Skin Care Taboos
Dermatologists recommend that their
patients with acne and acne-prone skin avoid the following:
Astringents, masks, toners, and
exfoliators that contain scrubbing particles
Unless one of these products
contains an ingredient used to treat acne, such as salicylic
acid or benzoyl peroxide, these products do not help clear acne.
In fact, these products tend to irritate the skin and make acne
worse. These products also may make it more difficult to
tolerate prescription acne medications.
Greasy hair-care products
These hair-care products, such as
pomades and oil-containing gels, can drip onto the skin and clog
pores. This can cause acne.
Picking, popping, and squeezing
People pick and pop pimples to
get rid of them quickly. The truth is doing any of these can
irritate the skin and make acne worse. These also prolong
healing time and increase the risk of scarring.
Skin care products that contain oil
Many skin care products from
makeup to sunscreen contain oil. Oil can clog pores and lead to
breakouts. Look for products that say “oil-free,” “will not clog
pores” or “noncomedogenic.”
Some people apply rubbing alcohol
in order to dry out the oily skin. This will not help clear acne
nor prevent breakouts. In fact, it can irritate the skin and
Some people claim that their acne
clears with sun exposure. The truth is tanning can be very
damaging to the skin. If you are using a retinoid that you apply
to your skin (adapalene, tretinoin, or tazarotene) to treat
acne, you must:
These acne medications cause the
top layer of your skin to thin, which makes the skin very
sensitive to ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun and indoor
tanning devices. Not using a retinoid for a few days will not
reduce this sensitivity. Stopping for a few days can, however,
reduce the effectiveness of your acne treatment.
Tanning also increases one’s risk of developing melanoma and
other skin cancers. Using tanning beds before the age of 35
increases one’s risk for melanoma by 75%. Melanoma is now the
most common form of cancer for young adults 25-29 years old, and
is the second most common form of cancer for adolescents and
young adults 15-29 years old.
Touching the skin throughout the
Dermatologists advise their
patients with acne and acne-prone skin not touch their skin
frequently. This can cause flare-ups.
content solely developed by the American Academy of Dermatology