What we write on Fem is not always glamorous. Skin is not always glamorous. We sometimes need the most basic info, and this is why this time we've come up with a basic list of different adorable skin issues. This way, it will be easier for you to explain what's up to your esthetician or us on Fem Plus. At the same time, you'll also get some peace of mind knowing that not every pimple equals acne.
CLOSED / OPEN COMEDONES
They are divided into two groups: closed and open comedones. Closed comedones are those small, tiny dots that are sometimes more, sometimes less white. They are usually not visible from the distance, as they are not red, inflamed. The difference between closed and opened comedones is that closed ones are covered in skin. The content of the pore is therefore not directly exposed to the air (as with open comedones) and do not oxidize - blacken. Both types of comedones are created in the same way. It is a clogged pore. But not with dirt, this is a myth, so over-rubbing and cleansing your skin will not help you at all. Dead skin begins to accumulate in the pore, which is then mixed with sebum/oil and bacteria. A hard bump is formulated, which then sits in the pore until it is removed with the help of cosmetic preparations and / or manual extraction. They occur mostly on the face, most in the t-region, where the level of sebum is highest, and can also be found in the décolletage, shoulders, back, arms. The causes can be different, mostly hormonal. When hormones go wild in a certain direction, we start producing more sebum, which then clogs our pores. Most noticeable forms of comedones are mostly seen in puberty, during menstruation (read here), during pregnancy, while taking contraception, and even during menopause. Of course, food is a powerful and important aspect in regulating a happy hormonal state, so always look at your plate as well.
PAPULES and PUSTULES
If the excess sebum, dead skin and bacteria clog the pore and gets inflamed, a papule is formed. A seemingly slightly convex red bump that feels painful and has no white head. They may be of different shapes and sizes, when formed more closely together, may indicate a rash. They can also occur in dermatitis, chickenpox or eczema.
Pustules, unlike papules, clearly show their white head. They are also inflamed, so a redness appears around the white head, which originates deeper in the skin. The size depends on the rate of inflammation. The problem here is the same as with papules. A clogged and inflamed pore, but to a greater extent than we discussed above. In addition to dead skin, bacteria and sebum, pustules are filled with pus. Hence the name. They occur mostly on the face, back and chest, and are often an indicator for acne.
NODULES and CISTS
When pustules become painful and hard to the touch, we start talking about cysts, or cystic acne or nodules. They differ in that the cysts are usually softer than the nodules because they contain pus. They extend deep below the surface of the skin, they are usually red and swollen, and they hurt even if they are not touched. Due to the magnitude and depth of the issue, even "professional" extractions are quite inefficient and can cause even more scarring. The latter is also the biggest problem of cystic acne since they often leave a memory in the form of a scar. Sometimes even if we don't squeeze them. Laser treatments, salon acid peels, and microdermabrasion help reduce the appearance of scars. Treatments should be performed by a dermatologist or a well-educated esthetician. Cystic acne is a serious condition that you can not cure yourself at home. They usually occur in people with oily skin, more commonly in women and in cases of hormonal imbalance. Treating the condition with over the counter products will not be enough here. You should see a dermatologist, find the root of the problem. In such cases, dermatologists are quick to prescribe stronger ointments, medications or antibiotics. All of these treatments are quite drastic and do not have a beneficial effect on human health in the long run. Therefore, the search for the cause of hormonal imbalance and acne must be taken seriously. Test your hormones, read a book, do your research and talk to as many experts as you can.
The more severe and longer-lasting forms of problems described above are classified as acne disease. Most teenagers and women in pregnancy struggle with acne, but they can also occur in adulthood, after the age of thirty, as the common denominator responsible for acne is a hormonal imbalance. Contraceptive pills may also be to blame and of course an improper diet, which again has a major impact on our hormone status.