Acne lesions first start to appear during puberty as hormone levels rise. Puberty usually starts at a younger age in girls than boys, so girls often start to develop acne at a younger age than boys. Girls may also experience acne flares before or during menstruation.
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.
- Choose oil-free cosmetics, preferably those labeled noncomedogenic or nonacnegenic. Remove makeup at the end of the day to prevent clogged pores.
- Teens 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.
- Keep hair products away from the face, and if your hair is long enough to touch your face, keep it clean to keep oil away.
- Wash your face gently after working around oily substances (such as in a hot kitchen or gas station) and after exercising.
- 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.
- If you are using an acne 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 dermatologist about switching acne treatments or adjusting your dosage.
- The sooner you treat your acne, the easier it will be to bring it under control. Virtually any case of acne is treatable, and it’s much easier to eliminate lesions in the early stages, which keeps them from growing and prevents scarring.
What you should know about skincare products and acne
In choosing cosmetics and skin cleansers, girls have many acne-fighting products to choose from. To kill P. acnes and other acne-causing bacteria, find a gentle cleanser containing benzoyl peroxide, sulfur, or salicylic acid.
When shopping for makeup, hair products, moisturizers, and other cosmetics, avoid greasy formulations that could clog pores and worsen your acne.
Choose products labeled noncomedogenic or non-acnegenic, as these are less likely to block your pores. Today, you can find acne-medicated makeup and spot treatments, which conceal and heal your lesions at the same time.
- Show All
- Preparing for Your Visit
- Diet & Nutrition
- En Espanol