Acne is a chronic inflammatory skin condition where hair follicles and pores are blocked by oil and dead skin cells, resulting in the follicle swelling and the iconic bumps most individuals hate to see on their skin. When this occurs, it causes an overgrowth of bacteria, making the skin more irritated. This cycle creates whiteheads, blackheads, and pimples. A lot of research has been done on how to eradicate acne from a cellular level. Here are some treatments that really do work, based on research from various studies.
Pore cleansers are effective because they prevent the plugging up of pores, thereby suppressing acne. The product targets production of oil and the hormones which studies show are the elements that trigger breakouts. A pore cleanser will typically contain benzyl peroxide or salicylic acid.
Benzoyl peroxide breaks down when in contact with skin, releasing the oxygen within it, which kills the bacteria that causes acne. The acid causes the skin to peel and dry, which will get rid of dead skin and sebum (the cause of follicle inflammation and bumps). Salicylic acid is gentler on the skin, but doesn't contain the oxygen that helps kill bacteria. If an individual's skin is sensitive and their acne is not too serious, salicylic acid cleansers might be better.