Why Drugstore Acne Products Don’t Work

Drugstore Acne Products | How to Clear Skin Naturally | Acne Tips Tricks | Acne Treatment Raleigh NC

Have you used every drugstore or over the counter acne product and gotten little to no skin clearing results? If so, just know that you aren’t alone! In today’s blog post I’ll go over the most common reasons why drugstore acne products don’t work.

Before I dive into the 4 reasons why drugstore acne products don’t work, I want to first say that I understand that my opinion on this topic may come across as biased being that I am a licensed esthetician with my own brand of acne products, but the reasons I am about to present are legit!

Ok so now that that’s out of the way let’s get started with the reasons why  these  inexpensive drugstore acne products don’t work to clear up your acne.

Reason #1 Why Drugstore Acne Products Don’t Work:  Pore Clogging Ingredients

Believe it or not, most of these products contain pore clogging ingredients despite the claims that they are making. A product may say that it’s non-comedogenic, oil-free or formulated for acne but none of those claims guarantee that the product is truly acne-safe because the FDA does not regulate these claims.

I put together a previous blog post that talks more in depth on pore clogging ingredients and how to check your current  skincare products and makeup to make sure they don’t contain any pore cloggers. 

Make sure not to miss it! Knowing if your products are breaking you out is so important!

Reason #2 Why Drugstore Acne Products Don’t Work:  Outdated Salicylic Acid

Many of these drugstore products rely on outdated salicylic acid or glycolic acid, but the best alpha-hydroxy acid for acne is Mandelic Acid.


Mandelic Acid does it all for acne…

  • It’s exfoliating so it prevents the pores from clogging
  • It’s anti-bacterial so it kills off the bacteria responsible for inflamed or cystic acne
  •  It’s anti-inflammatory so it helps heal lesions quicker
  • It has hyperpigmentation lightening properties so it can lighten up those annoying leftover dark marks from past breakouts

Mandelic Acid is multi-functional and is indispensable when it comes to clearing up the skin.

Reason #3 Why Drugstore Acne Products Don’t Work:  Using Benzoyl Peroxide Wrong

I know that most of you have tried benzoyl peroxide and it didn’t quite do the trick on clearing up your skin, but believe it or not, benzoyl peroxide is a very important and indispensable component in your skincare routine, along with Mandelic Acid.

There are several ways in which you are using benzoyl peroxide incorrectly. I recently wrote a blog post on it so make sure to read to find out all the ways that you are using it wrong.

Reason #4 Why Drugstore Acne Products Don’t Work:  Not Strengthening Up The Routine

You can’t increase the strength of your drugstore products. Acne has an ability to adapt to the products you use on your skin. At our office, to stay ahead of this ability we periodically increase the strength or frequency of our clients’ acne products until they clear up. Once they are clear and there is no more acne under the skin then they can maintain the clear skin at this level of their product routine.

Now I do understand that you can increase the level of drugstore benzoyl peroxide so you can go from a 2.5% to a 5% and then to a 10%, but you can’t do that with salicylic acid, which is the most commonly found drugstore acid. Salicylic acid can only be purchased at a 2% strength when it’s over the counter so your skincare routine is stuck there and for your products to be effective against the acne you need both your benzoyl peroxide and hydroxyl-acid product to be increased periodically or else the acne will adapt and you’ll be back at square one. Also as mentioned earlier, salicylic acid isn’t ideal for acne anyways.

RECAP: Why Drugstore Acne Products Don’t Work

  • They can contain pore clogging ingredients
  • They rely on outdated salicylic acid
  • They don’t instruct you on how to properly use benzoyl peroxide
  • They make it hard to stay ahead of acne’s ability to adapt to product use


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Does Salt Cause Acne? | Iodine Breakouts


Did you know that if you’re acne prone iodized salt can make your breakouts worse? In today’s blog post I’ll cover the connection that iodine has with acne so make sure to keep reading!

Certain Foods Impact Acne 

At Luminosity Acne Skincare, it’s very important for us to educate our clients on certain foods that can negatively impact acne so that we can ensure our clients clear up as quick as possible.  Before I move forward I just want to mention that you should not make any changes to your diet without consulting your doctor first. This post is strictly for informational purposes only and not a substitute for medical advice.

Iodine & Acne

One of these acne-aggravating foods is actually a mineral known as iodine or iodide and in addition to food, it may also be found in certain medications.

So iodine is a mineral that we do need because our bodies need it to function properly. However if you’re acne-prone and you take in an over-abundance of iodine then some of the excess amount that your body has no use for can be excreted through the pores. As it excretes it can irritate the already sensitized follicle and create more inflammation which leads to worse breakouts.

According to Dr. James Fulton iodine can create acne-like eruptions for even those that are not acne-prone if they ingest very large amounts of iodine. So if this has the potential to effect those without acne then it will certainly effect those of us who naturally breakout.

How Much Iodine Do We Need?

The RDA or Recommended Daily Allowance for iodine is 150 mcg per day. That’s micrograms, not milligrams, so it isn’t very much at all. In fact most of us get plenty of iodine without even knowing it and it can be very easy to go overboard which again isn’t a good idea if you are acne prone. I do want to mention though that there are some medical conditions or disorders that require you to take in an excess amount of iodine to maintain your health so as I mentioned earlier do not make any dietary changes without consulting your doctor first.

Is Salt The Same Thing As Iodine?

Now when it comes to iodine most people immediately think of salt. But not all salt is iodized meaning not all salt is bad for acne. Try to stay away from using iodized salt or table salt. These salts undergo a process where all the minerals are stripped away and then excess iodine is added back in which is also known as being fortified. This practice began because decades ago people in certain regions that didn’t have access to iodine rich seafood began having iodine deficiency issues so we started fortifying salt with iodine. Although this is no longer an issue in today’s times, the processing of salt still continues.

A good substitute for iodized salt or table salt would be an unrefined salt. Unrefined salts can still contain iodine but they will be the lower amount that is naturally found in the salt instead of the heavy amount added in most table salts. Many clients ask if sea salt is ok to use. I tell them to check the label and see if it says it’s been iodized because I have seen iodized sea salt on the store shelf.

Eating Out & Acne

When eating out it’s important to know that most restaurants or fast food chains use iodized salt because it’s much cheaper than unrefined salt. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t ever eat out, but I recommend sticking more to grilled options than fried because fried foods tend to be salted much heavier than grilled foods. So if you want a chicken sandwich, choose the grilled one rather than the fried one.

Processed Food & Acne

Iodized salt also finds itself into processed deli meat and canned vegetables so when grocery shopping for these items look for labels that say “low sodium” or “sodium-free.”

Seafood & Acne

Seafood also contains iodine but its amount varies by the type of seafood you consume. At Luminosity  Acne Skincare we caution our clients to mainly be aware of seaweed or kelp as those contain the highest amount of iodine and will be the most problematic for acne-prone individuals. The main sources of these that we consume would be in seaweed paper snacks and sushi.

Now don’t panic about the sushi! I personally love sushi and still eat it but I don’t have it weekly because the seaweed can flare me up if I overindulge. I’ve mentioned this in my other acne foods videos and blog posts, but at our office we don’t tell our clients they can’t have any acne-aggravating foods, we just ask them to consume them in moderation because unfortunately over-doing it will result in more acne. So enjoy your sushi but don’t make it a weekly thing.

Sodas & Acne

A hidden source of iodine that may be surprising to most is dark sodas. Most dark sodas get their rich, dark brown color from a red dye that contains iodine. And remember that iodine isn’t salt itself…it’s simply a mineral that is most commonly found in salt but can also be found in many other foods, including this red dye. If you consume dark sodas on a regular basis then try switching to sodas that aren’t dark. Now of course I am not advocating soda drinking but I understand not everyone will want to give up their sodas so instead just switch to a more acne-friendly one.

Supplements & Acne

And finally a last source of excess iodine could be in your supplements or vitamins, more specifically your multi-vitamin. It’s easy to check for iodine. Just flip the label over and look for iodine or potassium iodine. If the supplement contains it then opt for a multi-vitamin without it. Some multi-vitamins or superfood supplements can also contain kelp. Make sure to avoid those as well. To play it safe I would look through the ingredients list on every single supplement or vitamin you take to be safe.


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Benzoyl Peroxide Mistakes


A lot of people will pick up the highest strength  benzoyl peroxide  they can find, which is usually is 10%. This leads to several mistakes.

Benzoyl Peroxide Mistake #1
First is that they will dry out their skin really quickly to the point where the dryness becomes unbearable so then one would think that the logical next step would be to slather on a thick moisturizer to combat the dryness. Unfortunately heavy moisturizers interfere with the benzoyl peroxide’s anti-bacterial properties so it becomes less effective against the acne.

Benzoyl Peroxide Mistake #2
The second issue with jumping straight away into a high strength benzoyl peroxide  is that you have no room to strengthen it up. You see acne has this crazy ability to adapt to the products you use on your skin. That’s why if you’ve ever tried a new acne product you may have noticed that it works a little bit at first, but then before you know it the improvement stops and you’re back at square one with the same amount of acne. This occurs because you never strengthened up your routine to stay ahead of the acne’s ability to adapt.

At Luminosity we remedy both of these issues by starting our clients out on a low strength benzoyl peroxide  and strategically increasing it every couple of weeks. This allows the skin to slowly adjust with it and while some dryness will still occur, most will be able to avoid the extreme uncomfortable dryness that occurs with the higher strength benzoyl peroxide, thus eliminating the need for a heavy moisturizer which  as I mentioned can interfere with the benzoyl peroxide  doing its job properly. For those clients that still need a bit of moisture we recommend out Hydra Boost Gel which is a light weight hyaluronic acid gel serum that can be used in conjunction with the benzoyl peroxide  without stopping it from working.

Starting out with a low strength benzoyl peroxide  will also allow us to steadily increase the strength of it over time so that we don’t allow the acne to adapt. I also want to mention that we aren’t increasing the benzoyl peroxide  forever. We only need to increase it until you clear up. Once you are clear we can keep your routine the same to maintain the clear skin result.

Benzoyl Peroxide Mistake #3
Another issue that occurs when making the mistake of starting off with a high strength benzoyl peroxide is that many will stop using it or cut back on how much they are applying to their skin at the first sign of dryness. While we don’t want your skin uncomfortably dry, it’s important to understand that dry and flaking skin is normal to occur.

Benzoyl peroxide  has this great ability which allows it to peel or exfoliate the inner lining of the pore wall. You see on a daily basis your pores are shedding up to 5 layers of dead skin cells, and on a side note non-acne-prone pores shed only 1 layer of dead skin cells per day so the difference is huge. These daily 5 layers of cells first cling to the sides of the pore wall and then they start to continue piling up and clogging the pore. Benzoyl peroxide comes to the rescue by exfoliating that liner of cells clinging to the pore wall so some of the flaking you are seeing is just exfoliation at work which is a great thing if you want clear skin!

But if you back off of your benzoyl peroxide  at the first sign of dryness or flaking then you are allowing these 5 layers of dead skin cells to get a hold inside of the pore again and create a clog which will only continue to result in breakouts. So remember not to skip your benzoyl peroxide and not to use less of it and that dry skin isn’t the end of the world, in fact it’s a good sign as long as it’s not extreme.

Benzoyl Peroxide Mistake #4
Another mistake I see people making with benzoyl peroxide is by exclusively spot treating their individual pimples rather than applying it all over. I’ve written a previous blog post on this subject and you can click here to read it.

Benzoyl Peroxide Mistake #5
Another mistake is by not rubbing it into the skin thoroughly enough. Make sure that you really work it into your skin so that it can deliver its anti-bacterial properties properly.

Benzoyl Peroxide Mistake #6
Finally the last mistake we see people making with benzoyl peroxide is that they don’t pair it with a good exfoliating serum. While benzoyl peroxide does have the ability to peel inside the pore, your skin will clear up much quicker and better if you pair it with a serum that is designed to exfoliate. That’s because as I mentioned earlier acne-prone skin sheds up to 5 layers of dead skin cells per day so it’s important to really focus on exfoliation so that we don’t allow those cells to create clogs.

Now many people opt for salicylic acid or glycolic acid, but the superstar at our office is our Mandelic Maven Serum which contains Mandelic Acid. Mandelic Acid is superior to any other acid on the market because it tackles every aspect of acne clearing. It’s anti-bacterial to kill the acne causing bacteria, it’s exfoliating to prevent dead skin cells from clogging the pores, it has anti-inflammatory properties to bring down cysts, and it has hyperpigmentation lightening properties to speed up the fading of any leftover dark marks from past breakouts. It really does it all for acne, but it’s important to always pair it with benzoyl peroxide in order for each of these products to work to the best of their abilities to fight acne.

So those are all the mistakes that I see people making when it comes to using benzoyl peroxide.  Benzoyl peroxide can be amazing at fighting off acne but you need to use it properly or else it won’t be effective.


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Does Dairy Cause Acne?


You may have heard that dairy products or milk cause acne, well they don’t cause it but they can make it worse! Keep  reading today’s blog  post to find out why dairy may be adding to your skin issues.

It’s important first know  dairy doesn’t cause acne, but if you are acne-prone then it can make it worse!

The first reason is due to hormones. Dairy cows are pregnant for the majority of their lives therefor they are constantly producing high levels of hormones which in turn find their way into the dairy we consume. These hormones can stimulate our oil glands to produce more oil which will mix with an overabundance of dead skin cells which results in a clog inside the pore. With enough time this clog will turn into a pimple.

Now it may sound like the best solution would be to only consume organic dairy products or ones labeled as “Hormone-Free”, but organic and hormone-free only ensures that you are not getting artificial hormones from the milk or cheese. However you are still getting the cows natural hormones as they are present in the milk and then all of the products the milk gets turned into like cheese or ice cream. So always remember that there is no such thing as hormone-free dairy.

The second reason why dairy products affect acne is that they tend to contain high levels of iodine. Iodine is a trace mineral that our bodies do need for good health, however if you over-consume it then some of the excess amount that our bodies have no use for can be excreted through the pores. As it’s being pushed out it can be very irritating to acne prone skin and can create worse breakouts. The reason why dairy contains high levels of iodine is that dairy farmers give their cows an iodized salt lick or they fortify their feed with iodine as this helps them ward off infections.

So to recap, dairy doesn’t cause acne but if you are already acne-prone then dairy can make your acne severity worse through hormones and excess iodine.

At Luminosity Acne Skincare we recommend that our clients consume dairy in moderation. It’s ok to have it here and there but be aware that if you go overboard on the dairy then you’ll end up with worse breakouts. If you do find yourself consuming large amounts of dairy on a daily basis consider switching to a more acne-friendly alternative such as almond milk, rice milk, or coconut milk. I don’t recommend soy milk though because soy has its own problems when it comes to dairy.

Another thing important thing to mention when talking about dairy and acne is protein powders. The most common protein powders available are whey or casein based which are derived from dairy. A better alternative would be a plant based protein powder like brown rice. In fact there are so many plant-based protein powders coming out so you shouldn’t have any trouble sourcing one, however make sure to avoid soy-based protein powders.


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Do Peanuts or Peanut Butter Cause Acne?

peanuts AcneAre you wondering if eating peanuts or peanut butter is the cause of your acne?

Right off I’m going to let you know that peanuts are not the CAUSE of your acne, however they do play a role with its severity. If you are curious about the real cause of acne make sure to check out my past post where I go in depth on what causes it.

OK let’s get back to the peanuts. So as mentioned, even though peanuts do not cause acne, they do play a role with the severity of your acne. That means that if you are already breaking out then consuming too many peanut-based products can make you breakout worse. Worse breakouts mean different things to different people. For some it can mean that they go from getting 5 new pimples a day to 10 new pimples a day, while for others they may get the same number of breakouts but they become larger, more inflamed and more painful…and unfortunately for others their severity may worsen by both factors, so not only do they get more pimples but they are also larger and more painful. Either way, increasing the severity of your acne is never a good thing.

Let’s now discuss the reasons why peanut butter can worsen your acne.

Reason #1 – Peanuts have an androgenic effect on the body. Androgens are male hormones, like testosterone, that can increase oil production. Oil mixes in with dead skin cells inside of the pore and creates a clog. This clogged pore may later become inflamed and rupture into a pustule or painful cyst. The last thing someone that is acne prone needs is more oil.

Reason #2 – Peanuts are high in Omega-6 Fatty Acids. Omega 6 Fatty Acids promote inflammation in the body, including the skin so your acne will be more severe. Now make sure not to confuse Omega 6 Fatty Acids with Omega 3 Fatty Acids. Omega 3’s are anti-inflammatory so they are beneficial to acne prone skin unlike Omega 6s.

Reason #3 – Most commercial peanut butters contain hydrogenated oils or trans fats. These oils stimulate inflammation in the body so again you will be left with more severe acne.

Reason #4 – Peanuts and peanut butter that are salted are most likely salted with iodized salt. If the body gets an overabundance of iodine then some of the excess amount that it has no use for may be excreted through the pores. For those that are acne prone, this can stimulate more inflammation.

So those are the 4 reasons why peanuts or peanut-based foods like peanut butter and peanut oil are not ideal for those that are suffering from acne.

Now at Luminosity we like to educate our clients to keep everything in moderation, we don’t believe in 100% depriving yourself because you’ll just set yourself up for disaster. So either keep the peanuts to a very low minimum or switch to a slightly more acne-friendly nut like almonds.  Keep in mind though that almonds still contain Omega 6 Fatty acids so make sure not to go too crazy on them, but they aren’t an adrogenic food so that’s a plus for us acne prone people. Furthermore, I recommend eating unsalted almonds and natural, unsalted almond butter. Check the ingredients label to make sure it doesn’t contain any hydrogenated oils.

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Does Drinking Water Clear Up Acne?


One question that clients ask is, “Does drinking water clear acne?”

The answer may be surprising, but unfortunately increasing your water intake alone does not clear acne.

Now, I am not saying that water doesn’t have its place as part of a good plan for healthy skin, but when we are specifically talking about clearing up acne, it just doesn’t do the trick.

A lot of people are under the assumption that acne is caused by toxins trapped within the skin or body and that drinking water in heavy amounts will push the toxins out and the skin will subsequently clear up.

This prevalent myth that toxins cause acne is unfortunately misleading a lot of people. The truth is that acne is a genetic condition that effects the function of the pores. It’s as simple as that.

With that said, there is an exception…

If you mainly consume dark sodas throughout the day and you decide to replace these drinks with water then you may notice your acne severity decreasing. This is because most dark sodas contain a red dye, erythrosine, which contains iodine. I’ll talk more about iodine and its effect on acne later, but for right now just know that excess iodine can make acne more severe.

So to summarize, water itself does not clear up acne, however if you replace your dark sodas with water then you may notice your acne severity decreasing, but it’s not the water itself, it’s the fact that you have removed a source of excess iodine from your diet that was previously aggravating your acne condition.

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Acne Mistake – Don’t Use Makeup Remover Wipes to Cleanse Skin

makeupremoverwipesDo you rely on makeup remover wipes to clean your skin at the end of the night? If so make sure not to miss today’s post!

A  big mistake that I see acne-prone people making when it comes to removing their makeup or just cleansing their skin at night is relying on makeup remover wipes instead of using a cleanser. There’s a few reasons why I am against these wipes.

Reason #1
They can create too much friction for those with cystic or inflamed acne. If you have inflamed acne then it’s really important to stay away from anything that creates friction on the skin including scrubs, rotary brushes, washcloths and makeup remover wipes. The friction can create irritation which can lead to more inflammation and that’s the last thing you need with cystic acne. At our office, we educate our clients with inflamed acne to stay away from anything abrasive because it can slow down or prevent their progress toward clear skin.

Reason #2
These wipes can leave behind a residue and that’s problematic for 2 reasons. First is that depending on the ingredients found in the wipes, it can be pore clogging so this lingering residue can create breakouts. Second is that this residue can prevent the subsequent acne products that you use from fully penetrating into your skin. If your products aren’t fully sinking in then they won’t be effective.

Reason #3
Wipes just don’t clean as well as a cleanser and besides leaving behind a residue they also just push around makeup, sweat, oil and dirt.

To ensure that you don’t have any lingering residue from the wipes and that they don’t leave behind any makeup or dirt, you’ll have to cleanse your skin with water and a cleanser after using the wipes so why not just save yourself the time by skipping the wipes and just going straight for the cleanser.

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Don’t Spot Treat Your Pimples!

spottreatcover1 One of the biggest mistakes you can make when using acne products is to EXCLUSIVELY spot treat individual pimples. Now before I go on, please understand that I am not talking about using products specifically designed for spot treating, but rather I am talking about your general acne care products that are meant to be applied all over such as your exfoliating serums and benzoyl peroxide.

To understand why this is ineffective, first you need to know that every single pore on your skin has the ability to create a micro-comedone which is the beginning mass of dead skin cells and oil that later turns in to a pimple. It typically takes 1-3 months for that micro-comedone to grow into an actual pimple that surfaces on your skin.

The goal of your acne product routine is to PREVENT new pimples from forming in the first place and the only way to achieve that is to apply your products all over your face. All of your pores must receive your products because you don’t know where that next pimple will want to surface.

You are missing a big opportunity to PREVENT new pimples from forming if you are only spot treating.

One reason why so many people spot treat is because they want to avoid drying out their skin. Unfortunately, when it comes to successfully treating acne, dry skin is going to occur for most of us to some extent. Keep in mind though that your skin won’t be dry forever, just during the clearing process.

At Luminosity Acne Skincare, we take an approach that I call “starting low and  slow.” This approach helps your skin slowly adjust to your acne products so that you skin can tolerate them without getting excessively dry. Yes, some dryness may still occur but it will be manageable.

So remember that when you are using your general acne products, the key is to apply them all over your face in order to prevent new pimples from forming later on. Only spot treat with products that are specifically designed for that.

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Can You Outgrow Acne?

outgrowacnecover1If you are suffering from acne, it is important to know that eventually you will outgrow it! The bad news is that there is no way to know exactly when you will outgrow the acne. Even within the same family, some members may outgrow it years or even decades before others do. For example, in my family my brother out grew his acne around age 20…meanwhile I am 31 years old now and still very much acne-prone so I have not grown out of mine yet. I’ve even been on Accutane, while my brother never really did much for his skin, but in the end, just giving his skin time is what ultimately cleared him up, while for me I had to and still have to use acne products daily because I haven’t outgrown my acne yet.

Now generally speaking, most men will outgrow their acne much earlier than women will. Men most times outgrow it in their early 20s, while women can continue to breakout well into their adult years. In fact, have you ever noticed it is much easier to see an adult woman with acne, rather than an adult man? I see this all of the time when I am out and about.

So what exactly does it mean to outgrow your acne?

Well simply put, your pores give out. To understand, it’s important to first know that acne is a genetic condition of the pores which causes an over production of dead skin cells to form. These cells mix with excess oil and bacteria and eventually pimples form. To learn more about the cause of acne make sure that you read my previous post. Click here to read.

Once your pores “give out” like I mentioned earlier, they are no longer creating excess dead skin cells, they are back down to a regular production. Once these cells are no longer an issues then then oil production and bacteria do not become a nuisance.

If you breakout on multiple areas of your body, for example the face, chest and back, not all areas will outgrow the acne at the same time. Sometimes you will notice one area clearing up years before the others. So maybe you continue to have severe breakouts on your face, but your chest is now clear and no longer a problem.

When you reach the outgrowth phase, you don’t have to rely on acne products again, but you should continue to care for your skin with a general product routine.

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Microdermabrasion VS. Chemical Peels For Acne

micropeelcover1Many acne sufferers are turning to professional treatments in hopes of clearing up their skin. Two very popular choices are chemical peels and microdermabrasion.

At the end of this post I will let you know which method I prefer for my clients and why.

Let’s first talk about Microdermabrasion.

Microdermabrasion is a form of mechanical exfoliation that removes the outermost layer of dead skin. Originally microdermabrasion sprayed aluminum oxide crystals onto the skin while simultaneously vacuuming them up. Newer machines known as diamond microdermabrasion, use a wand that abrades the skin, while at the same time vacuuming up the dead skin cells. As an esthetician, I’ve used both types of machines and prefer diamond tip because you don’t have to worry about ingesting the crystals. If you are an esthetician and performing a lot of crystal microdermabrasion treatments, I highly recommend wearing a mask over your mouth and nose for protection or investing in a diamond tip machine if possible.

As far as using microdermabrasion as a means for acne clearing, I would only recommend it for non-inflamed acne. The abrasion is great for exfoliating the build up of dead skin cells which play the biggest role in this type of acne.

I would however completely steer clear of this treatment if you have combination or inflamed acne. You do not want to use anything abrasive when dealing with inflammation because it will promote MORE inflammation and irritation. And also the abrasive nature of microdermabrasion would just really hurt when used on cysts.

Now let’s talk about chemical peels.

Chemical peels most commonly contain acids that exfoliate layers of dead skin cells. Unlike microdermabrasion, which just exfoliates the outer layer of skin, peels can penetrate deeper into the layers of skin depending on the strength of peel that is used.

Besides exfoliation, which is very important when clearing up acne, peels can also provide much needed anti-bacterial and hyperpigmentation lightening depending on the acids or other added ingredients in the peel formula. There are so many peel combinations and I love that you can target multiple conditions based on the ingredients.

So which method do I use to clear up my clients?

Hands down, I prefer chemical peels to microdermabrasion. I like that I can use peels on both inflamed and non-inflamed acne, especially since most people tend to have a combination of both types. I also like that I can get more benefits besides just exfoliation, such as anti-bacterial action and hyperpigmentation lightening.

The bottom line though is that that whether you pick chemical peels or microdermabrasion, these methods will only be effective if you have the proper homecare routine to use in between your treatment sessions. So make sure that you are following the recommendations of your esthetician in between each treatment to get the best results.

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