You've probably heard that washing your face a number of times throughout the day will make it less oily. While it may be a refreshing solution to get the sheen off your face, all it really does is temporarily dry your skin and can sometimes even cause redness and irritation.
“By washing your face more frequently, you’re not decreasing the secretion of your oil glands. That’s a myth,” Dr. Kyla Talens of Skinphilosophie, a medical aesthetic and skin care clinic, shares.
It’s no secret that oily skin is more prone to pimples and acne. According to the expert, the hyperactivity of oil glands is one of the four major culprits of your post-puberty breakouts. The other three are bacteria, inflammation, and the buildup of dead skin cells.
But have you ever wondered why your oil glands work harder than it should? Well, it’s got something to do with hormones. “Oil gland hypersecretion is affected by increased levels of androgens or male hormones. So with hormonal imbalances, one is more prone to having adult breakouts,” according to Dr. Talens.
The dermatologist also shares some of the over-the-counter products she usually prescribes but cautions that one must see a doctor first to discuss the pros and cons of topical solutions because various skin types react differently to each product. You wouldn’t want to end up with skin burns after a bit of self-medication, right?
Take note of the following products and ingredients the next time you buy products for your face and see if you can incorporate them into your current skincare routine:
This kills the acne-causing bacteria lodged inside your pores and ultimately helps in reducing the buildup of dead skin cells on the face. This is often used to treat mild cases of acne.
Tretinoin and Retinol
These retinoids are usually found in serums promising to moisturize and brighten the skin. It aids in producing collagen that helps minimize lines and pores. It also helps avoid the clogging of hair follicle pores with dead skin cells, which are the usual spots acne grows on.
Salicylic and Glycolic Acids
Both help exfoliate the skin to avoid clogged pores. They also lighten blemishes and calm skin inflammation. Glycolic acid, also known as AHA, breaks down the sebum on the face to make the skin softer, smoother, and healthier.
Remember certain skincare ingredients cannot be mixed together as the chemicals may negatively react when applied on your skin. Make sure to consult an expert before you design your grooming routine.
“Your doctor will have to identify the specific product types that you need, the right combination of products, the frequency of applications and its duration. Consulting a medical professional means avoiding unwanted side effects and getting medical-grade products,” Dr. Talens emphasizes.
Sometimes, topical solutions won’t be enough to solve your acne, and derma procedures should be the next step.
If you're willing to spend more cash, there's a whole range of (almost) painless electro-surgery procedures being offered such as Laser Genesis and PhotoTherapy with blue light. Using world-class lasers, hyperactive oil glands are shut down and bacteria on the face are eliminated. These procedures also de-clog pores and help your skin produce more collagen to reduce the size of pores and make facial lines less visible. Lasers also get rid of fine facial hair that often catch dirt and bacteria.
“The success of a treatment, of course, does not depend solely on the machines, but more on the skills of the medical practitioner. So go to a doctor that you trust!” Dr. Talens says. “You won’t obtain results if the machines are also not properly used either. Treatments have to be customized according to the acne severity, skin sensitivity, and the resources of the patient.”