Busting Common Myths Related to Acne

Wondering about acne? We're here to bust some myths. Read on to learn some untruths about acne

We're here to dispel some myths about acne

Acne is an issue that most of us have battled or are still battling. It can be quite frustrating to find an effective solution to curb it, too. That, in addition to innumerable myths surrounding it, can make life quite arduous. If you consider a few of the so-called “causes” or “cures”, you’ll find that most of them are incorrect and misleading. Read on as we bust seven common myths related to acne.

Myth #1: Your Diet has Nothing to Do with Acne

In the 1960s and 1970s, two studies concluded that chocolate was not associated with acne. After that, research took a backseat on the topic for the next 40 years! However, researchers today have found that there is indeed a connection between the food we consume and acne.

Eating too much sugar, for example, can increase the appearance of acne due to its effect on insulin production.

Yet, eating greasy food will not cause acne. Skin expert Dr. Sandra Lee, a.k.a. Dr. Pimple Popper, says, “I tell my patients the only way greasy foods like pizza can give you acne is if you rub it all over your face.” Still, it is important to maintain a balanced diet consisting of green, leafy vegetables and plenty of water every single day.

Myth #2: Bad Hygiene is the Only Cause of Acne

Most of the time if you end up with a big, angry pimple on your forehead, a lot of people will ask you whether you washed your face before going to bed or give you a lecture on the importance of bathing regularly. While good hygiene helps to diminish acne by reducing the buildup of too much sebum and oil in our pores, its role is still small. Excess sebum production can be due to hormonal changes, genetics and so on which play a much more active role.

Myth #3: Washing Your Face Often will Prevent the Appearance of Acne

I’ll admit that even I believed this myth. It sounds quite logical too – if you wash your face frequently, the buildup of sebum and oil would be subdued. But, washing your face too much will only make your acne worse. This is because your skin becomes irritated, secreting more sebum which will, in turn, trigger whiteheads and blackheads.

Myth #4: The More Concentrated Your Product, the Better It’ll Treat Your Acne

Human beings tend to associate strength with effectiveness. For example, if you’re looking to buy a face wash for acne, you’ll find that salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide would be the two most prominent ingredients. The former helps to unclog the pores whereas the latter kills bacteria. However, it doesn’t mean that an acne face wash that has a higher concentration would be more effective. On the contrary, there are higher chances for stronger products to irritate the skin.

Myth #5: Applying Toothpaste on Acne Will Make it Go Way

Toothpaste contains ingredients such as sugar alcohols, baking soda, and hydrogen peroxide that temporarily minimizes the acne spots by drying it. In fact, the same ingredients should be avoided as they can irritate the skin.

Instead of using toothpaste, it is far better to apply topical creams that are infused with benzoyl peroxide. As mentioned above, they help to kill bacteria that will stop the acne from getting worse.

Myth #6: Sunscreen and Makeup can Aggravate Acne Making it Worse

Using makeup or sunscreen can cause acne only if it doesn’t suit your skin type. The wrong kind of sunscreen and will cause a chemical reaction on the skin and block our pores.

It’s the same with makeup products. Oily skin users should opt for products like foundations and concealer that are water-based. Hence, it’s better to buy sunscreens and makeup that are “non-comedogenic“ and contain ingredients such as titanium dioxide, bismuth, zinc oxide and so on.

Myth #7: The Blackish Appearance of Blackheads is Due to Dirt Accumulation

This is a very common misconception. Blackheads appear when our hair follicles become clogged with sebum. This sebum oxidizes after getting in contact with oxygen which makes it look dirty and dark. So yes, your pores are not filled with dirt and it's most certainly not a direct result of your skin being exposed to pollution or dust.

Resources— HealthMental FlossHers

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