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Is Fungus Causing Your Breakout?

With hot, humid weather can come breakouts and while there might be no escape from the heat for a while, I do know a thing or two about getting rid of the itchy bumps that can come from it.

The summer months always bring an uptick of fungal skin responses to my treatment room, but very few people know that an imbalance is what's going on in their skin. Honestly most clients believe until the heat dissipates, there's not much they can do but extract and extract those pimples.

I'm here to clear that up for you, literally.

These are fungal infections, which sounds scary. But I want to impress upon you that an infection doesn't necessarily mean your body has been taken over by mushrooms. An infection is when there is an imbalance that results in your body reacting.

See we always have fungus on our skin. Truly, always. Fungus is part of our microbiome. But sometimes we get an overgrowth, and that's when our body can start an inflammation process that results in breakouts.

Let's first start with how to recognize a fungal breakout. There are a couple of typical symptoms, and you might experience all of them or just one.

Symptom #1: Small bumps on your forehead. These look like small pimples and may or may not have anything in them. (The more irritated your skin, the more inflammation, and the more pus) They also could sometimes be itchy, or not. It's common for these to feel like they spring up overnight, and could spread down to your temples and nose.

Symptom #2: Redness around your eyebrows, nostrils, and/or nasolabial folds. (I.E. where sweat pools) The redness comes from irritation of the fungal infection. These patches can be rough, itchy, and have small pimples accompanying them.

Bonus symptom: Excessive fungal infections will glow neon yellow under a Wood's lamp. Pretty cool to see.

So if any of these symptoms are ringing a bell, keep on reading. (If not, book an Enlightenment Facial with me so we can figure out what's going on.)

So why is a fungal explosion happening? Hot, swampy air is air that fungus loves. Sweat on our face is a perfect space for fungus to snuggle up and create lots more of itself.

In addition, there are dietary things that we do that can inadvertently make our bodies even better places for fungus. Sugar and dairy. Sugar in particular, since high sugar diets actually change the chemistry of our bodies. This is why people with diabetes are so much more prone to bacterial and fungal infections. Not only does their body have more trouble fighting the infection, their body is a much better petri dish for more of them to grow in.

Now on to the important part. How do we rebalance the microbiome? I have several remedies:

Remedy #1: Tone your skin. After any activity that leaves sweat on your skin, wipe it down or spray it with a gentle toner (note, not an astringent). Toner balances the pH of your skin, making sure it stays acidic and able to fight infections better.

Remedy #2: Regularly cleanse your skin. Don't skip on your night routine! Cleanse morning and night with a gentle cleanser that does not strip oil from your skin. This remedy should not be abused! Don't cleanse your skin more that twice a day. The sebum your skin produces is vital in keeping your microbiome balanced.

Remedy #3: Use serums and oils with antifungal ingredients. Plant powered antifungals that come in clove, eucalyptus, tea tree, turmeric, cinnamon, neem, and lemongrass are some commonly used ingredients in skin care.

Remedy #4: Come in for facials with an oxygen infusion treatment. Oxygen rich environments make growth for fungus very difficult, so this is an effective way to rebalance your microbiome.

Remedy #5: Lower your sugar and dairy intake. Most dieticians recommend no more than 6-9 teaspoons of sugar a day. That's 24-36 grams. Just one bottle of gatorade or sweet tea will get you there. So if you're downing those types of drinks daily to stay hydrated, you might be doing more harm than good.

I hope this helps you diagnose the breakouts you might be experiencing this summer and if not, I'm here for you at the spa. Grab an Enlightenment Facial here.

Let your beauty radiate!

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