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The Anatomy of a Pimple (and how not to have them)

August 14, 2018

Acne is short for the name of the bacteria that causes the eruptions in our skin we know as pimples, propionibacterium acnes.


Not many people know, but acne is essentially a buildup of bacteria that plugs a tiny tube in the base of the hair follicle responsible for bringing oils to the surface of the skin. As bacteria multiplies, it ends up stopping the flow of oil, causing inflamation, redness, and oftentimes a white or a blackhead. 


Blackheads come from plugs in these oil "tubes" that are close to the surface. The oils, having contact with oxygen, oxidize and become black. Whiteheads, on the other hand, are below the surface and do not have the opportunity to oxidize and change color. 


Once the bacteria is trapped in the tube above the sebaceous (oil) gland, it continues to multiply, producing lipase, an enzyme that converts oil to fatty acids. These acids irritate the sebaceous gland lining, causing it to rupture and create what we know as the pimple. 


Complicated process, right? 


So how do we avoid pimples? As many of us know, helping the skin maintain its healthy, natural balance is always a good step. Furthermore, however, exfoliation, toning, and cleansing, all help to keep these glands clear from blockages. This decreases the likelihood of bacterial collection and, therefore, pimples. 


You could also try a procedure from a licensed esthetician like the SilkPeel, which simultaneously exfoliates and clears out your pores of blockages. It's by far our favorite procedure offered at our office! Book one today here!

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