How to Get Rid of Acne: Skin Care Tips from Dermatologists


A teenage girl checks her skin in the mirror.

Skin care is important, but proper care depends on your skin type. The following slide show contains skin-care tips for teenage girls so your skin can be as clear and bright as you are!


Before you can care for your skin and keep it healthy, you need to identify your skin type.

The first step in skin care is identifying your skin type. Is your skin normal, oily, dry, or combination? The following slides will review each type.


Normal skin has an even, smooth skin tone, soft texture, and no visible blemishes, red spots, or flaky patches.

If you have normal skin, your skin has an even and smooth skin tone, with a soft texture and nearly invisible pores. Normal skin has no visible redness, blemishes, or dry, flaky patches. The skin is neither oily nor dry.

For normal skin, wash your face once or twice daily with mild cleanser or plain soap and water to gently remove dirt or sweat.


Dry skin is dull, rough, scaly, and itchy, with almost invisible pores.

If your skin is dry, it would be rough, scaly, dull, and sometimes itchy. Pores will be nearly invisible.

For dry skin, wash your face daily with a mild cleanser, and follow with a perfume-free, alcohol-free moisturizer. Avoid taking hot showers, which can strip moisture from the skin. Dry skin is also common in the winter months when humidity is low and homes are heated with dry heat. A warm bath can help in these cases, followed by using a moisturizing cream or lotion to lock in moisture.


Oily skin is acne-prone skin with open pores, a shiny complexion, blackheads, and pimples.

If you have a shiny complexion, prominent pores, frequent blackheads and pimples you have oily skin. Hormones affect oil production in the skin, and stress can also trigger acne outbreaks.

For oily skin, wash your face once or twice daily with plain soap and water. If you need to cleanse your skin in-between washing, use a cleansing pad that helps dissolve oil and removes excess dirt from skin. If you have acne pimples, do not pop or squeeze them, as this can make the acne worse. Use non-comedogenic cosmetics that do not clog pores.


With normal/combination skin, you might have an oily 'T-Zone' (forehead, nose, and chin) and dry skin elsewhere.

Combination skin can be a mix of oily and dry. Your "T-Zone" (forehead, nose, and chin) may be oily while the rest of your face is dry. Pores are usually large, and blackheads are common. The skin may be very dry or very oily, and the skin on your cheeks may appear rough. Dryness may be worse during the cold weather.

For combination skin, cleanse your face two or three times daily with plain soap and water to remove excess oil. Use moisturizer on the dry areas, avoiding the oily spots.


There are four simple steps to keep your teenage skin clean and healthy.

Following are four steps to keep your skin healthy and clean.


A teen girl prepares to cleanse her face.

Daily cleansing is important to remove dirt, oil, dead skin flakes, and cosmetics. For oily or combination skin, look for cleansers that contain salicylic acid, which can peel off the top layers of skin. If your skin is dry, cleansers that contain glycolic acid can help rid skin of dead skin cells.

To remove eye makeup including waterproof mascara, use eye makeup removers that are specifically created for use around the delicate eye area.


Two teenage girls apply facial moisturizers..

Hydrating the skin is adding water, while moisturizing the skin is adding water, oil, or both. All skin types can benefit from moisturizers after cleansing, but it's important to use one that is right for your skin type. Never use heavy cream on oily skin – choose one that is oil-free and hydrates.


A teenage girl applies acne medication to her face.

If you have acne you will want to treat it. Acne occurs when oil glands produce too much oil, and dirt, bacteria, and debris clog your pores. Some moisturizers and cosmetics can contribute to this problem. Cleansing your face can help remove the dirt and bacteriasurface oil, but it won't alter oil production. Products containing benzoyl peroxide can help treat mild acne. Apply sparingly once daily on oily areas. Benzoyl peroxide may cause over-drying of the skin and it can take up to a month for the products to work as intended.


A teenage girl applies sunscreen on her face.

It is important to protect your skin from the sun and other damaging environmental factors on a daily basis. Use a sunscreen or a moisturizer with an SPF (sun protection factor) of 15 30 or higher. Use sunblock daily, and avoid the sun's peak hours from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. to reduce the risks of premature skin aging and skin cancer.


A teen washes her face.

Moisturizing is important for healthy-looking skin. Moisturizer helps increase water content in the skin's top layer so skin stays soft and smooth. Choose moisturizers with an SPF of 30 or higher, and if you have sensitive skin use one that is fragrance-free.


A doctor and nurse examine a teenage girl's face and skin.

If you are unsure of how to take care of your skin, or you are experiencing acne or other skin problems, talk to your family doctor or a dermatologist (a doctor who specializes in care of the skin). Take care of your skin to keep it looking healthy as you get older.

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