Acne is one of the most common skin conditions, affecting an estimated 80% of the population at some point in their lives between the ages of 11 and 30.1  The skin condition comes with a variety of symptoms and can occur when your skin pores become blocked by dead skin cells, dirt or bacteria.

Different types of acne

There are many different forms of acne ranging from the most common variant, acne to the more serious types such as severe nodulocystic acne.

  • Acne vulgaris
  • Pyoderma faciale
  • Acne conglobate
  • Gram negative folliculitis
  • Acne mechanica
  •  Fulminans Acne

These types can range from mild to extreme but it is important to discuss them in more detail. So that sufferers can better understand their condition and how to treat it. Some symptoms are commonplace in all subtypes of acne, such as pimples and other skin complaints such as blackheads.

Understanding your skin

To truly talk about acne we need to first talk about three things, the sebaceous glands, hormones, and bacteria.

Sebaceous glands

Are small glands that sit under the outer layer of your skin and are usually attached to a hair follicle. They emit a greasy mixture of fats known as sebum oil. Sebum oil is vital for the maintenance of your skin.  Keeping it smooth and elasticated, and it is normally secreted on the surface of your epidermis via tiny pores in your skin. However, an episode of acne usually arises when these tiny pores become clogged with dead skin cells, sebum oil and bacteria. Often you will start to notice the appearance of blackheads, whiteheads and other acne symptoms. Experiencing a surge in your hormone levels – think puberty – causes you to produce more sebum oil.

This is why your skin often feels greasy and it does make your pores more susceptible to plugging. Nevertheless, hormones are not the only culprit when it comes to stimulating your sebaceous glands. For example, diet, stress, liver function and insulin can all play a role in triggering an acne outbreak.

Hormones

Now you understand more about the sebaceous glands, it’s time to familiarise yourself with your hormones. It isn’t just a coincidence that acne tends to emerge around about the same time you start going through puberty, though it may certainly feel as though your body is playing a cruel joke on you.

Male hormones, androgens like testosterone, in particular, can stimulate your sebaceous glands and cause them to start overproducing sebum. Both men and women need testosterone but women tend to require smaller amounts than men, which is why they experience acne episodes during pregnancy or their periods. Your hormone levels are shifting during these times, and it might be that your levels of male hormones are increasing, inspiring your acne symptoms.

If your pancreas is producing too much testosterone, it might be expelled from your body via the skin, inspiring an outbreak of acne. It isn’t just puberty or your period that is to blame for producing too many androgens. For instance, your blood sugar levels can also influence your hormone levels so it’s important to consider certain aspects of your diet and lifestyle as well!

Bacteria

P. acnes,propionibacterium acne is the most common type of bacteria associated with acne. This bacterium can survive on your skin, usually inhabiting hair follicle, in small amounts and normally it is considered harmless. When your body starts to produce excessive amounts of sebum oil, it can transform your skin. As a result, you skin become the ideal breeding ground and the population of P. acnes explodes.

Your immune system may detect the damage being caused by P. acne and release a wave of inflammatory chemicals to fight the outbreak. These chemicals though, can be abrasive towards your skin and cause swelling, redness and inspire the development of pimples.

What are the symptoms of acne?

Given that acne usually only affects sufferers at specific points in their lives. For example, puberty, pregnancy, and menopause it can be considered a chronic skin condition.

Pimples and blackheads normally appear in mild cases of acne. Like acne vulgaris, and are easy to treat using natural and conventional medicines. However, in more extreme episodes of acne, the symptoms can become more inflamed and pronounced. Thereby, developing into nodules and cysts that may require additional care.

It’s important that you speak to your doctor if you feel that your acne symptoms are persisting or getting worse. You could be suffering from a more severe variant of the condition, such as Pyoderma faciale acne or severe nodulocystic acne.

What triggers acne? 

While the symptoms of acne may be infamous, there has certainly been a lot of debate over the years about the different factors that may trigger an outbreak. Many of these ideas have gained popularity, even if they don’t necessarily have a basis in reality.

Let’s try and separate fact from fiction, so you have a clear understanding of what might be causing your acne symptoms and what is definitely not.

Poor hygiene:

While it is never recommended that you allow your skin to become too dirty, rigorously over-cleaning your skin can be just as detrimental to your symptoms, For instance, over washing your face often irritating your skin and weakening the epidermis. Instead, try to follow a sensible skin-care regime and pay no attention to the people that pedal this fable that acne is cause by poor hygiene.

Only affects teenagers:

There is certainly a lot of evidence to disprove this theory. Puberty might be a time of upheaval for your hormones. It isn’t the only time you’ll experience a shift in your testosterone levels in your life. It’s estimated that over 80% of adult acne cases occur in women which makes sense when you think about it.  Women have menstrual cycles, can get pregnant, and eventually go through the menopause.2   Resulting, in fluctuations to their hormonal levels, which can definitely irritate the sebaceous glands and trigger an acne outbreak.

Sunlight can help:

Some people believe that sunscreen can clog up their pores. This idea becomes much more alarming considering that some people believe that sunlight can help to ease their acne symptoms. In fact, if you decide to go sunbathing without wearing sunscreen, you’re going to be in for a nasty surprise. UV radiation might dry out your spots, for example.  However, the damage caused to your skin cells and scarring is worth it in the long run.

Squeezing your pimples can help:

How many of us have pulled faces in front of the mirror, trying to desperately get rid of that one, persistent zit? Popping a pimple may be gruesomely satisfying, but it is definitely not doing anything to relieve your symptoms in the long run, and can even add further trauma to your skin, triggering the release of more inflammatory chemicals.

Our recommendations to soothe acne

Using Manuka Oil For Acne

When new acne breakouts appear targeted application of Manuka oil is the go-to treatment for disinfecting the blemish and eliminating toxins from the pores. Manuka oil’s powerful antiseptic and anti-microbial properties work to actively disinfect blemishes and clear pores of bacteria. As a result, clinical trials suggesting that Manuka oil it has more effect on MRSA bacteria than common tea tree oil.  Not only that, but Manuka oil has been shown to have exceptional cleansing and anti-bacterial effects against a wide range of microbes, including acne-causing bacteria. Furthermore, it helps to soothe and instantly reduces inflammation and redness, helping your acne appear less obvious. It also assists in speeding up the healing process to clear your complexion sooner.

How to apply Manuka oil to the skin

If you are new to using Manuka oil or have sensitive skin, we recommend that you dilute 3-4 drops with your preferred carrier oil such as jojoba, rosehip or sweet almond oil. This potent essential oil should only be used topically and can also be diffused.

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    Acne Bundle

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Manuka Biotic Skincare for Acne

We formulated our acne bundle, made with manuka oil to be effective at killing  bacteria, purifying clogged pores, and hydrating the skin.

Our Face Cleanser  will purify the skin by removing bacteria on the skin to reduce acne breakouts.  For our Light Day Cream moisturiser, we choose to included ingredients like, jojoba oil, camellia oil, shea butter and green tea extract.  Whilst, they are super lightweight, they are intensely hydrating for acne-prone skin. In addition, we added Totarol extract which is highly antibacterial and helps keep bacteria from replicating.  This potent  helps keep new blemishes at bay and helps to prevent future blackheads and whiteheads from forming.

Want to know more?

Many people have dealt with acne and found ways to manage the stress that comes with it. Consider joining our Facebook page, or private Facebook group to connect with other people for more support.  If you have any questions, feel free to contact us on Facebook or drop us an email here. For further information talk to your doctor.

Information displayed on this site is intended for Australian and New Zealand residents only. It is not designed to replace the advice of your healthcare professional. Use of, and access to, the information on this site is subject to the terms and conditions set out in our Terms of Use.

Why Manuka Biotic?

  1. We use the worlds only certified organic Manuka oil.
  2. All our products contain potent antibacterial, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory properties to help soothe and repair the skin.
  3. Our products are 100% New Zealand made.
  4. Our products are made using natural ingredients and are FREE from:
    • Parabens
    • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate & SLES
    • PEGs, PABA, EDTA
    • Added fragrances & colouring
    • Petrochemicals
    • Mineral Oils
    • Phenoxyethanol
    • Propylene Glycol
    • Phthalates
    • Animal testing or animal derivatives

Manuka Biotic is natural skincare for the whole family, giving you access to the potent power of Manuka Oil

Sources:

1 http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Acne/Pages/Introduction.aspx.
2http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Acne/Pages/Causes.aspx