My brothers acne...
HI! My brother, who is 18, is frustrated with his acne. I have been tentative to give him suggestions for a few reasons being that I have a clear face myself, I don't really know what to do, and I don't want to further the problem. He is also very self conscious about it, so the conversation doesn't come up often. This morning though, we deciding letting you all help might be a good thing.
I'd say he has moderate acne. It constantly covers his face and he has scars from past pimples. He does not get any abnormally large ones, just the normal whiteheads and red pin points.
As of now he uses OXY face pads twice a day and he also uses the face wash, though I'm not sure how often. He complains that even with this regimen it seems like new pimples keep appearing. This is what the packaging of the products look like.
Salicylic Acid is the main ingredient in both. I have used the pads occasionally when I am trying to get rid of a minor blemish, and it feels very drying. The face wash has a pretty offensive smell to it. He gets both at walgreens.
My thoughts are that these products, and how often he is using them, are drying out his skin to the extent where his skin is now producing excess oils. Is this correct? I also thought exfoliating might help, but I don't know.
My main questions are-
Would exfoliating help?
Is he over drying his face?
What products should he use?
and Is there a way to get rid of his scars?
Thank you so much for your help! He is going off to college next year; I think this is why he has been so worried about it recently.
~We are all beautiful~
Hmm, acne is always a mystery, especially since everyone's skin is so different. I feel like I've literally tried everything on the market with little results. Anywoo, to answer a few of your questions...
1. Exfoliating can sometimes help, but for some people it can really aggravate their skin. Also, there is a difference between physical and chemical exfoliation. Physical (like buffing grains) can sometimes irritate acne because it pretty much tears open the pimple, not only spreading bacteria but also taking it longer to heal. If you want to try a physical exfoliator, I would try something super gentle like Philosophy's exfoliating daily wash (do NOT, I repeat DO NOT use apricot scrub or anything like that...it'll make matters so much worse). In terms of chemical exfoliants, things like salicylic acid and glycolic acid are designed to help shed the top layer of skin, therefore basically allowing the gunk to come to the surface. Sometimes these methods can be petty drying though, so you need to be super careful...this leads me to my next answer
2.Overdrying the face can definitely lead to more acne/more oil. When using harsh products, it's really important to use a good moisturizer. Most people claim that acne-sufferers should only use oil-free moisturizers, but I honestly don't think its not that important. I struggle with acne and the only moisturizer I can use that doesn't cause breakouts is Josie Maran's Argan oil. I also stray away from any moisturizer containing fragrance, silicone, and mineral oil/petroleum.
3. In terms of products to use, it's really hit or miss and really varies person to person. Sometimes products with more than 1% salicylic acid can be drying, so try looking for a cleanser with a smaller amount of it (most drugstore cleansers have 2%). Also, I've been able to cross-reference the ingredients in the products I've used that have broken me out and have found some trigger ingredients like silicone, fragrance, high levels of alcohol, mineral oil/petroleum and sulfates. The alcohol and sulfates are especially drying, and for me personally silicone and fragrance simply irritate my skin. I've found that most OTC products designed for acne don't really work since they are loaded with a bunch of uncessary ingredients, many of which are listed above. My suggestion would be to look for a cleanser that doesn't have a bunch of chemicals like that. Philosophy's Clear Days Ahead Salicylic Acid is a prime example of this (I know it seems like I'm recommending all philosophy products, but I honestly have had success with both of these). Philosophy actually has a little acne trial kit in it, so maybe that's something worth checking out?
4. Scarring..it takes sooo long to heal, and sometimes time and patience are the best remedy. I'd say proper moisturization is going to be key for him at the moment, and that he should wait to use products designed to lighten scars until his acne totally clears up because sometimes products like that can irritate acne.
I hope some of this information has helped...I've been suffering from acne for the last 8 years and am just now solving my acne mystery by using prescription-strength topical creams and antibiotics my derm gave me. But I think my bout of acne is a much different story than your brothers for my skin is really sensitive and tempermental. In solving the acne puzzle, I think it's all about trial and error, proper moisturization, and patience. Also, sometimes with acne products your acne becomes much worse before it gets better--this is called purging, where your skin is de-gunking itself in order to begin the healing process. So if he tries something new and notices that he's breaking out, don't be alarmed--it's most likely purging. But if it continues for longer than a week or two, and acne appears in places you don't normally get acne/the acne itself looks different than your normal type of acne, it might be a sign that the product just doesn't suit your skin type. so i guess just be mindful of the difference...
anyway, I'm sorry this is long and all over the place, but I just wanted to give as much advice/help as I could because I can totally relate and understand how annoying/difficult acne can be. please let me know if you need any more info/have any questions at all!
Hope this helps and best of luck!
Sorry to hear your brother is having a hard time with acne. I have had it for 14 years and have finally started accutane for my problems. The first thing i would reccomend is for your brother to see a dermatologist. he may be able to start an antibiotic and that could clear alot of things up. If he does not have deep pimples his problem may be bacterial based not hormonal which is a good thing as this is easier to deal with. The other thing I would sayis that yes, if he is over drying his skin he may be getting more pimples due the the irritation. Everyone's skin is different bu this is what i would reccomend:
Use a washa nnd lotion that are not for acne, but just cleanse the skin, would reccomend first aid beauty: this stuff is gentle and made for sensitive skin and provides good hydration (it is not scented so it doesnt smell girly but works miracles for soothing the skin ( i am currently using it)
Then he can use an over the counter acne cream treatment. for acne treatment without salycylic acid, you could try tea tree oil. You can ge this in alot of organic sections or at a health food store, it is a natural antiseptic that is not drying.
you can apply a little with a wet cotton ball and call it done. hope this helps and good luck to your brother, acne is sometimes something that requires alot of patience, but he can get there, i promise
My brother is the same age and has been in the same situation. He tried very similar things to the OXY treatment pads but were a different brand and while they kept them at bay they never helped tremendously. My best advice for your brother would be to have him go to a dermatologist. Thats what my brother ended up doing and there has been a dramatic change in his acne. For the better of course! Depending on his acne the dermatologist with most likely prescribe an antibotic for him to take or some kind of wash and topical creme.
As for the scars I actually have the same problem and I use the Dr. Brandt Dark Spots No More Serum. Its a bit pricey but it definitely gets the job done. Hope this helps and good luck!
Hi I have acne skin and I hope it this informawould help . First I used those oxy and they really dry your skin , it makes it redder and then you have oily skin ( because your skin was like " oh dry skin I need to produce more oil " ) so you need a product that don't over dried your skin . I recommendEd http://www.sephora.com/search/search.jsp?_requesti
My son (16 years old) has been seeing great success with a line I used when I was in my twenties - Shiseido's Pureness Line (most products available on Sephora). I now (in my 40s) use a line from Shiseido for aging, but I used the Pureness Line well into my 30s to address acne and effectively clean make-up off. My skin is combination to dry, and my son's is essentially the same. I beleive the line is designed for combo skin.
My son finds the cleansing foam to be highly effective in getting off the grime that teenage boys get into when they are active. He has now been using the following products for nearly a year and won't use anything else:
Shiseido Pureness Deep Cleansing Foam
Shiseido Pureness Balancing Softener Alcohol-Free (truly a TONER)
Shiseido Pureness Matifying Moisturizer Oil-Free
Recently I bought him this brush, which he started using one-daily in the shower, and he has seen great results. It helps him to thoroughly cleanse without over-aggrivation of his skin:
Shiseido The Skincare Cleansing Massage Brush (a GREAT Christmas gift)
And we also picked up these two products based on the recommendation of a counter gal. He uses the scrub probably twice weekly, and he uses the acne blemish gel only as needed - it only takes a little dab with a q-tip, so it lasts forever.
Shiseido Pureness Pore Purifying Warming Scrub*
Shiseido Pureness Blemish Clearing Gel*
* note - these last two products are not available on Sephora, or at least I have not seen them - we had to get them at the Shiseido counter
I hope that's helpful for your brother. It's heartbreaking to see a young man struggle with something that some good products and discipline (regular care) can in many cases help.
My son found that with these products he can keep clear with exception of the occasional mild to moderate break-out when he is in a growth spurt. Before this line, he had moderate to bad acne beginning to affect him. We jumped on it pretty quickly and after trying about three other lines designed for teens and/or men, I decided to give this line I had used a try. The Pureness line has been around and the formula has remained consistent and true for well over a decade to my knowledge, maybe longer. That staying power evidences it's worth, AND gives me confidence they won't switch up or go away. Nothing is more frustrating than finding something that works and then.....(fill in the blank).
One more thing, which I am sure you know:
Consistency is key. My son got lazy for a while with this system that was working, and even then he started to get huge breakouts. We talked about his consistency and about HOW he was washing his face. We found he was sometimes skipping the regimen at bedtime, that he was being too rough - scrubbing instead of gently cleansing, that he wasn't drinking enough water, and that his other hygeine - dirty bedding and clothing was a problem.
He immediately started drinking more water, cut out some acne triggers from his diet (caffeine and excess starches), got back to his morning and evening full skincare regimen, we bought the brush so he could cleanse gently but fully, changed his entire bedding weekly and changed his pillowcase nightly, and stopped wearing his hoodies over and over again without washing - and voila - he cleared up!
Best wishes for fabulous skin to you all.