This is what your acne means based on its location on your face

June 6, 2019 in Beauty

Acne is a complicated condition that has many causes and just as many treatments. There are two very different analyses—western and holistic—that can help to target all the possible causes of the breakouts directly. “In all holistic medicine practices including Ayurveda and Chinese Medicine, the face is considered to be reflective of your body, and it directly connects to your respiratory and digestive systems. It also has a correlation with other organs such as the liver and kidneys,” says Dr Manoj Kutteri, wellness director, Atmantan Wellness Centre. “There is always a pattern on the face that is directly related to the constitution of the person (known as the vata, pitta or kapha dosha).”

But what does this have to do with the zits that regularly take over your face? “Acne breakouts can be based on external or environmental factors, as well as foods you eat, medicines you consume and products you use,” explains Mumbai-based dermatologist Dr Batul Patel. “For example, adult acne in the cheek area can be indicative of using a dirty pillow or makeup brush. It can also be due to your cellphone usage, helmets, or because you rub your exercise wristband on your forehead or cheek too often.”
What acne on different parts of your face might mean

The T-zone

The T-zone, comprising the forehead, nose and chin, has the highest amount of sebum production on the face, so breakouts here could be related to sweat gland occlusion. The forehead is also connected to the small intestine in the realm of face mapping. “The skin is thin on the forehead. This area is ruled by vata dosha, which is an air-related personality,” says Dr Kutteri. “Stagnation causes breakouts in this region, pointing to issues of constipation or high levels of stress.” Since blackheads and small whiteheads can also be commonly found at the T-zone, an active ingredient like retinol can help to unclog pores and improve cell turnover.

Between the brows

Breakouts between the brows are connected to impaired liver functioning, and are often seen on people who consume excessive amounts of alcohol. “These are common among women because of suppression of anxiety and anger, which has a strong impact on liver metabolism. To rectify this, one must avoid fatty food made with refined oils, and cleanse your liver by eating foods rich in Vitamin C. Yellow and citrus fruits, amla and guava are good examples,” advises Dr Kutteri. Dermatologists also suggest double-checking the ingredients in your shampoos and hairstyling products for comedogenic additions, as they might trickle down the face and cause clogged pores.

Cheeks

Acne just below the eyes on the top half of the cheeks is related to the lungs, as the body’s capillaries end on the face, so those that smoke can worsen this. “This is why splashing water on the face makes you relieved as you breathe better. Practising good breathing and doing some form of cardio to improve lung capacity is vital in this situation,” suggests Dr Kutteri. “Facial steams are also great way to improve the blood circulation. And they can dilate the air passages and make your breathing better too. You can steam your face with salt and turmeric water, and if the pimples are active, opt for a herbal steam with neem and turmeric or triphala powder,” he adds.

Cheek pimples can also be related to dirty pillowcases or an unclean phone screen, so ensuring that skin is thoroughly exfoliated with physical and chemical exfoliants to prevent clogging of pores is key. Using benzoyl peroxide to tamp down bacteria and salicylic acid to calm inflammation in the area works best to avoid these.

Chin and jawline

“Zits on the chin and jawline are mostly hormonal, and get worsened by the consumption of processed, fat- and carb-rich foods that can cause insulin resistance. Stress can also lead to breakouts on the jawline,” says Dr Patel. The Ayurvedic narrative agrees with this, adding that one is likely to break out when approaching menstruation. On the other hand, acne on the lower lip and chin is related to the small intestine, and can be reduced by eating fibre and drinking a lot of water.

It’s important to note that hormonal pimples can be of the cystic variety, so they can be red, painful and inflamed. Doctors usually suggest prescription retinols or oral medication for this type of acne.

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