Believe it or not, we have all been there. We have all suffered at one time or another from acne that just will not go away. From pimples popping up at the wrong time, be it before an important function that we just had to look good for, or a meeting for which we had wanted to look our most presentable, acne has pestered us time and again, shattering our confidence along with our self-esteem, leaving us desperate to get rid of it once and for all.
In our frantic attempts at eliminating blemishes, we tend to make various mistakes. We pop the pimples, use unnatural and ineffectual products, as well as medication which in turn not only takes a toll on our pockets, but does little to nothing to actually counter the acne threat. Moreover, it can leave us with inflamed skin and permanent, deep scars that serve as a reminder of the mistakes we wish we hadn’t made in the first place.
Alas, what can we really do other than blaming our bad luck and being envious of those who have crystal clear, radiant skin free of acne?
It turns out that, we can do a lot.
By understanding what acne is, what causes it, and identifying what type of, as well as the type of acne we have, we can, in fact, get rid of acne quite promptly, and if you think that you are the only one that is bothered by acne then think again and have a good look around. Even famous celebrities like Britney Spears, Megan Fox, Angelina Jolie, Jessica Alba, Victoria Beckham, Kendall Jenner, Brad Pitt, Daniel Radcliff, and Nicholas Cage had acne, so calm down, take a deep breath and educate yourself about acne so that you can get rid of it systematically as well as permanently.
Here follows a comprehensive guide on acne for you, full of foolproof tricks as well as remedies that you can master to counter any nasty breakout that threatens your confidence, complexion, and beauty.
What is Acne exactly?
Acne is a very common skin disease. It is primarily a form of skin lesions and inflammations which occur because the oil glands (sebaceous glands) of the skin become affected by bacteria. It is characterized and identified by red pimples on the skin, and affects people mostly when they hit puberty and is usually at its peak when individuals are 14-24 years of age.
What causes Acne?
When the skin is not washed properly and regularly, the pores become clogged which, in turn, traps the dead skin cells, oil, as well as bacteria, leading to the formation of pimples. The hormonal fluctuations in one’s body – the imbalance of testosterone/estrogen levels – causes acne. It leads to over-production of oil in one’s sebaceous glands which helps develop acne. Genetics play a big part when it comes to the breakout of acne. If your parents had acne, then chances are that you will too. This is primarily because your genetic makeup, immune system, and skin’s sensitivity are features that you inherit. Hence, the hereditary factor plays a crucial role when it comes to the development as well as the fight against acne.
In addition to this, stress, depression, smoking, and consumption of alcohol all directly lead to the development of acne. Surprisingly, your diet also plays a major but indirect role in the formation of zits as well. After all, your body is ‘what you eat’. Processed foods, sugar, dairy, and carbohydrates have all been proven causes of acne in one way or another.
What are the types of Acne?
All kinds of acne can be categorized into one of two main groups: inflammatory and non-inflammatory acne. The former consists of pustules, papules, nodules, and cysts whereas the latter consists of whiteheads and blackheads.
There are four main types of acne: Hormonal, Vulgaris, Cystic, and Inversa.
Hormonal acne tends to occur at the same time for instance around a particular date of each month or after regular intervals on mostly the same spots such as cheeks and jawline. It consists of pimples that are deep and full of pus.
Acne Vulgaris is characterized by whiteheads, blackheads, oily skin, inflamed or non-inflamed pimples. It occurs because the hair follicles become clogged from the bottom-up. It affects the face, chest, as well as back and is a long-term disease which can, eventually, lead to severe scarring.
Cystic Acne can be termed as the most painful and severe form of acne. Although it is a type of acne vulgaris, it deserves recognition on its own because of its effects. Hyperpigmentation, permanent scarring, formulation of giant acne nodules as well as lesions makes cystic acne standout and easily recognizable.
Acne Inversa which occurs when pores are clogged from the top down usually forms in armpits, in between breasts and buttocks, due to the rubbing together of two different skin areas. It is characterized by excessive skin growth which becomes inflamed and in turn formulates pimples.
Effective and Efficient Remedies to Counter Acne Quickly
Now to the most important part: How can you get rid of acne quickly? One thing that must be understood before we delve into the solutions is that each individual has a different skin type and immune system. Odds are that the type of acne you suffer from and how your skin responds to different treatments can also vary. Hence, one remedy that works for someone else might not work for you, or even work against you, so it is recommended that you do a patch test – that is trying out the strategy on some other part of your skin other than the area affected by acne to see beforehand how your skin responds. Avoid using remedies that irritate your skin and cause inflammation. Also, trying all the remedies at once isn’t going to help, in fact, it will only make matters worse.
Find what works best for you and stick to it. That being said, the following are the tried and tested strategies that counter acne and provide swift relief. Do give them a try:
Tea tree oil is an exceptional solution for treating acne. It not only fights against the bacteria that causes acne, but also helps the skin to heal faster. Just mix a couple of drops of tea tree oil in any carrier oil such as olive oil/jojoba oil among others, or mix it with a minute amount of aloe Vera gel. Apply the mixture onto the affected areas of your skin using a cotton swab and leave it on for 20-30 minutes after which you should wash your face with lukewarm water. Repeat this process 2-3 times a day and you will notice acne clearing out.
Icing is one of the most effective techniques that you can use if you are looking for quick results. It can reduce not only the size of the pimples but also the redness which makes your acne standout. Furthermore, it improves blood circulation and tightens the skin pores, which in turn reduces the swelling. Just wrap a couple of ice cubes or crushed ice in a clean piece of cloth and hold it over the affected area for 2-3 minutes. Repeat the process with 10-20 minute intervals.
While this may be a shock to you, applying white toothpaste can drastically help clear acne as well. You can either apply white toothpaste before going to bed directly onto the pimples or even in morning for at least 30-40 minutes. It will reduce the redness and shrink the size of pimples so much so that you won’t even notice them. It is recommended that you combine the ice and toothpaste treatment to get the best possible result.
Aloe Vera gel can be used to treat acne. It is safe and easy to use without any side effects and has antibacterial as well as anti-inflammatory properties which can counter acne of any type, and heal your skin. You can either extract the gel from aloe vera leaf or buy any product which contains pure aloe vera and apply it directly over the affected area in abundance. Keep it on for around 15 minutes before washing it off and repeat this process two times daily. You’ll be surprised by the results you get.
Last but not least is steaming. It is the ideal way of eliminating the dirt, bacteria, and dead skin cells along with oil that clogs up your pores and causes acne. Just pour boiling water into a container and position your face over the container so that the steam can come into contact with the affected part of your skin. Take the steam for at least 5-10 minutes. When you are done, rinse your face with water and apply an oil-free, non-comedogenic moisturizer. Not only will this prevent future breakouts, but will also help in the recovery from the current ones.
Knowing what particular type of acne you have is critical and this information goes a long way to helping you fight your battle against it. On top of that, you need to know as much as you can about your own skin as this will help you pick and choose remedies that can give you the maximum results in the minimum possible time. Still, if you need, you can consult a dermatologist to get a professional viewpoint, and you should always aim to use natural products on your face.
It goes without saying that pimples are indeed frustrating and a very common problem but with patience and good use of the remedies mentioned above you can get rid of acne. Just remember that you are beautiful and these temporary blemishes should not be allowed to take away from you your freedom and confidence. So, remain hopeful, relax, and enjoy life.
Great Acne Resources:
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