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Part 2: It's time to talk about acne treatments.
First and foremost, if the individual has active acne, especially if it is out of control, they need to see a Dermatologist and get on antibiotics prior to you doing any treatments on them. There are numerous product types that work well for Acne Treatments. These include Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) Salicylic Acid (BHA), Benzoyl Peroxide, Tea-Tree Oil, and Collodial Sulfur.
Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs)
Alpha Hydroxy acids (AHAs) most specifically non-buffered Glycolic acid slough off dead skin cells that cause pimple-producing clogged pores and leaves you with smoother, softer skin. It does a very nice job in cleansing hair follicles, as well, due to its small molecular structure. This has also been proven to lighten hyperpigmentation and stimulate collagen and fibril tissue that help scarring. pH for home use must be higher than 3.0 and less than 4.0 with concentrations of 8% and up to 20% based on degree of acne and over set time periods of building new stamina in the skin.
Salicylic Acid (BHA)
Salicylic Acid (BHA) is a good component in a treatment product. It is limited to 2% concentration (OTC Drug) as a leave-on item. It is effective as a drying and exfoliating agent that helps keep pores clear. It is less irritating that Glycolic Acid but it does not help with hyperpigmentation or scarring due to its lower concentration and pH level.
Benzoyl Peroxide works well for many people but we do not prefer to use it in treatment preparations due to its level of irritation as a leave-on product.
Tea-tree oil is a natural blemish-fighter with minor antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties to help calm acne. It is highly tolerable in most products even at 5% concentration.
Collodial Sulfur is a homeopathic “natural” remedy used to treat skin conditions including acne. Sulfur’s ability to cut down on sebum can help combat frequent breakouts. It is also a keratolytic; when applied topically to the skin, sulfur causes the top layer of the epidermis to dry and peel off. Watch for the next blog when we cover Acne / Protecting the Skin where we will talk about sunscreen use during acne breakouts, along with ingredients in Face Masks that help acne.