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what kind of acne do I have?

Learn how to clear and prevent blackheads without damaging your skin.

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- Acne comes in many forms. Knowing which kind you have can help you clear it faster and minimize collateral damage to your skin.

- See redness? That’s a sign of inflammation or possible infection. See a professional skin therapist to avoid scarring or spreading bacteria.

Got a breakout? Knowing what kind it is will help you choose the right product or treatment so you can get rid of it faster without compromising your skin’s health.

Here’s our handy guide to common forms of acne – and how to treat them 

Image Forms of Acne Appearance How to Treat It
  blackheads dark, small common in T-zone  either mask, scrub or extractions
  whiteheads small, white/ yellow bumps no redness scrub, leave-on exfoliant with Salicylic Acid
  milia hard, small, white bumps leave-on exfoliant or see dermatologist for extraction
  papules pink or red, w/out pus or visible opening use a  leave-on booster that contains Salicylic Acid / Tea Tree Oil
pustules pink/red bums with pus and white tops use a  leave-on booster that contains Salicylic Acid or see skin therapist
  nodules bumpy, swollen w/ clustered papules and pustules see skin therapist for best results
  cysts large, widespread bumps or areas w/out visible pus see skin therapist for best results


In general, blackheads, whiteheads, papules and pustules are treatable with adjustments to your skin care routine and lifestyle. If you need help, consult a Dermalogica skin therapist for complimentary guidance. If your acne is inflamed (aka red and painful), consider supplementing your efforts with medical advice from a doctor.

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