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I need some skin advice

Asked by Ben

Hello Dr. Schultz,

I have combination skin and experience annoying breakouts that are usually always in the same location. I assume that this is due to the nature of my combination skin creating areas that produce greater amounts of oil (the areas being: My nose, cheeks, upper lip and aggressively between my lower lip and chin) than the rest of my face.

My first question is to ask if whether there is something I could use on these areas that would control the oil production. I feel it’s important to add that when I get out of the shower these areas are dry and I need to use a moisturizer on them. I do take very hot showers, though.

Second, I have a friend who has a lot of knowledge on sunscreens. She tells me that the use of sunscreen, when the UV index is below 2, is unnecessary, and cites the potential oxidative and radiation dispersion effect that chemical filters possess. What do you think about this?

Ben answered
    Dr. Schultz 1.86K Rep.

    Oil production is caused ONLY by the normal male hormone, Testosterone, acting on oil glands. The only way to decrease the amount of oil one makes is to lower one’s testosterone levels (uniformly rejected by male patients and their girlfriends) Or to take the drug “Accutane” (isotretinoin) which stops oil glands from making oil. If neither of these theoretical considerations are appropriate for a given patient, then instead one can choose to remove the existing oil more efficiently with better oil removing cleansers and toners, 2 to 3 times/day.

    Concerning your second question, if there is enough light coming through the clouds to enable you to see your hand held in front of your face, then there is sufficiently inadequate UV filtering which allows damaging UV to get to your skin. Therefore to optimally protect one’s skin, a sunscreen with an SPF of between 15 and 30 should be used.

    Dr. Schultz answered

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