Stubborn, repetitive acne can be infuriating. But taking note where it pops up can tell you a lot about why it won’t go away–and how to fix it.
If you always seem to have a zit or two on your forehead, your hairstyle or hair products may be to blame. Whether your fringe is blunt or side-swept, the hair that grazes your forehead creates an acne problem area by transferring oil that can clog pores and creating the perfect greasy breeding ground for pimples. What’s more, heavy products like deep conditioners can clog pores along the hairline too. To clear up your forehead, make sure to fully rinse out all hair products and free your face from any strands that might be causing oils to accumulate.
The nose, like the forehead, is located in the notorious t-zone, where there are more oil glands than the rest of the face. Many who suffer from nose pimples don’t cleanse as often as they should–whether it be waiting too long to shower after a sweaty workout or going to bed with makeup on. This extra oil build up clogs pores and takes foreign matter with it. But the fix is easy: cleanse more often with a gentle soap and make use of oil blotting sheets to stay shine-free during the day. (Jane Iredale blotting films are a fan favorite. All natural and cruelty-free!)
When was the last time you cleaned your makeup brushes and beauty blenders? If you can’t remember and suffer from cheek acne, your tools are probably the cause. When bacteria and makeup residue builds up on tools, your cheeks are most vulnerable to breakouts because of how skin cells are arranged there in many thin, fragile layers. When your brushes aren’t properly cleaned they act as pea-tree dishes and offer free rides for bacteria to move from your face, your countertop, your makeup, back to your face, every application. To stop the vicious cycle, this too has an easy fix: make sure to wash any brushes or sponges you use to apply makeup immediately after use with a mild solution. Earthborn Solutions offers a cruelty-free, vegan, paraben-free, and even gluten-free cleaner that won’t aggravate acne and is gentle on your brushes. (And if you’re tired of scrubbing brushes with your hands, you can even get a device to clean them for you.)
Another common place acne pops up is on the chin. As women transition from adolescence into adulthood, hormone levels fluctuate and try to rebalance themselves. If one hormone is out of whack–estrogen, progesterone, and some androgens–the body sees that as a signal to overproduce oil and sebum, causing painful, cystic acne to pop up along the jaw. (Many women see regular breakouts in this region in cycle with their menstrual cycles, too.) The fix? Chat with your doctor: a dermatologist can prescribe a number of medications to clear up hormonal acne. Though antibiotics are a popular choice, they often don’t kick this kind of acne because it’s rooted in a hormonal cause. Many have success with medications like spironolactone that suppress androgen production to balance hormone levels and regulate oil production, but we love the all natural options much better such as Wondrous Root’s Hormonal Balance For Her.
Whatever your acne may be fed by, there is a cause and a solution. Diet, exercise and stress all factor in to whole body health, so while you focus on your skin’s weakness, don’t let other healthy habits fall by the way. Here’s to a healthier, acne-free you!