In this week’s beauty talk, we discover insights about something popularly called fungal acne thanks to our beauty expert Keshia Caudron. Are you wondering what it is? Then read on.
Taking care of you skin is more important than covering it up
Maybe you’ve heard this one come up before? Even though “fungal acne” is not an official term, many people know it. The official name? It’s pityrosporum folliculitis.
Fungal acne (or yeast pimples) is a rash caused by a certain yeast in the hair follicles, a fungus actually, hence the name ‘fungal’. This yeast is called pityrosporum malassezia. It can become predominant on the skin causing the hair follicles to inflame and develop bumps, hence ‘folliculitis’.
If you look in the mirror, you will see very small red bumps with a very small amount of fluid or pus in them. They are all about the same size and are often on your hairline, forehead, chest, shoulders and upper back. They are often itchy too, which is often the sign that you are not dealing with regular acne.
Actually, it looks like acne, which can easily be confused with it, although it is not at all. That’s why you need to treat it differently. Acne is mainly triggered by a bacteria on the skin and not a yeast and is also associated with excess sebum production, your hormones and cell division. Are you unsure if it is acne or fungal acne? Then take a look at the size of the bumps: with fungal acne they are all about the same size, with “normal” acne all the bumps look different. Often you have both normal acne and fungal acne. Sometimes this becomes clear because with treatment the normal acne clears up and fungal acne remains.
Pityrosporum Malassezia can also cause other skin challenges such as dandruff on the scalp, seborrheic eczema but also pityriasis versicolor where you get whiter or darker spots on your skin.
How do you get yeast pimples?
Have you been taking medication for acne? If so, you are more likely to get fungal acne. That sounds contradictory, doesn’t it? Antibiotics and isotretinoin are great killers for bacteria that cause acne. But this does give the yeasts on your skin free rein.
Do you have a weakened immune system, few white blood cells or low immunity? Then too, you are more likely to get yeast pimples. Just like when you take medication that weakens your immune system or you recently had surgery or were in the hospital. In short: the lower your resistance, the greater the chance.
Your skin type also plays a role: pityrosporum malassezia loves oil. A mixed or oily skin is therefore more susceptible to yeast pimples. Frequent sweating can also create the ideal environment for these yeasts to take over.
Tip: take a shower right away and cleanse your face after exercising!
How to get rid of it
Fungal acne and regular acne should be treated in different ways. These ingredients have an anti-fungal effect against yeast pimples:
– Zinc pyrithione: is in anti-dandruff shampoo
– Ketoconazole: is in anti-dandruff shampoo
– Salicylic acid: takes away the sebum and thus the breeding ground
Do you have stubborn yeast pimples? If so, be sure to visit your doctor to get prescription medication.
Do you stop taking birth control or change your pill? Then your hormonal balance changes. This can cause more sebum production, giving yeasts more chance to get the upper hand.
Important to know: your yeast pimples can come back, even if they have cleared up. Therefore, it can be interesting to keep some ingredients in your skincare routine to prevent a new outbreak! Oil-free products, for example, can provide additional support, such as the Purexpert Oil Free day cream with salicylic acid or the Purexpert Balancing Serum.
Looking for more beauty secrets? Then come back next week for more Beauty Talk with our expert Keshia.