Less is more when acne is involved

Last week I had a really bad break out…and it sucked! I think it was the perfect storm of hormones, the heat, and stress. I am very fortunate to have clear skin most of the time, but when those breakouts do occur, it is always a very humbling experience. It gives me so much empathy for my acne clients. Acne really does a number on your self esteem. I truly believe that feeling good about your skin is such an important mood booster. 

At the first sign of my skin breaking out I immediately went to Lucy Greene @lucyhatesacne, my esty bestie and expert acne specialist and asked for some tips. When you aren’t used to dealing with acne, it can be very easy to do the wrong things and make it worse, prolong it, and go down the acne spiral. I thought it would be good to share these helpful acne tips with you…you never know when they could come in handy!

Tips For Your Acne Breakout


First and foremost, do not, I repeat do NOT pick. Do not touch the acne. The less your fingers are on your face the better. Picking, touching, squeezing…all of that will aggravate the acne cause more inflammation and delay the healing process by weeks. I know it is easier said than done. Trust me. The best thing you can do is stay out of the mirror. If you have a magnifying mirror throw it away. I’m not kidding. No one should be looking that close at the skin and it will cause you to pick.

  1. Ice your Acne

Instead of touching, ice your acne. Keep a spoon in your freezer or use an ice pack. Icing the acne will help reduce inflammation and calm it down.

  1. Set your Acids Aside

This one is hard for me because I love my exfoliating pads. Lucy had me set all of my acids like koji pads, retinol, etc. aside while I handled my acne. Over exfoliating is one of the worst things you can do during an active breakout. Our instincts tell us to go harder on the acne, but in reality that can further inflame it. 

  1. Mask in Benzoyl Peroxide

This really helped me. I would mask in the BPO 5% every night for about 15 minutes and then rinse it off. Keeping it on overnight can be too drying for most. After the masking it helped to dry out some of the acne. The anti-bacterial effects of BPO is really incredible. Not only will it treat the active acne, but it will also help with acne that may not have surfaced yet.

  1. Use exfoliating scrub

The RFA Exfoliating Scrub was really helpful during my breakout. I used that a few times this week and it helped with mechanical and chemical exfoliation. The little exfoliating beads helped me purge and the lactic acid helped to clear some of the acne.

  1. Acne BBL

If you are local to STL we offer this at Racquel Aesthetics. You can find a provider in your area that offers Acne BBL. This is a laser that will “zap” the acne and kill the p.acne bacteria. I did this once last week and I really feel that it helped to kill the acne and clear it faster. It can also help reduce the PIH – the pigment left behind the acne spot.

  1. Focus on hydration

Do not be afraid to hydrate your skin during a breakout. The skin needs hydration to heal. It will not cause you to break out more to hydrate. When we are really dry, our skin produces more sebum to hydrate it and that will cause breakouts. Hydration will just help regulate that. At night I recommend RFA HA Peptide Serum and Restorative Lotion on top. For during the day, I recommend RFA Light Lotion and Prime + Protect SPF 40.

In the end, during a breakout less is more. Don’t overdo it. Get out of the mirror, don’t pick, hydrate, cut back on acids, and consider BPO masking and scrub. This is what really helped me get through this acne spurt!

I hope these tips are helpful. If you are struggling with acne reach out to us at RFA and we can help you! We offer complimentary skin consulting. Either myself, our acne queen Lucy, or one of our other talented providers would love to help you achieve your dream skin. Click here and request your complimentary skin consult today. Select your requested provider from the list and we will send back a complimentary skin plan and be there to help you every step of the way!



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Racquel Frisella

Board Certified Nurse Practitioner & Aesthetic Specialist based in Saint Louis, Missouri

I work as a cosmetic injector and skincare specialist with 12 years of experience in the Aesthetic Industry. I see patients both in-office at Racquel Aesthetics for treatments as well as online for customized, complimentary skincare plans. I focus heavily on preventative and corrective injections, treatments, and skincare.  My career is my passion and I love to help people feel like the very best version of themselves. I am a wife and a mother of 3 beautiful children under the age of 3. I love all things beauty, fashion, and fitness. I am creating this site as a place to share my expertise on beauty, anti-aging, and skin while also giving a glimpse into my lifestyle as a mom, wife and lover of fitness!  


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