Papulex Truthseeking: The Power of 3

The Power of 3
Power of 3. Works both for skincare AND witchcraft.

So I’m finally coming to the end of the Papulex Lead The Way Challenge. It’s been a pretty good ride and I think I know just a little bit more about the causes of acne and some easy ways to prevent a breakout. I’ll probably summarise the three main lessons that I’ve learned over the course of this campaign.

However, it’s also brought to light how little I actually know about the subject. Yes, I may know some of the general facts, but still there are countless people out there affected by acne who might be looking for a longer-term solution, and it’s my understanding that Papulex products are one such solution. Here’s the product information I got if anyone’s intending to try it out.

1. EU-Patented ABA Technology: Unique to PAPULEX, EU-patented ABA technology helps block the proliferation of P. acnes bacteria in the outer layer of the skin.1

2. Helps reduce inflammation: PAPULEX contains 4% Nicotinamide, a natural molecule derived from Vitamin B3 that has potent anti-inflammatory properties.2 Studies have shown that Nicotinamide is as effective as clindamycin gel in reducing acne severity and lesion counts without inducing bacterial resistance.

3. Helps reduce sebum production: PAPULEX contains Zinc PCA that helps regulate sebum production, which causes oily skin and acne. A clinical study demonstrated that 1% Zinc PCA leads to a significant decrease of the sebum rate 28 days after its twice daily application, while no significant variations were observed in the placebo group.

Lesson 1: Regular sleep hours are better for your skin than a mandatory quota
As explored in my previous post, according to Dr Lim Kar Seng, our bodies stop producing steroids during the hours of 11pm to 7am if our bodies are resting. Increased steroid production is a contributing factor to acne development.

Lesson 2: A healthy lifestyle can reduce the effects of acne
There’s plenty I’ll need to change about my diet, simply because I love fried foods, sweet foods, rich foods.. etc. And one of the connections between such foods and acne is a high glycemic index diet. I’d previously done work around a campaign for a low GI product, so there’s some knowledge there with regards achieving a healthier diet. However, it’d be good to embark on this some time in the future, not just for skin, but for health’s sake as well.

Lesson 3: Don’t suffer alone
One of the things that did strike a chord with me throughout this campaign, is that in severe cases of acne, there is a lot of emotional distress to the person being afflicted. I must say that it’s not easy if you’re going through this and instead of people understanding you, society taunts us back by reminding us each day what “beauty” is accepted as.

While the good news is that there is medical treatment available, either through dermatological practices, over the counter solutions or even more specialised solutions like the Papulex range of products, they are no substitute for the own worth you place in your own eyes, and the people that should matter to you. In any case, while each person’s case in unique, many people around the world are going through the same thing, and before a skin issue becomes a health issue, it’s probably wise to see what support and treatments are available.


Papulex Truthseeking : A session with Dermatologist, Dr Lim Kar Seng

Zooey Deschanel Critic

Thanks to the Papulex Lead The Way Challenge, I was given the opportunity to meet with a dermatologist, Dr Lim Kar Seng of The Dermatology Practice and ask him a few questions with regards to skin health. Now, I don’t have the fairest of skin, probably due to a fair amount of blemishes, nor do I stick to a rigorous skin regime (note: Just facial wash before and after the day), so the questions I asked were related to Nature vs. Nurture, and more importantly, skin health vs. skin beauty. Despite having blemishes, I think it’s important that our idea of beauty isn’t merely skin-deep (hurhur, pun fully intended), but we shouldn’t be none the wiser when it comes to conditions that threaten our health (like extreme obesity).

So let’s hear what the experts say:

How much of Acne is caused by Natural Circumstance vs. Lifestyle Choice? (Nature vs. Nurture>

Dr Lim mentioned that acne and blemishes were a combination of both nature and nurture. While being born with acne is probably genetic, there are many contributing factors that lead to an aggravated skin condition such as:
- Stress
- Smoking
- Foods with high Glycemic Index (GI)
- Excessive dairy products

One more thing to note is that adequate sleep is recommended for a healthy skin condition. Dr Lim recommends sleep between the hours of 11pm to 7am and lists the following reason:

Our bodies produce steroids (excess steroid production can lead to acne, hence body builders are usually affected by this) during the day and when we are awake, and peaks during 6am – 7am. However, our body’s steroid production drops between 12am – 5am, though if our body is still awake, we continue producing steroids during this lull period.

The math is pretty obvious, even if you clock in 8 hours sleep every day, depending on when you sleep, if you’re not allowing your body the proper time to rest, excess steroids can still be produced. This should explain why does of us with night-owl tendencies usually wake up with a mild outbreak if I sleep late and wake up late. I know I do.

Treatment of acne
There are probably two standard treatments for acne, they are (1) Topical treatment and (2) Oral treatment.

Sometimes, antibiotics are used in the treatment of severe acne so as to combat the body’s excessive production of steroids. Dr Lim also says that there is a misconception about antibiotic resistance, and that in acne treatment that does not occur.

One thing of note is that longer-term acne treatment might benefit from non-antibiotic treatment so that the body is not too reliant on antibiotics.

Healthy Skin
A medical practitioner’s definition of healthy skin is realistic. It’s not the magazine spreads you see in the media every day, nor is there a “scale of beauty”. These concepts merely exist in our perception of the world.

Finally I asked Dr Lim, what then is considered an unhealthy skin condition, and the following were listed:
- Redness
- Scaling
- Flaking
- Boils (These might indicate a deeper acne issue)

So there you go. My session with a dermatologist has been rather helpful in understanding skin conditions a little better. I come from a camp where I don’t equate flawless skin to beauty, but that we should take care of our skin more for health reasons.

The regular sleep cycle is probably the lifestyle-choice that I’ll have the most difficulty with, but I think it’s advisable from both a dermatological standpoint as well as a healthy lifestyle.

All in all, I hope this has been pretty helpful in understanding your skin a little better, and what approach you could seek if you do suffer from severe acne, or even a mild one.


Seeking the truth about acne


So I got engaged to be part of the Papulex ‘Clear the Confusion’ campaign. (Papulex is a dermocosmetic range to help reduce the appearance of blemishes in cases of acne prone skin.) It’s interesting to be on this side of the blogosphere again, but that’s besides the point.

So what’s a geek to do with dermatological products? Well, some geeks have bad skin too, especially if you’re stuck in the basement playing video games like me.

I jest. But I believe I had acne when I was growing up, and probably still have pretty bad skin since all I do is wash my face twice a day witha facial cleanser, but it still seems oily. People close to me also have pretty bad skin and some still suffer from acne, so when they asked if I was interested to take part in the campaign, I thought it’d be educational to see what the experts had to say, and not just rely on my usual alterna-rebel bravado.

My own personal explanations for my bad skin are as follows:

  • I eat oily food
  • I’m stressed out and strung up
  • I don’t get enough sleep
  • I have my showers late in the night
  • I’m just born with oily skin
  • I don’t know how true all these are, which is why I’m hoping that my consultation with a dermatologist can help shed some light on this. (Still yet to make an appointment, so anybody on the campaign team reading this, do take note!) Also, I’ve always been rather skeptical about skincare products. Basically, my entire life’s philosophy to all these “beauty products” has been, “If you’re born with it, deal with it.” – And so I never go past buying over-the-counter facial cleansers. Would be nice to be proven wrong, but even if there was no change, it doesn’t cost me anything.

    And that’s another thing, I do know that acne can definitely be genetic. So for those of us who had to grow up as awkward teenagers in an unforgiving society toward difference, that’s pretty harsh. And while it seems that we got the “short-end of the stick”, from what I’ve read so far, acne can at least be managed. Your looks should not need to matter, but if having clearer skin will give you the confidence you desire, then I’m looking to see if acne can be managed too.

    So, there you have it. A busy lifestyle, eating unhealthy (but delicious) food and not enough waking hours in a day.. Is this lifestyle deserving of bad skin? Are we born with it? Or is there a way to manage all this and still be healthy. I’m hoping that’s what the following weeks will teach me.