The Regimen

What Is Acne Exactly?

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No one wants to suffer from acne, but most people do get those telltale bumps at some point in their lives. But what is acne exactly? And how do you get it to go away?

Acne Causes and Types

Acne is a condition that affects the skin's oil glands. The pores of your skin connect to oil glands under the skin. The glands make a natural oil called sebum, which carries dead skin cells to the surface of the skin through a canal called a follicle. When the follicle becomes clogged with the dead skin cells or inflamed by bacteria so that the oil can't flow, the result is acne. The most common places to get acne are on the face, neck, back, chest and shoulders and it varies with age.


There are 5 grades of acne:

Grade I: Whiteheads, which are under the surface of the skin or blackheads, which are on the skin's surface.

Grade II: Myriads of closed comedones (whiteheads).

Grade III: The above, plus larger papules, which are pink bumps that hurt, and pustules which are red at the bottom with pus at the top.

Grade IV: Numerous pustules, papules, with large cysts.

Grade V: Acne Necrotina: a comedone is inside every cyst.

Acne can be caused by a number of different things, genetics being the most common reason. Hormone changes in the teen years, during pregnancy and even on a monthly cycle are thought to cause oil glands to overproduce and become blocked. Birth control pills can also cause acne initially because of the changes in hormones. Some medicines or makeup residue left on skin can cause acne. It may take some experimentation to figure out what may be causing acne for you. 


Treatments for Acne
There are various treatments for acne, which can have different goals and objectives. Some treatments heal existing pimples, while others may stop new pimples from forming. Still other treatments prevent or reverse acne scarring, which might otherwise be permanent.

No matter what treatment you use, there are some steps all acne sufferers can take to minimize the occurrence of this embarrassing problem:

--Cleanse your skin with a gentle cleanser in the morning, evening, and after a workout that has caused you to sweat. Scrubbing too hard or washing too often can only make the problem worse, as skin overcompensates by producing even more oil.

--Keep your hands off your face. Your hands have oils too, and picking at your acne can cause scarring.

--Use a light hand when shaving, and make sure your facial hair is softened first. Shaving too often or too harshly can cause more pimples to form.

--Watch your sun exposure. Acne treatments typically cause sun sensitivity, which will age skin faster and can even cause skin cancer.

--Use non-comedogenic and oil free makeup. Unfortunately, many comedogenic ingredients are commonly found, not only in makeup, but in cleansers, lotions and even acne products. These ingredients clog pores and should be avoided.

--Make sure hair products don't rub against skin. These products can be greasy or contain irritants that can cause or worsen acne.

Vivant Skin Care products were formulated by James E. Fulton, M.D., Ph.D., the researcher, cosmetic surgeon and dermatologist who co-developed Vitamin A acid, known today as Retin A®. An acne sufferer in childhood and adolescence, Dr. Fulton was passionate about researching and treating acne. For him it was a personal quest. This led him to the development of many of the gold standards in dermatological medicine including benzoyl peroxide and topical erythromycin.

Vivant's wide range of products targets concerns like acne and considers specific attributes like skin type and skin color when recommending a treatment. 

Here are some of Vivant's best products for treating acne: 

BP 3% Acne Wash: effective wash that contains 3% Benzoyl Peroxide wich suppresses acne-causing bacteria. Ideal for acne-prone and combination skin types.

BP 10% Gel Medication: this specialized acne-fighting therapy suppresses acne bacteria and peels out impactions to improve complexion. Also good for acne of the back and chest

Mandelic Acid 3-in-1 Exfoliating Cleanser: combines the anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antifungal properties of Mandelic Acid with exfoliating beads to restore damaged skin. Great for darker skin tones. 

Sulfur Clay Mask: detoxifying sulfur, salicylic acid and zinc sulfate mask that removes excess oil and blackheads. This clay base mask detoxifies, clarifies and helps thicken skin. 

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