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Become an Acne Specialist

By: Laura Cooksey
Posted: January 31, 2013, from the February 2013 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
inflammed acne

It took four months to clear this client’s inflammed acne and pigmentation, using a combination of mandelic serum, vitamin A proprionate serum and benzoyl peroxide.

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Retinoids. It seems logical that prescription retinoid preparations should work beautifully for acne. After all, they address the root cause of acne with their comedolytic action; they prevent the microcomedo from forming. However, one problem is that some acne patients are given the cream form of tretinoin that includes isopropyl myristate, a highly comedogenic ingredient. Even if patients are prescribed an appropriate retinoid, the retinoid often makes their skin so sensitive and irritated that they abandon using it before it becomes effective.

Isotretinoin. When the aforementioned strategies do not work, it seems the only choice left for the physician is to prescribe a round of isotretinoin. For many acne patients, the side effects are not worth the health risks. Although it can be the silver bullet for some acne-sufferers, one or multiple rounds of isotretinoin may be needed, only to break out again.

Get better results

An esthetician can be incredibly effective without the use of any prescriptions. More than ever before, skin care professionals have access to potent nonprescription active topical products. Product formulations with mandelic acid, lactic acid, vitamin A propionate, benzoyl peroxide and, to a lesser degree, glycolic acid and salicylic acid, can have a profound impact on acneic skin.

Research has shown that acne patients often do not adhere to physician-prescribed medication regimens and that more frequent visits by clients is associated with increased compliance.2 An acne specialist can take the time with acne clients that most physicians cannot by seeing them every two weeks for a two-to three-month period of time. This schedule makes the client compliance rate much higher—a key factor to getting results. (See An Effective Acne Specialist Can ...)

How to become an acne specialist