Breakouts, blackheads, comedones, pimples, whiteheads. Acne affects almost all teenagers and can persist into adulthood, more often for women than men. It can lead to scarring and unsmooth skin, leaving behind pigmentation spots as well as cause severe self-esteem issues.

These terms may sound all too familiar. But are you clear what is causing your skin issues? Know what you are up against to seize the problem by its roots!

Acne is the result of a chain reaction: excess skin oil is pushed through skin pores to the surface of the skin, giving the skin a greasy and shiny appearance. This excess oil gets trapped in the pores and clumps together with dead skin cells to block the follicles, leading to acne flare-ups.

Let’s look at each of these root causes one by one:

Root Causes of Acne

#1 Too much oil blocks pores

The oil produced by the skin (a.ka. sebum) is absolutely key to a healthy, beautiful skin. Indeed, sebum keeps the skin lubricated, soft and supple. Excess oil production, however, triggers acne by blocking pores. Genetics plays a part: for example, Asian skins tend to produce more oil, leaving them prone to acne. Life events such as puberty, pregnancy, menstrual cycle or stress, also drive hormone levels up, leading to excess oil production.

#2 Dead cells stick together further blocking pores (a.k.a. Hyperkeratinization)

When the skin produces too much keratin, the lining of the pores become sticky and dead cells which should be eliminated by the skin are stuck in the pores. They then combine with excess oil and clog up pores further. This attracts  P. acnes, a bacteria which feeds off oil and dead cells.

 #3 Bacteria then triggers acne

As the bacteria multiply, they cause damage to the cells as well as inflammation of the skin resulting in the formation of red bumps and pimples.

In turn, these lead to scarring and post-inflammatory pigmentation of the skin.

 #4 Pore Enlargement as a result of oily skin and acne

Pores become enlarged as a result of the blockage of the skin pores by excess sebum, dead skin cells.

Hot and humid weather exacerbates the issues

Pores tend to dilate as the temperature rises, skin becomes more oily further aggravating the issues faced by acne prone skin. It’s no surprise, then, that acne is a common skin concern across age groups in Singapore.

Closing Thought

Acne is a multi-cause skin condition. Effectively treating acne requires preventive action (e.g., reducing oil to address the issue at its source) as well as curative action (e.g., ridding the skin of its dead cells to reduce pore clogging, reducing bacteria proliferation, facilitating the healing process of acne scars).

Alcheme offers effective, personalized skin care products that contain high-quality ingredients such as Iris Root Extract, Zinc Sulfate, Vitamin A and C, which prevent the skin pores from becoming blocked and limits inflammation caused by bacteria proliferation.

Alcheme offers a free online consultation to help you assess your ski and find a personalized skin care solution that is a perfect match for your skin needs.

Any questions? Reach out to us at [email protected] if you have any questions. We are here to help!

Updated, May 15 2019