If you’ve suffered from acne your whole life or if you only occasionally get a zit, you still want those suckers gone as soon as possible. Yet, you might be using the wrong treatments. Using the wrong active ingredient to treat your acne can actually cause it to become worse. First, you must identify the type of acne you have and what active ingredients you need to see out to heal your pimples.
Salicylic Acid-Salicylic acid is for small blackheads and whiteheads. These are called comedonal acne, which happens when oil and old skin cells clog your pores. Look for a product that exfoliates and contains salicylic acid to clear your skin.
Benzoyl Peroxide-Benzoyl peroxide is great for pimples that are red, raised and painful when you touch them. This is inflammatory acne and you’ll need to treat it quickly to prevent scars.
Topical Retinoids-Topical retinoids are great for those with older skin and pimples. If you want to receive anti-aging benefits and clear your skin, topical retinoids are what you need. Look for Retin-A and other over-the-counter options or ask your dermatologist.
Oral Antibiotics-If your skin hasn’t cleared up from multiple methods or is worsening, you might need oral antibiotics. If the acne is moderate or severe, you will need to visit your dermatologist to get an oral antibiotic and a benzoyl-peroxide treatment.
Accutane-If you have severe or cystic acne, you might need the prescription Accutane. Cystic acne is deep, painful acne that can lead to bad scars. It does have some serious side effects though, so it should be looked at as a last resort. Talk to your dermatologist to determine if it is right for you.
Tea Tree Oil-If you’re looking for a more natural solution or if benzoyl peroxide has worked for you but you want something different, try tea tree oil. It works just as effectively as benzoyl peroxide with fewer side effects. Tea tree oil is less irritating for those with sensitive skin as well.
Alpha Hydroxy Acids-If your T-zone area has clogged pores or if you have very sensitive skin, look for alpha hydroxy acids. They are gentle chemical exfoliants to treat or prevent blocked pores.
What type of acne do you have? Which acne fighters do you use? Share with us your favorite acne fighting ingredients!