Categorized | Skin Care

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Why is it So Hard to Clear Up Acne and Get Rid of Pimples?

Most people fail to get rid of pimples because they fail to understand the basics of what causes acne in the first place. If you don’t know the source, how can you expect to clear up acne? It’s like taking shots in the dark!

Unfortunately that metaphor is right on the money when it comes to treating acne today. There are huge marketing budgets from the giant cosmetic companies feeding misinformation. “It’s bacteria that’s causing your acne!” “It’s not using our cleanser that is causing your pimples!” Don’t listen to any of it. Everyone just wants to separate you from your money and in the world of acne, a lot of desperate people are willing to throw their money away trying anything. Here’s the secret that you must understand (it’s not really a secret – it’s medical fact) Acne is not caused by not cleaning your face, and it’s not caused by bacteria — it’s caused by a complex process involving hormones.

Do you want to know what’s really happening on your face (or your neck, shoulders and back)? You skin is covered in tiny hair follicles. Each hair follicle contains a gland that produces an oily goo called sebum. This sebum normally coats and protects our hair and skin so it’s not a bad thing. The problem occurs when the pores at the top of the hair follicles (at the skin surface) become blocked and the sebum backs up and swells the area. Then it gets infected by bacteria and that’s how you get pimples.

Okay, all that makes sense, right? But why do the pores get blocked in the first place? The answer is dead skin cells. We shed around 40,000 dead skin cells every minute of the day and the whole surface layer of our skin IS dead skin cells, so dead skin cells are normal. They usually fall off one at a time but sometimes, within our hair follicles, they come off in sticky clumps held together by something called keratin. These clumps of dead skin cells get jammed into the pores and THAT’S what causes acne. The problem literally comes from within and that’s why when you want to find out how to get rid of acne, surface treatments are rarely effective.

There are only two ways to get rid of pimples and clear up acne that work for most people. One of them is a strong medication called isotretinoin, the most well known of which is Accutane. When I say strong, I mean strong. Accutane has some serious side effects that have to be taken into account including the possibility of birth defects and liver damage among others. There are also many less serious but very irritating side effects such as extremely dry and sun-sensitive skin, an initial worsening of acne symptoms and severely chapped lips. Accutane can take from 6 months to a year to clear your skin. In the meantime, be prepared to look worse. Accutane is the treatment of last resort. Do yourself a big favour and try everything else first.

The other way to get rid of Acne is to try one of the holistic treatments available. These treatment systems get rid of pimples by rebalancing your hormone levels (often thrown off by puberty, your menstrual cycle, stress and menopause) through changes in diet and lifestyle. Many thousands of people have been successfully treated by these programs where traditional methods failed. The best part is that the only side effects are improved health and appearance. Anyone serious about getting rid of pimples should investigate these promising treatments first, before subjecting their bodies to Accutane.

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