You know teenagers and acne go hand in hand. But acne strikes adults, too – more than half of all adult women and about a quarter of adult men. And these figures appear to be climbing. As the world begins to wake up to adult acne, it’s becoming clear that the psychological, social and physical effects of this condition don’t diminish with age. Neither do the causes of adult acne.
It’s difficult to know why adult acne seems to be on the rise. A 1999 study found that the mean age of patients treated for acne had increased significantly over the course of a decade, from 20.5 years to 26.5 years. This could mean one of two things: Either more adults are getting acne, or more adults are seeking treatment for their acne. While some recent studies have suggested that incidences of adult acne are increasing, others suggest that adults (particularly women) are simply more concerned about their skin than they used to be.
The fact is, adult acne is one of the most widespread medical conditions in the world. We’re talking billions of people, not just you (even though it can feel that way). More adults than ever are seeking treatment and more physicians are viewing acne as a condition for all ages – not just for teens.
So as you can see, you’re not alone. Many adults like you think ‘how could this happen to me at my age?’ and ‘none of my friends have it.’ The reality is your skin is unique and that means your susceptibility to acne is unique as well.
There are a lot of reasons you might get adult acne, and many are beyond your control. As with many conditions, your family genetics play a large part. Chances are good your parents’ acne conditions will be yours. Therefore, unless you’re doing something extreme like never washing your face, adult acne is not your fault. What you eat, how much you exercise, and how often you wash your face and body have very little influence, believe it or not.
That said, there are five main culprits that cause adult acne. They are briefly listed here. You’ll find a more detailed discussion here comparing adult & teen acne.
Culprit #1: Hormones
Culprit #2: Extra sebum
Culprit #3: Follicle fallout
Culprit #4: Bacteria
Culprit #5: Inflammation
The best weapon you have against the causes of adult acne is knowledge. The more you learn about your own body and the acne condition you have, the more you can do about it. When you understand the factors that contribute to your acne, and how different acne-fighting ingredients work to heal and prevent it, finding the right combination is easy. And when you find what works for you, make sure you stick to that regimen. Adult acne is not curable, but it is highly treatable, and a daily combination therapy routine that targets the factors that cause acne can help you achieve your goal of clear skin.