Celebrity-approved ways to banish adult acne – Evening Standard

Having a major breakout when you were in high school was bad.

Having a breakout when you’re about to walk a star-studded red carpet at an event watched by over 20 million people? Now that’s really daunting.

And yet Kendall Jenner did just that when she attended the 2018 Golden Globe Awards earlier this week, with her biggest insecurity on display.

Not only did she inspire legions of acne sufferers by managing to look fabulous despite her skin imperfections, the 22-year-old, who has opened up in the past about her struggles with acne, has been praised for slamming her critics on social media.

But Kendall is not the only one struggling with adult acne. In fact, it’s on the rise.

According to the NHS, 80 per cent of people aged 11 to 30 are affected by acne, with five per cent of women and one per cent of men suffering from the condition over the age of 25.

A study of 92 private dermatology clinics in 2015 found a 200 per cent rise in the number of adults seeking specialist acne treatment, with a massive 50 per cent of women diagnosed with some form of acne during their adult lives.

Stress, diet, lifestyle, pollution and hormone imbalance can all cause the over-production of oil from sebaceous glands which lead to blocked and inflamed pores. 

So what are the ways to treat acne?

On her YouTube channel, Kendall recommends an at-home mask:

However, If you don’t fancy getting your hands dirty, there are other options:


When it comes to finding a gentle but hardworking blemish-fighter, reading the list of ingredients is key.

You’re looking for products that contain retinoids, salycilic acid, low-dose benzoyl peroxide and tea tree oil – and you want to avoid products that contain alcohol. 

A particular favourite with celebrities such as Lili Reinhart and Kylie Jenner is Mario Badescu Drying Lotion


Views on whether skin conditions can be entirely affected and indeed controlled through diet are conflicting. Several studies suggest dairy can lead to outbreaks, while others acknowledge the negative effects of alcohol on your skin. 

In an interview with The Cut last year, Natalie Portman revealed that she changed from vegetarian to vegan in order to deal with her breakouts: “I cut out dairy and eggs, and I never had a breakout after. That was definitely a discovery.”

Victoria Beckham meanwhile, who notoriously suffered with acne in her Spice Girl days, told Net-a-Porter magazine in 2016 that her cure is to eat salmon everyday.


Keeping brushes clean

It may sound obvious, but makeup brushes, pillows, phone screens and towels are some of the biggest offenders when it comes to transmitting spot-causing bacteria. 

When Scarlett Johannson spoke to Elle about her beauty routine back in 2009 she said: “I clean my makeup brushes once a week. People don’t realize how dirty their sponges and stuff are! Bacteria — that’s what makes you break out.”

Our pillowcases can also become a hive of bacteria which can reinfect skin each evening. Luckily, brands like SleepClean and SkinLaundry  make pillowcases that fight the build up of bacteria


So, if you do suffer from blemishes or acne just remember – you’re not alone. Kendall’s breakout bravery should inspire us all. 

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