All Answered! 5 Questions About Acne You've Always Wanted To Ask

Sun Tzu's Art of War taught you to "know your enemy". This rule doesn't just apply to work and business, it also applies to pesky skincare issues like acne. Here are five things you need to know about pimples in order to banish them:

#1. How are pimples formed?

Our skin produces sebum (through the sebaceous glands), which is important for lubricating our skin. When sebum clogs the skin, perhaps due to ineffective exfoliation, or because of over-active sebaceous glands, it makes your skin a great breeding ground for bacteria, leading to inflammation and redness - and that's when a pimple is formed. Watch this video for a more visual explanation of the process:

#2. Is there a difference between adult and teenage acne?

You may have thought you'd stop suffering from acne once you're done with puberty. Unfortunately, acne can still plague adults. Adult and teenage acne, however, are usually caused by different factors. Teenagers are prone to pimples because of hormonal spikes, leading to an over-production of sebum, which can cause more clogging. On the other hand, adult acne is typically triggered by hormonal fluctuations or stress.

While teenage acne can usually be kept under control once the teenager is put on a good skincare regime to help keep sebum under control, adult acne is usually slightly harder to deal with, and is more persistent, because skin is usually also plagued with other problems, such as dehydration and sensitivity.

#3 Can I squeeze my pimples?

The "bump" that you see holds oil and acne-causing bacteria. When you poke the pimple and release the gunk, the bacteria that's in it can get into other pores, infecting them and causing more pimples.

Another problem with squeezing them is that, if it's not done properly, you might be pushing the bacteria deeper into your skin, or even be introducing new bacteria to your pimple from your fingers, making the pimple more inflamed, and harder to heal. In the worst scenario, it may leave a permanent scar.

Don't be tempted to squeeze pimples yourself, let the experts, who are trained to do it properly and safely, handle them.

#4 What can I change in my habits to prevent pimples?

Because pimples are caused by an infection by bacteria, simple daily habits to take note of includes:

•Clean your mobile phone regularly. Bacteria that's left on the screen of your phone can transfer onto your skin when you hold your it against your face.

•If you wear spectacles, clean it regularly. The nose support and frame may trap sebum and makeup from your face, and can cause bacteria to breed and transferred to your skin.

•Exfoliate regularly. This ensures that there isn't any dead skin cells build-up that can provide bacteria with the chance to breed.

#5 Should I seek professional help?

If you're seeing very occasional appearance of pimples, you can simply wait for the pimples to run their course and heal by themselves.

However, if you have acne-prone skin and you feel troubled by frequent appearance of pimples, you should probably get help from skincare experts. Remember to look for a skincare centre that has showcased sufficient track record and experience.

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