Pimple Formation Mechanism

Posted on by Beste Gürkan

Acne or Acne Vulgaris is not a seasonal or new skin concern. Acne can be seen frequently between the ages of 14-16 in women and between the ages of 16-19 in men. It is more common in men compared to women during puberty, due to the androgen hormone, a male-specific hormone that triggers sebum production. However, acne should not be limited only between these ages, it can occur in women during menopause, or it can occur in newborns under the influence of mother's hormones.

Acne or acne with its milder structure is a very common condition and almost everyone goes through the same development process. It is formed because our body biochemistry makes it possible. Acne starts with cellular inflammation caused by stress, various chemicals in the foods we eat, some chemicals in skin care products (SLES, Sulfates, Ethyl Alcohol, Essence) and hormonal imbalances.

In order to slow down the development process of pimples and prevent their formation, the first things to be considered are regular nutrition and hygiene by avoiding stress.

When it comes to hygiene, we should not only think of skin cleaning, hand cleaning, mobile phone cleaning, regular change of pillowcases, cleaning and hygiene of every object that comes into contact with our face are directly related to acne.

Regular nutrition is chocolate, ice cream, sugar, all kinds of sweets, cookies, biscuits, white flour, pasta, pizza, hamburger, potatoes, fatty foods, nuts, salami, sausages, spicy foods (in short, containing sugar, fat and starch). A diet without all foods should be established. There are many publications and researches on the fact that all the above-mentioned foods cause acne. This is something that has been scientifically proven. Also, drinking plenty of water and doing sports and including regular sports in our daily life are also factors that can offer a solution to acne concerns, as they will keep us away from stress.

The formation process of acne step by step:

    1. The pores are clogged with dead skin cells. Normally, our skin regularly renews itself by expelling dead cells. But in some cases, it may also be hormonal (due to puberty, etc.). Our skin can increase sebum production, lubrication increases, dead cells begin to accumulate in the pores and accumulate in the pores. As sebum production centers produce more oil, more skin cells become flattened and clog pores. The surface of our skin gains a rough and matte appearance due to the removal of the dead layer, the pores become clogged and cause blackhead formation. With regular exfoliation, this build-up is prevented. Since AHA or BHA exfoliants regulate the removal of dead cells, this problem is intervened at the very beginning.

    2. Dead cells that are not excreted and accumulate on the surface of our skin begin to mix with skin oil (sebum). In this way, they turn into a sticky substance. This substance completely closes the inside of the pore. They form thin nodules called microcomedones under the skin surface.

      3. Since all conditions sufficient for adequate nutrients and bacterial growth are formed inside the clogged pore, the bacteria we call Propionibacterium (P. Acne) starts to develop and multiplies very quickly. It feeds on skin oil and produces fatty acids as waste. Moreover, the bacteria leaves their own wastes in the pores. These wastes irritate the cell wall of our skin and damage our skin barrier. This is why acne-prone skin is sensitive.

    4. Acne bacteria causes the death of the tissue in the environment where it settles, inflammation begins.Pus and inflammation form in the pore. Blood and lymph cause the surrounding area to swell. Blackheads are new shelters for this bacteria to settle in the future. Just as we think that we have cleared our face from acne, new ones begin to emerge.

      5. White blood cells die while fighting against infections caused by bacteria, this is the white liquid we see inside the pimples and the dying white blood cells. In addition, P. acne bacteria causes tissue irritation by releasing enzymes such as lipase and protease. Inflammation can get progressively worse. The inflamed pore swells, enlarges, turns red and becomes filled with inflammation.

    6. Blackheads and whiteheads are ideal environments for acne to occur. If the surface of the pore is too narrow, the air cannot reach the skin oil secretion and bacteria, in this case a white spot occurs. When the pore is large, black-headed blisters form when the skin oil secretion adheres to the melanin cells and closes them. If the blockage occurs under the skin surface, it is seen as a red dot from the outside. This is a sign that acne is starting to grow. This point is sensitive to the touch and there is no white dot in sight.

    7. If our immune system responds poorly to acne, the inflammation may turn into an acne or cyst under the whitehead.

It is important to carry out regular and daily care with products containing AHA and BHA for the solution of acne, blackheads, whiteheads, large pores and skin lubrication concerns. Gentle cleansers (products that do not contain SLES, SLS, ALS, Sulfates, soap and ethyl alcohol) should be preferred for skin cleaning.

After the cleansing step, a well-formulated, antioxidant-rich and BHA-containing tonic should be used. The tonic should not contain ingredients that cause irritation such as ethyl alcohol, essential oils, rose, mint and hamamelis.

AHA, BHA, or a combination of both AHA/BHA exfoliants should be used daily after the tonic. During the day, the skin should be protected with broad-spectrum sunscreen. It should be noted that the sunscreen is water-based. In night care, night moisturizers that are rich in antioxidants, have a denser structure that prevents water loss from the surface of the skin, and contain actives with high moisturizing properties such as Sodium Hyaluronate should be preferred.

The skin should be mechanically exfoliated with peelings containing micro-particles on a weekly basis. Mechanical exfoliation will ensure that dead cells are removed from the skin. After mechanical exfoliation, moisture or clay masks containing AHA or BHA should be applied.