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The latest and best acne treatment: an interview with Dr. Daria

Dec 30,2021 | HISEEK PRETTY

Acne is something that most people struggle with. There's no escaping it! In fact, between the ages of 11 and 30, about 80% of people will experience an acne breakout. Because it is so prevalent, the skincare market is oversaturated with creams that promise to cure your skin problems overnight, acne mark care products, and more. You may be at a loss for how to begin exploring and discovering what works best for you and doesn't cause more damage to your skin.

Therefore, the author contacted Daria, a dermatologist, to bring you information on the most effective ways to treat acne. In addition, he provides some insight into the latest treatments and mistakes people make when trying to cleanse their skin.

Dr. Daria is a cosmetic and clinical researcher in dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. In 2015, he received the magazine's prestigious Skin Genius award for his innovative approach to treating aging skin. His work has also been published in top dermatology journals. Dr. Daria was selected by his peers as one of New York Magazine's Top Doctors in 2018 and continues to be selected as one of the top doctors in the New York metropolitan area. So if there's one person you should listen to when you're treating acne, it's him!

When your patients are trying to treat topical acne, what do you tell them to look for -- the key ingredient or formulation?

In over-the-counter (OTC) medications, there are four key ingredients that can be used to treat acne. These include peroxynivalenol, salicylic acid, sulfur, and adapalene.

If you have red inflamed acne, benzoyl peroxide should be your first choice. It reduces the amount of acne-causing bacteria and also helps reduce skin inflammation.
Salicylic acid is a beta-hydroxy acid that removes excess oil and removes dead cells from the surface of the skin. It is suitable for all types of acne.
Sulfur has anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties. If you have sensitive skin, this would be a very good choice.
Adapalene is a topical vitamin A acid. It prevents skin cells from clumping together and clogging pores and is especially effective for blackheads and whiteheads.
If you're suffering from acne, it's important to treat the entire area where the acne may have broken out, not just do a spot-on treatment. You want to get rid of the pimples you already have now and prevent them from developing new ones in the future.

What do you think is the most common mistake people make when trying to treat acne?

Treating just a single pimple without addressing the underlying problem will not prevent future outbreaks either.
Squeezing a pimple can do more harm than good: just pulling on the top layer of skin can cause dryness and inflammation, which makes acne treatment more difficult.
Another mistake is not giving your treatment regimen enough time. Medications take weeks to take their full effect, and just because you don't observe immediate improvement doesn't mean the treatment isn't working.
More is not always better. Higher concentrations of active ingredients, such as deoxynivalenol, may not necessarily bring better results and may instead cause more irritation. In fact, 2.5% benzoyl peroxide has been shown to be as effective in treating red, inflamed acne as concentrations of 5% or even 10%.
What do you think is the best makeup for men and women suffering from acne?

If you suffer from acne and have red or brown scarring on your face, there is no makeup more valuable than a concealer to hide the blemishes. Look for an oil-free foundation, preferably a mineral foundation that provides full coverage. For those suffering from acne, some liquid foundations that contain a low concentration of salicylic acid would be a good choice.

Are there any new treatments or products on the market right now that you are excited about? What do you think is the next big thing?

There are two new prescription drugs that have just entered the market. The first is an antibiotic pill called Seysara. This drug is a sister drug to doxycycline, but it is only specifically approved for the treatment of acne. Patients get faster improvement, with significant results in as little as three weeks. When I prescribe an antibiotic for acne patients, it is always combined with topical treatment and is always controlled for three to four months or less. After the patient's face has improved, I will discontinue the oral antibiotic and continue with topical medication for maintenance. A new topical retinoic acid-based lotion called Altreno was introduced to the market. It is the only FDA-approved retinoic acid-based lotion on the market. It has proven efficacy, but because it is a unique vehicle, it causes less irritation to the skin.

What inspired you to pursue a career in dermatology?

Dermatology is a field based on pattern recognition and physical diagnosis. As a visual person, it comes naturally to me. Dermatology gives me the opportunity to make a meaningful difference in the lives of my patients because the state of the skin obviously lies not only at the skin level, it also has a significant impact on self-esteem. My approach is to separate medical dermatology, cosmetic and surgical procedures so that my artistic side can also be brought to bear.

Do you have any advice for people aspiring to become dermatologists?

Remember that dermatology is much more than Botox, or before and after comparison photos on Instagram. Make sure you are doing it for the true nature of the field as perceived from the heart, not the watery moon that you see on the internet. Study hard, get good marks on your exams, get good grades in school, and be prepared to spend some time doing research when necessary.

Back to Acne Skin Care.