Let’s face it, there isn’t a good kind of grain But if you’re looking for outbreaks on a scale that goes from bad to worse, then cystic acne falls in the way, in a ‘worse’ way, for sure. You can try to get rid of cystic acne easily.
“Cystic acne creates the most frustrating type of inflammatory imperfections because they last longer and can cause long-term scars,” says Renée Rouelau, founder of Renée Rouelau Skincare, an expert on aesthetics and skin of celebrities based in Austin. They can also be painful.
Here is the information about cystic acne, including what you need to know and do to deal with it.
What is cystic acne?
“Acne comes in a variety of shapes and sizes,” says Tara Rao, M.D., who practices at the Schweiger Dermatology Group in New York City. Mild acne, its pimples, blackheads and smaller pimples, is generally described as comedonal acne. When those pimples enlarge and hurt and are deeper in the skin, you are probably seeing cystic acne, she says.
What does cystic acne look like?
Where imperfections are found in your skin is the greatest indicator of cystic acne. If your pimples are on the surface of your skin, that is, things that you could (but should not) squeeze out, you are dealing with comedonal acne. On the other hand, “the cysts form deep under the skin and never surface,” Rouleau explains, adding that they are also hard and painful.
Talk about adding insult to the injury. Cystic acne often arises along the chin and jaw line, Rouleau notes (more on why in a minute).
What are some causes of cystic acne?
As with other acne, you can blame clogged pores (usually with oil and dead skin) and bacteria (in this case, p.acnes) that feed on this dirt.
With cystic acne, bacteria cause inflammation and deep swelling in the pores. Whether you end up or not having it largely comes down to the genetics and luck of the draw, although good old hormones also play an important role.
“Cysts are usually triggered by an increase in hormones, so they commonly occur around a woman’s menstrual cycle,” says Rouleau. “During this time, the sebaceous glands of the skin become hypersensitive to the hormonal increase and react producing excess sebum.” In the middle of the cycle, there is also a decrease in estrogen and an increase in testosterone, which triggers sebum production.
All this eventually leads to swollen, swollen and hard spots under the skin. And hormonal acne, also known as adult acne, often appears around the chin and jaw.
Another possible trigger: dairy. According to Rouleau, cystic acne could be a sign that you are consuming more dairy products than your body can tolerate. (For your information, there have been several studies showing a correlation between acne and dairy. Recently, a 2018 study published in Nutrients found that the intake of milk, yogurt, and cheese increased the likelihood of acne in people from seven to 30 years). The exact connection is still unclear, but the general consensus is that once again it returns to hormones and that hormonal levels in milk stimulate excessive sebum production. (Related: How to Make DIY Makeup Primer )
What is the best treatment for cystic acne?
Now is really the time to call the big guns since most of the common over-the-counter acne treatments will not be able to reach the imperfections buried deep in the skin. “The dermatologist can better treat cystic acne and can suggest topical medications, oral medications and sometimes cortisone injections,” says Dr. Tao. (Topical and oral antibiotics are commonly prescribed, such as spironolactone, an oral medication that addresses the hormonal component.)
Above all, adopt a 100 percent non-intervention policy: “Don’t touch the cysts,” says Rouleau. “They are not meant to surface and doing so can cause scars or persistent redness that lasts for weeks.” Keeping hands away from the face will also be useful to mitigate the spread of bacteria (and for your information, all imperfections are related to bacteria in the pores).
What you can do depends on your prevention game. Rouleau suggests cutting the dairy for three weeks to see if that is the culprit.
When it comes to topics, be careful with standard stain treatments: most dry the surface of the skin, trapping even more bacteria that are buried deep beneath the shin, he says. Benzoyl peroxide is a good ingredient to look for, as it kills the bacteria that cause acne and has anti-inflammatory benefits. The warning: look for it in a lower concentration (2.5 percent), as studies show that it is as effective as higher percentages but less dry. Find it on Neutrogena On-The-Spot Acne Spot Treatment (Buy it, $ 17.50, amazon.com). Rouleau also recommends soothing and antibacterial masks to prevent breakouts without causing more irritation or stress to your skin. Try: Nivea Daily Essentials 1 Minute Urban Detox Mask (Buy it, $ 16.99, amazon.com).
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