Acne: Let's Break it Down

 Acne is the primary skin concern for most Americans. This severe problem greatly affects one’s self-esteem and in some cases can be incredibly painful. There are so many varying opinions as to what causes it, including speculation about diet, oil content of products, hormones and genetics, etc… So, let’s dig deep into the science behind it and take a look at the actual scientific composition of acne.

Acne is the primary skin concern for most Americans. This severe problem greatly affects one’s self-esteem and in some cases can be incredibly painful. There are so many varying opinions as to what causes it, including speculation about diet, oil content of products, hormones and genetics, etc… So, let’s dig deep into the science behind it and take a look at the actual scientific composition of acne.

Acne is a skin disorder of the sebaceous glands. It is characterized by comedones (pimples) and blemishes. Science does tend to side with the hypothesis that acne is hereditary and triggered by hormonal changes and begins to flare up when a person reaches puberty. But, adult acne is on the rise as well.

Acne ranges from mild breakouts to sever cysts and scarring. Acne can be controlled with proper medication, but many medications have undesirable side effects and acne can be a lifelong battle.

The known and scientifically accepted causes of acne are:
-Genetics/heredity
-clogged follicles
-bacteria

Triggers are:
-hormones
-stress
-cosmetics
-foods

When we think about acne the first cause that comes to mind is clogged pores. Well it goes a little deeper, and it is actually the hair follicle that becomes clogged with sebum.  People with acne tend to have a condition called hyperkeratosis, a condition in which dead skin cells build up because they do not shed from the follicles as they do on normal skin. Excessive sebum production over-taxes the follicles and causes further cell buildup. Sebum mixed with dead cells in the follicle become comedones (pimples) and this is the beginning of acne problems.

Bacteria in the follicles are anaerobic, which means they cannot survive in the presence of oxygen. When follicles are blocked with sebum and dead skin buildup oxygen cannot reach the bottom of the follicle. This results in excessive propionibacterium. P bacteria is the culprit of acne and this bacteria causes pimples, blemishes, lesions, and cysts.

With all of this in mind, there are some very clear measures that can be taken to reduce acne breakouts. Exfoliation reduces dead skin buildup, and helps oxygenate follicles, which in turn kills the propionibacteria that cause acne. A healthy diet consisting of lots of oxygen-rich foods like leafy greens helps keep skin clear as well. Exercise is always vital to keeping healthy circulation of the skin, as long as sweat is not left on the skin to reabsorb toxins that were excreted. Maintaining a healthy moisture balance is important as well. Many people think that when it comes to acne all topical oil is bad for the skin. However, most acne skincare products and astringents are very drying, and this can cause the skin to overproduce oil and cause more breakouts. So if you are exfoliating on a regular basis, you should be moisturizing properly with a natural organic oil like Sweet Bee Magic.  Please reach out to us with questions and concerns and share your story of acne and how you cleared up your skin!

Posted by Jaclyn Steinmann on 12 August, 2014 beauty, living | 0 comments
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