About Acne

Acne is a very common, chronic, difficult-to-treat skin disorder that affects 7 million people in Canada alone.  In technical terms, acne is a disorder of the pilosebaceous unit, more commonly known as the pore. The pilosebaceous unit (pore) consists of a sebaceous gland, a hair follicle and the sebaceous duct.

When hormones overstimulate sebaceous glands, it can result in acne.  The sebaceous glands secrete sebum, a fatty, oily substance that empties on the skin surface through the opening of the hair follicle. The skin produces sebum in order to lubricate the skin and seal in moisture. Sebum, at normal levels, also helps protect the skin.


The Development of Acne

There are four main phases your skin goes through during the development of acne:

Hormonal stimulation of the sebaceous glands, causing increased sebum production.

During puberty, or at other times when hormone activity is stronger than usual, hormones can overstimulate the sebaceous glands. This overstimulation can produce excess sebum, creating oily skin, and in turn clogging the sebaceous ducts (pore openings).

Acne may be mild (few, occasional pimples), moderate (inflammatory papules and pustules), or severe (nodules and cysts).

Mild Acne

Mild acne usually causes only whiteheads (closed comedones) and blackheads (open comedones). Whiteheads are white bumps on the skin, comprised of oil and keratin cells, caused by the clogging of pores. Blackheads are pinhead sized dark spots on the skin, caused by small amounts of clogging in pores. The reason that blackheads have a dark color is because the sebum and other material within the pore has been exposed to the oxygen in the air (oxidized). At times, these open and closed comedones may develop into an infection in the skin pore (irritation from the acne bacteria).  

Moderate Acne

Moderate acne suffers can see several to many whiteheads and blackheads (open and closed comedones), along with some bigger papules and nodules. A papule is a raised area of the skin. A nodule is a raised, hardened area of the skin that is larger than a papule.

Severe Acne

Severe acne can produce hundreds of whiteheads and blackheads that cover large areas of skin. Cystic lesions are pimples that are large and deep, and may be interconnected. These lesions are often painful and can leave scars on your skin.  Sometimes acne needs treatment with stronger medicines or a combination of therapies. Deeper blemishes, such as nodules and cysts, are more likely to leave scars. A dermatologist’s help may be needed to prescribe oral medications to bring cystic acne under control.

How AcneFree Products can Help Manage Your Acne

AcneFree products feature a range of different modes of application and active ingredient levels, as well as systems that provide an acne sufferer with a complete regimen of cleansing, moisturizing and treatment products.  We also have medications that contain a range of dermatologist-recommended effective acne treatment ingredients: salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, to adjust to the different needs of acne-prone consumers.


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