If you are reading this, chances are you must have experienced acne, or what is commonly known as pimples, at some point in your life. 

They can be really stubborn and troublesome at times. Acne not only irritates your skin but also leaves dark marks or scars on it. 

Therefore, a good skincare routine is very important, especially if you have acne-prone skin. Read further, as we navigate through the issue of acne and what regimen you can follow to curb it.

What is Acne?

Acne is one of the most common skin conditions that occur due to clogged hair follicles in your skin. Your sebaceous (oil) glands secrete sebum to keep your skin moist. When these glands get clogged, it can lead to pimples.

How do You Develop Acne?

Acne is common with oily skin. Excess sebum (oil) production by the oil gland leads to clogging of the pores, giving rise to whiteheads and blackheads, referred to as closed and open comedones, respectively. 

These long-standing comedones are further infected by bacteria present on your skin and are converted into acne. 

There are many factors like diet and hormones that can increase the production of sebum in your body. So, it is important to regulate sebum production and keep acne at bay.

How to Prevent Acne?

There are numerous ways by which you can reduce or control your acne flare-ups. It is important to note that the cause of acne flare-ups can be different for every individual. Following dermatologist-approved skincare often works for acne. 

Here is a quick list of what you should and should not include in your skincare routine for acne-prone skin:

1. Cleansers. Cleaning your face with a Beta Hydroxy Acid (BHA) or Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) face wash can prevent clogging of your pores. They are gentle exfoliators and can dissolve the excess oil and dirt on your skin. 

Restrict washing your face to not more than twice a day.  You can use medicated face pads or thermal spring water sprays in the afternoon if your face feels oily.

2. Scrubs. Use scrubs cautiously. Scrubs can only aggravate your acne. Excessive scrubbing can make your face dry, indirectly triggering more oil production. 

A mild scrub can be used once in a while and it can be followed by a rich moisturiser.

3. Toners. You can skip this step if open pores are not your concern. If needed, use a mild water-based toner or rosewater as these work well for oily skin. 

Toning should be done after cleansing so that your skin can absorb better. Astringents also work well for oily skin.

4. Moisturiser. It is important to moisturise your skin from time to time as it keeps your skin hydrated. Use a water-based, non-comedogenic moisturiser. 

Avoid the oil-based creamy moisturisers as they can clog your pores. Wait for a minute or two to let your skin absorb the moisturiser.

5. Sunscreen. Using a suitable sunscreen to reduce photosensitivity (skin damage due to sunlight) caused by anti-acne creams and medicines, thus preventing further tanning or residual pigmentation.

6. Overnight Products. Your body heals better and faster when you sleep. Therefore, an overnight application of powerhouse ingredients like retinoids (a type of Vitamin A) can be really beneficial. 

You can use them with a little moisturiser or club them with your night care routine.

7. Face Masks. Anti-acne face masks can also be used as a preventive measure for acne. It helps by absorbing the grease and gunk from your pores. 

Since these masks can dry up your skin, limit their use to once or twice a week depending on the skin type. 

Remember, with acne, less is more and consistency and routine are key for keeping your acne at bay. Along with a good skincare routine, it is important to consult your dermatologist to diagnose the root cause of your acne which may require additional management.

Disclaimer: This article is written by the Practitioner for informational and educational purposes only. The content presented on this page should not be considered as a substitute for medical expertise. Please "DO NOT SELF-MEDICATE" and seek professional help regarding any health conditions or concerns. Practo will not be responsible for any act or omission arising from the interpretation of the content present on this page.