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Oily Skin and Acne 101

Janet Newman, Medical Esthetician Oct. 2015

I have had so many patients come to me with acne complaining that the topical medication or daily cleansing routine is causing them to breakout more


This is a simple case of basic histology of our skin 101.  No matter how old or young we are, our nationality or background, our skin is our body’s largest organ and protects us.  It has two layers, and both have very specific jobs and will react to the elements it is exposed to.  The epidermis is the outermost layer.  Deep in the epidermis are growing cells, and on the outside of this are flat, dead skin cells that fall off as new ones are made. The dermas is under the epidermis, where hair follicles, nerves, blood vessels and glands are located. The nerve endings sense pain, the sweat glands produce sweat in response to heat and stress. The sebaceous glands secrete sebum into hair follicles. Sebum is an oil, that keeps the skin moist and soft and acts as a barrier against foreign substances.  The hair follicles produce the various types of hair found throughout the body.  The blood vessels of the dermis provide nutrients to the skin and help regulate body temperature.  Working together these two layers of skin are your out most covering.  Acne is caused by one of four things.  Hereditary, hormones, stress, diet or improper digestion.


When you are treating acne or oily skin it is important to moisturize.  I’ll explain.  When you put on products that treat oily skin or acne they likely will contain salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, clindamycin, retinol and the list goes on and on. These chemicals are killing the topical bacteria causing clogged pores to clear which is good but also dries up the natural oil. Your skin reacts naturally to fix the decrease in oil by making more oil.  This is why moisturizer can help decrease that reaction. After washing and using a light moisturizer with sunscreen in the morning and a little light moisture at night on top of your prescription or over the counter clearing product you can expect to find a balance and achieve a better complexions. 


"The information provided on is not intended as a substitute for medical advice. If you have a medical question or concern please consult your physician..."

Posted on 10/04/2015 at 09:13PM


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