Acne is a complex skin condition that can be caused by multiple factors including hormones, bacteria, diet, lifestyle, genetics and gut health. It occurs when there is an overproduction of oil in the skin along with dead skin cells resulting in clogged pores. The trapped sebum is the perfect meal for the p.acnes bacteria and as their population grows, skin becomes inflamed and spots, pimples and cysts form. Acne is most commonly localised to the face, however it can also occur on the back and chest.
Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs)
Alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) are a group of chemical exfoliants which include lactic, glycolic, malic, and citric acid. They are water-soluble and only work at the surface level of the skin. AHAs exfoliate by breaking down the substance that holds dead skin together, allowing the dead skin cells to shed off easily. The benefits of using AHAs include improving hydration, skin texture and skin tone. Like all exfoliators, they can result in increased sun sensitivity so daily sunscreen is a necessity when incorporating them into your routine. AHAs work best when included in leave-on formulations such as serums and creams.
Alpha-lipoic acid is made by your body and is present in every single cell! It is an antioxidant that fights free radical damage, preventing the cells from being harmed or even dying. Studies have also shown that alpha-lipoic acid can improve skin texture and reduce inflammation levels.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Made from apples, this vinegar contains antibacterial malic acid which is an alpha-hydroxy-acids. These properties mean that it can be used as a gentle exfoliator and spot treatment. For best results, use an apple cider vinegar containing the mother- a group of probiotics that can be beneficial to the microbiome.
Advanced Fluorescent Technology (AFT)
AFT is the next generation and advanced form of IPL, designed to target pigmentation irregularities, vascularity, and broken capillaries. AFT technology delivers different, gentle wavelengths that simultaneously target the skin on multiple levels during each pulse released. With this technology, we are able to eliminate hotspots making the treatment more comfortable and efficient. These light pulses are converted into heat and absorbed by the chromophore, the area of the skin responsible for its colour, to permanently target the pigment while leaving the surrounding skin unaffected.
Algin (aka alginic acid) is derived from algae and is used as a natural thickener in skincare and hair care products to improve product feel and glide.
Astringent products cause the contraction of cells. In skincare, this is helpful in reducing oil production and cleansing the skin. Astringents include witch hazel, citric acid and alcohols. Astringents are not suitable for dry or sensitive skin and should be used sparingly so as to not over strip the skin.
Azelaic acid is an alpha hydroxy acids and is found in wheat grains. Azelaic acid is very successful treating adult acne and Rosacea acne. It is suitable for sensitive skin and those prone to redness and broken capillaries. We may also reach for this acid also when we look to brighten or target pigmentation.