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What Causes Acne


The best way to fight acne is to know what causes acne, this will make easier to avoid the appearance of acne. A blemish begins approximately 15-20 days before it appears on the skin surface. It starts in your sebaceous hair follicles (the tiny holes commonly called pores). Deep within each follicle, your sebaceous glands are working to produce sebum, the oil that keeps your skin moist and pliable. As your skin renews itself, the old cells die, mix with your skin's natural oils, and are sloughed off. Under normal circumstances, these cells are shed gradually, making room for fresh new skin.

But sloughing is different for everyone. Some people shed cells evenly; some don't. Uneven shedding causes dead cells to become sticky, clumping together to form a plug. This plug traps oil and bacteria inside the follicle.



The plug traps oil and bacteria within the follicle, which begins to swell as your skin continues its normal oil production. Your body then attacks the bacteria with a busy swarm of white blood cells. The whole process takes 15-20 days, culminating in acne.

Acne causes

Major Causes of Acne


Extra sebum - When the sebaceous gland is stimulated by androgens, it produces extra sebum. The sebum mixes with skin bacteria and dead skin cells that have been shed from the lining of the follicle. While this process is normal, the presence of extra sebum in the follicle increases the chances of clogging and can cause acne.

Bacteria - The bacterium Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes) is a regular resident of all skin types; it’s part of the skin’s natural sebum maintenance system. Once a follicle is plugged, however, P. acnes bacteria multiply rapidly, creating the chemical reaction we know as inflammation in the follicle and surrounding skin.

Hormones - Acne mainly appears in puberty when the body begins to produce hormones called androgens. These hormones cause the sebaceous glands to enlarge, which is a natural part of the body's development. In acne sufferers, however, the sebaceous glands are over stimulated by androgens, sometimes well into adulthood. Androgens are also responsible for acne flare-ups associated with the menstrual cycle and pregnancy.

Follicle fallout - Normally, dead cells within the follicle shed gradually and are expelled onto the skin’s surface. But person with overactive sebaceous glands and during puberty these cells are shed more rapidly. Mixed with a surplus of sebum, the dead skin cells form a plug in the follicle, preventing the skin from finishing its natural process of renewal.


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