I was going to just do a straight list here on famous and not so famous acne myths at the same time countering them with the relevant facts.
However when I started to research the topic, it just seemed to go on forever!
So instead of trying to do the impossible by taking them all up one by one I thought it might be more useful to you to be able to learn how to separate an acne myth from a fact for yourself.
Doing this depends largely on you having read and understood on the previous page about What Causes Acne and if you haven’t read that yet, now would be a good time to do so.
So let me show you how to do this until you can get the hang of it for yourself.
Myth #1: Getting a Tan Helps Clear Up Acne
No, getting a tan helps you to look good at the beach!
The fact here is that exposure to sunlight improves your skin’s ability to manufacture vitamin D. Vitamin D is necessary for healthy skin function and if it is functioning in a healthy manner it is far more likely to be able to resist other factors that cause acne or at least make you prone to it.
On the other hand, it is also a fact that overexposure to the sun can result in irritation due to burning and this can result in actually increasing your chances of a breakout. It can also lead to cases of cancer which I guess in one sense would at least take your mind off the pimples!
Myth #2: Washing Your Face Prevents Breakouts
No, the fact is that just like your mom said, washing your face makes your face clean.
Washing your face twice per day with an antibacterial cleanser designed for the job will assist you in resisting further outbreaks and help deal with existing outbreaks.
It will not cure it and it will not by itself, stop it.
Both the presence of bacteria and excessive oil on your skin are contributing factors to outbreaks and they can both be helped by regular cleansing.
However regular cleansing will not address the causes of excessive oiliness or why your resistance to the bacteria is low.
On the other hand obsessively washing, scrubbing and generally going crazy with the cleaning will result in the irritation of already irritated skin and make you more likely to have an outbreak.
Myth #3: Popping Pimples Makes Them Go Away Faster
Yes! It is indeed a fact that if you squeeze a pimple and pop it, that individual pimple will go away faster.
Not only that but you will achieve that strange sense of satisfaction and accomplishment you get when that baby does pop!
The downside is that you have most likely torn tissue in the deep layers of your skin, significantly increasing the chances of permanent scarring.
At the same time you have probably forced the existing bacteria into that freshly torn deep tissue and the bacteria will not only spread sideways but also at a deeper level.
You will also have spread pus, jam packed full of bacteria, to the nearby outer areas of skin increasing the possibility of other pores now becoming infected.
And finally, your fingers are also now covered with the same toxic mess and any other part of your body that you touch can become similarly infected… but hey, don’t let that stop you!
Myth #4: Don’t Wear Makeup
Actually I never do… but that’s a kind of “guy” thing.
Wearing make-up does not necessarily cause you to have an outbreak. It can contribute to one if you use cheap oily products that further contribute to the blocking of your pores.
Makeup can also contain a whole range of nasty stuff that can irritate already affected skin so always look for noncomedogenic (a big word meaning it doesn’t block pores) make up and have a sensible cleansing routine.
Myth #5: Shaving Causes Acne
Cool! Just grow a beard and your troubles will be over!
The fact is that shaving does not cause acne so therefore logic dictates that: “not shaving” will not cure it. Just ask my brother.
He had terrible acne so decided to stop shaving and grow a beard. Sure his face looked way better because you couldn’t SEE it anymore… but it was still there.
Acne affected skin is covered in little bumps and lumps and at the same time is in a state of irritation and inflammation from the infection.
Dragging a straight, sharp piece of metal across this uneven surface is certainly not going to help the situation but it is not the cause of it.
Therefore, not doing that cannot cure it. Shaving with cold water and doing so with care when your face is cool will help stop making a bad situation worse.
Myth #6: Masturbation or Sex Causes Acne
Boy, it’s really hard to know where to begin with this one but it is easily my favorite of all the acne myths!
As if going blind, being cast into eternal damnation and growing hair on the palm of your hands weren’t enough, now it causes massive outbreaks of pimples?
This one actually has nothing to do with the causes or cures of anything. This is just about adults stopping those crazy kids going out and having sex all over the place as they are prone to do… apparently by inventing “facts” to scare them into obedience.
Not worth discussing any further.
Myth # 7: It’s Just a Stage You Are Going Through
That it is a stage that you are going through is rather an undeniable fact but it is a myth that you have to sit there and do nothing about it!
The truth is that almost all types of acne can be cleared up or at least dramatically improved in the majority of cases. Teenage acne, acne during pregnancy, adult acne, back acne… whatever!
They can all be dealt with and no, you don’t have to sit there and suffer through it.
The only way to effectively deal with it is to find out what is causing it and more specifically, what is causing it in YOUR case.
There really is only one product I recommend on this site for dealing with all of these scenarios is called the Acne No More Program and is an holistic (whole or complete) approach to the problem, based on facts and not myths.
It encompasses an understanding of the four causes of acne, their relationship to each other and how they are affecting you individually and as a group.