When Acne Lingers: Effective Adult Acne Treatment

Try Perricone acne-treating products today!You may be one of the 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 most common skin disorders in the United States, affecting 17 million people. Adult acne can start in your twenties and last until your forties.

The underlying cause is the same for both adult acne and teenage acne. Acne is caused by bacteria, oil, and debris becoming trapped in the pores due to the surplus of the androgen hormones. Although the underlying cause is similar, there are subtle differences between teenage and adult acne. That means the treatment for adult acne is often different than that for teenage acne. Also, because adults have more sensitive skin due to aging, it is important to treat your skin with appropriate products that aren’t formulated for teenagers.

This article will discuss:

Teenage Acne vs. Adult Acne

The pores in your skin contain sebaceous glands (also called oil glands). These glands make sebum, which is an oil that lubricates your skin. When the sebaceous gland produces an excess amount of oil because of the hyperactivity of androgen hormones, this oil can mix with debris and skin cells. This causes pores to become clogged. Bacteria begins to build up in the pores, causing them to swell and redden. These clogs are what we commonly recognize as acne.

Adult acne and teenage acne have a few factors in common. First, they can both be caused by androgen hormone imbalance. Second, they can both manifest as several types of acne blemishes such as blackheads, whiteheads, pustules, and cystic acne. Although there are similarities between adult acne and teenage acne, there are also some differences that are important to understand in order to find the best treatment for you.

Teenage acne:

  • Is found at the t-zones.
  • Can be treated with over-the-counter products.
  • Is caused by a hormone imbalance.
  • Can take the form of several types of acne blemishes, including blackheads, whiteheads, pustules, and cystic acne.
  • Acne suffers typically have oily skin.

Adult acne:

  • Usually found on the lower part of the face and chin.
  • Is often more difficult to treat with over-the-counter products.
  • Is frequently made worse by stress as well as hormone imbalances.
  • Can take the form of rosacea in addition to blackheads, whiteheads, pustules, and cystic acne.
  • Acne suffers may have dry or oily skin.

Although teenage and adult acne can both be caused by a hormone imbalance, the cause of this imbalance differs in teenagers and adults. Women’s hormones tend to fluctuate during menstruation, pregnancy or menopause. During these times there is a surplus of androgens, the male hormones present in both men and women that contribute to oil production and clogged pores.

Similar to adults, teenagers have hormone imbalance that causes acne. However, the hormone imbalance is due to puberty. During puberty, an excess of androgen hormones are released and are responsible for the appearance of acne. For many people, when puberty ends, their hormones become more balanced and the acne goes away.

Adult Acne Treatment

It’s important to understand that adult acne should not be treated the same as teenage acne because of the differences mentioned above. Most over-the-counter acne treatments cater to teenagers’ oily skin. Because adult skin can be oily or dry, you should choose the products you treat your acne with carefully. It’s best to treat your skin with products specifically marketed to adult consumers. Using harsh products can cause further skin irritation worsen your acne condition.

Even if you have oily skin, using teenage acne products, such as those containing benzoyl peroxide, can cause your skin to age more quickly. This is because these products may create damaging free radicals. In addition, benzoyl peroxide can be very drying and irritating, especially on more fragile adult skin. This can also make skin look older. Instead, adult acne sufferers should use gentle products that help fight acne and treat the signs of aging, something that teenage acne treatments don’t factor in.

Prescribed Hormonal Treatments

Adult acne is often treated by prescribed hormonal medications such as birth control pills. Oral contraceptive pills can reduce the amount of the androgen testosterone within the body, improving hormonal breakouts. By suppressing the production of testosterone, the amount of oil produced by the sebaceous glands is decreased, reducing pore blockage.

Stress Relief

Since stress can be a cause of acne, anything that reduces stress can also improve acne. Taking yoga classes is a great way to relieve your body of stress. Yoga also increases blood flow to your face to flush away toxins and supply nutrients to your skin. Other ways to relax include meditation, exercise, walking, deep breathing. Anything you find relaxing is a great way to reduce stress levels and help your adult acne.

Change of Diet

Another effective way to treat acne is by changing your diet. The food you consume can affect your acne. Because inflammation, redness, and swelling are characteristic of acne, Dr. Perricone recommends anti-inflammatory recipes to help control inflammation throughout your entire body.

If you avoid pro-inflammatory foods and eat more anti-inflammatory foods, this will help your acne subside and aid in healing your skin. Anti-inflammatory foods are typically high in antioxidants, healthy fats, and whole grains. They include things like fish, fruits, vegetables, and grains like oatmeal.

Another treatment that can reduce adult acne is Perricone Skin Clear Supplements. This dietary supplement helps clear up blemishes and prevents them from resurfacing. In addition to enhancing skin clearness, these supplements also support a healthy immune system, and provide both antioxidant protection and anti-aging benefits.

Adult Acne Skin Care Products

The ingredients used for teenage acne products often differ from found in adult acne treatments. Instead of benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid is commonly used to treat adult acne. This key ingredient is very affective at reducing excess sebum and unclogging pores. It also encourages the shedding of dead skin cells, which helps the the pores stay clear of cellular debris. When your pores are clear of bacteria and dead skin cells, this helps reduce blockage and breakouts.

The Perricone Skin Clear line uses salicylic acid as major ingredient to fight acne. By using a product like the Skin Clear Acne Toner, you can both clear blemishes, as well as help prevent new blemishes from forming. The Skin Clear Acne Toner now has new Perricone discounts to save you money on your order. This product also contains Alpha Lipoic Acid refine skin texture and pore size, while also helping to eliminate fine lines and discoloration. The addition of eucalyptus oil calms inflammation and eliminates bacteria.

These kinds of beneficial ingredients to fight aging and care for skin are what differentiate adult acne treatments from those for teenagers. They are are more gentle, hydrating products that ensure your skin will not become dry and irritated, two factors that can make acne worse. In addition, Perricone’s adult acne products contain ingredients that work everyday to fight the signs of aging.

Although the underlying cause of adult acne is similar to that teenage acne, the treatments differ. This allows you to clear and care for your skin while also receiving anti-aging benefits. Avoiding improper treatments can keep you from irritating your blemishes and help prevent scarring.


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23 Comments • Please comment below


  1. I am a 30yr old woman whom suffered with acne since middle school. At times I’m depressed when i look in the mirror at my skin. I’m too old for this!!! Nothing works. My skin is always full of oil I don’t take pictures due to the high shine. Please help me these breakouts are embarrassing. Ppl don’t look me in the eyes they are staring at my skin…

  2. I am 66 years old black women and still having acne. I have tried every thing on the market. I follow a routine in keeping my skin clean but from time to time have pimples and now I must go to the doctor.

  3. I am a 36 year old African American woman and did not get acne until I was about 27 years old. I have a combination of cystic acne, red pimples, and scarring. I have combination skin that seems to be sensitive as well. I have tried many over the counter products and seen many dermatologists over the last few years but nothing seems to work. I am frustrated and don’t know what else to try. Please send me samples!

  4. I am a 36 year old African American woman and did not get acne until I was about 27 years old. I have a combination of cystic acne, red pimples, and scarring. I have combination skin that seems to be sensitive as well. I have tried many over the counter products and seen many dermatologists over the last few years but nothing seems to work. I am frustrated and don’t know what else to try. Please send me some samples so I can see if Perricone products will work for me.

  5. I’m now 44 years of age and have been suffering acne since I was 13 years of age. NOTHING has ever worked for me 100%. I eat a very healthy diet, tons of water, exercise daily, shower daily and a lot of sleep and still nothing works WELL. I have tried everything over the counter and even ALL natural products which I must say do work BEST but still NOT 100%. I really believe that there is NO real cure and that I just have to accept it.

  6. I am in my mid thirties with severe acne. Cystic, blackheads, whiteheads, especially on my low cheeks and jaw line. Any help would be greatly appreciated!!

  7. I’m 30 and I have had acne 15 years. I also tried everything from eating super healthy and trying every product on the market (non of which are off the shelf). It’s true that your skin does dry out with most products of your not careful worsening the condition. I am looking to try anything to relieve some redness, scarring, and large pimples esp with a wedding coming up.

  8. I am so very frustrated! I had struggled with acne through most of my teen years up until about age 27…I am now 28 and had approximately 8 glorious months without acne and now all of a sudden…BOOM…it’s back. :( HELP!

  9. Hi I am forty five female suffering from sour red acne just around my nose and chin.it leaves marks.can you please first send me testers for these problems.thank you.regards.

  10. I am 37 and have had cystic acne since I was twelve. That is 25 YEARS of serious acne. I have tried over and under-the counter medications and and creams (benzyl peroxide, salicyclic acid, triclosan, sulfa, retinol, among others); antibiotics; Accutane; and birth control pills. Accutane and hormonal therapy are the only treatments that have ever worked; however within a couple weeks or months of ceasing medication, extremely oily skin and hair and acne returns. It is so frustrating. Thankfully I have fairly hardy skin and haven’t sustained too many scars. But it is a psychologically debilitating condition for sure.

  11. please send samples I can test

  12. I’m eighteen, and I’ve had bad acne for all of my life; constant zits around my mouth, on my chin and forehead, and lots of blackheads on my nose, and my skintype was really frustrating; oily and greasey, yet dry all the time. Wash your face with water as hot as you can stand it for a while, or try steaming it, then slap some of the Lady Soma “Antioxidant Berry Masque”; it’s incredible.

    It will dry on your skin; then wash it off. If you have red irritating pimples, you’ll notice a change overnight; and if you use it every night, your skin will rock. The cool thing is, this stuff also shrinks and minimizes the little pocks that zits leave in your face; I used to have them really bad under my eyes, they’re almost nonexistant now.

  13. I am a 30-yr old woman who has fought acne for 18 years now. I have been prescribed everything you can imagine, changed my diet to a vegetarian one, given up bread and white sugars, eliminated coffee, taken multiple supplements like Vitamins A, B complex, C, D, E, Beta carotene, and now Mega H- an inhibitor that is supposed to assist in inflammation. I have an active yoga practice, and exercise several times a week. Nothing has changed my skin, even a little bit. I am so discouraged, and hoping your products and regime will help me. At this point, I don’t know what’s left for me to eat! I don’t eat meat or dairy, and avoid fish with high mercury levels. HELP!!

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  17. I had beautiful skin as a teenager, then in my adult years I woke one morning to find my face covered in acne. I’m interested to try your products on my skin. I’ve tried numerous lines of acne products with little results. A friend suggested I try yours. I hopeful due to the fact that you separate adult and teen acne. Maybe I haven’t been finding the right regimen because I’ve been using teen products on my adult skin. Thanks for the info!

  18. I am close to thirty and still get blemishes every so often but blackheads are more my concern. Teenage acne cleansers and pimple creams seem to dry out my skin and the problem of clogged pores are still there, it’s an awful cycle.

  19. I suffered with acne from teenage to mid-life and still have problems and scarring. Pores tend to be the worst problem. I dream of smooth, clear skin.

  20. Having acne as an adult is a nightmare! I thought I was done after my teens. Like the description above it is mainly on my chin and jaw area.

    I have tried many things and have not had any luck – I hope that Dr. Perricone will do the trick. I think the science behind his products, diet/lifestyle recommendation is solid.


  22. I have suffered with hormonal adult acne for over 10 years. Nothing I used short of medications could cure my skin of acne, so I had resolved to live with it.
    About a year ago I picked up Dr. Perricone’s book “The Wrinkle Cure” and tried to follow the diet as best I could for a couple of months. I was only a couple of weeks into it when I noticed my skin was actually clear! No more large bumps or irritating red spots. My face showed that my body was no longer inflamed, thanks to Dr. Perricone’s diet perscription!!

  23. I have battled acne for most of my life. I am 44 now. I tend to break out around the jaw line. About 10 years ago I went on Acutane. It helped with the cystic acne, but I still experiece break outs. I cleanse my face twice a day-that is a must. I would love to test any adult acne product you offer. Thanks!