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Nomadic Nick

Air, HUMIDITY, and Temperature control acne.

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I'm sure that I am not the only person who has noticed these things. I just discovered this website. Its great to have some people to share this with. I told a Derm. a few yers ago and she was like, " Thats interesting."

I'm 24 and have had acne for 12 years. Growing up in NJ its always humid in the summer. My acne was always horrible when it was humid. Having family in California and Arizona I would always visit and the air is very DRY out there in the desert. My acne would clear right up. That and a day or two swimming in the Colorado river on a hot summer day will cook it off of you!

Now I'm a pilot and I travel from city to city living out of hotels spending a few days to a few weeks in each place. I can predict my acne kinda like a weather man can predict the weather. I know the weather guys usually suck but when they're right usually I am too.

Whenever the temperature goes below freezing I clear right up. I noticed that when its 36 degrees out it feels really cold but when its 31 degrees it doesn't bother me so much. Thats because all the moisture in the air is frozen. If its freezing out, the air is clean and free of moisture. Its frozen! If its above freezing theres usually moisture in the air. Thats what makes you feel so cold. Its not so bad once the moisture is gone and it drops a few more degrees.

When I was in Arizona at the end of August I cleared up really good. Then I went to florida, Louisiana, and the gulf area of texas and I broke out horribly cause it was really really humid. Then I was in Rochester, NY , Burlington, VT , And Toledo, OH for November and December. It was freezing! I didn't care cause my acne wasn't that bat. Then I went down to East TN, SC, AL, and East TX for the end of Dec and Jan and it came right back because it wasn't as cold and the air was full of moisture. Eww i lived in Miami for a few months and some of those months were the summer months. It got really bad!

I can go on and on for ever with examples like those.

Is there anyone else who can relate to me or believes me? I have cystic acne. Those same little fuckers have been haunting me for years. It has gotten better since someone introduced me to BP a couple years ago but that same derm I mentioned before looked me in the eyes 3 years ago and said, "your acne is never gonna go away.... The only way you can get rid of it is to use Acutane." The FAA doesn't allow me to take that drug. I can predict it though. I know where and when its gonna get really bad. I hated her for so long for telling me that but ya know what she wasn't lying. These cysts don't go away. The only thing you can do is climate control if you have the means to travel, use BP, and drink lots of water.

I love freezing winter air and dry desert sun. Thats my medicine for all of you! Now if only we could bottle it.

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When i went to Colombia two years ago my skin got clearer all by itself. I thought maybe it was that they had a lot of vetilation through the place i was living in :think: but who knows. My brother noticed that his skin was getting clearer too. Plus my family that lives there all have nice skin, well except for one cousin, but i think she does not live in the same area. My mom says there is no humidity there :shrug:

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:think: not that i have noticed

Then again it doesn't really rain a LOT where i live. Maybe two days straight but i don't think longer than that.

I'll take notice of my skin the next time it rains :)

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That's really interesting Nick. Before I lived in the Eastern Sierra, I visited often in the winter and found that the dry cold climate made my skin clear up nicely. I thought that when i moved here it would have the same effect...but I've been living here for almost 2 years and still have acne.

I live at 8,500ft above sea level The air is thin and very dry, it's considered "high desert". Sometimes winter can last for 8 months and the temperature in the winter averages about 35 degrees. Last night it got down to 3 degrees.

I notice when I get a lot of sun my skin clears up. But in humid places it gets worse.

Maybe all the winter sports I do cause my acne...having to wear helmets, goggles, facemasks, and beanies all the time...maybe it's that my skin needs to breathe and it can't. Or maybe the air is TOO dry and cold, causing my skin to become dry, making it produce more oil?

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Hey Nomadic Nick,

Thanks very much for your posting. I've noticed pretty much the same thing. I moved out to California a few years ago, and every time I went camping for a few days in the deserts, I noticed that my acne cleared up considerably. I've noticed as well - and this won't be good news for you, Nick - that my acne worsens whenever I take an airplane. It's also bad in humid places, like Seoul in the summer, and when I'm stuck inside all day - like now, in Canada, during the winter, argh.

I'm an anthropologist by training, and I've noticed that people living in traditional societies who are out and about all day have incredibly clear skin. Rather than cursing our genes, we should think of the oily layer that we acne-prone people produce as being a protective layer of oil, in the same way that fish and slugs have mucus to protect their skins. What sucks is that our contemporary lifestyles force us to be indoors (or in an airplane!) all day, allowing our pores to get clogged up with sebum. In an environment like the desert, the sand and the wind naturally scrub away the sebum. That would be potentially catastrophic for some people, but for us oily types, it's the optimal situation. What would a duck do without oily feathers?

The only other aggravating factor that I've noticed is milk products, for which there is evidence in a large medical study:

I guess the take-home message from this is that for people like us, an outdoors lifestyle with healthy non-dairy food is our genetic calling.... Not such a bad situation, when you think about it ;)

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Rather than cursing our genes, we should think of the oily layer that we acne-prone people produce as being a protective layer of oil, in the same way that fish and slugs have mucus to protect their skins.

That's a common theme heard on these forums, but I just don't buy it. I don't think there's any purpose at all for sebum. It may soothe people a bit to think that there's some subtle God-given reason for sebum to be there, but I think it's just a rationalization.

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why do u all think that oil causes acne? i have dry skin yet i still have acne.....when it rains my acne seems to have calmed down but when i go under the hot sun my acne gets so red

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Nick might be right.

Found this post as i am tryting to find some prove or something.

Skin is almost clearing whenever the temp is cold.

Hot/ warm temp is when huge massive breakout, obuviously from all the oil production.

I suspected is temp,

but nick says is humid, which might be true.

In my country, it is well known for it's very warm and humid weather all 4 seasons.

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why do u all think that oil causes acne? i have dry skin yet i still have acne.....when it rains my acne seems to have calmed down but when i go under the hot sun my acne gets so red

It doesn't. It just doesn't help and tends to go along with many of the factors that trigger acne. It's dead skin cells that clog pores, and cell malformation, rapid proliferation, delayed cell death that causes cells to not exfoliate freely like in clear skin. That's the difference between us and them.

And yeah, humidity makes oily skin worse. And it traps heat, perhaps worsening the inflammation going on.

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