There is a saying that strengths and weaknesses are two sides of the same coin. While experiencing acne is hardly something we would have chosen for ourselves, it can come with some advantages. And frankly, after dealing with the emotional, physical, and financial toll of acne, we all deserve any upside we can get.
Read on for seven surprising acne benefits:
1. Oily Skin Can Result in Slower Skin Aging
Acne prone skin is often oily, which occurs when the sebaceous glands in the skin produce an excess amount of sebum, the natural oil that lubricates and protects the skin.
While that same excess oil can clog our pores, having some amount of natural oils on the skin can help keep it moisturized and protect it from external factors such as pollution and environmental stressors. Oily skin may also be less prone to wrinkles and fine lines because the oil helps to keep the skin hydrated and plump.
2. Longer Telomeres
There is some evidence that having acne is associated with longer telomere lengths. Telomeres are the protective caps at the end of chromosomes that help maintain the stability and integrity of the genetic material during cell division. Telomeres naturally shorten as we age, and this is associated with cellular aging and age-related diseases.
In general, longer telomeres indicate that a person’s cells may be younger and healthier compared to cells with shorter telomeres. While telomere length is just one of many factors that influence cellular aging and disease risk, the potential for longer telomeres is not to be underestimated.
3. Better Skin Care Habits
You won’t catch us not washing off our makeup at night or skipping our skincare routine. Acne forces many of us to pay attention to skincare in a way that we never would have with clear skin. We learn to look at labels and see what ingredients are effective instead of just believing in marketing hype. The habit of taking care of your skin will stick with you long after your acne fades. Additionally, some products that we use for acne, particularly retinoids, can also help reduce signs of aging!
4. Sun Protection
The time we spend learning about skin care leads many of us to understand the importance of sun protection. Many acne treatments make our skin sensitive to the sun, which makes it even more important for us to use a good sunscreen and avoid prolonged sun exposure. Keeping our skin safe from ultraviolet (UV) rays also helps fade the hyperpigmentation that comes after pimples. This additional motivation to wear sunscreen helps keep our skin safe from the long term aging effects of UV rays, and skin cancer. Put simply, we’ll be enjoying the benefits of our sunscreen use for years to come!
5. It Teaches Us That Our Self Worth is Internal
Having acne can be terrible for our self esteem. It’s difficult to feel good about yourself when you can barely even look at your skin in the mirror. Over time, we can learn to develop a mindset of acne neutrality and see our skin as just skin.
When we learn to live our lives and enjoy ourselves while having acne, we internalize that we are worthy of these things no matter what our skin looks like. This sense of internal self worth will stick with us long after the acne is gone. Furthermore, going through the pain of acne and the process of acceptance can also make us more empathetic to other people’s struggles and insecurities.
6. Medical Care
Acne pushes many of us to the dermatologist’s office to get treatment. Before we leave with our prescriptions, we have to be comfortable talking with a doctor about our skin and health. While discussing treatments for acne, our doctor may also diagnose other health concerns, as acne can often be a symptom of underlying medical conditions, such as acne caused by PCOS. We may even have a skin check that can catch cancerous moles. Receiving medical care and treatment for acne can help us improve our health beyond just our skin.
The gratitude we feel for clear skin days is unmatched. Without acne we would never be able to fully appreciate the joy when we experience pimple-free skin. Clear skin is not wasted on us! Even lingering acne scars and hyperpigmentation don’t bother us as much when we remember what we went through to get there. Acne helps to teach us to love our skin where it’s at.