Acne on the face is a disease in which corks are formed in the skin pores, consisting of sebum and desquamated skin cells. The disease is commonly referred to as terms: acne or acne, and acne itself is often called acne vulgaris or comedo.
Acne can be divided into two types -
- Closed acne (Fig. 1-3) -
they are white and look like white bumps on the surface of the skin. Traffic jams inside them are not visible.
- Open acne (Fig.4-6) -
plugs are clearly visible inside the pores, because have black color. The dark color of the plugs does not give dirt, as is commonly believed, but the skin pigment melanin.
Almost all people have acne on the nose. Quite often there is acne on the forehead, chin, cheeks.
In many articles, incompetent authors are often called acne vulgaris - acne. Although acne and pimples are completely different things that are even treated differently ... With acne in the pores of the skin there are fatty plugs, in the absence of inflammation in and around them. And a pimple is a hair follicle that is festering under a stopper, around which inflammation develops (Fig. 7).
Dermatology also has the term Acne. This term combines both acne and acne, and also includes the effects of the healing of large pimples and cysts - scars and age spots.
Facial Acne: Causes of Education
Hair follicles and sebaceous glands located around them take part in the formation of acne. From such follicles hairs grow on the face, penetrating to the skin surface - through the skin pores (Fig.8a). The sebaceous glands, in turn, produce sebum, which penetrates through the ducts first into the lumen of the hair follicle and then through the pores to the surface of the skin.
The appearance of acne is associated with 2 main factors:
- Increased sebum production of sebaceous glands -
This usually occurs in adolescents during puberty. During this period, the amount of hormones (androgens) increases in the blood, which are produced both in men and in a smaller amount - in women. Androgens tend to enhance the function of the sebaceous glands.
- Keratosis epithelium of the hair follicle -
the inner walls of all hair follicles are covered with epithelial cells. These cells, like any other cells on the surface of the skin and mucous membranes, are gradually exfoliated, and new ones appear in their place. Violation of the rate of keratinization of epithelial cells (called keratosis) leads to the fact that in the follicle lumen the number of dead dead cells increases.
As a result of these two processes, the skin - the pores are clogged with traffic jams consisting of sebum and desquamated epithelial cells. Moreover, the sebaceous glands continue to produce sebum. But due to traffic jams - it can no longer get onto the surface of the skin and accumulates in the lumen of the hair follicle, stretching its walls (Fig.8b).
If such plugs form in the depth of the skin pore (closer to the hair follicle), then there are closed white eels (Fig. 9,1,2,3). If the plugs form in the upper part of the skin pores, then open blackheads with black heads are formed (Fig.10,4,5,6).
How acne is formed from acne -
If inside a blocked hair follicle there are bacteria brought from the skin surface, inflammation develops, which is that pus is formed inside the follicle. This is a real pimple (Fig. 7), not an eel.
You can find more information on the treatment of acne in our article:
→ "Everything about acne treatment"
Facial Acne: Predisposing Factors
The main cause of acne is the increased production of androgens during puberty. However, this is not the only factor that contributes to the appearance of acne. Predisposing factors are also:
- Cosmetics on the basis of fat -
skin care products and cosmetics can lead to acne if they are made on a fat basis. For the face, it is desirable to use products that are water-based (such products do not clog the pores of the skin).
- Contraceptive pills and hormonal changes -
women may experience regular exacerbation of acne once a month, due to changes in hormonal levels during the premenstrual period. Birth control pills can only stimulate acne if these tablets contain only pure progesterone.
- Medications -
if you are taking anticonvulsants, bromides, lithium, iodides, prednisone or its analogues, as well as steroid hormones (they are usually taken by athletes) - keep in mind that they can stimulate the appearance of acne.
- Increased sweating -
if due to physiology or due to increased physical exertion, or working conditions - you often sweat, it can aggravate your acne.
Acne: treatment at home
How to get rid of acne? ... In the treatment of acne the most difficult thing is to make the right choice of preparations for treating the skin of the face. Funds from acne are sold in pharmacies and the Internet in large quantities. Moreover, many of them are practically ineffective, and only a dermatologist or cosmetologist can correctly evaluate and select drugs for treatment.
- Treatment of acne in adolescents is better to start as early as possible, because in this case, it is possible to prevent the transformation of acne into acne, after which scars and pigment spots remain on the skin.
- Treatment of acne in women is carried out in the same way as other groups of patients (basic therapy you will see below). If the baseline therapy effect is insufficient, birth control pills or spironolactone can be prescribed.
Acne treatment regimen -
Below you can familiarize yourself with the groups of drugs, voiced in the scheme.
1. Retinoids -
Preparations of the Retinoid group are derived from vitamin "A". And this is probably the best remedy for acne. The use of retinoids helps to remove already formed plugs (acne) from the skin pores, and also helps to prevent the appearance of new acne. The highest efficacy in retinoids is in the form of lotions; gels are a little inferior to them, and creams are the least effective.
Modern retinoid drugs are made on the basis of Tretinoin, Adapalena or Tazaroten. Keep in mind that drugs with retinoids can be both mono-component and combined. Monocomponent retinoids are used when there are acne on the skin (without acne), and combined ones - with a mixed form, i.e. when there are acne and acne on the skin at the same time.
Monocomponent retinoids -
1) with tretinoin: Retin-A (USA), Lokatsid (France) and Ayrol (Switzerland)
2) with adapalene: Differin (France), Klenzit (India), Deriva (India)
3) on the basis of tazaroten: Zorak (Germany), Tazret-gel (India).
Combination drugs -
Retinoids are usually combined with either an antibiotic or benzoyl peroxide. These components are very effective when, in addition to acne on the skin there are inflamed acne.
1) "Epiduo" (France), "Effezell" (France) - retinoid Adapalen + benzoyl peroxide,
2) "Deriva-S", "Klenzit-S" - contain Adapalen + antibiotic clindamycin.
Application Scheme -
Retinoids are used only once a day (at night) - 20 minutes after washing the face with a mild detergent. The course of treatment is at least 3 months, but you will see a good result after 5-6 weeks. It is necessary to start using the drug from 3 times a week, gradually moving to daily use. In this case, the skin will not be very irritated and quickly get used.
Application features -
- slight burning or irritation of the skin is possible,
- retinoids should not be used with peeling agents (possibly significant skin irritation),
- increase the sensitivity of the skin to the sun (be sure to use sun protection on sunny days).
2. Azelaic acid -
Azelaic acid-based preparations exfoliate dead skin layers, helping to remove traffic jams, and also have an antibacterial effect. In acne, azelaic acid is prescribed as an independent means of treatment, and in acne with acne, as an adjunct to benzoyl peroxide or an antibiotic gel.
For oily skin is better to use gels, and for dry - creams with azelaic acid. Examples of drugs: Skinoren (Germany), Azix-derm (India), Azogel (Russia), Acne-derma (Poland).
Application features -
the drug is applied 2 times a day on the skin on which there is acne. The effect will be noticeable after 1 month from the start of treatment. The course of treatment is at least 3 months. The positive features of azelaic acid is that it does not increase the sensitivity of the skin to the sun, prevents the appearance of age spots, and also causes less irritation of the skin.
3. Salicylic acid -
Acetylsalicylic acid has the property of dissolving the fatty substrate that makes up acne, and also exfoliate dead skin cells. Salicylic acid acne preparations come in at 0.5% or 2% concentration, both in the form of lotions and in the form of gels. An example is the Clearasil line of products (Klerasil) in the form of a lotion, cream and gel.
When acne salicylic acid has a good effect, but it is still at least 2 times lower than from the use of retinoids. But the use of salicylic acid is not for acne, but for acne - generally ineffective and simply meaningless.
Application features -
Prepare for the fact that with regular use of salicylic acid products, the skin will be red and flaky. If you have dark skin - keep in mind that salicylic acid with regular use will cause the appearance of age spots on the skin.
4. Antibiotic Acne Treatment -
Antibiotic treatment of acne cannot be effective because acne is not inflammatory and not infected. Eel is a pore blocked by skin fat, in the depth of which the sebum secreted by sebaceous glands accumulates. Therefore, antibiotics for acne do not apply, but for acne - on the contrary is one of the main types of treatment.
Above we list an exhaustive list of drugs that are used specifically for acne. If the result of treatment with these drugs was insufficient, then similar drugs with higher concentrations of active ingredients are selected.
Important: if you have both acne and acne at the same time -
In this case, in addition to retinoids and azelaic acid, the following groups of drugs are used:
- benzoyl peroxide gels, lotions and creams (very effective!),
- or antibiotics in the form of gels for local use.
With the properties and trademarks of these drugs you can find in the article: "Preparations for the treatment of acne"
Three additional rules for treating acne at home -
In addition to the main treatment with retinoids, azelaic or salicylic acids - you should always follow three important rules ...
- Regular cleansing and skin care -
2 times a day, wash your face with mild detergents only (eg Neutrogena). Due to this, the skin will be clean and its irritation will be minimized. You also need to eliminate the use of cosmetics and skin care products based on fat (they clog pores). Use only water based products!
Periodically, you can use preparations for a soft peeling. You can do this peeling even at home, but you only need to use professional tools for home use, but not soda, aspirin or lemon. Such products most often contain glycolic acid, which exfoliates dead skin cells of the skin, which allows including open pores.
- Reduced sebum production -
To reduce the amount of sebum inside and on the surface of the skin, as well as the oily shine of the skin - use the following means:
→ special toners for cleaning oily skin,
→ special cosmetic strips (Fig. 19), which are attached to the surface of the skin on the nose, forehead, cheeks, or chin, in order to pull sebum from the pores (Niveya, Propeller, etc.).
→ Special cosmetic masks will allow skin fat to be pulled out of the skin.
- Bacteria reduction -
if you only have acne, then using these tools is not necessary. However, if acne periodically turns into acne, then you can use antibacterial agents based on benzoyl peroxide (1 time in 2 days) in order to prevent the appearance of acne.
Is it possible to squeeze acne -
You need to keep your hands away from acne. This is due to the fact that squeezing acne can: firstly, lead to penetration into the depth of the infection and the development of purulent acne, secondly, in some cases during compression (especially closed acne), a rupture of the sebaceous gland fat occurs.
This leads to getting fat from the sebaceous gland not to the surface of the skin, but deep into the soft tissues, which will cause inflammation in the deeper layers of the skin and suppuration. It is best to use special strips and medical masks designed to extract sebum from the pores.
But in some cases, dermatologists and cosmetologists still recommend the removal of acne. This is done with the help of special tools "comedo-extractors" (Fig. 20 and video).
Squeezing blackheads: video
We hope that our article on the topic: How to remove blackheads from your face turned out to be useful to you!
Author: editors of the portal.