Prevent acne and get rid of those dreaded clogged pores
One of the most frequent concerns I hear from my dermatology patients is how to deal with clogged pores. It seems that even washing your face more often does not solve the problem. However, there are some easy ways to remove these unsightly skin blemishes and lessen their return. That’s how.
Clogged Pores: What Can You Do About It?
It’s pretty simple: What clogs your pores is a buildup of oily, waxy sebum that contains dead skin cells, dirt, and skin germs. Sometimes this debris can be removed with just a good wash with a harder terry cloth and other times with a White Point form, which is a milky pus-like collection inside the pore that eventually comes out. Sometimes blackheads form, which are hardened and darkened plugs of this material, which usually have to be manually removed. The more pores that get clogged with whiteheads or blackheads, the more the pores stretch, so even after the clogging is removed, these pores are likely to get clogged again. So let’s talk about reducing and/or preventing this waxy sebum and dead skin cells from building up on the skin in the first place.
Diet: Recent research from Australia has shown that diet and acne are closely related. However, it is not the fat in our diet that is to blame. In the past, greasy foods were thought to cause whiteheads, blackheads, and angry red acne. Rather, it appears that the level of sugar in our diet is the main contributing factor. The researchers found that diets high in sugar and high glycemic index carbohydrates are what really influences the development of acne.
They also found that a diet low in sugar, low-glycemic carbohydrates, and more protein helped clear skin with 50% of the subjects studied having a significant reduction in their acne. Chances are if your diet is high in sugar and carbohydrates, you’re missing out on crucial skin-nourishing vitamins like vitamin A, B vitamins, and vitamin C. It’s also very likely that you’re not eating enough protein to maintain skin integrity. of the skin. So, eat low-glycemic carbohydrates, skip/reduce refined sugar (count sugar-sweetened sodas, too), eat at least 0.3 grams of protein per pound of your body weight.
Water: I always stress the importance of drinking enough water for the health of the whole body, but it couldn’t be more important to keep your skin clean. Adequate water helps flush out toxins and debris from the intestinal tract that can show up on the skin. Be sure to drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day, more if you’re sweating a lot and/or taking prescription medications.
Hygiene: As I mentioned earlier, simply washing your face more often, while a good start, may not be all it takes to clear clogged pores from blackheads and whiteheads. A good battery-operated sonic facial cleansing brush system, whose bristles can penetrate into the pores and cleanse them, is a good option. Also, a facial sponge available at cosmetic counters, under different brand names, can also work. Moisten your face and apply the cleanser to the pad, or to your face if using the brush, and work in circular motions all over your face. Be sure to rinse well with cool water which helps close your pores.
1. Normal/Sensitive Skin: If your skin occasionally accumulates whiteheads and blackheads, use a mild cleanser so as not to irritate the skin. A good old-fashioned, mild natural soap to try is glycerin, or even a castile soap. They are usually available in the cosmetic or soap aisle of your pharmacy and can also be purchased at most health food stores that sell skin care products.
2. More oily skin: this skin tends to accumulate blackheads and whiteheads more easily; a cleanser with some exfoliating ingredients can help clear clogged pores. Look for a finer-grained exfoliating/cleansing product, or you can make your own with regular sugar. Follow the same procedure as above, except take about a quarter of the size of the exfoliating cleanser or sugar, and apply it to your face with your fingertips before using the brush or pad.
3. Acne Prone: This type of skin can have a variety of pores clogged by whiteheads or blackheads, as well as red pustule-like formations. Requires a mild cleanser with a mixture of keratin, agents that break down dead material in the pores and include glycolic acid, Retin-A, salicylic acids, and/or benzoyl peroxide to soothe acne and clear clogged pores. There are also non-lightening keratins that play an additional role after cleansing to help lighten the skin.
Whitehead/Blackhead Removal: Even with the best cleaning, very stubborn blackheads or stubborn whiteheads sometimes need to be manually removed. You can do this by first cleansing the skin as above. Then very carefully, using both index fingers, place your fingers on either side of the clogged pore and gently press down. After a good cleaning, this should be enough to pump the debris out of the pore. However, do not aggressively pinch the area to avoid breaking the capillaries and causing redness on the skin. A professional facial every 4 to 6 weeks can also help remove these clogged pores, as they use special instruments to do so.
Shrink enlarged pores: Once you’ve thoroughly cleaned your face with the brush or pad, and removed as many clogged pores as possible, you’ll need to use a good astringent, an agent that will help shrink pores, so they don’t get clogged again so quickly. Astringents can be commercial cosmetics or you can use plain witch hazel, aloe vera, tomato juice, rosewater (for normal to sensitive skin), rice water, lemon/lime juice (for more oily or acne-prone skin), vinegar of apple cider or green vinegar. tea (which also disinfects acne).
Most of us have memories of having clogged pores and acne more often in our teens, but this condition can still cause skin disorders even in the over-40 population. As stated above, review your diet to make sure you’re eating the most beneficial diet and drinking enough water. Your skin is the largest organ in your body and reflects your overall health. So keeping your body as healthy as possible will also help keep your pores clear of debris and your face with a healthy, youthful glow!