As if dealing with adult acne and a broken-out complexion isn’t bad enough, there’s also the potential of scars forming. Your best plan of attack is stopping scars before they start. When you’re faced with a full-on breakout, it might seem a little late for scar prevention, but that’s not the case.
When you feel a blemish coming on…
1. Apply medication to the area.
Almost all acne patients require medication of some degree, be it antibiotics, tretinoin or something that helps regulate hormones, to get the skin under control.
2. Don’t overload your skin with products that are too harsh or too drying.
Stick to one zit-zapping ingredient with a proven track record (unless your dermatologist instructs you otherwise) like retinoids, benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid or sulfur.
3. Steer clear of overcleansing and overexfoliating the skin.
This can strip away too much of the skin’s natural oils, making the skin dehydrated
When you’re faced with a full-on breakout…
4. Don’t squeeze it, pop it or pick at it.
The pressure incurred from picking or squeezing can push the infection deeper into the skin and spread it to the surrounding tissue, in turn causing more inflammation and the potential for further damage.
5. Wear an oil-free noncomedogenic sunscreen.
“This is especially true of darker skin because an inflamed spot that is exposed to the sun will hyperpigment and scar,” says Orlando, FL, dermatologist Kathleen W. Judge, MD.
6. Get the blemish injected.
“Patients often benefit from cortisone injected into larger cysts to improve acne,” says Santa Monica, CA, dermatologist Karyn Grossman, MD. Extractions may help too.
When the pimple starts to dwindle in size and intensity…
7. If a scab forms, let it fall off on its own.
Forcing or picking a scab off the skin will most likely leave behind a discolored spot.
8. Apply a brightening lotion or cream.
Topical products that work to lighten and brighten may reduce how dark a spot may be, especially if you are prone to post-acne discoloration.
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