Dead skin cells

An accumulation of dead skin cells together with excess oil production can lead to congested skin. Every three-to-four weeks the skin replenishes itself with new cells. That means that a layer of dead skin cells forms on the top of the skin. When this happens and the skin cells are mixed with excess oil, they may sink down into larger pores. What’s the end result? Blackheads, dull skin and sometimes acne.

How do you avoid congested skin
There’s nothing that you can do to avoid your skin creating and replenishing its skin cells, the best and most effective way to avoid and treat congested skin is to make sure that you’re sloughing off dead skin cells both from the surface of your skin as well as beneath the skin where they may have already built up inside of larger pores or hair follicles. How do you do this?

It’s the magic of exfoliation! Here are some things to keep in mind when preparing to start a regular exfoliating skin care regimen.

Avoid Scrubs or Rough Beads: Be careful about anything that may be rough or cause irritation on your skin. The skin on your back and body is tougher than on your face, so an exfoliating scrub or loofah may work there. But your face is sensitive. Avoid anything that may feel rough on your skin. It will most likely do more harm than good. Instead, exfoliate using Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) and Beta Hydroxy Acids (BHAs). AHAs and BHAs can be used more easily in every-day skin care products. But the biggest benefit of these exfoliating ingredients is that BHAs are not water soluble. What does that mean? It means that a BHA such as Salicylic Acid can work beneath the surface of the skin to break down dead cell build up within pores or hair follicles where it may already be causing clogged pores or blackheads.

Recommended product: Murad's AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser

Clogged pores

If your pores become clogged, congestion and pimples often result. When skin pores are clogged, the bacteria inside those pores multiply, which then stimulates an inflammatory response. This inflammatory response causes swelling, redness and pus to form inside the clogged pores, resulting in the development of a pimple.

Treating clogged pores is actually feasible using a two-step process. The most important thing to remember when treating clogged pores is not to squeeze them. While it is always tempting to simply squeeze a clog until it is removed from the skin, doing so can damage and harm the skin, ultimately causing further breakouts as well as acne scars and post-acne marks.

Step One: Draw Impurities From Beneath Your Skin

Begin by using a purifying clay face mask to draw the impurities and debris that clog your pores closer to the surface. While you don’t want to squeeze at your clogged pores, you do want to encourage the clog to move closer to the surface so that it can shed and exfoliate away as part of your natural skin regeneration process.

Recommended product: Murad's Clarifying Mask

Step Two: Treat Clogs Beneath the Surface of Your Skin

The most effective way to treat clogged pores (and prevent blackheads and breakouts) is to treat them beneath the skin before they become visible. To accomplish this, you’ll want to seek a pore treatment that utilises Salicylic Acid. Salicylic Acid is able to penetrate through your skin’s sebum and exfoliate away dead skin cells within the hair follicle to dissolve away clogs.

Recommended product: Murad’s Acne Spot Treatment

Poor cleansing

Your face comes into contact with many things that can contribute to bad skin each and every single day. Failing to remove this thoroughly at the end of each day can lead to blocked pores, blackheads and congestion. Use a targeted cleanser each night and each morning that helps clear pimple-prone skin andpromotes a healthy complexion.

Recommended product: Murad's Clarifying Cleaner

Hormonal changes

It doesn’t matter if you’re male or female, 16 years old or 35 years old, fluctuations in hormone production can lead to acne breakouts. In fact, acne is considered a hormonal skin disorder. It’s ultimately hormones that control the glands in the skin that produce oil, and when those glands overproduce oil, it creates a breeding ground for acne-causing bacteria. Additionally, an overproduction of certain hormones has also been linked to the overproduction of skin cells that clog pores. In particular, androgen, which is a male hormone that is found in both men and women, commonly causes acne breakouts when overproduced.

Hormonal acne can happen at any time in your life. For males, it most commonly, but not exclusively, occurs during puberty. Women may experience hormonal acne during puberty, menopause and pregnancy. Women may also experience hormonally related breakouts during their menstrual cycle.

Unhealthy diet

If you’re researching the causes of acne, you may encounter a great deal of conflicting information about whether diet plays a role in acne breakouts. The reality of the matter is that diet matters when it comes to having clear skin. Clear skin is healthy skin and the health of your skin is dependent on the health of your body overall.

Ideally, a diet rich in antioxidant-rich fresh fruits and vegetables and other healthy foods will cause your body, and your skin, to be healthy. Eating a diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables has an additional benefit that may help to get rid of acne. Fruits and vegetables are very hydrating, and healthy skin is hydrated skin. Though drinking plenty of water will help keep your skin hydrated, the cellular structure of water in fruits and vegetables keeps you hydrated for longer and has a greater impact on your skin.

Recommended product:  While you should get the bulk of your nutrients from natural food sources, it’s a good idea to take a daily supplement that’s rich in the nutrients needed for healthy skin, such as Murad’s Pure Skin® Clarifying Dietary Supplement acne pills.