Acne starts to appear during adolescence. Boys develop higher levels of androgens, the male hormones that lead to an increase in muscle mass. These same androgens can also trigger more severe and long-lasting cases of acne in boys. Boys are more likely to get acne on the chest and back than girls.
What You Can Do To Prevent Acne
- Cleanse your skin twice a day with a mild soap; avoid scrubbing hard with a washcloth—it won’t help the acne go away and it may worsen the condition by irritating the skin.
- Teenagers tend to get acne in the T-zone of the face (chin, nose, and forehead), so use an oil-free moisturizer if possible, and use less moisturizer in those areas.
- If your hair is long enough to touch your face, wash it daily to keep oil away from your skin. Avoid letting hair products touch your face.
- Wash your face gently after working around oily substances (such as in a hot kitchen or gas station).
- Bathe or wash your face after exercising, especially areas of the body that come into close, prolonged contact with sports gear (such as helmets, shoulder pads, backpacks, or bike shorts).
- Don’t touch your face, because the oil and bacteria from your hands can worsen your acne.
- Avoid the temptation to pick at or squeeze your pimples or zits—this can irritate them and cause scarring.
- When using a medication, give it time to work. Your skin may look worse before it looks better, and it may be 6-8 weeks before you see improvement. If you don’t see results after two months, talk to your doctor about switching treatments or adjusting your dosage.
Tips for shaving with facial acne
Boys with facial hair know that shaving with acne can be a challenge. These tips may help minimize skin irritation when shaving with acne:
- Before shaving, soften the hairs. Wetting the face thoroughly with lukewarm water can help soften the hairs.
- Experiment. Try shaving with electric and safety razors to see which works best for you.
- Make sure the blade is sharp. This helps prevents nicks from a safety razor, which can irritate the skin and lead to breakouts.
- Shave lightly. This can help avoid nicking acne lesions, which can make acne worse.
- Never try to shave off the acne. This aggravates the condition and makes the acne worse.