dead skin cells to your skin. These can clog your pores, leading to breakouts.
What to do instead: Make sure you’re the only person who uses your makeup, makeup brushes, and makeup applicators.

Sleep in your makeup. Even non-comedogenic makeup can cause acne if you sleep in it.
What to do instead: Remove your makeup before you go to bed. No exceptions. If you’re too tired to wash your face, use a makeup remover towelette. Just make sure it’s a non-comedogenic towelette.

You can read the rest of the AAD’s anti-acne tips here.

And as long as you’re turning over a new, clear leaf for the new school or work year, don’t forget to see us at Comprehensive Dermatology Center of Pasadena for a full range of anti-acne treatments and products, from our own Anti-Acne Kits (with those noncomedogenic wipes the AAD recommends) to clarifying facials (we can do them for “backne,” too!) and peels, to Blu-Light and Photo-Dynamic Therapy (PDT) treatments to fight bacteria, to the best in scar reduction. Our physicians also offer prescription anti-acne treatment if necessary, and we’re open on Saturday mornings for your school week convenience! Contact us today, and here’s to a clear year.

Anti-aging: Should we lose the term?

Anti-aging is one of the top-searched keywords on the internet. The notion of turning back the clock draws patients to dermatologists and clients to med-spas, and the term is part of skin care advertising for thousands of products from over the counter moisturizers to prescription peels and injectables.

So it comes as something of a shock that this month the publishers of Allure, a leading fashion and beauty magazine, announced that they’re banning the term anti-aging from their editorial copy. Huffington Post quotes Allure‘s Michelle Lee on the thinking behind the change:

“Whether we know it or not, [the term is] subtly reinforcing the message that aging is a condition we need to battle — think antianxiety meds, antivirus software, or antifungal spray,” wrote Editor-in-Chief Michelle Lee on Monday, adding, “Repeat after me: Growing older is a wonderful thing because it means that we get a chance, every day, to live a full, happy life.”

Allure is putting its cover where its philosophy is, with a September issue featuring ageless cover woman Helen Mirren. (Of course, if we all aged as gorgeously as Dame Helen, maybe we wouldn’t be so anti-!) But the magazine isn’t content to police their own editorial team. Lee is issuing a challenge to all of us to rethink the way we approach aging, to think of it as something we do naturally, beautifully, gracefully, not an enemy in the mirror to vanquish.

Huffington Post points out that the idea that beauty comes in all shapes, sizes, colors, and ages — by now a standby of fashion — has yet to catch on in the beauty biz:

Fashion has slowly but surely done a better job at being more inclusive and accepting of race, size, and age. The beauty industry has been a bit slower on its feet. Plus-size model Precious Lee previously pointed out that beauty advertisements exclude models over a certain size, for example, despite the fact that women of all sizes can wear makeup.

At Comprehensive Dermatology Center of Pasadena, it’s our motto that healthy skin is beautiful skin — at any age. Though we’ll continue to use the keyword anti-aging to describe many of our cosmetic treatments and products, the only aging we’re dead-set against is premature, preventable damage to skin that causes early wrinkling, sagging, and spots and can lead to skin cancer. Otherwise, we’re here to help you live gracefully and beautifully every year of your life.

What about you? How do you feel about the term anti-aging? Share your comments with us on social media, or talk to our cosmetic consultant Mary Lou Brimecombe today about protecting and reclaiming your own ageless beauty.



Our treatment suites are equipped with the latest dermatological lasers, for advanced, safe, comfortable treatment of your skin's medical and cosmetic needs. Our in-house Acne Treatment Center offers complete care for all ages and acne stages. We offer a full line of skin care products designed to suit your unique...

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