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What’s the Difference between Dry Acne and Oily Acne?

Acne is frustrating no matter at what age you are afflicted. Those blemishes just put daggers in the heart of your self-esteem when they stare back at you in the mirror.

Everyone seemingly has a suggestion for how to deal with it, ranging from blatant urban legends (like using toothpaste) to more scientifically based methods. Unfortunately for many, these well-intentions suggestions haven’t delivered the cure. If that is the case for you, the reason many be that you are using the wrong treatment for your type of acne.

Not All Acne Is the Same

We know that the primary acne-causing culprit is bacteria that has become trapped in the pore, reacting with the sebum in your skin. The bacteria overproduce, thus causing an infection defined as acne. However, though the culprit is known, there are many factors that can lead to the bacterial overproduction.

Oily Acne

Oily acne is what most people think of—the overproduction of sebum resulting in a thick, greasy layer of oil on the skin, clogging pores and creating a breeding ground for bacteria. The overproduction of oil is most common during puberty and for adult women during certain parts of their menstrual cycles when hormone levels change and stimulate the sebaceous glands.

Treatment of oily acne is mostly topical and directed to decrease the amount of oil on the skin. Ideal products include:

  • Soapy, foamy cleansers to remove excess oil
  • Lightweight moisturizers to balance the skin
  • Topical applications of benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid treat the acne lesions

Periodic application of masques may also help reduce acne by removing dead cells that clog pores and foster bacterial overgrowth.

Dry Acne

Dry acne is more complex as it is actually a combination of conditions that lead to blemish formation. Dry acne occurs in individuals with dry skin. Dryness reduces the skin’s elasticity, making it more susceptible to damage that allows bacteria to penetrate to deeper layers and cause infection. Dry acne is also complicated by the reactive overproduction of sebum in response to skin’s dryness. As a result, dry acne is often exacerbated with the use of products formulated for oily acne. For that reason, it is important that those with dry acne:

  • Use products formulated for dry skin
  • Avoid harsh soaps and over application of topical agents
  • Focus on repairing the skin’s integrity and maintaining adequate moisturization

For any acne, avoiding over treatment is key. Hale Cosmeceuticals has a variety of products that can help clear acne and are gentle enough for daily use.

Also remember, for best treatment of dry or oily acne, focus on improving your overall health. Your skin will always benefit from balanced nutrition and hydration, decreased stress and adequate rest.

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