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The main steps in controlling breakouts are:
1. Gently exfoliate skin and increase cell turnover to regulate excessive dead cells shedding within hair follicles and prevent dead cells built up and get pore clogged. In case of teenager acne we are concerns about exfoliating and de-greasing effect (like glycolic acid and ets) and in a case of adults exfoliating and hydrating effect (like lactic acid and ets) together with speeding up cell turnover effect of retinoids (depends on skin sensitivity) and resorcinol.
2. Control sebum production (with ingredients like salicylic acid, cinnamon bark, astringent toner, licorice extract) for both teenager and adult acne with additional hydrating effect (like urea, glycerin, hyaluronic acid) for adult acne.
3. Control P. acne bacteria proliferation with ingredients like salicylic, azelaic, lactic, kojic acids, benzoyl peroxide, and tea tree oil. In a case of adult acne try to avoid too drying effect of alcohol of benzoyl peroxide.
4. Protect and hydrate the skin with appropriate moisturizer and UV rays’ protection. For the best result both teenager and adult acne should be treated professionally (in office) every two weeks till breakouts subsides, then treatments can be moved to every three weeks, then to four for maintenance. Treatments like Deep Pore, Oxygen or Medical facials, LED (Light Emitting Diod) , Microdermabrasion, Chemical peels with appropriate solutions will be beneficial to control breakouts.
Results are also dependent on appropriate home care. As such, facial cleansing and product application twice a day is crucial for result, but excessively washing oily skin is just as detrimental as not washing, causing skin to overproduce oil trying to protect skin from dehydrating, which leads to more potential for breakouts.
And the most important is to understand that your skin is not your enemy, it is as confused as you are. Try to understand, to help it and you will be surprised how it will respond wonderfully.