Everything You Need To Know About Acne  

Unless you’ve been genetically blessed, you’ve likely suffered from acne at some point during your life. While many of us think of acne as a primarily teenage problem, hormonal shifts are only one factor contributing to the prevalent condition.

When it comes to treating acne, whether mild or severe, the best offense is a good education. Here’s what you need to know about the causes of acne and how to navigate them for your best skin ever.

First Things First, What is Acne?

Acne is a skin condition that occurs when the tiny holes in the skin, known as pores, become clogged with an oily substance called sebum and dead skin cells. The combination causes whiteheads and blackheads. When those plugged cells become infected, it can cause papules, pustules, nodules, or cysts.

While the exact reason some get acne and others don’t isn’t known, there are some common reasons for the condition:

Hormonal changes are the most common cause, which in teens, has even been linked to the increase in testosterone.

Lifestyle choices like cigarette smoking can also cause irritation and skin inflammation, as can certain skin care products with high oil content and even medications like steroids. Recently, certain dietary choices have even been linked to acne, specifically refined sugar, carbs, and dairy consumption. Additionally, poor sleep and stress can contribute as well.

However, there is also a genetic link, so even if you’re doing everything right, acne might just be in your DNA.

No matter the reason for your acne, there are treatment and prevention options! The three primary ways to treat acne are topical medications, oral medications, and therapies like LED and steroid injections.

Topical medications include everything from skincare to retinoids. Our favorite product line right now is Face Reality — their products are filled with effective ingredients like Mandelic Acid, Lactic Acid, Sodium Hyaluronate, and Niacinamide. In fact, their acne product line is designed to treat your skin type and concerns. We love their kits filled with cleanser, toner, gel, and moisturizer, all designed to keep your skin clear but not dry. They also offer great products for preventive therapy, including gentle cleansers and oil-free moisturizers.

Oral medications, on the other hand, help treat more severe and stubborn acne, targeting bacteria on and within the skin and helping to regulate hormonal changes. Because of their strength, it’s recommended as a final option to be taken only for a short period of time.

Lastly, there are therapies. These include light therapies, manual extractions, steroid injections, and chemical peels. Depending on the severity of your acne and your age, different treatments will be more effective than others.

Not sure where to start? No worries. If you or a loved one is suffering from acne, present or past, we’re here to help. From recommending products to treatment paths, you’re not alone. Don’t suffer in silence; make moves to restore your confidence: 650.964.2200.

If you are interested in becoming a patient of SF Bay Area Plastic Surgery, we invite you to schedule a consultation at one of our three Bay Area locations.


515 South Dr., Suite #25
Mountain View, CA 94040


275 Tennant Ave., Suite #105
Morgan Hill, CA 95037


15965 Los Gatos Blvd., Suite #201
Los Gatos, CA 95032

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(650) 964-2200.