Adult acne

Written by Angela, 13th May 2018

We have a lot of clients in both our Tarporley and Ellesmere Port beauty salons asking about adult acne. Many people feel that when they have reached their thirties and beyond that they are too old for acne. However, unfortunate as it may sound, you are never to old for acne.

In fact, the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology states that 54% of women over the age of 25 are affected by adult acne and adult acne can be deeper, more uncomfortable and more difficult to treat.

If you have spots and blemishes it is a good idea to look for skin care products with ingredients which treat the inflammation associated with acne without drying out the skin.

To help treat acne it is a good idea to understand the four main factors that contribute to it:

  1. Overactive sebaceous glands. Increased sebum production which helps set the stage for acne development can be triggered by the adrenal glands going into overdrive which can be due to chronically high stress levels. Try and reduce stress by introducing mindfulness and stress relieving treatments into your life. We recommend Insight Timer (a free app which you can download), reflexology, massage and our Head in the Clouds treatment. Look for ingredients to calm overactive sebaceous glands whilst eliminating shine; ingredients such as Niacinamide, Yeast Extract and Zinc Gluconate are helpful.
  2. Accumulation of dead skin cells. The build up of dead skin cells combined with sticky sebum clogs the hair follicle. The bad news is that as you age your skin’s cell turnover slows down which makes the build up worse, so effectively exfoliating your skin is a must. This doesn’t mean scrubbing your skin with harsh exfoliators. In fact, harsh gritty exfoliators often are the least effective at removing dead skin cells from the mouths of hair follicles. Choose exfoliators with ingredients such as Salicylic Acid and Lactic Acid which dissolve the ‘glue’ between the dead cells helping them to lift of the skin easily and without surface aggravation.
  3. Bacteria. The clogged hair follicles with their sebum and dead skin cell plugs are an ideal breeding ground for Propionibacterium Acnes bacteria which is a key acne culprit. Select products which help limit acne bacteria. Lactobacillus Ferment and Colloidal Silver are very good for this.
  4. Inflammation. Inflammation is aggravated by rapid bacterial growth causing redness and swelling. Ingredients such as Tea Tree can help keep redness under control.

Treating adult acne is not easy and requires dedication both with your homeware regime and with professional skin treatments. We recommend Dermalogica Medicbac products for home use and regular salon treatments which focus on deep exfoliation and an electrical galvanic current which helps the penetration of active ingredients 400 fold compared to manual applications.

We always recommend avoiding makeup products which have F,D and C dyes in them which can aggravate acne conditions. Choose a natural mineral option for your foundation. Fake tans can also affect acne so swap your fake tan for a mineral based bronzing powder for a non-aggravating bronzed look.

Keeping hair tied back and away from the face can help as many hair products can affect acne too.

We like to treat all our clients holistically so getting advice on dietary factors to help alleviate acne  is also very helpful.

Occasionally even with the most dedicated home and salon care extra help is needed and we are always happy to refer onto a Dermatologist for severe cases of adult acne.

Originally published May 13, 2018 14:08pm, updated January 15, 2024

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