I had the chance to have an online interview with Dr. Debra Jaliman an NYC dermatologist and author of the book Skin Rules. She said ‘acne is my passion’ therefore I got the chance to ask her a wide range of acne related questions! Learn more about supplements, diet, cleansing and good product ingredients for acne-prone skin.
1. Retinoids are all the hype lately, what are your opinions on using these for acne? Especially the over-the-counter products like adapalene.
Adapalene is actually prescription only and it is effective for acne. Retinols help de-bump the skin as well help get rid of dead skin cells.
2. Do you think that there is a link between diet and acne?
Sugar, or high glycemic products, are known to increase inflammation thus inducing acne, avoid those. Consuming foods rich in antioxidants will make our skin less dull. Avocadoes are a good source of healthy oil such as monounsaturated fat (oleic acid) which is also very beneficial for the skin, as it can keep it soft and hydrated.
3. You mention in your book ‘skin rules’ a lot about cleansing. Do you think twice a day is the right amount?
Yes, cleansing twice a day is the right amount.
4. Many people, including myself, worry that make-up causes breakout, even if we use mineral foundations or non-comedogenic products? What are your opinions, should we all go make-up free for clear skin?
My opinion is it’s OK to use makeup that is non-comedogenic, as well as mineral foundations.
5. Do you think there are any supplements worth taking to improve acne?
I recommend Nicomide dietary supplement. It has high levels of niacinamide and zinc to help improve acne.
6. On the topics of supplements, we have heard a lot about amino acid l-lysine for acne, have you heard of this as a treatment?
There isn’t enough research on effectiveness of l-lysine for acne.
7. Do you have any advice for those with body acne? There are fewer products for this type of acne, and its also much harder to apply products to these areas!
Body acne is caused by the same factors that trigger acne on the face. These factors include overactive oil glands that secrete too much oil, dead skin cells that block the pores and of acne-causing bacteria on the skin surface. Oil and dead skin cells become trapped in the pore. This causes blackheads. They may become pimples if bacteria is involved and inflammation. Body acne is generally found on the back and upper chest. There are more sebaceous glands there than other areas of the body, so the follicles are more likely to become plugged with excess sebum and dead skin cells. When exercising wear breathable fabrics like cotton, not polyester. Shower right after exercising to prevent bacteria from forming, clogging your pores and causing more acne. Use antibacterial soap and a cleanser with salicylic acid or a toner with glycolic acid which would help unclog pores. You can also use a Clarisonic cleansing brush system.
8. Are herbal remedies worth it, have you seen any success with this?
I haven’t had much success with herbal remedies.
9. What is your opinion on facial wipes / make-up wipes? I believe they cause me to break out, however many people swear by them as make-up removers?
Some people like it, it’s better to use them than not washing your face if you are not able to wash it. I like the Neutrogena Makeup remover cleansing cloths.
10. I love micellar water as an alternative to make-up removing wipes, what is your opinion on this type of product?
I am a fan of micellar water. It’s great to use after washing your face to take off any extra residue of makeup.
11. Do you have any advice for those of us with hormonal acne? Why exactly do hormones cause the flare-up?
Hormonal acne is caused by an excess of the male hormone. An androgen like testosterone is the male hormone that contributes to the acne. Flares are caused by overstimulating the oil glands and altering the development of the skin cells that line the hair follicles. This causes clogged pores where the acne bacteria grow. This leads to inflammation, redness and acne. I find the best solution is to use a hormone blocker, which blocks the excess male hormone. This is called spironolactone.
12. Popping spots, is it all that bad? Sometimes its impossible to avoid with white-heads!
It’s better if you have a professional do it for you so you don’t infect your skin or scar yourself.
13. Many skincare products contain alcohol, is this bad for our skin?
Alcohol is OK if you have oily skin. If you have adult acne with dry skin, avoid alcohol. We offer products that substitute alcohol with aloe, for sensitive and dry skin types.
14. Many products are labeled by skin-type (ie, oily, dry, sensitive). What should people, like myself who have oily/acne prone skin but also very sensitive skin do? I find it hard to get skincare products that are beneficial to my acne and my sensitive skin!
It’s essential to look at the ingredients on the products especially if you have sensitive skin. For example, we make products for this purpose such as aloe based product versus alcohol based, thus suitable for sensitive skin.
15. Finally, whats your main and most important acne tip you have for us?
Be consistent with your skin care regimen; don’t expect your skin to get better in a week. It can take up to 6-8 weeks to see a change.
Purchase at Dr Jaliman’s Skincare book @ Amazon