How Skincare for Teens Is Different from Adults

Being a teenager is a special time, full of new and exciting experiences. It’s sort of this unique time between childhood and adulthood where teens are encouraged to discover new things about themselves. Well as it turns out, one of the new things that teens will experience has to do with their skin. That’s right, teenage skin is different from adult skin, so it would make sense that skincare for teens is different from adults. So how, exactly is it different, and what does that mean for your skincare routine as a teen? To make things simpler, we’ve broken this down into two main topics: understanding the changes in your skin and knowing how to treat common teen skin conditions.

Understanding Teenage Skin

To really get to the bottom of what makes skincare for teens different from skincare for adults, we have to first understand what’s going on under the surface. Like many things that are changing during the transition to adolescence, your skin goes through a series of changes that make it unique from adult skin. Here’s what you need to know about teen skin:  
  1. Structure: Believe it or not, the actual structure of your skin begins to change during the pre-teen and early teen years. As a child, your skin renews itself quite frequently by shedding the outermost layer of skin cells and generating new ones. When you begin to enter into your teen years, though, this outer layer of skin sheds less frequently. This allows your skin to become tougher and stronger than it was during childhood, making it more resilient and less susceptible to cuts and bruises (The Dermal Institute). It is, however, still full of collagen, which gives the skin its fullness. Collagen production decreases with age and sun damage, which can lead to wrinkles and sagging skin.
  1. Hormone Changes: So what does this structural change have to do with skincare for teens? Because your skin is maturing in structure, it’s also ramping up things like oil production and sweat, which can be at the heart of many skincare problems for teens. Your skin does benefit from your body’s natural oil production, but too much oil and sweat can trap dirt and makeup in your pores. When pores become clogged, that’s when acne breakouts happen.
  1. Routine: Because of these changes in oil and sweat production, dermatologists recommend that teens wash their face twice every day--once in the morning and once at night before you go to bed (Kids’ Health). Choosing a gentle face cleanser like our P.R.E.P. purifying daily cleanser can help teens maintain a regular skincare routine to make sure they remember to remove makeup and apply any dermatologist-recommended treatments.

Treating Teenage Skin: Teen Acne vs. Adult Acne

Speaking of skin treatments, let’s talk about one of the most common skin conditions in both teens and adults: acne. Although teens and adults alike can have acne flare-ups, the causes behind them are different. That’s why teens and adults also treat their acne in different ways. Here are the main distinctions:  
  1. Causes: Teen acne is primarily caused by those hormonal changes that the article discussed earlier, which can result in clogged pores. While adults can also experience hormonal changes, especially adult women, adult skin doesn’t regenerate itself as quickly as teen skin (The American Academy of Dermatology). So while teens may be dealing with ongoing oil production, the main concern for adult skin is that it’s not working to correct itself as quickly as it used to.
  1. Treatment: Because of the rate that teen skin produces oil, dermatologists recommend that teens wash their face twice a day, whereas many adults should wash their face only once each day. But for both teens and adults, choosing acne cleansing face washes with gentle ingredients that won’t make acne worse is important (Kids’ Health). Our P.R.E.P. everyday clear acne wash is gentle enough for teens to use as a part of their daily skincare routine.
  1. Habits: In the case of acne, teens may be more tempted to pop or pick their pimples than adults. Although it might seem like a way to temporarily get rid of them, popping your pimples actually makes acne worse. When you pop a pimple, you are forcing the bacteria deeper into the skin, which causes more redness and swelling and may lead to scars (The American Academy of Dermatology).
It’s also important that you give products like the P.R.E.P. everyday clear acne wash a little time to work. Some teens find it difficult to wait long enough for the ingredients to begin clearing the skin, but when it comes to great skincare for teens, patience really is key. For more information on all things acne for teens, take a look at our acne guide. In it, you’ll find tips and tricks for dealing with teen acne, as well as guide to setting up a healthy daily skincare routine to keep your skin looking and feeling its greatest. Stay healthy,