How to combat adult acne


Adult acne somehow seems even more unfair than the bursts of blemishes we dealt with as teens – it’s a cruel joke to have to simultaneously deal with wrinkles and pimples. The first thing others see when they meet you is your face, and if you’re fighting a daily battle with adult acne, it can really play on your confidence. Not only can adult acne be painful both physically and mentally, it can be incredibly difficult to manage and treat and – ultimately – get rid of completely.

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To help shed some light on why some of us have to deal with adult acne and the best ways to treat it, we spoke to an expert to get some answers…

What causes adult acne?

There are a number of factors that can cause adult acne, but hormones are usually the main culprit. “Adult acne can be highly influenced by hormonal factors, which in turn can be influenced by stress, diet, [or] polycystic ovary syndrome,” says Rachel McAdam, La Roche-Posay Medical Relations Manager. “Regardless of the deeper cause of acne, it’s the same skin issues that are involved as in adolescent acne. Adult acne can be more persistent and driven largely by cyclic hormonal fluctuations, but the same issues in the skin are occurring, such as inflammation, bacteria, oil and cell turnover,” she says.

How can I tell the difference between adult acne and breakouts?

To have adult acne, you don’t have to be suffering from persistent breakouts or inflamed whiteheads – the regular occurrence of a blind pimple or breakout before your period is technically adult acne, too. “In females, adult acne tends to occur around the mouth and jawline in females, but can also occur anywhere on the face, too,” explains Rachel.

“The pimples themselves can be deeper in nature and not form a visible pustule (blind pimple). They can also appear in cycles.” In fact, adult acne affects around 35 per cent of females, according to Rachel.

Can you get rid of adult acne? What are the best ways to treat it?

The good news is that when treated properly, adult acne can be managed. “Adult acne can be persistent and difficult to completely eliminate,” says Rachel. “Understanding and possibly addressing the deeper cause with your doctor or dermatologist is important. You can also make a difference with topical treatments. Give the skin as much of a chance to fight cell congestion, excess oil and inflammation. Some skin care ingredients to look for include niacinamide (at least 2 per cent) and beta hydroxy-acids.”

To get you on your way to clearer, healthier-looking skin, try these skin care goodies formulated specifically to help target, relieve and manage acne…

Cleansers for acne: SkinB5 Acne Control Cleansing Mousse, Clean & Clear ® Advantage Continuous Control Acne Cleanser

Serums for acne: Mary Kay ® Pore Purifying Serum for Acne- Prone Skin, Ella Baché Serum Marin

Moisturisers for acne: DMK ACU-MOIST, Avène TriAcnéal Expert

Acne treatments: La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo Plus, Clearasil Ultra Extra Strength Acne Treatment Cream

Main image credit: Getty Images

Do you suffer from adult acne? What are your top tips for dealing with it?

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Comments 6

  1. Fluctuating hormones are literally the bane of my existence and I don’t know if other women can vouch for me on this but they’re terrible. Hormones affect everything in your body, your mood, acne, body weight, just how sleep you are how energetic everything. And the thing that sucks is that they’re always jumping around everywhere, with me anyway, just not stable

  2. Great article. Struggled with acne for years. I’ve only found one solution out of all the products ive tried, prescribed or otherwise. It’s called hypochlorous acid spray. It’s all natural with potent anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, and wound healing properties. It has proven to be extremely effective against my severe acne (hormonal/stress). Reduced swelling and redness within a few days and I have not had acne in over a month. This is the product I use personally.

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