How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores?

 I am caught up in a vicious cycle of acne from clogged pores.  This winter may skin (usually normal combination, blemish free, zero pores, zero lines) became severely dehydrated.  To address that issue, I over did with oils, heavy emollients, masks, etc. etc. and deep seeded acne ensued and never quite resolved.  Salicylic acid seems to push the bumps towards regression but never completely resolve.  This afternoon, after using AmorePacific treatment enzyme and scrubbing way too hard,  two patches of skin flaked off leaving me with two islands of red, raw, skinUgh,...can someone please help me break this cycle??? Please.

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

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It's worth it at this point to go to a reputable spa for a facial.  Your esthetician can extract those pores that are clogged without making your skin angry.  After that, use just 1 product dailt that has salicylic acid in it to keep them cleaned out.  It'll be over soon!

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

Have you tried Dr. Brandt's Pores No More Vacuum Cleanser? It's my new obsession. I used to scrub scrub away to unclog my pores, but recently discovered this. Its a clear gel you apply to your face, wait about 10 minutes while it dries, turns a light blue color and sucks the junk out of your pores in the process. Then you wash it off! My skin looks ridiculously clean like I've never seen it before using this product :smileyhappy:

 

While your skin is angry, raw and red right now- I would recommend using some First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream- this stuff is great for angry skin (I feel like I recommend this to someone every day practically!)

 

 

 

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

Awesome!!  I think I'll add those to my basket too for when my skin clears up... because I know it will!! It just has to.  I am willing it so...

 

Thanks crazyRN.  

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

@crayzeeRN, I am going to need you to stop giving recommendations on products! This is the 2nd one you have provided a great review on that is on my loves list and have yet to pull trigger as I was unsure! I need a HG pore cleaner and yet to find one and now you got me convinced to try this. But has you know I am on a no-buy! You are killing me, can you refrain from commenting on products during the no-buy period please! Your cooperation is greatly appreciated ;-) 

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

Eeeep sorry! I wasn't aware that my enabling-power was set to kill! Turning it back down to "stun." :smileyvery-happy:

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

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Hi blushnglow,

 

I recommend taking a break from exfoliation for at least a week. I would keep your routine as basic as possible while it is still healing from the overexfoliation. I know it is difficult when you see breakouts and clogged pores on your face, but I would keep it pretty basic for the time being.

 

I recommend cleansing once a day, in the evenings with the First Aid Beauty Face Cleanser. After cleansing as well as in the morning, stick with a fragrance free, oil-free moisturizer to prevent further irritation to the skin. A great moisturizer for this is Clinique's Moisture Surge Intense for Dry to Dry Combination skin.

 

Good luck! 

Best,
Randee

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

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Thanks for taking the time to give me your suggestions Randee.  Good thing tomorrow is the VIB sale so I am already prepped with my coupon and list in hand (that includes Moisture Surge!!))..  I would also consider FAB if it was avail at the local store in the city where I'm currently working.  I hope the Algenist Gentle Rejuvenating Cleanser falls in that same category of gentle creamy cleansers??  

 

If patience is a virtue, then after this week i hope to be incredibly virtuous!! haha.  Thanks again Randee!

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

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How can you scrub too hard with AP Treatment Enzyme Peel? it dissolves into a rich lather & doesn't have any granules. 

 

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

Oh no I hope my post didn't come off as a dig on the AP product itself.  Rather I was explaining my course of actions and the given result.  I actually am a huge fan of the enzyme peel-  in a regular situation when my skin was healthy.  It just so happened to be the last step and ultimately the straw that broke the camels back so to speak.  I now realize that was not the thing to do on already damaged skin.  The two raw patches were exactly where my fingers had rubbed the peel (I admit excessively in my growing frustration) and left on longer than the recommended time in hoping it would be more effective.  

 

My point being that any product is suitable - but in the right context.  I love honey but I would give it to a diabetic in a hyperglycemic coma. 

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

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Gotcha. I get really dry flaky skin in the winter + retin-a, and love the AP for morning use a few times a week. I find it gently eats away at the dry skin, but I've never had it peel off in chunks. 

I couldn't figure out how you were able to scrub it too hard LOL. I know some people will use a wet wash cloth with their cleanser to exfoliate, and wanted to make sure you weren't doing that with the AP. 

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

Yes this! I think this is the most gentle "peel" I have ever used. It is not abrasive at all. 

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

blushnglow -

 

First and foremost, no more manual scrubbing!  Any type of gritty scrub or over scrubbing with a brush or harsh cloth will only irritate your acne and make it worse.  If your oil glands are producing too much sebum, it blocks your pores and acts as a glue to the skin cells that should be naturally sloughing off.  Instead, these dead cells block up your pores, holding up the oil and viola - blemish.  So yes, the more you can keep skin cells exfoliating in a normal manner, the less your pores should be blocked, eliminating blemishes and blackheads.  However, manual scrubbing cannot remove the dead cells inside your pores.  Instead, they can block your pores even more, making your acne worse.  You need to use a chemical exfoliator for the best results and to break the cycle.

 

You should exfoliate with a topical solution that is gentle enough to be used every day.  There are two types of topical exfoliators, AHAs (glycolic acid being the most common) and BHAs (salicylic acid).  Both AHAs and BHAs help remove the top layers of your skin, increasing cell turnover and helping slough off the dead cells.  In addition, BHAs are also oil-soluble, meaning they can penetrate inside the pore and help remove dead cells there.  AHAs work best in concentrations of 5%-8% and BHAs work best in concentrations of 1%-2%.

 

I would recommend you look at Lotus Moon's blemish control solution.  It contains 5% glycolic acid and 2% salicylic acid in the same formulation.  Lotus Moon is an organic skin company - you can find their products at the SMB Essentials website.  Start out using the solution every other day, building up to once or twice a day as needed. 

 

It is also important you keep your skin moisturized when you are exfoliating to avoid having your oil glands over produce.  You may also want to consider Lotus Moon's Aloe Matte moisturizer for this or Clinque's Moisture Surge.  I have had good experiences with both, and I think you will find they provide the moisture you need without making your face shiny or your acne worse (I love the Lotus Moon Aloe Matte in the summer).

 

You can also try the following as a nighttime treatment - I do this when the "monthly" blemishes threaten.  Buy some organic tea tree oil and organic jojoba oil.  Desert Essence is a good brand.  At night, put one drop of tea tree oil in your hand and add just enough jojoba oil to cover your face.  Mix and apply.  Tea tree oil is amazing antiseptic, but is too harsh to be applied straight to your face. 

 

Finally, I'd lay off the AmorePacific treatment enzyme peel as well.  Unless its an AHA or BHA, it isn't really doing anything for you.  Papaya enzymes just aren't going to give you the results of an AHA or BHA.  You can use a clay mask once a week if you enjoy your mask time, but if you using a topical AHA/BHA I wouldn't recommend using any kind of enzyme mask or peel.

 

If these suggestions don't help, then snowshoe's right, you will probably need to visit a dermatologist.

 

I wish you the best of luck!

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

I so appreciate your reply quixotic!!  I finally understand what's causing the stubborn bumps on my face and glycolic acid is something that is really missing in my overall skin care routine. BHA on it's own is not enough.   I was just always under the impression that it would be too harsh for my delicate skin.  

 

I also love love your organic suggestions....and will pick up them the Moisture Surge tomorrow. Perfect timing.

 

Waking up this morning my red patches have healed but the bumps remain.  I will take all the advice from everyone and refrain from anything and just give my skin a chance to calm down. ( This was my very first venture into BT and I must say I am so happy I did!!))

 

 

 

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

[ Edited ]

Honestly?  You are best in talking to a dermatologist to get you and your skin back on the straight and narrow, especially if you are having continuing bouts with acne.  

 

Even if you don't see a doctor, ease up on the overexfoliation and the treatments.  Excessive scrubbing and overdosing on face treatments doesn't improve problem skin, but usually only makes things worse. You need to give your skin a break so it can heal and find its balance again.  

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

Thank you so much for your reply snowshoe! It's just really hard to exercise patience and restraint when it comes to exfoliating especially if I see those flakes coming on!! Getting in to see a derm can takes months....but probably worth the wait I guess.

 

I'll take your advice and ease up until then....

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

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Derms are usually hard to see if they do more of the lasers, big money treatments. However, a bigger derm office will have nurse practitioners, who can prescribe if needed, and may be the ones who deal with acne more than the derm themselves. There are also smaller practices and you could possibly get in faster also. Look for a derm that specializes in acne, they all can 'do it' but it's much better to know their specialty, they will have more training in that area.

 

And no more exfoliating! Yes seeing clogged pores can be annoying, but time is the key to repairing the skin.

Re: How to treat damaged skin from overexfoliation without exacerbating the underlying clogged pores

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Thanks you trysbeautyitems. I'll take all that into consideration.   I am so sitting on my hands!!!  Also,  I'll do some looking around for derms today but I'm pretty sure my PCP needs to write a referral. 

 

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