I have been a long time sufferer of cyctic acne, one of the worst ones. These are the things I’ve learned over the years, from various doctors and dermotologists.
Scrubs are a NO NO. They only irritate the pore and cause the skin to create more sebum. In turn, this will on make acne worse. Scrubs are for perfectly clear skin, not acne skin. This includes scrubbing with a loofah, wash rag or other item.
No picking or popping. Ever. No matter what. Not only does it damage the pore in question it can damage the surrounding pores and spread the bacteria from the popped zit to the clear pores around it and cause more acne.
Don’t over medicate. And don’t cross medicate. Only use one acne medication at a time, unless a doctor tells you different. Many times people will get 10% Benzoyl Peroxide. Over drying the skin will again, cause a rise in sebum and oils and in turn cause even more acne.
Always apply treatment creams at night. They make you skin sensitive to the sun, and you’re certainly not getting sun at night. Also, your body repairs itself at night and for whatever reason creams really do work better if applied at bedtime.
Stick to one wash for at least 3 months before you switch to another brand/stregnth. Switching too much will cause irritation and more of that sebum I spoke of.
If you must apply lotions, get one made for acne skin. Phisoderm makes an awesome lotion. (It’s much cheaper in stores)
I highly suggest this method to anyone I meet with acne.
Phisoderm makes a 2% salicylic acid wash that has a acne fighting kick without being too strong. It also smells really good, IMO. You can find it at Amazon.com, or Walgreens/CVS. Your local chain pharm may sell it too. I buy mine from Drugstore.com because they usually have great prices compared to the above mentioned places. They also make a body wash, but I have found that the facewash actually works just the same.
Wash the affected area 2x daily with the Phisoderm Anti-Blemish wash. Pat dry.
OXY makes a really awesome 5% Benzoyl Peroxide cream that I have found works wonders, just overnight. Apply this cream after the nighttime washing. Let it dry completely before you cover the area with clothing or lay on/against fabrics. (BP can cause color loss of fabrics, but it also helps lighten acne scars.)
You should see a definite difference in a week or so.