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Shaving – Shaving for both genders is an excellent way of exfoliating or removing dead skin to help with prevention and spreading of acne instead of leaving remains to clog pores. And for some light acne cases already in process, shaving can help rid whiteheads and blackheads from face. A word of caution: for areas with infection or high inflammatory activity (redness, sensitive, open acne, sores, etc.), do not shave. Or at very least, use a shaving cream for sensitive skin. For best results with regular shaving, follow these procedures:
Steer away from shaving creams that are oily and choose one for sensitive skin if available. Then moisten facial or other hair with warm water, apply shaving cream and lather well. Shave with a sharp (not dull) blade. Note when shaving, use gentle swipes instead of heavy pressure ones that can irritate acne-prone areas. And go with flow or “grain;” in other words, adapt to downward, lateral, angular or upward swipes, for a smoother shave with less nicks and irritating backward motions. Experiment with different razors, both electric and disposable, with single- double- or triple-edged (mach III) heads to see which works best for you. And try shaving in a warm shower for better results.
For after shaving applications, try toning to stop bacteria dead in its tracks before it gets into your open follicles. Try antibiotic gel or lotion, witch hazel, Dalacin T, a mild alcohol-free toner, Benzoyl Peroxide in gel form and Salicylic Acid in a gel.
Shaving Tip: Electric razors may not shave as close to skin; however, they help with prevention of acne and other skin breakout's and flare-ups better.
Shaving Tip: If a non-electric razor is your choice, a single-edged blade is actually better. Why? Because double- and triple-edged blades grab hair follicles and pull them out from below epidermis. And in process, your skin “heals itself” by closing over these holes, making it difficult for future hair follicles to grow outward – creating inflammation in tight areas.
Diet – Studies show diet does not play a role in either cause or treatment of acne. However, what is recommended for acne preventative care is what is best for your body and best for your skin, especially since your skin is largest organ of your body. So here are healthy vitamins, minerals and other supplements known and recommended to prevent and help conquer acne breakout's:
Hormones – Hormones or lack of, during later years and especially for women, can play a role in acne flare-ups and prevention. One recent study showed about 50 percent of women have acne, referred to as hormonal acne, problems during week before their menstruation. Treatment options can include topical retinoids, oral antibiotics and Benzoyl Peroxide for teen years. On into adult years, some acne aids include oral contraceptives or hormonal birth control pills and hormonal replacement therapy (HRT) for women, combined with systemic or topical treatments, prescription or over-the-counter products and medications, and antibiotics for both sexes.
Hygiene – A healthy skin regimen should include no harsh scrubbing or over-washing, because this can cause possible skin irritation or possible over production of oil to replace what's washed off, clogging pores in process. Products with gentle exfoliation ingredients are OK to use; i.e. not scratchy nut or fruit shell pieces that can tear skin. And skip alcohol products when possible; these can take off top layer of your skin and cause your glands to product more oil, clogging pores in process.
If you do spot acne-troubled areas, do NOT mess with them. Remember these are already weeks in making, and squeezing or picking blemishes can force infected area to regress back inside, further troubling region and possibly leave a scar. If necessary, seek help from a dermatologist for alternative treatments.
Kim Standerline is a registered nurse working for a large hospital Trust in the UK. Her websites include www.nursing-hints.com, www.backpain-free.com and www.acne-and-you.com