With modern stress levels on the rise, it’s no wonder our skin is taking a beating. And when the dreaded pimples rear their ugly heads, it has us all wanting to know the same thing – how to get rid of spots and acne fast.
With so many spot treatments on the market, it’s tough to know which acne treatment will give us the clear skin we crave. Plus, with adult acne now more common than you’d think, it may be a longer term solution you need.
Take Lily Allen, for example. The singer recently posted a close-up of her jawline on Instagram (and made us all feel a whole lot more human), captioned: ‘How is it fair that I get acne at 30 ? #1stworldproblems.’
So what causes bad skin and how do we get rid of spots for good? We’re here to help with our handy guide to banishing those blemishes.
What causes spots and acne?
Increased stress hormones in adult life lead to excess oil that binds with dead skin cells to clog our pores. Bacteria then goes wild, forming pimples and cysts. Breakouts can occur with hormone surges around your period, pregnancy and the menopause.
How to get rid of spots and acne
Try to resist the teenage-targeted over-the-counter solutions. Lesley Reynolds Khan, skincare specialist at Harley Street Skin, treats 40 new acne patients a week. ‘We always start with skincare. There are key ingredients to look out for – AHA glycolic acid and Retin-A are great for treating acne and are also effective anti-agers.’
See also: Best Spot Treatment: Tried & Tested By LOOK
Sign up for the newsletter
Get news, competitions and special offers direct to your inbox
Follow her top tips using the best skin care products for blemish prone skin:
1) Double Cleanse: Clean your skin twice with a simple formula like Cetaphil (£8.99) morning and night.
2) Exfoliate: A liquid exfoliator works much better than a scrub as granules scratch the skin, aggravating it even more. Elemis Papaya Peel (£28.60) will gently but efectively slough away dead skin.
3) Hydrate: Look for oil-free non-comedogenic (non pore-blocking) moisturisers. Harley Street Skin Firma Serum (£32) is reassuringly non-greasy.
4) Treat: Harley Street Skin Spot Buster (£25) works wonders to dry up breakouts.
5) Zap: Tria Skin Perfecting Blue Light (£299) has been proven to reduce acne by 70% in two weeks. Pricey, but it’s cheaper than clinical treatments and it works!
Adult Acne No-Nos
DON’T wear aggravating make-up. ‘Mineral make-up contains only natural ingredients and has anti-microbial properties’, Lesley says.
AVOID fragrance. ‘Artificial scents can increase acne infection and skin sensitivity.’
DON’T use dirty brushes. Make-up brushes harbour bacteria. Wash them every other day and let them dry naturally.’
DON’T strip your skin. ‘It’s tempting to scrub or wash the skin until it’s squeaky clean. Harsh cleansers can fool the skin into producing more oil, so keep it gentle.’