What’s worse, acne in your teens when you have less confidence in your sense of self, or acne as an adult when you thought your skin worries would be more about sun damage and wrinkles than spots and an oily t-zone? We reckon, if we put this to the vote amongst friends, it would probably sway to the latter, but probably because we are adults and the ‘now’ generally outweighs the ‘then.’
Even so, adult acne is an annoying little beast. It often manifests itself around the jawline, chin, neck and lower cheeks due to hormonal fluctuations (specifically Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) if you want a name to blame). These fluctuations increase oil production, clog pores and, along with other usual suspects such as stress and diet combine to make acne in adult women more common than ever. Sigh.
But it’s not all bad news for females over the age of 25, because never before have there been so many effective, proven acne treatments available at the doctor’s office. Herein, our current top three…
1. HydraFacial MD
You may have noticed this already, but we can’t get enough of HydraFacials here at HintMD. Hydrating, clarifying, deeply cleansing and radiance-boosting, bar doing the laundry and paying off your mortgage, there’s almost nothing a HydraFacial can’t achieve. It works by gently, but deeply exfoliating the skin before removing pore-clogging debris with a gentle suction action. Skin is then nourished with antioxidants, peptides and moisture for an enviable glow every time. And we’re talking about a real glow that almost comes from within, rather than the surface glow you get from a bit of clever makeup action. Trust us, we’ve tried it.
When it comes to acne-sufferers, regular HydraFacials are a very wise move. Why? Because their number one purpose in life is to cleanse the skin.
“One of the major benefits of having HydraFacials is that your skin will be completely clean,” agrees Terrie Absher, licensed medical esthetician, HintMD partner and founder of Total Glow Wellness in Menlo Park, California.
“This makes it a great choice for acne sufferers who want to get ahead of the congestion that often leads to breakouts.”
Try: A HydraFacial MD every month
2. Chemical Peel
It figures that the right kind of chemical peel can be devilishly effective for treating acne. After all, it’s the top layer of dead, damaged skin cells that, if left alone, builds up on the surface, dulls your complexion and kick-starts the development of breakouts. Regular chemical peels help loosen these dead skin cells, allowing them to slough away to reveal smoother, clearer skin underneath.
Ask your doctor about the best option for you, but keep in mind that salicylic acid is one of the best ingredients for diving deep into your skin to unclog pores and keep the skin blemish-free – both immediately and long-term.
Try: A personally-prescribed PCA Skin Chemical Peel every two to three weeks
3. Light Therapy
Phototherapy or light therapy is a non-invasive procedure that works by exposing the skin to specific wavelengths of light in order to boost regeneration. This light is absorbed by cells within the skin to stimulate naturally-occurring cellular processes to make them more efficient and active when they may otherwise become slow and sluggish. In the case of acne-prone skin, a combination of both red and blue wavelengths are harnessed to kill bacteria, slow down sebum production, and reduce redness and inflammation. With no pain, no downtime, no irritation and no hassle, light therapy is a very popular choice for treating both acne lesions and scarring.
Try: NeoLTS Light Therapy System once or twice a week
Carrying on the good work yourself is obviously vital if you want to maintain your in-office results, so think about what goes on your skin as well as what goes in your body in the comfort of your own home.
Ask your skin expert about incorporating high-performing, medical-grade skincare such as SkinMedica or ZO Skin Health into your treatment plan and think seriously about introducing topical retinoids and ingredients such as salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide (BPO) into your regime. All are bit-hitters in the fight against acne.
When it comes to your diet, it’s wise to remember that high-glycemic-index carbs such as white bread and sugary foods can really sabotage your skin. Dairy and iodized salt are also thought to be acne-initiators, especially around your jawline and neck, so avoid these as much as possible. Instead, eat more whole grains and veggies and never underestimate the power of a large glass of water.
We repeat, never.