The angry red bumps on your otherwise smooth cheeks are enough to damper your mood. These come in various forms; whiteheads, blackheads, zits, or acne. If you have oily or acne-prone skin, we wouldn’t doubt you for a second when you say that you have tried gazillions of products, and various steps in AM-PM routines. If anything, we would empathize with you.
We also know how difficult it is to stick to the routines that you might have set up. We get it, there are tons of products that you have lined up. Layer over layer, it can be exhausting for anyone. It’s even more difficult at nighttime when all you want to do is just crawl over the bed and sleep like a baby! At that time, routines and acnes are the last thought on your mind.
WHAT IS ACNE?
When we say acne, skin covered in bright red bumps probably comes to mind. However, it is not the only way acne can manifest. Though it is very common, a huge amount people don’t know what acne is.
Acne occurs when the sebum (oil produced in your body) mixes with the dead skin cells and bacteria, clogging your pores. These clogged pores then form into bumps and many a time, a cyst. Simply put, acne is a bacterial infection.
The main bacteria that causes acne is scientifically called P. Acnes. This bacteria blooms in humid, oily, oxygen-less conditions. That’s unfortunately inside our skin. That means the existence of this bacteria becomes unavoidable, but there are some things we can do to prevent our skin from becoming a host to it.
TYPES OF ACNE
Being a skin condition that results in breakouts, it makes everything that appears on your skin a synonym for acne. However, it is important to understand the various types of acne in order to treat them right.
- Comedones: The whiteheads and blackheads that show up in oily prone areas of the skin, especially at the T-zone.
- Papules and pustules: The raised red bumps with pus, which are identical to pimples. These acnes are inflammatory. The main difference between the two is that papules are raised bumps, while pustules contain pus.
- Cysts: These are the hormonal breakouts that appear anywhere, and tend to show up as deeper cystic breakouts involving the lower one-third of the face or the jawline area. These inflammatory acne takes a long time to go away.
CAUSES OF ACNE
Apart from the dead skin cells, sebum, and bacteria, various other forces result in acne.
- Hormonal changes: This is the most obvious cause of almost all of our problems. Androgens are hormones that increase during puberty resulting in the enlargement of the Sebaceous Glands that results in increased production of sebum. Hormonal changes during midlife, pregnancy, or even through the menstrual cycle can often lead to breakouts.
- Stress: Okay, we just cannot stress enough about how much stress is not good for your overall health. Cortisol, the primary stress hormone, goes into overdrive if you are stressing too much. As a result, an excessive amount of cortisol is released into the bloodstream which further triggers increased oil.
- Diet: As much as it pains to say, maybe those fries weren’t good for your health after all! Studies suggest that certain ingredients can probably cause acne. Processed foods, increased intake of carbohydrates, fat and hydrogenated oils, spicy, pungent foods, meats, alcohol, and even coffee can amp up your acne.
- Genetics: Oily skin is something that can be passed through generations. This would mean that you’re prone to excessive sebum and therefore acne at all points in your life.