Acne: More than skin deep

Acne is a common skin condition that can be prevented with a good skincare routine. (PHOTO: Freepik)

Here’s what you need to know about fighting acne and getting flawless skin.

Acne is a common skin condition that can be prevented with a good skincare routine. (PHOTO: Freepik)

Acne is one of the most common skin conditions. Since it is seldom life-threatening, many of us give little to no attention to preventing and curing it.  

It’s important to understand how to prevent acne and take good care of your skin as its effects can go far deeper than just the surface. Let us learn more about skincare and several remedies from Dr Evelyn Tay, a dermatologist at Dermatology & Surgery Clinic.


Certain foods we eat can potentially trigger acne.

According to Dr Tay, dairy products, and foods with a high glycemic index such as chocolates and whey-based supplements for bodybuilding can increase the chances and exacerbate acne. 

However, on the bright side, there is a wide range of foods that can reduce your chances of having acne. You can opt for plant-based milk instead of animal-based milk, or skimmed milk. You should also choose foods with low glycemic content such as vegetables and fruits, that are easily found in the supermarket. 

A Mediterranean diet would also be a good option as it includes a plethora of vegetables, fruits, beans, and even healthier oils such as olive oil. These are rich in polyphenols- a superfood that contains antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, that has been scientifically proven to help reduce acne. 


Acne Clear cream (PHOTO: Guardian)

When a pimple pops out, and for many of us makeup lovers, the first instinct would be to conceal it with either foundation or concealer. But is it really a good idea to do so? Or are there any tips on what to look out for in choosing the best makeup products for acne-prone skin? 

People tend to feel insecure about acne on their skin. It can significantly affect one’s emotional well-being and self-esteem, especially in this modern day and age, with the unrealistic beauty standards we see on social media.

Many would compare themselves to influencers and even to idols. This gives them the urge to cover up their acne with makeup products. 

Ideally, your acne condition would improve faster without the use of makeup. But if you were to use makeup for coverage, there are some tips you can use to prevent and speed up the process of healing. 

When shopping for makeup products, choose those that are oil-free, mineral, and non-comedogenic labels on the packaging. 

But if there is a large acne, you can first apply an over-the-counter (OTC) cream such as Acne Clear, which comes with a slight tint over the pimple. Following this, apply your makeup for additional coverage. By doing so, the healing process of your acne would significantly speed up. 

After a long day of makeup, you should remove it as soon as possible and wash your face thoroughly with a gentle and moisturising cleanser. 


Different brands of Niacinamide products (PHOTO: NYpost)

Want skin that glows?

 A good skincare routine can effectively help to prevent, cure, and keep your skin looking at its best. 

For stubborn acne spots, use a combination of three ingredients – salicylic acid, a low concentration of benzoyl peroxide, and niacinamide for spot treatment. Studies have shown that benzoyl peroxide has anti-inflammatory properties and works as an antiseptic to reduce the number of bacteria on your skin. Simply dab the mixture onto acne areas to effectively cure it. 

Dr Tay suggested the combination of a day cream with niacinamide, sunblock (SPF), and polyhydroxy acid (PHA) before heading out. A night cream with retinol and niacinamide is also recommended. Dr Tay also mentioned that niacinamide is in both day and night creams as it significantly reduces irritation while regulating oil production.

Prevention and cure is the first step to having beautiful skin. Consider switching to a healthier diet, look out for makeup labels, and have a good skincare routine.  This will help you fight acne and have flawless skin. 

If you’re interested to learn more about acne and skincare, watch Mediacorp’s medical series, Let’s Talk About Health, on episode 8 with Dr Evelyn Tay. Let’s Talk About Health is available on meWATCH, Mediacorp’s Entertainment YouTube channel, and Channel 5 on Thursdays at 8 pm.

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