Spots, warts and moles – many of us have these blemishes. Whilst many of these blemishes are harmless, certain marks can be unsightly. Here are eight of the most common skin defects along with several tips on how to get rid of them and prevent future outbreaks.
Pimples and acne
Pimples are the result of blocked pores. Almost all of us get these as a teenager when our hormones are all over the place, but many of us may continue to get them into adulthood. When spots get out of control they may develop into acne in which the skin becomes red and inflamed.
Spots may develop for a variety of reasons. It could be the result of not cleaning your face regularly or it could be brought on by stress. Diet is also thought to play a part, with excessive sugar consumption helping skin to become oilier and more inflamed. Some people may have naturally oilier skin (acne is almost always a genetic defect, although you can still reduce symptoms).
Exfoliating your skin using a face scrub can help prevent blocked pores leading to pimples. Meanwhile, there are products such as tea tree and witch hazel that you can use to help to get rid of spots. For serious outbreaks of acne, it could be worth looking into specialist products or talking to your doctor who may be able to prescribe antibiotics. There are even cosmetic procedures that can get rid of acne.
Rosacea is a skin condition characterized by red blotchiness as the result of inflammation and dilated blood vessels. This exact cause is unknown, although there are many triggers that can exacerbate the symptoms such as heavy drinking, sunburn, stress and using steroid cream. Older people are more likely to suffer from this condition, although younger people can get it too.
You can treat rosacea with various medications of which your doctor may be able to prescribe to you. There is also the option of laser surgery in some cases, which can reduce the redness. Other than these forms of treatment, your best form of cure is to avoid known triggers such as drinking less alcohol or covering up in the sun.
In certain cases, veins can swell up or get closer to the surface of the skin, causing them to look more prominent. These include varicose veins and spider veins.
Varicose veins are most common on the legs and are often caused by pregnancy, whilst obesity and standing up for long periods are also known triggers. These veins appear thick and bulging. Wearing compression stockings or applying topical gel can help to reduce these veins, whilst those wanting quicker results can look into surgery.
Spider veins meanwhile are smaller and often darker. These can appear all over the body – you may even get spider veins on your face; what causes them & how to treat them is worth looking into as there can be a number of triggers and treatment options. Smoking, heavy drinking and being overweight are some of the most common causes.
Fatty deposits on the surface of the skin are often known as cellulite and are another skin blemish that many people are eager to get rid of. Women are more likely to get cellulite than men and the causes can range from anything from smoking from not being active enough.
There are a number of treatment options out there for removing cellulite such as acoustic wave therapy, laser-assisted liposuction and endermologie. There are various creams on the market that can also reduce the appearance of cellulite for those wanting a less invasive option.
A lot of women get stretch marks during pregnancy, whilst rapid weight gain can also cause them. These scars are the result of skin being stretched beyond its natural elasticity and are most common on thighs or the belly.
As with cellulite, there are a number of procedures to choose from that can reduce the appearance of these marks. Many people also swear by home remedies such as rubbing sugar on the stretch marks or using shea butter.
Warts are actually the result of a virus. You’re likely to catch this virus by coming into contact with someone else who has a wart – the virus usually passes through an open wound. Warts are most common on the hands and face, whilst some people also get them on the genitals. Instances on the feet are known as verrucas.
You can remove warts by visiting a doctor who will usually freeze them off. Some people also find that rubbing various food extracts such as banana peels or lemon juice onto a wart can reduce this growth.
The majority of moles are the result of sun exposure. Our skin releases a darkening pigment known as melanin, which can sometimes get trapped forming a dark cluster known as a mole. Freckles are created in a similar fashion.
Moles shouldn’t generally be tampered with unless they’re particularly unsightly or an odd shape (certain unevenly shaped moles can be cancerous). A dermatologist will be able to remove these moles for you – you should never attempt to remove moles yourself.
Skin tags are small growths of skin similar to moles but without the dark pigment. Nobody quite knows what causes skin tags – they could be triggered by a hormone imbalance or by chaffing.
Most skin tags are likely to be fairly unnoticeable, although there may be some that are more prominent and you may want these removed. You’re best making an appointment with a dermatologist who can remove these safely.