How to Get Rid of Acne in Your 30s
Published Nov 16, 2020
Acne is commonly associated with puberty and often seen as a right of passage into adulthood. I mean, if you haven’t experienced a breakout at least once in your teens to your 20’s, then you are one of the luckiest creatures on this planet. But for some of us, the battle with acne continues right into our 30’s.
Yes, contrary to popular belief, acne doesn’t end in puberty. In fact, it’s very much possible to not have acne in your teens then experience the worst breakouts in your 30’s. According to a 2012 study, more than 45% of women aged 21 to 30 still suffer from acne. The same is also true for 26% of women aged 31 to 40 and some 12% of women aged 41 to 50.
If you’re a part of these statistics, then we understand your frustration. Having acne can be difficult as a teenager but it’s even more so as an adult. In your teenage years, almost everyone has acne. So people are more forgiving. But if you still have acne at 30, you’re bound to get some comments about it.
No worries. Adult acne might be difficult to deal with but it’s very much possible to get rid of. Read on to find out how.
Why Do You Still Have Acne Breakouts in Your 30s?
Acne breakouts, no matter your age, is usually caused by one or a combination of factors. But for adult acne, the most common culprits include:
Most of us think that the raging hormones of our teenage years will finally settle down in our 30’s. Unfortunately, that’s not the case for everyone.
Some women, especially those with fluctuating hormones, are bound to suffer from acne well into their 30’s and even up to their 50’s. Women are especially prone to hormonal changes during pregnancy and even after it. Certain birth control methods can also wreak havoc on a woman’s hormones leading to acne breakouts.
Our 30’s are usually defined by demanding work schedules, financial woes, and familial pressures. This is why, in the US alone, more than 70% of people aged 30 to 59 years old reported that they often feel stressed.
Though stress can’t directly cause acne, it can trigger a breakout and worsen your current acne problems. When you’re stressed, your acne-causing hormones increases. This prompts your sebaceous glands to produce more oil. When the dirt and bacteria trapped in your pores mix with that oil, it causes inflammation which leads to acne.
Admit it or not, aging becomes a concern when we hit our 30’s. That’s why, at this age, many of us are experimenting with cosmetic products to conceal those wrinkles. Little do we know that some of those cosmetic products are also the culprits behind our worst breakouts.
You see, some anti-aging products contain coconut oils which are often marketed as an anti-aging miracle. While this might be true, coconut oil is also a known comedogenic. This means that it can clog your pores and trigger acne breakouts.
As teens, we were often told not to eat pizza, chocolate, and other greasy foods as it causes acne. To date, there is no scientific evidence backing that claim. But science does say that dairy products and sweet foods can trigger acne.
A study in Malaysia shows that young adults aged 18 to 30 with a high intake of dairy and high-glycemic foods are also more likely to have acne.
If your family has a history of adult acne, then chances are you’ll also have it too. Yes, far more than our lifestyle choices, our DNA also dictates how likely we are to have acne.
Steroids, birth control pills, and other medications can alter your hormone levels. And, as you know, changing hormone levels can cause acne.
Getting rid of adult acne is not something that can be done overnight. There’s no silver bullet that can treat all types of acne. And unlike teenage acne, adult acne can’t simply be solved with salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide. Those harsh substances can dry out and irritate more mature skin.
So instead of stacking up on those anti-acne creams for teenagers, you can check out these recommended treatments for adult acne:
- Essential oils. Tea tree oil, jojoba oil, and rosemary extract contain anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties that will help with acne.
- Honey. That honey in your pantry could be the solution to your acne woes. It has antioxidant and wound-healing properties excellent for healing acne lesions.
- Garlic. Just like honey, garlic has excellent antiseptic properties.
- Aloe vera. Aside from its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, aloe vera is also a great moisturizer. This makes it ideal for adult acne.
- IPL Treatments. Intense Pulse Light (IPL) treatment uses laser light to get rid of acne without pain or downtime.
- Microneedling. If you’re struggling to get rid of acne scars, microneedling is the way to go. It uses fine needles to prick your skin to encourage your skin to produce more collagen. This smooths out the skin and fades acne marks.
- Microdermabrasion. As its name suggests, microdermabrasion involves creating small abrasions in your skin’s surface. This scrapes off dead skin cells allowing a new skin layer to grow. It’s more effective for mild acne and acne scars.
Treatments for Hormonal Acne
Unlike common forms of acne, hormonal acne doesn’t respond well to the above-mentioned treatments. If your acne is due to hormones, you should ask your dermatologist before taking any medication. They’ll usually prescribe oral contraceptives, anti-androgen drugs, and retinoids. In certain cases, they may also advise you to make certain lifestyle changes like steering clear of dairy, sugary foods, and stressful situations.
(Related: PRP Facial Injections: Is It Worth It?)
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About The Author
Judy Ponio has many years of experience writing about beauty and wellness topics. As a writer, she is passionate about helping her readers find accurate answers to their questions. Thus, she makes sure to only use information from credible and reliable sources. Her work has also appeared on various health and beauty sites.