Specialised Skin Care & Laser Clinic


I am Debbie McGregor, owner and founder of Total Body Concept. I started the skincare clinic and day spa back in 1993. Welcome to my blog about fostering a holistic, more positive outlook on life. I have just started on my new life's mission to become a motivational speaker, and this blog will follow this journey. Enjoy!

This is a place where I would like to share my knowledge on everything from skincare and inner health to holistic living and the importance of meditation, creative visualisation and affirmations. Nothing in life is by chance – and in this blog I’ll tell you why. Come and join me as we learn to Live the Balance.

Your guide to Acne and how to manage breakouts

Back to blog home 17th March 2020
Your guide to Acne and how to manage breakouts

Clogged pores, excess oil production, poor diet and a lack of hydration can all wreak havoc on your skin, and cause acne and breakouts to form. If you’re tired of having to deal with unwanted visitors taking up residence on your skin’s surface, read our guide to banish acne, and feel confident with your complexion.

Your guide to Acne and how to manage breakouts

So what is acne and why do we get it?

The dreaded A word. It can happen to any of us at any time in our lives. Although acne is commonly thought of as a problem of adolescence, it can occur in people of all ages. When you get a breakout (yep, usually at the most unexpected time when you have a particularly important event or meeting to attend), you question if it’s that time of the month or if your diet was off track that week. Although this is true, moments of intense stress or lack of sleep can also affect your skin and cause havoc with breakouts.

Acne or skin congestion is one of the most common skin concerns treated by skin therapists so if you think you’re alone… you’re most certainly not, let us tell you.

Our skin types can be inherited which means the skin is determined by genetic makeup. Internal factors such as these plus hormonal influences can make a difference. Oil glands produce sebum which is triggered by the male hormones. If these androgenic hormones increase, so does the release of sebum. This then accumulates behind a build-up of dead skin cells. In turn, sebum continues to accumulate, oxidises and inflammation occurs. The response is that in an oxygen-deprived environment, inflammation occurs and infection develops.

Lifestyle factors such as stress can affect the activity of hormones. Exposure to pollution can clog pores, which can bring on the development of acne. Diets high in sugar have been also associated with acne and some studies suggest dairy consumption can play a role in triggering acne and skin congestion. Even hair products, skincare products, and makeup can clog pores and certain medications can increase the chances of adult acne.

As varied as the reasons we can fall prey to acne, so are the different types. Stay with us for the ‘ewww and arghhhs’!

The papule

 This one is the red blemish that hasn’t quite reached the surface. It’s an infected blemish under the skin that requires calming, not drying. This way the whitehead can reach the surface and be gently extracted. 

The Pustules

Not to be confused with the papule, this bad boy is your traditional zit and if you don’t follow the recommended care for them, they will scar and leave their trace. Pustules should be dried out as soon as you can get to them.


Those dreaded clogged up lumps we fear are growing since we last looked in the mirror and are showing themselves in all their glory. Exfoliating products are good for these ones as we want to clean the pores and resist the squeeze!


Contrary to popular belief, these guys are not full of dirt or debris or anything but oxidised oil. Tempting as it is to squeeze it out, we recommend the contrary. As there is no way to permanently get rid of blackheads, our best advice is to get monthly deep pore-cleansing facials and use well-formulated products at home to keep your pores clean long after the facial.

Cystic Acne

Those painful lumps that seem to last for weeks. Don’t attempt to pop them. They were not intended to be prodded, and eventually the body absorbs the infection and the lump will disappear, albeit even a few weeks later. Keep your hands away and if you have to go near them, just apply ice! Some say that reducing dairy products can help banish these unwanted spots.


Daily skincare routine for acne-prone skin

There’s no better time than now to get your baseline simple skincare down to a fine art. A good skincare routine and the right products will repair skin damage, prevent major skin breakouts and keep your skin in check. It’s never too late (or early for that matter)! The steps you take now to understand your skin and establish a good routine will set you up for an amazing complexion decades into the future. We’ve put together a guide to baseline skincare to help keep your skin balanced, blemish-free and feeling great. Be your best beautiful self!


Skin needs to be cleansed morning and night. A good cleanser should not only cleanse your skin but nourish and maintain its moisture too. Use a prescribed cleanser for your skin type so it doesn't strip your skin from its lipid barrier and natural defenses.

- Best cleanser for oily skin: Ultra Clear Foaming Cleanser (for controlling breakouts); Ultra Brightening Foaming Cleanser (to maintain your skin after clearing it from acne).

- Best cleanser for combination skin: Ultra Balancing Gel Cleanser.

Treatment serum

When you are struggling with breakouts and congestion you need a treatment product with active ingredients that will kill the bacteria within your pores causing inflammation. Aha’s and Bha’s (Alpha/Beta Hydroxy acids) like Salicylic and Mandelic acid are the perfect combination to clean out your pores and gently increase the cell turn over in your skin to reduce any clogging and blockages. Clove Oil then comes in and acts like an atomic bomb for bacteria to blast it all away.

- Best serum: Ultra Clear Treatment Lotion

Hydrating serum

Use a fast-absorbing oil-free serum or gel for intense hydration. The right product will penetrate your skin at a deep level, instantly smoothing, hydrating and plumping your skin. You will see visible results in the reduction of fine lines and wrinkles, and gives your skin a supple and dewy appearance.

- Best serum: Ultraceuticals B2 Hydrating Serum

Antioxidant serum

An antioxidant serum protects your skin from free radicals which age your skin faster. Go for a serum that includes a powerful blend of antioxidants, for example, Chaparral, Silymarin, Provitamin C, Vitamin E and Ferulic Acid. These will help reduce the visible signs of premature aging by helping to minimise free radical damage. Free radicals age your skin faster and can be found in car fumes, smoke and UVA and UVB rays.

- Best antioxidant complex: Ultra Protective Antioxidant Complex

Daily protective moisturiser

The sun is public enemy number one when it comes to our skin so make sure you apply sunscreen before you leave the house, and apply every two hours on your face and body if you are outdoors. Go for a non-whitening fast-absorbing formula that protects your skin from harmful UVA & UVB rays to help reduce the signs of premature skin aging.

- Best sunscreen: Ultra UV Protective Daily Moisturiser SPF 30.

Restorative night treatment cream

Invest in a night cream and your skin will love you for it! During the night is the peak time for cell turnover and rejuvenation, so assist your skin by hydrating with a prescribed night cream for your skin type. Maximise your skin's opportunity to reproduce healthy, buoyant cells during this precious renewal time.

- Best night cream: Upon prescription for your skin type.

Acne sucks but we can help you to get your glow

We’re passionate about spreading skin positivity and feeling confident when you wipe the day away (aka taking your make-up off and baring all). But like most things in life, acne is not always completely in one’s control. There are, however, some key tips we offer to help prevent breakouts and a targeted, multi-step approach should be taken, considering both internal and external factors. So if you’re tired of having to deal with unwanted visitors taking up residence on your skin’s surface, read our top tips to banish acne, feel confident with your complexion and in control!

Keep it gentle

Don’t spend hours in a hot bath or under the hot shower. It will rob your skin of essential oils. Strong detergents can strip oil so be sure to use the gentle offerings. Lubricate skin when shaving and pat dry, moisturising the skin as a final step.

Keep your skin clean

Clogged pores lead to congestion and acne forming, so to avoid breakouts, make sure you keep your skin clean. Never hit the sack without washing your face and be sure to give it another good clean as you rise and shine. We recommend double cleansing in the evening to ensure your makeup is entirely removed from your skin, keeping your pores clear and breathable overnight.

Use the Ultra Clear range Specifically designed to help treat breakouts and acne-prone skin, the Ultra Clear range is full of helpful ingredients like Salycilic acid to clean and sweep out the pores, Vitamin B3 to reduce excess sebum production and Mandelic acid for unclogging pores, anti-inflammatory and brightening skin. From spot treatments to purifying masks, there’s a product to suit every acne condition.

Don’t over-exfoliate

We’re all for exfoliation but don’t be tempted to exfoliate, particularly if your skin feels oily. While exfoliating is great for removing dead skin cells, it doesn’t work to remove oil. Over exfoliating will strip the surface of your skin, and to recover, your sebaceous glands will produce more sebum. We recommend exfoliating no more than once a week so make a date with your exfoliate favourite.

Switch to lighter makeup

We understand you might not want to go make-up free and many people who struggle with breakouts also have oily skin, which is why they're generous with powder application to keep oils at bay. But applying too much can cause your foundation to look cakey and yes, clog those pores.

Makeup is one of the biggest pore-cloggers, and while the best solution would be to stop wearing makeup, it’s not the most realistic solution. The next best way to help keep your skin unclogged is to wear lighter makeup, so switch out your heavy foundation for a BB cream and avoid any unnecessary products like contour or highlighter. You really can achieve a natural, healthy glow without added layers that will lead to a vicious circle of needing more and in turn, doing more harm.

Opt for a shade similar to your natural skin tone that can enhance a golden glow rather than an orange or pasty line. To even and enhance the complexion, apply from the centre of the face outwards and get into the good habit of removing make-up at the end of the day.

Keep your hydration levels topped up

Keep H2O happy because your skin is your body’s largest organ. Lack of hydration can cause all sorts of issues with your complexion. Dry skin often causes the skin to tighten which results in bacteria becoming trapped inside the pores. Dry skin often lacks lustre and can affect the appearance of your complexion. Ensure your skin stays hydrated for smooth and supple skin that glows.

Our in-clinic solutions

Blue-Light Therapy

Ever heard of Blue-Light Therapy? We invest in the most up-to-date technology available anywhere in the world to achieve excellence in skin treatment results.

Acne is one of the most common and stubborn skin problems. Regardless of skin type or lifestyle, approximately 80% of the population will suffer from acne at some point in their lives. Yet many patients fail to respond adequately to current treatment options and others develop problematic side effects. Further, the cost and duration of acne treatment with topical medications and oral antibiotics make standard therapy far from ideal.

Now, Celluma Pro Acne setting offers a new tool designed to clear moderate inflammatory acne without drugs, side effects, patient discomfort, photosensitivity or downtime. The Acne setting emits blue light at a wavelength of 465 nanometers (nm). Blue LED light penetrates only a few mm into the epidermis and creates an ‘elimination cycle’ of the P acnes bacteria.

The treatment is painless and doesn't require any recuperation time. To be effective a course of eight 30-minute treatments, twice a week for four weeks, is required.

Ultraceuticals Microdermabrasion Treatment

Don’t let the scars tell your story. Microdermabrasion Treatment… think expert exfoliation treatments for polished skin. Microdermabrasion is a non-surgical exfoliation technique to remove dead skin cells from the outer layer of skin (and promoting new cell generation). Reveal a brighter, more vibrant complexion. It is a mechanical process using a diamond head to exfoliate together with a vacuum to remove the dead skin cells leaving the skin feeling soft and smooth.

The treatment helps to improve irregularities on the surface of the skin and to reduce fine lines, pigmentation marks, and shallow acne scars. The process also accelerates the regeneration of new skin cells, stimulates the production of collagen and strengthens elastin, effectively pumping the skin out and revealing fresher, healthier and younger-looking skin.

The treatment is virtually painless and doesn't require any recuperation time. Best results are achieved with a course of six, 30-minute, treatments spaced 2 weeks apart.

Mandelic Peel

An ideal treatment for problematic, congested or acne prone skins, Mandelic acid, the main ingredient of the peel is an Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA). Derived from bitter almonds, the peel helps to efficiently eliminate dead skin cells, counteract excess lipids on the skin, unblock pores, break down intercellular bonds and activate the skin's natural regeneration cycle.

Mandelic acid works on two levels: as a mild exfoliant and as an antibacterial. It reduces hyperpigmentation in the skin and is very effective for acne. It also reduces fine lines and wrinkles. At higher concentrations Mandelic acid makes a great chemical peel and is less irritating than a glycolic or lactic peel.

Ending on a (clear) high.

Don’t let acne get the better of you. Help manage and control those pesky blemishes or big boilers with the correct treatment and keep them at bay with confidence. Our blemish-fighting treatments and consultations are here to help and guide you into a glow like never before. We have your clear skin and bright complexions in mind. When you have confidence, you can have a lot of fun. And when you have fun, you can do amazing things. Our final message? Work towards inner and outer health with a little help along the way. But remember, inner beauty never needs make-up. Glow with it.