Or an explainer on why Pro-Activ alone doesn’t really work for most people.
Acne is not just driven by bacteria, the make up you didn’t take off last night, or the pizza you ate (actually greasy foods haven’t been shown to cause acne... only low fat milk). It’s driven by a combination of factors, including sticky skin cells clogging up your pores, the bacteria, P. acnes, hormones, and genetics. Benzoyl peroxide, the active ingredient in Pro-Activ, is great at killing P. acnes bacteria, but does nothing for sticky skin cells. This is why I see a lot of patients that tell me that just using one over the counter product doesn’t do the trick.
What does help your skin cells get less sticky and less likely to clog your pores is a retinoid, a.k.a Differin, Retin-A, Tazorac, tretinoin, etc. Hydroxy acids, like salicylic or glycolic acid, help keep your pores nice and clean, too.
So, the best thing you can do in your fight against acne is a have a regimen with multiple ingredients that work against the different factors that cause acne to form in the first place. Using a wash with benzoyl peroxide, over the counter Differin at night, and a weekly glycolic acid peel (try PIXI glow pads) is a great regimen to start with.
Clear skin here you come! I’ll be posting more acne tips and tricks over the next few weeks, so stay tuned!