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Spotty, blemished skin – you are not alone!

Spotty and blemished skin – it’s a problem we thought we’d seen the last of in our teenage years, but that’s not the case for more than half of British women.

Acne can strike at any age and even celebrities aren’t immune – Cameron Diaz, Britney Spears and supermodel Lily Cole have all been snapped with blemished skin recently.

What causes acne and spots?

Whatever your age, the actual cause of acne is the same. Our hormones trigger the sebaceous glands to produce more oil. This excess oil gets trapped by dead skin cells, which clogs the pores and holds in bacteria that reacts with grease and forms spots.

But, fortunately, there are several ways to battle blemishes…

Clever makeup tricks, soothing ingredients or even acne fighting acid

Occasional spots are simple to disguise with some clever make-up tricks. Use a concealer to camouflage pimples and blemishes, just be sure to select one infused with blemish-fighting ingredients like bisabolol to soothe and antibacterial salicylic acid to prevent new breakouts.

Mild acne, which consists of tender red bumps, is relatively easy to treat. Dermatologists swear by products containing benzoyl peroxide – which you can pick up at most pharmacies. The ingredient causes the top layer of skin cells to shed, which unblocks the sebaceous glands and breaks down black and whiteheads. If you find that benzoyl peroxide is too harsh for your skin, opt for products containing a milder alternatives, such as salicylic, azelaic or glycolic acid – these ingredients exfoliate gently, clear clogged follicles and decongest the pores.

When shopping for products, look out for nourishing ingredients too – although a squeaky clean face may feel good, stripping the skin’s natural oils, can actually lead to more breakouts as it tries to compensate. Ingredients like niacinamide and camphor oil are ideal for soothing and nourishing breakout prone skin.

Breakouts and spots on your body?

If you suffer from breakouts on the body, avoid using regular soaps and shower gels, which can aggravate the skin. Scan labels for the words “non-comedogenic” which means that the formula won’t block the pores.

If these home solutions are not working and if your acne is persistent or dominated by cysts and nodules, your best bet is to seek professional advice – talk to your GP, or ask to be referred to a dermatologist.

For those with festering acne that has failed to respond to products and medications, a professional zit-clearing treatment, which utilises lasers and light-based technology, may be worth a go. These are designed to work at a deeper level to destroy acne-causing bacteria.

Skin peels, microdermabrasion facials or skin needling for tougher acne scars / scarring

And those of you who have managed to get your acne under control, but are left with acne scarring may want to look into a facial peel, skin-needling treatments or microdermabrasion sessions – these can work wonders to clear the complexion.

While waking up to a breakout can leave you wanting to hide your face from the world, fortunately, there are plenty of spot-fighting solutions that can help clear things up.

Until next time beauty buffs,

Anjana x

Find your nearest microdermabrasion therapist here

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