Does Dry Skin Cause Acne - Causes, Treatments And Primary Tips

How To Remove Pimples From Dry Skin – Treatments & Tips

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Acne is the most common skin problem faced by almost 85% of people in their lifetime. Though it is more prominent in teenagers and in people with oily skin, but dry skin acne is also an equally pressing concern. Pimples on dry skin is more prominent in adults; though even teenagers face this problem. Let us find out how to treat dry skin pimples, and also what is the best acne treatment for dry skin.

What is Dry Skin and Acne?

Before we answer this question let us first understand what does dry skin mean?

Dry skin refers to the uncomfortable condition of the skin that is marked with scaling, itching and cracking due to the lack of moisture and hydration in the upper layer (epidermis) of the skin. It affects the epidermis, that safeguards from dirt, dust, harsh chemicals, etc. The outer layer thus acts as a barrier against all these elements. Now, this layer of the skin contains cells and natural oils; both of which together perform the role of a barrier.

It is very important to ensure that the outer layer has the adequate amount of natural oils and fats. Otherwise the skin will get dry. It can be triggered with prolonged use of soaps or other cleansing products which contain harsh chemicals. These chemicals cause an adverse effect on our skin by stripping off the naturals oils. The continuous loss of natural oils and cells over a period of time results in dry and flaky skin.

Also Read: How To Find The Best Dermatologist For Pimples Treatment?

Does Dry Skin Cause Acne?

Yes, dry skin can be one of the reasons for your breakouts. People with dry skin usually tend to have problems like itchiness and redness. And with injury or trauma, the skin barrier becomes weak, thus causing infection due to deposition of acne causing bacteria. With pollution and chemicals (from skin products) there is an inflammation that results in the formation of acne.

How to Treat Acne On Dry Skin?

Treating dry skin acne can be challenging without expert guidance. Since the commonly used acne treatments cause the skin to become dry to reduce the excess sebum depositions. Some methods to treat dry skin pimples include

Treating the acne on dry skin – Your dermatologist would determine the right cosmetic treatment for dry skin acne that comprises treating both root cause and aesthetic aspects simultaneously. These treatments comprise –

  1. Chemical peel – The first line treatment for acne on dry skin by an expert dermatologist is generally chemical peel. Peeling is the controlled exfoliation of the skin, layer by layer, and it is mostly confined to the upper layer of the skin. A plant extract based solution is formulated based on the skin type, and is applied for a few minutes. This helps in bringing immediate radiance to the skin and within 3-5 days’ upper dead skin layer is removed. A few weeks later new and rejuvenated skin from beneath comes up, which is free from acne. Continued sessions will help in improving the appearance of skin effectively
  2. Laser toning – Controlled beam of laser is targeted to remove the deformed layer of the skin comprising acne. Fluence and type of laser technology is decided by expert dermatologists, based upon your skin type. This stimulates collagen production which helps in removing the acne on the dry skin. With continued sessions, desired results can be attained effectively
  3. Subcision – This refers to removing the dry skin acne using specialized tools. Expert dermatologists use sterile protocols for precisely removing the acne and helping in collagen stimulation for bringing out new and rejuvenated skin
  4. Intralesional injections – For cystic and pus filled acne, corticosteroid injections are used to immediately settle the acne outgrowth. These are quick and help in evening the skin and thus alleviating the pain as well
  5. Medications – Oral and topical medications including retinol A and other antibiotics would be prescribed by dermatologists to help reduce the acne on your dry skin. Also non-comedogenic skin care products like sunscreen, lotion, cleanser, etc. would be suggested based on your skin type

    Also Read: Doxycycline Acne Treatment – Dosage And Side Effects

Prevention Tips to get Rid of Dry Skin Acne

The skin care tips detailed below will not only help you in treating your dry and acne-prone skin, but also help in protecting your skin from the re-occurrence of acne breakouts –

  • Adequate moisturization – Proper skin hydration is the key to prevent dry skin acne. The more your skin gets dry, more will be the breakouts. Regular application of moisturizers will help keeping your skin moist. Use only non-comedogenic and fragrance-free or chemical-free moisturizers
  • Cleansing and toning – Cleansing is an important skin care ritual that helps in preventing toxins from entering the skin pores and aggravating acne. Choose a cream or lotion cleanser which does not dry your skin. Do not use hot water, just lukewarm water will do the needful
  • Protect your skin from the sun, cold, and wind – One of the most ideal way to keep your skin from drying out is to protect it from all the various elements of the weather such as the sun, wind, cold, rain, etc. Use sunscreen, hats, and scarves every time you head out
  • Keep your body hydrated – Drinking enough water and clear fluids is as necessary as moisturizing the skin. This will help in enriching the circulatory system and removing toxins from skin
  • Exfoliate with caution – A skin care regime typically consists of exfoliation. Since exfoliation involves scrubbing the skin, but it can harm your dry skin. Avoid abrasive exfoliators and use mild chemical free products instead. These ensure that there is minimal stripping of the skin as well as no unnecessary dryness
  • Choose the right products – The importance of choosing the right products to deal with your dry and acne-prone skin cannot be emphasized enough. Using a wrong product can further aggravate your condition. Hence, it is better to avoid products that are alcohol-based, as they will make your skin even drier
  • Makeup – Do not use harsh cosmetics for make-up and makeup removal must form an important part of your day. Too much makeup can clog the skin pores and aggravate acne outbreak
  • Do not touch the skin – Touching or picking at skin can cause acne and worsen them if you have a tendency to form acne. Also picking at acne will end up in scarring that can also be permanent, so beware
  • Give your skin time to adjust – During the course of your acne treatment, especially at the beginning of the treatment, you might notice that your skin has become drier and is peeling off. It takes a while for the treatment to kick-in as acne in the first place took months to form. Once your skin gets used to the treatment, you will notice the difference
  • Wash Your Face No More Than Twice A Day – In the quest to look fresh at all times, people often end up washing their face three to four times a day. This is not a good practice for those who have dry skin as you are continuously stripping away all the natural oils from the skin. Ideally, you should wash your face just twice a day using mild cleansers which are dermatologist recommended for dry skin.

Also Read: Forehead Acne – Causes, Treatments And Natural Remedies

FAQ’s On Dry Skin Acne?

What About Dehydrated Skin And Acne? Is It Different Than Dry Skin?

In a way both are different in context. Dehydrated skin lacks water but dry skin lacks natural oil. You may have both dry and dehydrated skin, where-in dehydration caused your skin to flake out and dry up.

My Skin Is So Dry, Even When I Moisturize. Does That Lead To Acne?

Yes, dry skin can also lead to acne outbreak. Since the skin gets flaky, cracked and peels off when it is extremely dry. This causes clogging of pores and with grime and dust depositions along with sebum, acne may proliferate in some cases.

What Is Dry Skin Cystic Acne?

Dry skin cystic acne is a severe form of acne where painful nodules form on the face, back, chest, etc. They are pus filled, inflamed and red coloured bumps on the skin.

Dry Skin Pimples On Forehead

Dry skin can also have pimples on forehead due to scalp infection, hormones, other health conditions, etc. Treatments like peel, laser, medications, etc. can help alleviate the acne on forehead.

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About The Author

Minu Manisha Babel

Minu Manisha Babel

An MBA by chance, a trainer by passion, a psychologist by interest and a voracious reader by parentage. I enjoy traveling, public speaking, exploring and writing on topics relevant to our health and well-being.


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