Most acne treatment programs contain a single active ingredient such as benzoyl peroxide. However, acne is caused by various factors which cannot be addressed by any one active ingredient alone. These factors are hormones, abnormal keratinization, abnormal oil production, bacteria and exaggerated immune response and inflammation.
- Hormones that impact the pilosebaceous gland are in higher concentrations after puberty. Stress can also influence hormone levels, causing and aggravating acne.
- Abnormal keratinization is another cause of acne. Normally, dead skin cells are shed by the epidermis in a process called exfoliation. In acne-prone individuals, the dead skin cells are not shed properly and end up clogging the pilosebaceous (oil-producing) gland. This causes blackheads.
- Abnormal sebum (oil) production is another cause of acne. Acne-prone individuals have swollen sebaceous glands that overproduce oil. Also, the composition of free fatty acids secreted by acne-prone people differs from those in acne-free individuals.
- Bacteria is another cause of acne. Bacteria populate the pilosebaceous gland, breaking down lipids and causing inflammation.
- Exaggerated immune response and inflammation is the final culprit in acne. The inflammatory response to microcomedones and sebum produces papules, pustules, nodules, and cysts in acne prone individuals.
Rx Systems PF has created an oil balancing system designed to control abnormal or excessive oil production and acne using the synergistic effect of 5 anti-acne ingredients:
- Salicylic Acid
- Glypoic Complex
- Azelaic Acid
- Elemental Sulfur
Salicylic Acid is the active ingredient in our Acne Control Cleanser. It is an organic, beta hydroxy acid which is a natural plant-derived ingredient. It causes cells of the stratum corneum to shed more rapidly, preventing pores from clogging and allowing space for new cell growth. This helps reduce and prevent blackheads. The acne control cleanser is designed to cleanse, exfoliate, and prepare the skin to make other anti-acne ingredients more effective. As with many cleansers the acne control cleanser has antibacterial properties. Although it reduces bacteria and cleanses excess oil from the skin, its major corrective effect is directed against abnormal keratinization.
Scientifically advanced glypoic complex is the key to our claryfing toner. The glypoic complex is a combination of glycolic acid 15% and alpha lipoic acid designed to correct abnormal keratinization and abnormal exfoliation. The proprietary oil reduction solution is designed to correct the abnormal sebum secretion in acne-prone individuals. The clarifying toner with glypoic complex is scientifically unique. It has two major corrective effects. The first is a reduction in abnormal sebum secretion and the second directed at eliminating abnormal exfoliation.
Azelaic acid, found in our acne control lotion, is a natural plant-derived dicarboxylic acid. Azelaic acid is a prescription product used in the treatment of acne. In lower concentrations it can be obtained without a prescription and when combined with other anti-acne products can eliminate acne and hyperpigmentation. It has both antibacterial and keratolytic effects on the stratum corneum. The keratolytic effect reduces the formation of blackheands and increases the penetration of the azelaic acid into the pilosebaceous gland. This enhances the antibacterial effect of the azelaic acid by decreasing the bacteria that cause inflammatory acne lesions. Although azelaic acid reduces abnormal keratinization, its major corrective effect is antibacterial.
Micronized, elemental sulfur gives our acne spot treatment its antibacterial property. The concentration of the elemental sulfur intensifies its antibacterial effect and its ability to eliminate active acne lesions. A worry for some is that if they have an allergy to sulfa drugs they may have problems with products that contain natural, elemental sulfur. No one is allergic to natural, elemental sulfur. However, sulfa drugs are more appropriately labeled sulfonamides. Sulfonamides are not allergenic but sulfonamides have the ability to form sulfonamide-protein complexes that can be allergenic in some individuals. Natural elemental sulfur cannot form these allergenic complexes.
Allantoin is the active ingredient in the oil control mask. Allantoin is a glyoxylic acid and is a natural botanical extract of the comfrey plant. It enhances the shedding of dead skin cells. It forms complexes which inactivate irritating sebum and sensitizing bacteria that cause excess oil production and acne lesions. Controlling skin surface oil and reducing skin bacteria promotes skin healing. Allantoin reduces abnormal keratinization and reduces bacterial colonization in the pilosebaceous unit, but its major corrective effect is eliminating abnormal sebum (oil) production.