Adult Acne Treatment Reviews

Clearing Up the Mystery of Adult Acne

woman with acne

Woman with acne

Things you can find out from this article: Why do adults get acne? The common triggers of acne. Who suffers from it the most. Some Latest Adult Acne Treatments.

Acne is the most prevalent skin disorder with almost 50 per cent of the adults suffering from various kinds of acne in the United States alone. Most of the time, acne is always associated with teenagers predominantly, as a natural condition they must go through.

Most teenagers are able to overcome this skin condition, as their youthful skin has the ability to combat acne fast and effectively. As we start aging, this natural combative shield gets weaker and thus, acne has a better say in what damage they can cause on our skin. This is where the problem becomes prevalent among adults, and their fight against acne has taken a real center-stage in their lifestyles.

Generally, it has been thought that those who get acne during his/her teen days will most likely not suffer from it again when they reach adulthood. Those in their teens, who did not get any acne, are most likely to face it when they mature. But in truth, this is not the case.

Acne can affect almost anyone, and it doesn’t have any time table or any pre-warning signs. Of course, the earliest warning sign is when your acne is at its mild stage and is your responsibility about taking any action to stop it from growing and spreading to a moderate condition.

Acne has been characterised as blackheads, whiteheads, pimples and lumps. They appear commonly on the face, chest, back, shoulders and even the upper arms.  It is an abnormal condition of the sebaceous glands, where sebum, which is our natural oil product, gets trapped in the hair follicle.

This happens when there is an over-secretion of the glands producing too much sebum. This oil then mixes up with the dead skin cells as they are sloughed off and thus leads to clogging of the follicle. There you have it. A pimple is born!

So what can happen next? The follicle becomes inflamed when excess oil causes bacteria to multiply, thus infecting the neighbourhood area. The outcome is a skin blemish which appears to be huge red tender spots.

This kind of skin blemish is a common occurrence among adults. Because adult skin is more dry or has combination skin. So their redness lasts longer as the healing process is painfully slow. However they do have a pattern or a common area for acne to occur on adults.

For adults, it’s usually on the face, along the jaw line and neck. Teens have more oily skin and what they get is in the form of blackheads and whiteheads.

So why do adults get acne? I hope in this article, I can dispel the mystery surrounding this question. I will also address the common triggers, who generally suffer from it and the latest treatments available as well.

It’s difficult even for the doctors to pinpoint exactly what triggers adult acne. They usually blame it on genetics, hormones, stress, skincare products and diet.

The Triggers:


Hormone level changes are very high during adulthood, especially during menstruation and at menopause. The oil glands become very sensitive to these hormonal shifts especially during the early 20s and 30s. However, this age group seems to increase and expand way beyond 40s too.

What happens during menopause is that at its initial stage, the ovaries slowly begin to shut down and create hormonal imbalances. Female adults produce strong androgens called testosterones which can cause an increase in the production of sebum. This will block the pores. You know what happens next.


Stress can be a contributing factor too. That is yet to be proven by any doctors as it is still quite debatable. But what can be proven is that it certainly contributes to the aggravation of adult acne. It is believed that stress aggravates acne in two ways.

One is by triggering the adrenal glands, which is situated above the kidneys. These glands produce more hormones known as norepinephrine and epinephrine. The combination of the male hormones secreted by the adrenal cortex sparks the production of excess sebum under stressful conditions which leads to an acne breakout.

The other is psychological stress. It is believed that it reduces the healing capacity of the immune system, which is the body’s natural healing process as much as 40%.

Most adults find it very difficult to cope with this skin condition and probably were not expecting to battle zits at this age. In today’s world, appearance matters. So the psychological factor plays a very huge roll in aggravating acne.

Skincare Products

The average American adult uses about seven skincare products on their face. That is more than enough to do multiple damages to your tender skin. Most of them contain chemicals which can be harsh and can trigger some reaction on your skin.

If there is acne on your face, this will further worsen the condition. Anti-wrinkle creams are said to have most of the harsh chemicals involved in the production of them.


There is an incredible increase in the consumption of processed sugars. Processed sugar is sugar which has been refined so that it has a regular texture and flavour. A classic example of processed sugar is white sugar, which is widely used in baking and sweetening. Studies have found that they do have an effect on your skin and its best to limit the intake of it.

Who’s most likely to get adult acne?

Women are more prone in getting it than men. This is because it is often related to the menstrual cycle, pregnancy, premenstrual syndrome and menopause. Thus more than twice of women suffer from adult acne then men.

Latest Adult Acne Treatments

Treating adult acne is different from teen acne. The adult skin is more fragile and dry and is easily susceptible to the harsh cleansing agents.

There are many over-the-counter home treatment products you can find in any pharmacy. Look for cleansers, lotions, creams, medicated treatment pads, and solutions that contain salicylic acid. Salicylic acid is commonly used to treat comedonal or non-inflamed acne.

Salicylic acid has the ability to exfoliate and sloughing away dead skin cells from within the follicle and helps keep the pores clear of cellular debris. As a result, it reduces the number of pore blockages and breakouts on the skin.

Another option would be benzoyl peroxide. Read more about the benefits of benzoyl peroxide. However, do not use treatments that use higher amounts than 2.5% as it will turn your skin very dry.

Another recommended treatment would be the use of microdermabrasion kits or light peels. They are primarily used to exfoliate your skin. The purpose of dermabrasion is to smooth the skin and, in the process, remove small scars made from acne.

This is a mechanical method which remains popular because it is the most affordable and has practically the same results as laser treatment method.

You can use birth control pills too. They can subdue the hormones known as androgens that stimulate the oil glands. These are prescribed by the doctors and you have to follow their instructions about the level of dosage intake.

If over-the-counter methods don’t work for you, it’s best to consult a dermatologist. They perform a skin test on you in order to prescribe the right antibiotics or some special customized topical creams.

Nighttime treatments of a retinoid such as Retin A, along with a spot treatment or topical antibiotic are getting popular now. This is a new method where this combination treatment works very well. Read more about the use of Retinoids for adult acne.

There are also in-office procedures like giving a painless shot with a small amount of cortisone to take down the inflammation when someone suffers from a painful cyst.

Another latest treatment is called Isolaz. This treatment features a breakthrough technology in that it vacuums out all the bacteria and use painless broadband light to deep cleanse and purify the pores from the inside out. It also reduces the redness caused by acne inflammation. This whole treatment only last for about 15 to 20 minutes and can be performed during lunch breaks.

However, there could be some maintenance treatments required depending on the type of your acne condition and your skin. It would probably require about five treatments.

So there you have it. There is always a continued approach from skin specialists all over the world to give you the best possible and affordable acne treatments. However, if you choose to let your acne untreated, although it will disappear eventually in the long run, it will leave behind some permanent scars.

There are acne scar removal treatments. But you have to dig deeper in your pockets to afford it. If you can’t afford it, you have to live with this acne curse for the rest of your life and you are sure to receive some ‘special’ treatment from the public. You surely wouldn’t want to be in such a situation do you?