Acne, ah the bane of youth, right? Unfortunately for many women it continues long past their teen years.
Tip #1: If you’re finding you’re suddenly breaking out with acne, look at your anti-aging cream and see if any of these ingredients are listed: lanolin, squalene, alcohols, any oils (mineral, coconut butter, etc.), and sodium lauryl sulfate. Chances are they could be causing the problem.
Here are 3 more causes and 3 cures:
- It may not be acne after all. There’s a condition called perioral dermatitis in which the skin has a bump rash focused primarily around the mouth and chin. It will look irritated. This condition is often caused by topical steroid creams (or the use of prescription steroids), as well as heavy creams. Ask your dermatologist to check it out to rule out acne, and if it is perioral dermatitis, they will most likely prescribe anti-inflammatories.
- It could be stress. No surprise here, right? Stress causes a change in your hormones, which can lead to an increase in testosterone as well as pimples. And if you dose your stress with junk food, you’re most likely making it work. First, try yoga and some deep breathing to get to the heart of your stress. Then apply a topical ointment to the pimples that contain salicylic acid. Just remember your skin is drier than it was in your teens, so use less.
- It could be your skincare or makeup. This one is the hardest one to decipher, especially if you’re already fallen in love with your new foundation. But try eliminating one topical item at a time (start with your foundation, then try your moisturizer). It can also be from a cleanser that isn’t be properly washed off the skin. Once you’ve found the culprit, switch it out for an oil-free variety. Be sure to eliminate for at least a week to see results, and try something for at least a week before you make any conclusions.
Inflammation is something you’re undoubtedly familiar with the skin redness that comes from a bee sting or the swelling that results from twisting your ankle. In these and other acute cases, you should feel thankful it is around it’s your immune system’s natural fix-it response, after all. Inflammation comes, it protects, it heals and then poof it disappears. At least that’s when things happen as they should.
You see, inflammation has a darker side, too. When chronic and low-grade, it can be much more silent and insidious than this. “Your immune system can become chronically ‘locked and loaded,’ trying to fight problems that don’t exist,” says Mark Liponis, M.D., corporate medical director at Canyon Ranch in Lenox, Mass. “It’s as if our white blood cells are being sent to attack, but there is no specific infection. This kind of inflammation can cause damage to your heart, brain, blood vessels, kidneyseverything.” Even very low levels of inflammation have been linked with significantly increased risk for heart attack and stroke, and it doesn’t really matter what the source of the inflammation is.
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