Are you suffering from pimple breakouts and really have no idea how to get them under control which leaves you feeling frustrated and annoyed? Darling, we feel you - treating breakouts can be a tricky thing! Simply because there are as many factors that come into play as there are stars up in the sky. The path to clear skin – and especially keeping it clear – is often easier said than done.
But fear not! We’ve looked into that topic for you and compiled the top 10 pimple triggers that might lead to your breakouts. We’ve covered everything from beauty products, diet, lifestyle and sleep. And of course we tell you how to fix them, too. So if you’re on the quest for clear skin, simply read on.
TYPES OF ACNE
How can I control my breakouts instead of them controlling me?!
Well, the answer to that question you’re going to know by the end of the article. First let’s look at why your skin is actually breaking out.
There are two main factors for breakouts. First up are hormonal changes and second is the overproduction of oil. Generally, hormones increase the oil production leading to clogged hair follicles and thus an increase of the pimple-causing bacteria known as P.acnes. However, it’s important to consider that everyone’s got a different skin and that genetics play a huge role in how your body responds to the acne-triggering hormones. That makes it clear that no single product or lifestyle factor will work across the board for everyone.
With this said, visiting your dermatologist is worth a shot. Getting expert-advice on your diagnosis, potential triggers and the right products is great to set you off for your individual journey to clear skin. Anyways, in the meantime let’s look a little closer at your daily skincare habits because guess what - there are a multitude of things you might be doing on a daily basis that could seriously contribute to your breakouts.
The top 10 pimple triggers & how to fix them
#1 Your face mask causes maskne
You’ve noticed more breakouts on your chin, jawline and cheeks and your gut feeling tells you that your face mask has got something to do with it? Well, yes maskne is a thing! Sweat, oil, bacteria and humidity trapped underneath your mask creates the perfect environment for acne to break out.
How to fix: To keep your maskne in check, we recommend washing your face regularly, simplifying your skincare products, and making sure you’re always wearing a clean mask only. Also, switch to a mask with breathable fabric and stop with the make-up for a while. If you want to dig deeper into that topic, our in-depth blogpost on maskne got you covered.
#2 Your facial and pillow hygiene are not at its best
Do you wash your face at night? No? You better should. During the day, our skin becomes a home for dirt, oil, make-up and other stuff and if you don’t wash all that off, it easily gets transferred to your pillowcase and afterwards right back to your skin. Long-term exposure to this environment alongside the friction of your skin rubbing against the pillowcase, might contribute to inflammation and acne breakouts.
How to fix: Well, that’s a no brainer. Wash your face before you head off to bed and change your pillowcase weekly.
#3 Too much anti-acne cream is drying out your face
As soon as you spot a pimple, you’re slathering on that pimple cream? Chances are you’re not only overreacting but also over-treating. Classic salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide or sulfur over-the-counter-treatments can dry out your skin and thus lead to an increase of oil production which in turn leads to - surprise - pimples. On top of that, the active ingredients of these products can slightly burn the epidermis leaving it looking red and irritated if these products are used excessively.
How to fix: Don’t worry, you can still stick to your regular spot treatment - just slow down a little. As so often, less is more. And if you have an acute breakout, use a 1% hydrocortisone cream that calms inflammation and reduces the redness.
#4 You overdo with the face scrub
Yes, not exfoliating your skin on a regular basis might cause acne but if you’re scrubbing more to prevent the acne, then you’re not doing yourself a favour. Regardless of what you use - washcloth, face scrubs, loofahs or brushes, the formula “the smoother it is, the less acne you get” doesn’t work. The point of exfoliating your skin is to repair its protective barrier to keep bacteria out and not to stress it out even more.
How to fix: We recommend washing and exfoliating your skin with a mild but effective product that contains chemical exfoliators and don’t require scrubbing. Also, be gentle and as above: less is more.
#5 You use the wrong skincare products
Though you already take care of your skin, it can also be the products you use that trigger your acne. Some products contain ingredients like mineral oil that is a heavy moisturizing agent which may clog your pores if you’re already prone to unclear skin. Using natural oil already? Well, even coconut oil is known to clog your pores, too. Further on, fragrance and sodium lauryl sulfate (an oil-stripping surfactant) is often found in many products and can also contribute to your breakout.
How to fix: Reading labels can be overwhelming, especially if unsure what to watch out for. However, a good place to begin is by getting rid of any products that contain aforementioned common irritants. Also, switch to fragrance- and sulfate free products. If you still have doubts, then search for products that are labelled as non-comedogenic. Tried all the above but without success? Then it’s best to see your dermatologist and dig a little deeper - maybe allergies play a role here.
#6 You use too many products
You love to try out new products and that quite a few times per year? Well, that’s great for the beauty industry but not so much for your skin. Changing skin products frequently without giving them enough time to work, stresses out your skin. The new preservatives and active ingredients can be irritating and thus cause breakouts.
How to fix: It’s best to stick to one or two products and give them at least 1 to 1.5 months to unfold their magic. Experts say that it takes that long for your skin to change, so being patient is key. Also, buying less beauty products is not only cost effective but also saves you some space in your bathroom.
#7 Your eating the wrong foods
Are you stuffing your face with highly processed, sugary or fried foods? Well, all that might be linked to your breakout as these foods are highly inflammatory in nature. In addition, other foods like dairy, gluten or refined carbs can also play a significant role here. But not only the “classics” are important to watch out for, also veggies like tomatoes or spices like pepper can contribute - both contain acidic lycopene - a common irritant that can throw off your skin’s pH levels and thus trigger acne around the mouth. However, the diet factor is quite complex as the dietary effect on the skin totally depends on the person itself.
How to fix: Swap carby, sugary snacks like crips or ice-cream with fruits, veggies, whole grains and a good amount of protein. If that doesn’t do the trick, go see a doctor to check if there’s something going on in your gastrointestinal tract or whether any of the food you’re eating is causing anything unusual.
#8 Your stress levels are too high
Simply put: stress triggers acne and acne triggers more stress - it’s a downward spiral, let us tell you. When stressed, the skin produces increased stress hormones like cortisol which in turn stimulates your oil glands to produce testosterone. That leads to higher oil production clogging your pores and voilà resulting in more pimples.
How to fix: Go for a balanced lifestyle - regular exercise, meditation, time with loved ones and in nature. Make sure to take enough time out to nourish your soul and release these stress hormones to avoid them messing up with your skin. However that you-time looks, make sure to take it as seriously as your other daily to-do’s.
#9 You’re sleeping to little
Speaking of stress leads us to the next one already. During sleep our body rests and repairs meaning that also our cortisol levels decrease. Not getting adequate amounts of sleep means that we’re continuously exposed to high levels of cortisols which could trigger pimples.
How to fix: If everything would be that simple, sigh. Get your snooze on, switch that phone off and make sure you get your 8h in.
#10 Your medications mess up your skin
You’ve almost made it through but one last thing to consider if you’re still searching for your breakout trigger. Certain medications like steroids, hormonal pills, anticonvulsants or lithium can be the cause of pimples and acne, too.
How to fix: Here it’s best to see a professional doctor to assess whether your medication is really needed or if it’s possible to switch to another product too. Maybe there is even a natural alternative that would work and thus giving some relief on your skin.
The one beauty product that fights pimples overnight
If you’re not only searching for the cause that triggers your acne, but also for something that beats it, the Clear Skin Patch from AND SHINE is the right fit for you. The innovative non-drying patch combats pimples and reduces redness whilst you sleep. Each patch contains highly effective active ingredients which are dissolved into the top layer of your skin by using microstructure technology. The application is super easy and safe and clinical studies prove a significant reduction of pimples after 3 to 6 days with daily use. if that doesn't make it worth a try then what else would do?