Starting My Teenage Son on Skin Care & Having Fun
September 1, 2022
At my practice, I see a lot of mother and their children as patients. The mothers would first come to me as patients and as they see their dermal health being restored, they start sending their hormonal teenagers to me, most for acne issues. I have seen my fair share. The difficulty with teenagers is that they are sometimes (or most of the time), not very compliant when it comes to sticking with a regimen. They may not understand that destructive long term effect that acne can cause to their skin. Usually my time with these teens turn into sit down sessions where I had to explain to them what happens with men I see whose skins were impacted and textured from teenage acne. Another problem with these teenagers is that some of them are in a rush to clear the acne and the scars ... in a rush for prom, in a rush so that they don't feel so embarrassed ... I've seen it all.
My son just turned 12, his skin is still flawless. But between mask-wearing, basketball ... and being a boy ... yes ... showering daily is a negotiation. God help me ... I found his first whitehead. My motto at my practice has always been wellness before illness and that prevention is key. So, as in anything in medicine, the skin is no different. Early intervention with pre-teen and teens can make a world of difference.
Normal teenage acne affects 80% of teens. They get acne because of hormone changes, which is normal. It comes with puberty. Hormones stimulate the sebaceous glands in the skin, sometimes becoming overactive. When there is an overproduction of sebum, it can clog pores which leads to acne. While there is no guarantee in teenage acne prevention, but there is no better time to start teaching children and easing them into the habit of facial skin hygiene. One, when and if they do have acne, adding anti-blemish products will not overwhelm them. And two, regardless of acne or not, learning to take care of the skin is important and a great habit to get into.
So at age 12, I began my son with a face wash. That is all I ask of him. For me, ingredients in children's face wash, body wash, and shampoo are very important. While I may start my adult acne patients with an acid base face wash, for my child, I had given him the V-Enzyme Nettoyant. Children's skin is still delicate compared to ours, so I want to more gentle yet still powerful in its cleansing properties, one of the reasons why V-Enzyme Nettoyant was formulated. It utilizes powerful enzymatic elements to super cleans deep into the pores without stripping the skin, while we engineered natural, skin pH balancing ingredients into it. As a mother, also knowing there are no harsh chemicals or carcinogenic ingredients in there gives me a peace of mind that he can be using this daily long term.
Since I started seeing white heads, it is essential that his face is kept cleaned, so part of easing him into a good regimen is making this fun. We began doing a clay mask once a week. The purpose of the mask is to draw impurities to the surface of the skin. We made it a fun, silly time for the both of us rather than making this a weekly chore for him. Now he looks forward to our weekly mask time. Again, good ingredients are essential for me. For my son, I use SkinBetter Science Detoxifying Scrub Mask. For those that are already on an acne regimen and may have drier skin due to the regimen, you may want to use the CBD Masque Enzymatique instead. That mask will deep cleanse pores will rehydrating the skin.
While it will take time to ease step in after another, here are some more tips for you to develop for your teenager's regimen:
- for those that do sports or involve in activities where they will sweat, it is a good idea to wash their faces post activities- for those that have already developed acne, a night swipe with the Correct & Control Tissu is safe and will further help control blemishes.
- For blemishes, important to let your children know to never pick or pop a pimple due to possibilities of hyperpigmentation and textural scaring. Consider using a fast and effective spot treatment like the La Clarte.
- teens that use face lotion, creams or makeup should look for products labeled "oil free" or "non comedogenic". Mineral makeup is always a great choice. Brands I recommend to patients are Jane Iredale and Bare Minerals.
- those with long hair, or hair that gets in the face should make sure hair is kept clean. Oil from the hair will further clog pores on the face.
- baseball hats or other hats can cause or worsen acne at the hairline.
- teens that have acne in the chest or back should avoid restrictive clothing or non-breathable materials. Cotton is always a good choice as it absorbs moisture and is breathable. Be sure to change clothes after exercise.
A note about ingredient safety on children with Vivre SkinLabs' products. Please refer to a previous article where we address our concern about ingredient usage in the skincare industry. At Vivre SkinLabs, we adhere to a very strict, self-created standard of using non-harmful, non-toxic, non-hormone disrupting, non-cancer causing ingredients. Our founder, Mina, will only formulate products that are safe enough to use on her son. Our commitment is always to be safe.