Acne Friends & Acne Foes, Part 1

There are so many confusing tips about caring for your skin when you are suffering with acne. Clearing your acne takes focus and commitment, and it won’t happen overnight. I’d like to share some of my top dos and don’ts, also known as Acne Friends and Acne Foes. Part one of this two-parter addresses the Acne Foes.

Acne Foes

  1. Picking. No-no-no. Just, no. Picking leads to scabbing, which leads to scarring and marks that stay on your skin long after the pimple goes away. Picking at your face could also create a deeper infection, or worse, trigger a staph infection that spreads far beyond the original blemish (and can even land you in the hospital). I know you can’t help it, but DON’T DO IT.
  1. “Non-Comedogenic” Products. But they are supposed to be non-comedogenic, whatever that means, so it’s good for acne, right? Not necessarily. Cosmetic labeling is not regulated, so cosmetic manufacturers can include whatever ingredients they want in the formula, including pore-clogging ingredients. I know, it’s super confusing, but you must become familiar with ingredients that have a comedogenicity rating of 3 or higher (up to 5 – 5 being the most comedogenic). Check all your skin product ingredient lists thoroughly and THROW OUT anything with pore-cloggers.
  1. Fabric Softener. But I like the way everything smells so fresh and clean, you say. Sorry—all types of fabric softener: dryer sheets, dryer bars and liquid softeners have a waxy residue that keeps the fresh scent and soft feeling in the fabric—which can also create clogged up pores. It’s best to use fragrance free detergents and the textured dryer balls instead.
  1. Using Acne Med as just a “spot” treatment. By the time you visibly see an acne blemish rear its ugly head in your skin, it has been developing for up to two months in the pore underneath. Use your topical acne medicine evenly over the entire area that breaks out, not just the on the visible spot.
  1. Sun Exposure. Ok, even if getting a little color seems to help even out the skin that is darker from the blemishes, and sun exposure causes some skin sloughing and drying, it can be way more negative than positive. Too much sun creates inflammation, which damages the follicle and triggers unwanted pigmentation, and causes skin cancer and premature aging. You absolutely must wear a non-pore clogging sunscreen every day, not only for sun protection, but also to help with skin hydration. I have lots of great options for non-pore clogging sunscreens from which to choose.

This is just a short list of the top Acne Foes – the next blog will cover part 2 on Acne Friends (or Acne Dos).

For more information on how you can safely and affordably clear your acne within 12 to 16 weeks, contact Idaho’s first (and only) Certified Acne Specialist for an acne consultation appointment at 208.724.6250 or schedule online at

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