How Acne Treatments Affect People of Color

Patience and Persistence Pay Off

Managing Side Effects of Treatment for Acne

To help you stick with your acne treatment, try these techniques:

  • Moisturize. This option requires the least effort and expense. The right moisturizer will even out skin tone and cut down on the dryness and irritation you may be feeling. Choose an oil-free moisturizer to avoid adding more oil to your face and look for the word “non-comedogenic” on the label, so you know it won’t clog pores and worsen acne.
  • Lighten up dark spots. People of color who develop dark patches (called post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation) after acne treatment may benefit from azelaic acid (Finacea), a prescription topical that you apply to trouble spots.
  • Correct color variations with cosmetics. You may be able to conceal some discoloration with a foundation that offers extra coverage.
  • Have a chemical peel. A light chemical peel is an option for people who want to speed through the acne treatment process and cut down on side effects. Teng recommends these peels every three or four weeks. “Sometimes we will see dramatic improvement after six weeks or so, which is very encouraging,” she says, adding that such improvement motivates patients to stick with their acne treatment plan.

Help for Acne Scarring

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