Acne Awareness

Written by Michelle D'allaird Brenner AIA President and Director of Education

It is interesting that after almost 30 years in the skin care and beauty business, the same three skin conditions continue to wreak havoc on the health and beauty of the skin: acne, rosacea, and hyperpigmentation. It really is not a wonder why, when you consider the underlying biology and take a look at most lifestyles and the world around us – it makes perfect sense.
Let’s discuss acne and consider what we know. We know that acne is a chronic inflammatory condition of the sebaceous gland. We know that there are four key etiological factors: altered keratinization, excess sebum production, hormonal activity, and increased bacterial activity – all of which contribute to and result from an increase in inflammation, making for one perfect recipe for acne.
We also know that all of the above factors are directly impacted by environment and lifestyle. Thus, we must pay special attention to the world around us and, more importantly, to the world around our clients. Eating habits, sleeping habits, exercise (or lack there of), smoking, drinking, improper skin care, and stress are all essential factors in the development and pathology of acne conditions.
Amongst the list of lifestyle factors, one in particular holds the torch and leads the pack – stress. When stress levels increase, they trigger hormonal imbalances. The increase in androgens stimulates sebum production, which gets the acne ball rolling. At the same time, chronic stress levels activate inflammatory responses throughout the entire body, which in turn fuels the fire.
These few paragraphs are a simple snapshot of a serious skin condition. To help your clients, you must be empowered with the knowledge and understanding of what a condition is, what causes it, what can improve it, and, most importantly, why it occurs.

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