- The good news is, people with this skin type are less prone to wrinkling andother signs of aging. However, due to the overproduction of sebum on the skin, they aresusceptible to whiteheads, blackheads and pimples.All three types of acne - blackheads, whiteheads and pimples - are usually caused by adisorder of the pilosebaceous gland. The pilosebaceous gland includes the sebaceous glandthat produces the oil or the sebum, the hair follicle and the pore where the oil ﬁnds its way outonto the skin surface. In all three cases, there is a build up of sebum that clogs the pores.What causes the overproduction of sebum can vary from person to person. Here
s a rundownof some of them:•genes•hormones, like in the case of adolescents•certain medications•stress•the combination of humidity and tight clothing or impermeable clothing•dyes, oils and other chemicals found in products we apply to our skinNow, all three types of acne start off the same way - as sebum that blocks the pores. Whathappens after determines whether you
ll have a blackhead, a whitehead, or a pimple.
In the case of a whitehead, dead skin cells and oil secreted from the sebaceous glands mixtogether inside the pore. Instead of being sloughed off, they plug the pore, preventing oil fromgetting out. The pore itself has a very small opening, so the plug doesn
t get exposed to theenvironment, which means, it doesn
t oxidize and it stays white in color.
Blackheads start out similarly as whiteheads. However, the pore that gets clogged with oil anddead skin cells have bigger openings. They get exposed to air, and this causes the melaninthat is found in the dead skin cells to oxidize and turn a dark color.
In the case of pimples, the process usually starts out with bacteria that is normally present onthe skin. There are times when a follicle ﬁnds itself with an accumulation of these bacteria inaddition to the sebum and the dead skin cells. When this happens, our immune systemresponds by calling in the white blood cells, which are responsible for ﬁghting off infection.