You’ve followed your derm’s advice to a T, you’ve been watching your diet and drinking enough water. So why are you still breaking out?
Scientifically speaking, acne occurs when hair follicles become clogged with your skin’s natural oils – aka sebum — and dead skin cells. Bacteria can also enter the pores, becoming trapped with the sebum and dead skin cells. The skin reacts with inflammation and redness as it tries to rid the clogged pore of bacteria and impurities and voilá, you’ve now officially arrived at Breakout Central.
The key to stopping pimples on your face is therefore to keep your skin calm and free of excess oil and impurities while encouraging a balanced microbiome, which is your skin’s best defense against acne-causing bacterial invaders. Of course, this is often easier said than done.
Here are five commonly-made skincare mistakes that can contribute to breakouts, and how to fix them.
1. Skipping the Double Cleanse
Cleansing once is good, but twice is better. A
Starting with an oil-based cleanser – such as our
Your skin is left clean, hydrated, and free of pore-clogging debris.
2. Your Toner Technique
Your skin is teeming with bacteria, many of which make up its microbiome. Your microbiota are your first defense against pathogenic microorganisms and environmental stressors. This is why most dermatologists recommend against antibacterial facial cleansers. When you wipe your skin clean of all bacteria, you eliminate one if its key defenses.
This means you’ll likely still have a few acne-causing bacteria on your face after cleansing. If you have a healthy microbiome the good guys will likely take care of them before they can cause any problems.
Swiping the skin with your toner can spread those few bad bacteria, delivering them directly into your pores where they’ll feed on sebum and reproduce, potentially overpowering the good bacteria your body dispatches to do away with them.
Instead, try pressing toner into your skin with clean fingertips. This not only prevents you from spreading bacteria, it also helps deliver skincare actives — such as the pore-refining white willowbark extract in our
3. Overusing Acids
Clinically proven exfoliating acids are highly effective ingredients for refining uneven skin texture, minimizing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and visibly improving dark spots. They work by speeding cell turnover, dissolving dead skin, and revealing the fresh, healthy, even-toned skin cells underneath.
Overusing acids can cause your skin cells to turn over too quickly, revealing vulnerable, immature cells and causing inflammation that traps bacteria, dead skin cells, and sebum in your pores.
Avoid layering acid skincare ingredients, and cycle in a lightweight hydrating serum every few days to flood skin with moisture without clogging pores. This hydration boost will plump skin cells and strengthen your skin’s moisture barrier, another key defense against acne-causing bacterial invaders.
4. You’re Using the Wrong Moisturizer
Oily, acne-prone skin is often
Our advanced reformulated
In consumer studies, 94 percent of participants reported visibly smaller pores after just one use, and 97 percent reported clearer skin after four weeks of use.
5. Anxiety + Stress
Cells that produce sebum have receptors for stress hormones, including cortisol.