Adult acne

Well after adolescence, many adults still regularly see pimples and blackheads appear on their face. Different from juvenile acne in its causes and manifestations, adult acne requires a specific treatment.

Submitted on 20/07/2012
 Far from being limited to teenagers, acne also affects adults, especially women between the ages of 25 and 40 years: 41% are affected by it. Among these, over a third did not have acne during their teens: hence, there is not necessarily a connection between juvenile acne and adult acne.

Adult acne is generally less severe than that of teenagers: fewer and less inflammatory pimples and comedones, located around the mouth and chin for women and on the back and neck for men. As there is less aesthetic damage than in younger subjects, adult acne is often easier to live with and, because of this, it is sometimes neglected: barely 22% of adult women with acne are currently receiving treatment for it. Yet nowadays there are products and treatments that can permanently get rid of this problem.

A variety of causes

While it is essentially caused by the hormonal changes of puberty in teenagers, adult acne is multifactorial. It may be due to:
  • Naturally oily skin.
  • In women, hormonal changes related to menstrual cycles which often trigger the appearance of pimples a few days before menstruation. The hormonal upheavals caused by pregnancy may also be accompanied by acne breakouts.
  • The repeated use of unsuitable cosmetics and, in particular, oily and occlusive make-up as with some foundations.
  • Taking certain medications.
  • Unsuitable contraception.
  • Genetic predisposition.
  • Stress.
  • Pollution.
  • More rarely, malfunctioning of the ovaries or adrenal glands.

Adult acne tends to disappear spontaneously in women at the time of the menopause.

Dermo-cosmetic products at the forefront

Lighter than those for teenagers, acting on skin that is less resistant to harsh treatments, adult acne needs to be treated in a more targeted way and respect the sensitivity of the skin. Often, impeccable cleanliness and regular use of specific dermo-cosmetic products is enough to achieve a significant improvement:
  • Clean your skin morning and evening with a mild, soap-free cleanser.
  • Every morning, apply a restructuring skin care cream to nourish and soothe your skin, and every evening an anti-blemish cream to deal with blemishes.
  • Remove your make-up thoroughly every evening before going to bed.
  • Only use cleansers and skin care products specifically formulated for acne-prone skin.
  • If you wear make-up, only choose non comedogenic, non oily products and, if possible, designed for acne-prone skin.

In the event of persistent acne

If these measures do not suffice for clearing up your acne, seek advice from your dermatologist. He or she will prescribe the appropriate treatment for your age and your skin type, which may include:
  • Local topical treatments to apply to the affected areas: anti-inflammatory, antibiotic or retinoid creams or lotions.
  • And/or an oral treatment composed of antibiotics, zinc derivatives, isotretinoin or even hormonal treatments such as certain contraceptive pills.

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