Acne Basics – What is It? Acne Myths and Treatments

Far from being just a teenage plague, acne is one of the most common skin complaints. Indeed, it affects people of all ages, even some infants. Acne includes by the various forms of clogged pores including whiteheads, blackheads, and inflamed red pimples.

Skin care scientists have identified many of the causes of acne and some very effective treatments. In particular, Perricone MD has developed a combination of diet, topical products, and supplements that work to fight acne both on the surface and from the inside.

This article will discuss:

What is Acne?

Human skin contains millions of openings called pores. Each contains a hair, an oil gland, and a sweat-secreting gland. The oil gland, however, has the greatest impact on acne formation. Skin oil, or sebum, is necessary because it lubricates the skin and helps the epidermis, the topmost layer, shed dead cells. Proper lubrication and cell turnover are important parts of healthy skin function and part of what gives the complexion a fresh and even look.

However, when the oil glands are overactive, the excess oil mixes with dirt, dead skin and bacteria to form clogs inside the pores. The clog is either a whitehead, which is closed to the surface of the skin, or a blackhead, which is open to the skin and oxidized. Often, bacteria builds up and infects the pore. The immune response to this infection includes increased blood flow to the area of the pore. This results in the red, inflamed appearance most associated with pimples.

The Roots of Acne

Most acne comes from a combination of genetics, hormones, stress, external factors, and diet. Acne tends to run in families, and is generally exacerbated by hormonal fluctuations. Teenage acne tends to be among the worst because teenagers experience significant hormonal changes that alter skin function and oil production.

Women going through pregnancy, certain phases of their menstrual cycle, or menopause have similar hormonal instability that can make their acne worse. In addition, certain drugs, especially ones that deal with hormones, such as steroids and birth control pills, can affect acne formation.

Environmental factors that affect acne include weather, such as sun exposure, temperature, and humidity. External factors like the use of heavy, greasy skin and hair products can increase the likelihood of clogs forming. On top of all that, your stress level and general health play a role as well.

Stress stimulates abnormal hormonal fluctuations and inflammation throughout the body, thus often making acne, an inflammatory condition, worse. A balanced diet is essential for all kinds of proper biological functions, and is essential for healthy skin. A diet rich in healthy fats and antioxidants give your skin cells the tools they need heal damage and turnover at a correct rate.

Acne Treatments

Proper cleansing with a gentle face wash is important to remove excess dirt, oil, and debris that can clog pores. Be sure to choose a gentle, nonstripping product as over drying the skin can make oil glands overcompensate, thus making skin even oilier.

One of the most popular and effective acne treatment ingredients is salicylic acid. Salicylic acid exfoliates dead skin cells and removes debris from the pores. This limits the excess material that can mix with sebum to clog pores. Other products, such as benzoyl peroxide have antibacterial qualities that limit bacteria growth that may occur in the clogged pore. Moisture is important for all skin types, even acne prone.

A good moisturizer counteracts the drying effects of adult acne treatment, protects skin from the environment, and reduces dry skin cells that can clog pores

In addition to maintaining a general healthy diet, there are foods that can help the skin’s natural defenses against acne. Olive oil, for example, improves the malleability of cells and assists cellular functions like the transference of nutrients. Foods that are rich in antioxidants, such as the acai berry, fight the free radical damage that keeps cells from functioning correctly.

Dr. Perricone’s Anti-Inflammatory Diet focuses on these kinds of beneficial foods. It is designed to treat the systemic inflammation at the root of a number of conditions. It focuses on healthy fats, low-glycemic carbohydrates, high-quality protein, and antioxidant rich fruits and vegetables. These foods are especially well suited to reducing the inflammation that contributes to acne and keeps skin from looking clear and radiant.

Check out this video for more on Dr. Perricone’s Anti-Inflammatory Diet:

The skin care products from Perricone MD has a range of products that cover all the bases of, treatment, and moisturizing to help skin naturally fight off acne. The products also include ingredients to minimize the signs of aging. The Skin Clear Cleanser contains salicylic acid to clear clogged pores and exfoliate skin while alpha lipoic acid naturally promotes the reduction of uneven texture and puffiness. In addition, green tea extracts cool and soothe the skin.

The Skin Clear Toner and the Skin Clear Hydrator both moisturize skin and limit skin debris and contaminants. Dr. Perricone’s clear skin plan also includes the Skin Clear Supplements which combine potent ingredients including vitamin C, omega-3, and evening primrose oil. These substances work internally to improve skin clarity and tone while supporting the immune system. Before purchasing one of these products, be sure to get a Perricone coupon to save more than just your skin.


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22 Comments • Please comment below


  1. [...] last common cause of red skin is “hormones”, particularly in the form of acne. Acne often gets worse during the teenage years because hormone levels in the body trigger increased [...]

  2. I have had whiteheads and blackheads since I was 13. I am now 30 and still dealing with acne. I have tried numerous products that work for a short period of time then it seems as if my skin adapts to the product and the product no longer works for me. Or maybe its my hormones changing I don’t know but something has to give. I have to admit I’ve never tried a healthy diet or supplements such as vitamin c, omega-3, or evening primrose. I have tried supplements that help fight free radicals but none of the ingredients included acai berry. The article was very informative and it would be great to find the one product that I could stick with.

  3. [...] Lessen acne [...]

  4. [...] Keeping pores clean is an important part of every skin care routine. Pores become dirty from a buildup of oily sebum, cellular debris, and bacteria which clogs the pores. When all of this residue comes in contact with oxygen, the pores become darker and are called blackheads. The blackheads act as a plug in the pores. The body keeps trying to rid itself of oil being produced, but oil cannot escape the skin because of the blackhead. Instead, all of the oil builds up behind the blackhead and causes acne. [...]

  5. [...] causes of acne symptoms, such as blackheads and pimples, are partly responsible for enlarged pores. When a pore [...]

  6. [...] to be confused with just a teenage phase, acne can affect teens, adults, and sometimes even infants. Since it is a very common disease, you need [...]

  7. [...] women who escapes teenage acne only to wake up in your thirties and discover you have blemishes. Acne is not just a problem for teenagers, but can also be a concern for adults. This issue is one of the [...]

  8. The question is, does it really work? I’ve tried so many different types of skin care lines and eating healthy foods…. My acne is still here and I’m only 34 yrs old! It all started 6 months after getting off birth control.. The pill really kept my skin beautiful. Now, I look like a monster!


  10. [...] to leave scars, so it’s important to treat the disease as soon as possible. Controlling adult acne is no quick task, but it can be improved with the right ingredients and right [...]

  11. I’m thirty years old, have two children, and my skin is just falling apart. I don’t know what happened, but after almost a decade of blemish-free skin I look like a teenager once more (and not in the good way). I’d love to be able to have blemish-free, glowing skin that I had up until two years ago.I’d love to be your tester and hope I can use my experience to send more people my way. Thank you.

  12. I need products for acne AND antiaging. I am 37 with both issues.

  13. I need direction and guidance. I am choosing various products myself but i dont feel knowledgeable to pick the correct items to suit my needs.

  14. I am 57 yr. old female, on renova, i keep having breakouts, no matter what cleanser i use, sun screen, then get scares from breakouts, i feel i am running around in circles, would love to try , products.

  15. Acne has been a struggle for me for over 20 years and now having to deal with fine lines, large pores and blackheads makes things even more difficult. Having sensitive skin doesn’t help either. I’d be honored to try the line and perhaps finally find something that actually would work for me.

  16. I love the informative articles, the products, and would love to test new products since I know they’ll be great!

  17. I would love to become a Dr. Perricone tester. I have loved the products that I have used and would love to be a tester and share my experience with the products.

  18. great article.
    i would love to try this product
    and recommend it to friends and family.

  19. i have dealt with acne all my life, and have not found anything to effectively manage it!

  20. I purchased the Skin Clear Cleanser and I did not think it was going to be so soothing and creamy, but it is and it makes my skin feel beautiful…
    I would love to try out the whole kit some day!

  21. These articles give helpful information.

  22. I like how the article includes tips regarding diet too! Looks like the anti-inflammatory diet can help with a variety of problems.