Acner.org: Acne treatment

Acner.org: Acne treatment

Types of Acne Products

Types of Acne Products Types of Acne Products

With a variety of acne products on the market, it's hard to decide which is best for your skin. Before choosing an acne product, it's important to understand how each one works and why it works. Treating your acne with the wrong product can make future breakouts more severe. The American Academy of Dermatology states that it's imperative to follow the directions on the label, regardless of which product you choose, to decrease the risk of side effects and increase the product's effectiveness.

Benzoyl Peroxide

Benzoyl peroxide works by removing excess oil and dead skin cells that cause pores to clog. The Mayo Clinic states that products containing benzoyl peroxide are probably the most effective acne treatment. Benzoyl peroxide is available in strengths ranging from 2.5 to 10 percent. The Mayo Clinic recommends starting with the lowest strength to see how your skin will react before venturing into stronger acne medication. Side effects associated with benzoyl peroxide include excessive dry skin, redness, scaling, stinging and burning. The AAD explains that if your cleanser stings your skin, it can be an indication of either irritated or dry skin.

Salicylic Acid

Salicylic acid works by slowing down the rate of shedding cells inside of the hair follicle, which decreases the risk of pores becoming clogged. The Mayo Clinic states that salicylic acid may reduce blackheads and whiteheads. Salicylic acid products are available in strengths ranging from 0.5 to 2 percent. The AAD and Mayo Clinic warn that use of salicylic acid causes mild skin irritation and stinging of the skin. The AAD recommends halting the use of products once these side effects occur until the side effects subside. Continuous use with skin irritation can worsen your skin condition and make acne more difficult to treat.

Alpha Hydroxy Acids

Alpha hydroxy acids are available in different over-the-counter types, such as glycolic acid and lactic acid. Alpha hydroxy acids work by reducing inflammation and removing dead skin cells. Benefits of using alpha hydroxy acids include the stimulation of new skin growth, smoother skin and reduction of the appearance of acne scars.

Sulfur

Sulfur is often used in combination with other ingredients, such as resorcinol, benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid, according to the Mayo Clinic. Sulfur works similarly to regular benzoyl peroxide, as it removes dead skin cells that cause pores to clog and removes excess oil. The side effects are also similar, as sulfur may cause dry skin; however, one noticeable difference is that sulfur products have an unpleasant smell.

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