What You Are Doing That May be Causing Acne

What is acne?

Four main causes of acne

  • Too much oil production and clogging the pores
  • Dead skin cells not being sloughed off naturally and clogging the pores
  • Bacteria
  • Hormones

Acne occurs when hair follicles become plugged with oil and dead skin cells. Your hair follicles are connected to oil glands. These glands secrete an oily substance called sebum to lubricate your hair and skin. Sebum normally travels along the hair shafts and through the openings of the hair follicles onto the surface of your skin.

When your body produces an excess amount of sebum and dead skin cells, the two can build up in the hair follicles, causing them to form a soft plug where bacteria can thrive. If the clogged pore becomes infected with bacteria, inflammation results and the outcome is a pimple. Pimples are a raised red spots with a white center that develop when blocked hair follicles become inflamed or infected.

Other forms of acne include black heads, black heads occur when the plug is open to the surface and may cause darkening in which is called an open comedone. A blackhead is a pore that is congested with bacteria and oil, which is oxidized brown when it’s exposed to the air.

Acne causing behaviors           

Using the wrong kind of makeup

  • Using makeup that is oil based and has fragrance, instead use fragrance-free, non-comedogenic (non-pore-clogging) formulas and paraben free.
  • Avoid ingredients such as;
  • Coconut oil and capric/caprylic triglycerides– although natural, coconut oil is considered to be highly comedogenic. The capric/caprylic triglycerides is considered medium comedogenic
  • Talc– dehydrating for most skin types, which will lead to your skin starting to trap and clog. Found in most drug store makeup.
  • Bismuth oxychloride– often in powder makeup, the crystals are sharp, irritating, and can get stuck in pores. Can be linked to cystic acne.
  • Silica– can be pore clogging
  • Mica– some find this irritating, but isn’t as bad as talc
  • Oxybenzone– ingredient in chemical sunscreens. It is carcinogenic, can causes free radical damage, and increases photosensitivity.

Not drinking enough water

  • When dehydrated your pores can become clogged because the skin is much dryer when the body is not properly hydrated. What these means, is an abundance of dead skin cells on the surface of the skin, which eventually accumulate and clog the pore. This can be further compound if you had dirt and bacteria on the face into the equation.

Washing your skin too often

  • Even though washing your face is good for your skin, washing your face too often strips away the good oils and lipids your skin need to retain the proper PH balance to help keep your skin blemish free.
  • If you skin gets oil throughout the day, pat dry it with a paper towel or makeup wipe to take away some of the shine.

Picking at your blemishes

  • This causes for the bacteria in a pimple or blackhead to spread to other places on your skin creating the chance for another outbreak.
  • Popping or picking at a blemish can cause increased redness from squeezing the pus deeper into the skin and sometimes even scarring.

Not washing your make up brushes

  • Not washing your makeup brushes can be the number 1 cause of continuous breakouts because you are not washing off the bacteria from a previous breakout off, but instead spreading the bacteria around your skin.
  • Makeup brushes should be washed at least once a week.

Not cleaning off the screen of your phone

  • Using either an alcohol wipe or hand sanitizer you should clean off your phone at least once a day.

Not washing your makeup off at night

  • Not washing your makeup off every single night ages you 7 times faster than if you were to wash off your makeup.

Sleeping on a silk pillow case

  • Silk does not pick up as much pore clogging bacteria as cotton pillow cases does.
  • Helps your skin retain more natural moisture.
  • Silk is a natural hypoallergenic
  • Can help reduce fine lines and wrinkles.

Treatments for Acne available at Northwest Aesthetics:

Our results-oriented facials are individualized to meet your skin’s needs and include exfoliation, mask for skin type, extractions, oxygen, icing and LED light therapy.

This resurfacing laser treatment targets acne scarring, large pores, textural issues, pigmentation and aging skin. The Fractora Fractional Rejuvenation and Resurfacing Laser Treatment also helps to stimulate collagen, renew and smooth skin.

One of the most popular and effective acne and scarring treatment is the chemical peel, giving your skin the opportunity for a fresh start and a new outlook. Northwest Aesthetics is one of the very few skin care clinics in the Seattle area that offers the VI Purify Precision Plus Peel. The VI Purify Precision Plus Peel is proven to be highly effective in treating acne as well as acne scarring.  VI Peel Precision Plus is one of the latest break-troughs for age-defying, radiant skin.

 eMatrix treatments tackle wrinkles, scars, enlarged pores, and rough skin.  One of the key features of the treatment is its ability to only affect the skin that needs treating. Collagen is also stimulated so that the overall condition of your skin continues to improve for months after your treatments.


Skin Care Products for Acne available at Northwest Aesthetics:

We offer many skin are products that will help with acne prone skin, but here are a few of our very favorites to learn about!

  • SkinMedica Acne Treatment Lotion

Benzoyl peroxide is an effective ingredient for treating acne because it helps clear blemishes and reduce bacteria on the skin surface. SkinMedica Acne Treatment Lotion contains this powerful ingredient along with others to reduce the appearance of breakouts. The formula helps clear pores and keeps them clear which prevents blemishes from returning as well as whiteheads and blackheads.

  • IS Clinical Active Serum

iS CLINICAL Active Serum treats multiple skin problems. This anti-aging serum contains acids and botanical extracts to help correct aggravated skin while it calms irritation. With daily use, you’ll notice this advanced skin care product brighten your complexion, smooth skin texture, fight breakouts, lighten dark spots and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.  It also helps with both hormonal and cystic acne.

  • IS Clinical Pro-Heal Serum

Pro-Heal serum contains zinc sulfate reduces inflammation, kojic acid prevents blemishes and vitamins E and A condition, nourish and neutralize free radicals. Pro-Heal Serum Advance+ offers iS Clinical’s highest levels of antioxidant protection, making it ideal for sensitive, compromised and sickly skin types.


Everyone is guilty to at least 1 of these behaviors. Acne can affect up to 85% of young adults between the ages of 12- 24 years old. 25% of people affected by acne will have scarring left behind. If you are someone who either suffers from acne of has scarring, call Northwest Aesthetics and see what acne treatments would best fit your needs.

Northwest Aesthetics offers complimentary consultations with our expert service providers.  We would be happy to develop a customized treatment plan to address all of your acne concerns.



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