Acne Treatment Ingredients & Products that Really Work! | Skincare with @Susan Yara
one of the most common skincare topics is acne but it can be really difficult to treat mostly because there’s not a one-size-fits-all treatment but there are ingredients that we know specifically fight acne so today we’re going to talk about those so i realize acne sucks it really does it is one of the worst things that we can ever deal with whether you get you know just like the occasional pimple or you get severe breakouts and you deal with it for years i know that acne sucks i had my own personal experience with acne it was all over my back at one point because i got off birth control and my hormones just started raging and it caused these breakouts that that made me not want to wear a tank top or a swimsuit or anything like that for an entire year i ended up having to see a dermatologist it was the only way i was going to fix it and that was actually my introduction to retinoids because i got tretinoin for my back and that was finally what cleared it up so i understand that acne can just be it can be really traumatizing it’s terrible to deal with and it can be super annoying at the very least and i think one of the issues is that there are so many types of acne and there are so many different causes like hormones or just even your products that you’re using there can be so many reasons why you get these breakouts and it’s hard to identify what it is that you’re supposed to be using because there are so many ingredients out there so that’s why i want to talk about these ingredients these are kind of like the most common ingredients that are used to treat acne over the counter specifically so these are the things that you can just place an order for and i’ll show you some products that have these ingredients as well and hopefully this will you know help you figure out what type of ingredients or products it is that you want to look for to treat your acne i also want to throw out there if you are dealing with severe acne and it has been a while and you just cannot find anything that will help it i do recommend you go see a dermatologist because you might have to get something that’s stronger or something that they’ll have to prescribe to you or they might talk to you about something that might be happening on the inside so that’s something to also keep in mind all right so the first ingredient is one that is probably the most popular acne ingredient and that is salicylic acid or bhas and you know bhas aren’t necessarily out there to treat acne there are so many different reasons to use a bha or a salicylic acid which are essentially interchangeable bha stands for beta hydroxy acid and it is an oil soluble acid so it’s a chemical exfoliant but it’s oil soluble and what the difference is between that and ahas which are alpha hydroxy acids like your glycolic acid and lactic acid is that those are not oil soluble the reason why salicylic acid is great for acne and clogged pores and everything is because since it’s oil soluble it means it actually gets into your pores deep into your pores and it unclogs the oil so oil cleansing for instance with your skin when your oil cleansing oil removes oil versus water removing oil it’s kind of the same thing it’s one of the only chemical exfoliants that can actually unclog your pores from the inside out the phas also are just a great overall exfoliator they can help you know exfoliate that top layer of your skin and help with you know any acne scarring or anything like that can really help the exfoliation process in general and give you just that brighter looking skin in general another reason why salicylic acid is great to treat acne is because it’s anti-inflammatory so it’ll help with that redness and it’ll help with the swelling as well so when you have those red cystic pimples you want to use something like salicylic acid even just to tone down the redness because that is one of the properties of salicylic acid the thing to keep in mind though is salicylic acid does not kill acne bacteria so while you are treating it and in some ways you know dealing with the oil clogs i guess and with oil production you’re not necessarily killing that bacteria that causes the acne to begin with one of the products that i really like with salicylic acid is this by zitstika this is the killa kit and if you’ve heard me talk about these it comes with a basically a cleaner pad is what they call it which is a swab that has salicylic acid in it it has tea tree oil it has vitamin e it has a little bit of alcohol to help all of those active ingredients absorb into the skin and after you use that you open one of these up and you apply it right to your pimple the complaint that i hear about these is that you have to use too many of them and it won’t you know like if you’ve got pimples all over your face it’s not going to help with all of that or it’s too expensive the thing to remember about these these are for those really special the special honkers that you get i also use these for ingrown hairs ps because again it can you know get in there it helps with the inflammation it helps to soothe everything and i think it’s because of the salicylic acid these are for those people that just get the occasional pimple truly like that’s who these are for these are not supposed to be for your daily treatments or anything like that there are lots of other products and i’m going to show you those the way these work and the reason why i like them specifically when it comes to acne patches is because they have little micro darts in them and this is a technology that’s used even in you know the medical profession where you put this patch on it has these little tiny micro darts and then that helps to get the active ingredients into your skin a little bit deeper it penetrates your skin a little bit more and i like that another type of product that has salicylic acid in it or bhas in it is an exfoliant like this one a toner exfoliant this is by my brand naturium this is our bha liquid exfoliant two percent this is meant to exfoliate your skin so again salicylic acid bhas they’re really great to exfoliate the top layer of your skin as well and to really just like you know get in there because salicylic acid is oil soluble so it really gets into your pores and unclogs them and stuff i like to have this around because it just brightens and exfoliates my skin really nicely this one is very very gentle to the skin too because we have really nice hydrating and soothing ingredients in it as well this is meant to be more of like your daily exfoliant because we have the bhas in it we also have some fruit extracts in it that help to really brighten and exfoliate your skin as well so that’s the main purpose of this but because it has two percent salicylic acid in it it does help to unclog your pores so if you do feel like you’re acne prone or you do get clogged pores a lot having something like this around can be really helpful to just treat your entire face in general all right one of the next ingredients is benzoyl peroxide and i know benzoyl peroxide seems like a very scary ingredient to a lot of people you know i’ve heard people ask like what is the difference between salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide they’re actually two completely different ingredients benzoyl peroxide actually fights the bacteria that causes acne and that’s a very big deal because if you are dealing with persistent acne sometimes you need to go a little bit stronger and that is what benzoyl peroxide does the problem with it is that it can be very drying to the skin it can even bleach your clothing and your towels and stuff because it’s such a strong ingredient but it’s also proven to really work it’s very old school i know dermatologists are always recommending benzoyl peroxide cleansers because it’s an easier way to get the benefits of benzoyl peroxide without overly drying your skin but if you are dealing with persistent acne benzoyl peroxide might be the ingredient you need to look for besides being able to kill the bacteria that causes acne benzoyl peroxide is also anti-inflammatory and you know there’s something about that drying effect that it has that makes people feel like it’s helping with oil production too i think that sometimes it can cause some excess oil production if you over use it or it can cause a lot of irritation but that’s honestly that’s with any of your active ingredients you have to really ease into it and see how your skin is reacting and tolerating it but benzoyl peroxide is that next step ingredient if you were dealing with persistent acne another thing to know about benzoyl peroxide is that it kind of cancels out all of your other actives like all of your you know your niacinamide your vitamin c all of that it doesn’t really play well with any of those types of ingredients so if you are using benzoyl peroxide it shouldn’t be an ingredient that you just use in your everyday routine for the rest of your life it’s more of a treatment i really would think of it that way because salicylic acid is one of those ingredients that can really be in mostly your daily routine as long as your skin can tolerate it whereas benzoyl peroxide should really just be for the purposes of treating your acne when you need it one of the benzo peroxide cleansers that i always go back to is this one from iron medic this is their antibacterial wash with exfoliating beads for blemish skin this has 2.
5 benzoyl peroxide which is on the lower end of the percentage of benzoyl peroxide you want to have in your products it can go all the way up to 10 if it’s an over-the-counter product like this i like to start on the lower end of things and ease into it because you’ll find at least for me that this is actually a really strong cleanser and it goes to work really quickly but that’s been my personal experience with this i’d like to keep something like this around for those occasional breakouts as well like i said i’ve used it on my body and it works very well for those types of problems too as far as the actual micro beads in this the exfoliating beads they’re made out of a synthetic wax and they dissolve completely into the water and on your skin too so they’re round and they’re not going to scratch your skin and they’re actually really far apart so it’s not rough on your skin you can obviously make it too rough manually if you’re exfoliating too hard with your hands but overall i find that this is gentle enough but strong enough too for me personally even though it’s only 2.
5 i find that this is very strong it also has a combination of willow bark and salicylic acid in it so this is really strong for me you can use this as a spot treatment also like if you’re getting breakouts in one specific area you can focus it in those areas and then just rinse off and then wash your face the way you normally would so you can use this in very specific ways and that’s one of the things that i like about it i will caution it has peppermint oil in it it makes it feel nice and refreshing it’s a rinse off product so it shouldn’t be too bad but for people that are sensitive to that it does have peppermint oil next up is sulfur and sulfur is actually really popular as far as being an acne treatment usually it’s paired up with other ingredients like salicylic acid for instance like if you look at those like those treatments that you like open the bottle and you dip a little q-tip into it it usually has a combination of sulfur and salicylic acid the reason why sulfur on its own is an acne treatment is because it helps to break down keratin keratin is a protein in our skin and in our nails and it helps to kind of build that when you have clogged pores you get a keratin buildup so the sulfur can really help to break it down and it’s really good for you know like if you want to get everything that’s in your pimple i guess if you want to get it out you use something like sulfur to help really loosen that skin up what i tend to find with sulfur is that it’s not strong enough for me like i’ve never actually thought like sulfur is that go-to acne ingredient but there are reasons to use it and like i said you know a lot of brands will use it in combination with other acne ingredients like salicylic acid but if you’re pregnant if you’re breastfeeding if you have just really sensitive skin you might have to opt for sulfur especially when you’re pregnant breastfeeding it’s like you can’t use anything that’s really going to be that strong on your skin you can’t even use retinoids which is going to be down the list so if you have to go for something sulfur is that ingredient that you would look for you know one of the other things that it has is it’s a natural antibacterial so it will help to fight that bacteria that causes acne it’s not as effective as benzoyl peroxide but it does have that added benefit to it one of the things that i dislike about sulfur is that it can be a little bit smelly so it can smell like farts rotten eggs that kind of thing but i tend to find that the products that i’ve tried with sulfur don’t smell that way one product that i recommend is this one by verse it’s actually one of their newer products it is their game over acne drying treatment this has 10 sulfur in this it also has a mix of bentonite clay and cowling clay so it helps it feel a little bit more comfortable and actually stay in place when you use it there are two different ways that you can use it you can use it as a spot treatment or because it has that clay in it you can even spread a thin layer on your face and let it sit i tend to like sulfur treatments like this to be more of a spot treatment but again you can use it kind of the way you want to use it you can even use it on blackheads and whiteheads the only thing with this is that you can only use it at night because it has those clays so you don’t want it to be something that i mean i guess if you’re just sitting at home which a lot of us are doing these days even if you’re working you’re working at home so that’s just something to keep in mind is that it does have the clays in it which are going to help to draw out the excess oil and everything too but you will be able to see it because it is a spot treatment and it does have that clay in the sulfur another ingredient and one that i just you guys know i think everyone should have in their routine anyway is retinoids retinoids are the gold standard for acne treatment they’re the gold standard ingredient when it comes to anti-aging all of it retinoids do a lot of different things for your skin but the reason why they’re great for acne treatment is because they stimulate skin cell turnover so they’re essentially pushing new skin cells up to the surface and then getting rid of the old skin cells so you’re constantly shedding i guess is the best way to explain it that sounds funny it’s not like we’re like reptiles or anything but it is speeding up that shedding and so it helps to keep your skin very clear and pretty there are obviously lots of different options for retinoids it can be as simple as something like retinol palmitate which is more of a gentle ester and it goes all the way up to you know prescription type of ingredients like your true retinoic acid which is tretinoin you can get adapylene which is something i talk about all the time with like different for instance which is now over the counter it’s a great treatment for acne it doesn’t work for everybody but it works for a lot of people and then there’s just regular over-the-counter retinol which is a really wonderful just ingredient to have in your skincare routine and one that i talk about all the time and it’s an ingredient that i have in my skincare routine almost nightly at this point one product that i have just been loving lately is this by allies of skin this is their 1a retinol and peptides overnight mask calling it a mask makes it seem like it’s really thick or something or that you have to rinse it off but it’s actually more of just a nice cream or almost feels like a lotion this has a really nice peptide complex it has really wonderful antioxidants in it but it also has encapsulated retinaldehyde and retinaldehyde is a precursor to retinoic acid so all the over-the-counter retinoids what they do is they have to convert in your skin to actually become retinoic acid which is what we’re actually looking for that’s what’s stimulating that skin cell turnover and i know that’s like kind of complicated to think about but retinaldehyde is that one precursor to retinoic acid so it only has to go through one conversion i love the formulation of this it’s at a ph of 5.
2 to 5.7 so that means that it’s really comfortable on your skin but because it’s encapsulated retinaldehyde it means that the retinaldehyde is staying a little bit more stable because people don’t realize that you know vitamin a is an antioxidant also and it means that it releases over time so it’s still gentle even though it’s strong if that makes sense so i really love this stuff i can’t tell you how much i think that this is just a wonderful moisturizer and treatment to have in your skincare routine so those are the four ingredients that i really think treat acne there are other ingredients that you should have in your skincare routine if you are dealing with acne or with oily skin or with clogged pores one of those ingredients is niacinamide you hear me talk about it all the time and i always say that this is a year of niacinamide we obviously in my line deteriorium have our niacinamide serum we actually have a few different niacinamide products but this is probably our most popular when it comes to niacinamide this really helps with oil production sebum production so if you have excess oil this really helps to balance it it’s also anti-inflammatory it just strengthens your skin it’s a wonderful ingredient to add into your skincare routine basically for anybody but if you are dealing with acne though it’s a wonderful ingredient for you another ingredient that isn’t necessarily an acne treatment but is a great ingredient to have in your skincare routine if you are acne prone is linoleic acid it’s an omega-6 fatty acid that’s another way to look at it it’s really great because those who are acne prone tend to have a lower percentage of linoleic acid in their sebum if you have acne you likely have low levels of linoleic acid so it’s really good to just find products that will help add that back into your skin a couple of cleansing oils that i recommend that are high in linoleic acid are one there’s the coatily cleansing oil that one has sunflower seed oil it has grape seed oil it has a few other oils that aren’t high in linoleic acid but the main oils are there’s also the drunk elephant cleansing balm that one has a high percentage of safflower seed oil which is also high in linoleic acid so those are two cleansing oils and balms that you can try to find if you are acne prone and you’re considering trying a cleansing oil as a first cleanse so those are the ingredients to look for when you’re trying to treat acne i hope this was really helpful i hope it kind of broke it down a little bit easier for you i realize it can be so confusing if you’re really dealing with a lot of acne i encourage you to go see your dermatologist because there could be you know multiple ways that they want to help you treat your acne if there are products that you absolutely love that you use to treat acne and pimples tell us in the comments below so that other people can you know look at those products and maybe consider them if they’re dealing with any issues like this you can find me on instagram i’m at susan yara and i’ll talk to you soon bye