What are the top three causes of adult acne?
There is no special cause for ‘adult’ acne - ALL acne is caused by overactive oil-gland activity, inflammation and blockage of pores by dead skin and oil - this, in turn, is directly and indirectly due to hormonal upsets and other causes such as genetics, environmental factors and even diet.
How can I identify the breakouts I’m having from the type of pimples I see (eg: using the wrong product, skin is too dry/oily/dehydrated, pollution or hormonal caused etc.)?
There are suggestions that the type of breakout and the location or pattern reflects the cause. This is a myth as there are no proven clinical studies to substantiate this.
In your opinion, can I use pimple patches (the ones that a lot of mass K-beauty brands sell) on my blemishes? What is the benefit (if any) of using a pimple patch?
Pimple patches are another way to deliver an active ingredient to the affected area. Salicylic acid is one of the most common ingredients used and, in the right dosage, may be able to reduce inflammation or even ‘shrink’ the pimple.
When should I see a professional about my breakouts? And what kind of treatments can I expect at the doctor’s office?
Any breakout that bothers you, should be treated. All breakouts will recover but the danger is that it may leave long-standing marks or hyper pigmentation or, worse still, permanent damage to the skin and scarring.
Medical treatments include topical skincare products, oral medication and procedures such as chemical peels and lasers, used individually or in combination.
What kind of over-the-counter products should I look for if I want to treat my breakouts (eg: active ingredients or product benefits etc.)?
The most common ingredient that may benefit acne sufferers is probably salicylic acid.
To target breakouts, what products should I introduce into my daily skincare regimen – must it be a complete skincare routine from cleanser to toner and moisturiser? Or can it be a specific product, like a spot treatment or pore-clearing lotion etc.?
Acne product protocols may be used individually or in combination and depends very much on how they are formulated. A combination of products is something I personally prefer as the products can be customised to individual needs, omitting or adding products when necessary, rather that a single one-fit-all product.