Acne is often an unsightly and embarrassing affliction, but there are plenty of great over the counter methods that work very well in treating acne. In this article, we will discuss the best treatments that work for treating acne and why these treatments work so well.
Step #1: Cleansing the Skin
Before applying any sort of acne treatment, it is of utmost importance to apply a cleanser to clean the skin. This makes sure that dead skin cells and oils that naturally coat the surface are removed, allowing a treatment cream or wash to actually penetrate to the level acne.
Step #2: Benzoyl Peroxide or Salicylic Acid
These are the two active ingredients that power most acne treatments. They tend to work very well. Benzoyl peroxide is the more established treatment, and research indicates that it works better than any other treatment. However, a minority of the population can get a rash or itching from benzoyl peroxide. For these individuals, salicylic acid makes a good alternative.
These treatments work by destroying the P. acnes bacteria that actually cause the acne infection. Acne is formed when pores become blocked and infected with this bacteria. It is able to breed and grow its numbers until acne is formed. The white fluid inside of an acne lesion is a collection of sebum (skin oil) dead P. acnes bacteria, dead skin cells, and white blood cells that were fighting this infection.
This is why it is so important to cleanse before applying these acne treatments: you need the dead skin cells and sebum to be removed from the skin’s surface so that the active ingredients (benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid) can actually reach the P. acnes bacteria to fight the infection.
Step #3. Repeat For Up to 10 Weeks
Fighting acne that already has a foothold can take some time before results are realized. Follow this routine of washing your face twice a day with a gentle cleanser and applying a treatment cream before bed for 10 weeks. If symptoms still do not improve, you might have some other sort of factor that is contributing to your acne, as discussed below.
Step #4. Remove Irritants
Sometimes, other things in the environment might be triggering acne, such as a dirty pillowcase. Make sure you are washing your pillow case on a regular basis as this often harbors dirt, bacteria, and oils that can cause acne while you sleep. Also, be sure to clean your clothes regularly in addition to washing your hats for best results.