There are quite a lot of common misconceptions about acne, so in this post we will just touch on a few ones that I find especially important.
Fiction: Acne can’t be cured so there is no point in treating it.
Fact: While there is no cure for acne, treatment is important to keep skin looking its best and for general skin health. Also, acne can add to (or lead to) insecurity and/or some psychological conditions such as body dysmorphia or depression, especially among teenagers and young adults. Treatment may not cure this chronic condition, but it may improve appearance and quality of life.
Fiction: To improve acne, I should wash my face several times per day and exfoliate aggressively.
Fact: Because acne is associated with oily skin and bacteria, people often try to make their skin “squeaky clean” by washing their face a lot, exfoliating with physical granules, rubbing skin as if they are scrubbing a pot, and more. This is not a good way to treat acne! Cleanse skin no more than 2-3 times per day (3 times if you exercise or are sweating). Be gentle with your skin because too much rubbing or physical exfoliation can increase irritation and inflammation, which can make acne worse. Use chemical exfoliants and a light touch.
Fiction: I should avoid adding any moisturizer to my skin.
Fact: You should continue to moisturize your skin after cleansing. Otherwise, the skin will sense the lack of moisture and produce even more skin oil. Use a light, oil-free moisturizer to keep the skin from producing too much oil.
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