M-Teen Magazine's Buzz!

Paula Begoun – 6 Anti-Acne Systems That Don’t Work!

In Fave Beauty Products on March 29, 2011 at 3:23 pm

M-Teen Magazine BEAUTY BUZZ!

When it comes to beauty products, we turn to Paula Begoun for her scientifically based research and fact-filled objective reviews. Check out her latest report on anti-acne systems before you make your next purchase!

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Beauty Exclusives from Paula Begoun

The Cosmetics Cop

6 Anti-Acne Systems That Don’t Work!

We understand the emotional frustration of acne. It is devastating to wake up every morning, or even just occasionally, to red bumps on your face. Anti-acne products and multi-product anti-acne systems abound, but many of them are so poorly formulated that they make things worse, leaving consumers, and us, saddened and angry.

More often than not, anti-acne products contain ingredients that either aren’t helpful for acne or that actually make acne worse! Yes, we know the testimonials are compelling, and the “before and after” pictures are impressive, but you should approach every product with skepticism, especially considering the thousands and thousands of people whose skin doesn’t get better after trying product after product. The real proof of a product’s efficacy is always in the formula!

What Really Works for Acne
Research shows that the gold standard for treating acne effectively with over-the-counter products is to use a consistent routine that includes the following three types of products:

• Water-soluble cleanser.
• BHA (salicylic acid) exfoliant with a pH of 3-4.
• Topical disinfectant, typically benzoyl peroxide, formulated without irritants.

Depending on the type of acne you have, this kind of routine has been shown to perform even better than some prescription treatments!

We’ve done the research, and we know you can definitely find individual products to carry out this three-step approach, and they DON’T contain irritants that can make matters worse. For some unknown reason, however, nearly all of the anti-acne systems available get only one or two of the products right, if any at all!

Rather than believing the marketing shtick, we turned to published research, and found that the following anti-acne systems are ones you should avoid completely or at least modify to some extent if you want your breakouts and red marks to really improve:

1. Burt’s Bees — Natural Acne Solutions: Like many products from the “natural” product lines, this one is teeming with irritating plant extracts (like eucalyptus and fennel), which will stimulate oil production at the base of the pore and lead to more acne, more redness, and longer healing time.

2. Neutrogena — Rapid Clear 7 Day Acne Intervention Kit: This two-product kit claims it can reduce the size and redness of blemishes in one week, but the tiny vials of BHA (salicylic acid) treatment contain large amounts of irritating alcohol and witch hazel, which dry out your skin and make red marks worse. Plus, the irritation they cause can lead to increased oil production in the pore.

3. Dermalogica — Clean Start System: This system does indeed contain some ingredients shown to have proven benefit for fighting acne, but they are joined by irritating ingredients, such as camphor and bitter orange extract. In short, this system has promise, but the irritating ingredients included present the risk of hurting your skin’s healing process and stimulating oil production.

4. ProActiv Solution — Basic System: ProActiv has the absolute right idea with its three-step system, which includes a cleanser, exfoliant, and topical disinfectant with benzoyl peroxide. What they could have done better is the exfoliant, which contains the AHA glycolic acid. AHA is a great exfoliant, but it doesn’t provide the benefits of BHA (salicylic acid). BHA is preferred for breakouts because it not only can exfoliate the surface, but also can penetrate into pores and get to the source of clogged pores. BHA also provides a mild antibacterial punch and it is a potent anti-inflammatory due to its relation to aspirin, so it’s great for calming skin and reducing redness.

5. Avon — Clearskin: This large collection of products is a potential disaster for your skin. Case in point: Both cleanser options contain harsh detergents that dry out the skin, and although they also contain the active ingredient salicylic acid, it is less effective in a cleanser because it is rinsed off your skin before it has a chance to work. The Clearskin system has no less than four BHA options, but not one of them is formulated at the right pH range (3-4) to work effectively.

6. Kiehl’s — Blue Herbal Collection: Each product in this four-product anti-acne system is brimming with potent irritants that don’t help acne! Cinnamon, ginger, alcohol, and aluminum chlorohydrate (an ingredient in many antiperspirants) are but a few of the problematic ingredients in the Blue Herbal line. This large amount of irritating ingredients can cause irritation, stimulate oil production, worsen redness, and lead to dry, flaky skin.

After reading all of that material above, you may think it’s hopeless, but don’t dismay. We can help you find the very best anti-acne products for your skin! With our detailed reviews on Beautypedia, including reviews of the systems mentioned above, you can find the right products to develop an anti-acne skin-care routine that really works for you. Our list of Best Anti-Acne Products is a great place to begin your journey toward obtaining the clear skin you want!

 

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