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Achieving Stable Skin with "True Acne Care"


a person checking skin for acne

Acne.

It's one of the common skin troubles that everyone experiences, but surprisingly, many may not be aware of its true causes.


In this article, we'll share with you "Acne Care to Truly Transform Your Skin" from the perspective of microbes. Let's aim for stable and beautiful skin without being perplexed by acne care.


Contents


A Genuine Approach to Acne Care Starting from the "Gut"

There are various "acne solutions" such as dermatological treatments and acne care cosmetics in the world. However, what's fundamentally important is the "dual approach from the inside and outside."

When it comes to acne care, most people tend to first think about external care like skincare and cleansing. However, what should not be forgotten is the internal aspect of the body.

This is because, when you trace the root cause of acne, it's related to the "intestinal environment" and "diet."


"Leaky gut" as a Cause of Acne

One factor to be aware of as a cause of skin troubles like acne is "leaky gut." In simple terms, this refers to the disruption of the intestinal "barrier function," allowing harmful substances that should not normally exit the body to flow into the internal environment.


The intestinal mucosa is typically protected by a substance called "mucin" from the inside, serving as a barrier function. However, when dietary habits become irregular, this barrier weakens. As a result, toxic substances that the barrier couldn't hold leak from the intestine, circulate through the body, and some reach the skin. This can affect skin turnover, sebum balance, and lead to troubles like acne.


In other words, to prevent acne caused by "leaky gut," it's crucial to maintain the intestinal environment regularly.


The Role of Diet in Excessive Sebum Production

While dietary habits are essential to prevent "leaky gut," the relationship between acne and "food" goes beyond that.

Certain foods, especially those that lead to excessive sebum secretion, include:

  1. High glycemic index (GI) foods

  2. Dairy products


High-GI foods like white sugar and white rice, known as carbohydrates, tend to raise blood sugar levels easily. When blood sugar levels spike, the body secretes the hormone "insulin" to lower it. Since insulin also intensifies the activity of male hormones, it can lead to increased sebum secretion.

Dairy products, although often perceived as healthy, contain "androgen," a male hormone. Excessive intake of dairy products can increase androgen levels, disrupting hormone balance. This imbalance can lead to excess sebum secretion, similar to the effect of high-GI foods.

For those concerned about acne, consciously reducing the consumption of high-GI foods and dairy products for 2-3 weeks may yield noticeable differences.


Microorganisms' Role in Acne

In most cases, two types of bacteria are involved in the development of acne:

  1. Acne bacteria

  2. Malassezia fungus

"Acne bacteria" is commonly associated with the image of the "origin of acne," and it's a well-known commensal bacteria present on everyone's skin. While acne bacteria typically play a role in moisturizing the skin, an overgrowth of this bacteria can contribute to acne formation.

On the other hand, "Malassezia fungus" can be a bit troublesome, causing issues like back acne. An excess of this fungus can lead to the secretion of inflammatory substances, contributing to various skin problems.

The causes of acne are generally attributed to the significant involvement of either of these bacteria.


Antibiotics for Acne: A Surprising Pitfall

In a survey we conducted, 56% of respondents admitted to using antibiotics for acne treatment. While using antibiotics to reduce the bacteria causing inflammation is a reasonable approach, self-prescribing antibiotics without a doctor's guidance is a risky behavior.


Using antibiotics without professional advice can lead to several drawbacks, including the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, side effects, and the limitation of antibiotics to bacterial targets only. Furthermore, antibiotics can disrupt the balance of good bacteria in the body, causing complications.

It's crucial to use antibiotics under a doctor's supervision and not rely on them without a proper diagnosis.


Optimal Acne Care from a Microbial Perspective

While antibiotics may be necessary in certain cases, achieving a more natural approach to control acne is desirable. Key to this is leveraging the power of "Staphylococcus epidermidis," also known as the "beautiful skin bacteria."

Staphylococcus epidermidis not only contributes to skin moisture and barrier function but also helps in suppressing the growth of harmful bacteria, such as acne bacteria. Therefore, maintaining an environment where Staphylococcus epidermidis thrives can make it more difficult for acne to recur.


Three Key Points for Acne Care from a Microbial Perspective:

  1. Increase Staphylococcus epidermidis One of the causes of acne is the proliferation of acne bacteria. To suppress the excessive growth of acne bacteria and provide moisture to the skin, "Staphylococcus epidermidis," a beautiful skin bacterium, is crucial. Staphylococcus epidermidis is believed to decrease due to factors such as excessive washing from cleansing and the influence of preservatives and surfactants in cosmetics. Therefore, it's important to be cautious about excessive daily washing and excessive skincare. Developing habits that do not wash away good bacteria, such as stopping double cleansing or washing only at night if you cleanse both morning and night, is essential. If you've been using a lot of skincare products, switching to a simpler routine may also make a difference.

  2. Avoid promoting acne Along with maintaining Staphylococcus epidermidis preventing the proliferation of acne bacteria is a crucial point in acne care. Especially in skincare, it's important to avoid ingredients that are known to promote acne. Ingredients such as glycerin and high oleic acid oils should be used with caution by those concerned about acne. While glycerin is a common moisturizing ingredient and may be suitable for those with dry skin, it has a tendency to promote acne, making it unsuitable for people with acne-prone skin. Similarly, "oleic acid" found in olive oil and camellia oil is a component that can easily become food for acne bacteria. Of course, these are generally useful moisturizing ingredients, so it's not that "glycerin or oleic acid is entirely bad." However, for those with acne-prone skin, it may be beneficial to avoid products with high levels of glycerin.

  3. Maintain the skin's weak acidity Healthy skin is naturally maintained in a "weakly acidic" state. When this tilts towards "alkaline," skin problems are more likely to occur. This shift to alkalinity weakens the skin's barrier function and makes it easier for harmful bacteria to proliferate. "Acne bacteria" and "Malassezia," which are deeply involved in acne, are known to cause trouble more easily when the skin's pH shifts to "pH 6.0 or higher," indicating alkalinity. Factors that cause the skin to become alkaline include "moisture," and the recent issue of "skin irritation in areas covered by masks" may also be related to this moisture. While completely eliminating mask-induced moisture is difficult, try to be conscious of maintaining the skin's weak acidity by using weakly acidic toners and cleansers in your daily routine."


Conclusion

Acne Care from a Microbial Perspective, Both Inside and Outside


a person with clear skin and no acne

Intestinal bacteria and beauty bacteria play a crucial role in the body's microbiome. By aligning with the functions of these resident bacteria, you can aim for fundamental acne care.

To achieve this, it is essential to address both internal and external factors. By creating an environment where the power of these bacteria can thrive, bid farewell to persistent acne.

Let's say goodbye to recurring acne by focusing on both internal and external approaches, harnessing the strength of these bacteria.

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