Even though my friends and I are in our 50s, some of us still get acne on occasion. And my two daughters, who are in their 20s, thought they had left their blemish-filled days behind them after they exited their teen years, but sadly, that’s not the case. Apparently, 20% of us get acne as adults! What causes adult acne and how can we prevent those sometimes painful pimples that appear on our faces? According to webmd.com, changes in hormone levels (like those in menopause) and taking or stopping birth control are two possibilities. Some medications also cause acne. But what I’ve seen contribute the most to adult acne is lack of attention to good skin care.

Let’s start first with washing our faces. Sounds simple, right? Don’t under-wash and don’t over-wash. Cleanse your face twice a day with lukewarm water and a gentle cleanser—I like cleansers with glycolic or salicylic acid to help with anti-aging, too—then patting skin dry.

Diet: Avoid processed foods and get plenty of fruits and vegetables. And hydrate! Generous water intake is extremely important to prevent dehydration and allow skin to look its best.

Double-duty acne and wrinkle-fighting treatments: As well as fighting wrinkles by speeding up cell turnover, retinoid cream can clear skin of acne. Salicylic acid acne creams or gels provide a gentle peeling effect. And for spot treatments, you can sparingly apply benzoyl peroxide at 2.5% or 5% concentration rather than the maximum strength of 10%.

Cosmetics: Dirty makeup and makeup brushes can cause breakouts. Look for skin care and cosmetics that state they’re noncomedogenic, meaning they don’t clog pores, or non-acnegenic, meaning they don’t cause acne.

Prescription Medication: Menopause hormonal issues can wreak havoc on the skin. If doing everything listed above doesn’t work, then it may be time to see your dermatologist for an acne-fighting prescription. Two prescription drugs, Aldactone and Isotretinoin get good reviews for clearing acne from the inside out.

You don’t have to live with adult acne, and with so many over-the-counter and prescription treatments, it’s easier than ever to get rid of it.