Managing Pimples

A pimple, also known as spot or zit, is a small pustule or papule that contains white pus at the tip. They are bumps that are red and tender. They usually occur in areas such as the face, neck, shoulders, back and chest because these areas of the body have large numbers of functional sebaceous/oil glands. When these glands become clogged with too much sebum, dirt and dead skin, they are prone to getting easily infected and this could lead to pimples.


1) Hormonal Changes

At certain points in our lives, our bodies go through certain changes which cause fluctuations in the production of certain hormones that cause the sebaceous gland to produce more sebum. These fluctuations usually occur during the periods of puberty, menstruation and menopause. A good example of these hormones is testosterone which is produced more in males during puberty. In women, a reduction in the production of estrogen hormone during menopause and fluctuation in the production of progesterone hormone during the menstrual cycle also cause pimples.

2) Stress

Being stressed can lead to an increase in the production of sebum by the sebaceous gland. When one is stressed, there may be an increase in the production of corticotrophin-releasing hormone which binds to the sebaceous glands receptors and causes an increase in the production of sebum.

3) Poor Skin Health

Poor skin health could cause dirt, dead skin and sebum to accumulate in the sebaceous glands. A good skincare routi helps to unclog the pores in the skin.

4) Hair Products

Sometimes, our skin, especially our face, come in contact with the hair products we use even though we don’t mean to. This can cause the pores of the skin to get blocked and get infected with bacteria.

5) Touching One’s Face

Touching one’s face can cause pimples because we tend to do a lot of things with our hands all day and as we do some of these things, our hands are accumulating germs. When we use our hands to touch our face, we unknowingly transfer these germs to our face and this could infect the pores.

6) Makeup

Most makeup products contain oil, dyes and chemicals which can accumulate in the pores and lead to infections.

7) Uncomfortable Clothing

Wearing clothing that are too tight may irritate the skin and lead to a breakout.

Prevention and Treatment

1) Apply Home Remedies

Aloe vera, lemon juice, tea tree oil and apple cider vinegar can be applied to the pimples. Aloe vera gel can also be used to make a face mask which can be applied overnight.

2) Take Care of Your Face

Take care of your face by washing it twice daily. It is not advisable to wash more than twice daily because this could make the skin too dry and when this happens, it triggers the sebaceous gland to produce a lot of oil. You should only use your hands or a very soft cloth to wash your face. Do not scrub harshly with exfoliating gloves or sponges. You should also apply moisturiser after washing your face or after applying a pimple product because most pimple products are made with ingredients that cause the skin to get dry and peel off. When you want to buy a product you want to apply to your face, check the label to see if it is noncomedogenic. This means that it doesn’t cause acne or pimples.

3) Relax

Engage yourself in stress reliving activities such as yoga, breathing exercises and meditation every now and then.

4) Keep Your Hair Away from Your Face

Try as much as possible to keep your hair away from your face and wash it regularly with a mild shampoo and conditioner.

5) Change Bedsheets and Pillowcases

Our beds and pillows make contact with the skin a lot and this why it is very important to keep them clean because if we don’t do so, the dirt and germs from the dirty bedsheets and pillowcases can get easily transferred to the face.

6) Eat Right

Avoid greasy foods and eat more wholefoods. Wholefoods are foods that are grown. They are good for the body because they are natural and highly nutritious.

7) See a Dermatologist

Most pimples outbreak can be treated at home and they tend to go away within a few weeks but there are some severe cases that require the a visit to the dermatologist’s. The dermatologit may prescribe corticosteroids, antimirobials, antibiotics, retinoids or combined cotraceptives.

8) Over the Counter Medication

This can be gels, lotions or creams. They usually contail benzoyl peroxide, salicyclic acid, retinol rescorcinol, glycolic acid and lactic acid. You can apply just a little bit of benzoyl peroxide to reduce the size of a pimple overnight. These poducts usually dry the skin and that is why it important to moisturise with a fragrance free nocomodogenic moisturiser.

9) Avoid Touching Your Face

Try as much as possible to not touch your face and do not pop pimples with your nails and fingers. The temptation is always there to do it but don’t because this could lead to scarring and infection.

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