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All About Acne: Acne Types and Remedies

All About Acne: Acne Types and Remedies

Posted on January 18, 2016

Acne in woman

Acne is a very common skin condition that affects many people, no matter what race, geographical location or age they may have. This is caused mainly by bacteria, hormonal changes, stress, environmental influences, and poor food choices.

However, most people aren’t aware that acne has several types. In this article, we will enlighten you of the different types of acne and the possible solutions to cure it. Hopefully, this will also educate you why there is no “one-size-fits-all” cure for acne.

Type 1 Acne

Type 1 acne is the mildest form of acne. It doesn’t cause major damage and is the easiest type of acne to treat. It lacks swelling, tenderness, and irritation and is generally not painful.  This type of acne affects a limited area of the body.

It is usually temporary and heals on its own after a few days. Common forms of this acne include small red bumps or papules and non-inflamed blackheads.

Facial washes with salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide are effective in treating this type of acne. Blue Light Therapy also works to prevent the formation of acne-causing bacteria that may infect these uninflamed bumps.


Type 2 Acne

Type 2 acne is similar to Type 1 acne. The major difference is Type 2 is painful to touch and the swelling and redness are more pronounced.  Pimples can range from small to medium sized red bumps that are painful to the touch.

It is important to practice good personal hygiene and avoid touching the inflamed pimples. Most people cannot help popping their pimples which lead to scarring and infection.

Treatment of choice is over-the-counter topical antibiotics and topical retinoids. You may also opt to have oral antibiotics if acne is not responsive to topical treatment. 

Those who do not want to take oral medication may also elect to get Blue Light therapy. It is a treatment often done in clinical settings but has been made more affordable and sustainable by Trophy Skin.

The Blue light penetrates the skin, targeting the acne-causing P. acnes bacterium and causes it to starve and die off.


BlueMD Blue Light Therapy Illustration

Type 3 Acne

Type 3 acne are painful medium to large nodules and pustules and are accompanied by inflammation and swelling. Large whiteheads and huge, sore bumps are common. It takes approximately 10-14 days for each pimple to dry out.

Type 3 acne is usually unresponsive to topical acne medications because the infection is located deeper in the skin. Because of this, type 3 acne has a greater chance of producing pitting scars or raised acne scars.

Oral antibiotics and retinoids are the treatment of choice for Type 3 acne.

Type 4 Acne

The most severe form of acne is Type 4. This type of acne causes lasting skin damage and scarring.  A common feature of Type 4 acne is the formation of large, irregular nodules or large cysts.

It is not responsive to topical over-the-counter acne medications. The infection is located deep in the skin and causes wide irritation, swelling, and redness. Because of the location of infection, this type of acne can cause extensive tissue damage and can lead to heavy scarring.

Type 4 acne should be treated as aggressively as possible because it can be physically and emotionally stressful. This kind of acne requires oral antibiotic or retinoid treatments and it should be closely monitored by a dermatologist. Accutane may be the last resort to treating more aggressive acne.

Although there is a wide array of pimple-fighting remedy available in the market today, it is still advisable to consult a dermatologist so you can work out what’s the best acne remedy there is for you.

Most people try out different products hoping that they can magically wipe away acne vulgaris overnight but it doesn’t work that way. Most people think that if they scratch off their pimples, it will go away for good, not knowing that they are just causing more damage.

Like we mentioned earlier, there is no “one-size-fits-all” remedy for acne. The important thing is you figure out what’s best for your acne-type.

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