About your skin
Your skin has three layers. The layer you see is called the Epidermis and consists of cells made up of keratin — the tough protein found in your hair and nails too. The second layer, called the Dermis, is where your sweat glands and hair follicles live. The deepest layer, the Subcutis, includes a layer of fat for insulation and acts as a protective cushion.
Understanding how your skin works is beneficial to not only help you look at your best but feel at your best too. Your breakouts and the overall condition of your skin can reveal a lot about your health.
While problematic skin could simply mean you need to alter your daily skincare routine, or you’re going through a stressful patch, it can also be a tell-tale sign of an underlying condition… yes, we’re talking about the complicated beast of acne.
What exactly is acne?
Acne (medically known as Acne Vulgaris) is a persistent, inflammatory skin condition caused by an overproduction of oil resulting in breakouts and pimples showing up on your face, shoulders, back, chest and upper arms.
Acne occurs when there's an excess of sebum, the oily substance produced by glands found at the base of hair follicles. When these glands overproduce sebum, the follicles become clogged with dead skin cells, debris, and bacteria, resulting in pimples and inflammation.
It’s the most common skin condition in the world, affecting around 80% of all people between 11 and 30 (Source: National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases)
Identifying the different types of acne.
Not all acne is the same. Knowledge is power, and once you figure out what you’re dealing with, it’s far easier to treat and to take it down, once and for all.
Why is my skin prone to spots and acne?
Hormones, we’re looking at you.
Fundamentally, we have our raging hormones to thank for the unwelcome arrival of those pesky and painful breakouts. Skin conditions are mostly attributed to the different hormonal changes we go through in life with certain stages having more of an impact: puberty, pregnancy, and menopause. Yes, it’s more common for acne to happen during teenage puberty but it can occur at any age — many women and men can experience acne until their mid-forties.
Genetics is another factor to consider — if your parents struggled with acne, you’re more likely to go through the same. Your environment can also affect the state of your skin. If you live in humid conditions or live in a city exposed to heavily polluted air, you might find your skin becomes clogged more frequently resulting in breakouts.
How do I clear my skin?
Commitment : Routine : Repeat
There are steps you can take towards clearing your skin and achieving a clear complexion.
It all begins with understanding how to treat and care for your skin with a simple daily skincare routine. At first, you might be inclined to over-exfoliate your skin, in the hope you’ll be able to scrub the spots away. Sadly, it’s not this simple, and you can end up doing more harm than good.
Spots are caused by a build-up of oil leading to your pores becoming clogged. That’s why it’s essential to cleanse your face every morning and every night to remove bacteria which causes inflammation. A daily skincare routine might seem like a significant commitment, but it really doesn't have to be complicated (and involve a hundred products). Once you get in the habit of taking only five minutes out of your morning and night to look after your skin, you’ll soon see a real difference. Listen to your skin, it won’t clear overnight but if you persevere - trust us, the results are worth it.